Parents in Florida Are Struggling To Buy Baby Formula As Supply Chain Shortages Continue in the State

Toby Hazlewood

But people are scalping it on ebay for a profit?

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Baby feeding from a bottlePhoto by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Supply chain issues have become a standing feature of daily life in Florida since the global pandemic interrupted the flow of goods around the world.

While Governor Ron DeSantis has promoted Florida as an alternative destination for goods being shipped into the U.S., shortages have continued. These shortages, together with the effects of inflation have pushed up the price of many products which we all rely upon, at a time when rents are increasing at an out-of-control rate too.

And now it's being reported that parents who feed their babies by bottle are struggling to get hold of baby formula. A report from within Florida on May 5 suggests that in many stores, shelves that would normally carry milk formula have been empty for weeks now.

The situation has been made worse in that one of the biggest manufacturing plants for baby formula - the Abbott Nutrition facility in Michigan - was shut down by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration after an inspection earlier this year reported unsanitary conditions at the plant.

Baby formula supplies down by almost a third in April

A recent study carried out by Datasembly has revealed the scale of the problem.

According to their data, supplies of baby formula were down by 31% from normal levels in the month of April 2022, which starts to explain the shortages being experienced by families with young kids.

With such shortages impacting upon Florida's parents, it's understandable that they will do anything to ensure their infants are fed. Many witnessed the sight of consumers panic-buying toilet paper at the outset of the pandemic, and stores are keen that parents don't resort to similar behavior when it comes to stockpiling baby formula.

National retailers like Walgreens and CVS have limited customers to three baby formula products per purchase. At Target, customers can buy up to four baby formula products in a single transaction.

As ever, some are taking advantage

As was also witnessed during the pandemic, some shoppers who have managed to stock up are taking advantage of shortages to make a quick buck.

A 20 ounce can of Enfamil Gentlease formula that would normally sell for $26.48 at Walmart (if they had any in stock) can be picked up on ebay right now, for $49.95 plus shipping - based on this opportunistic listing.

It seems that wherever there's money to be made, some are happy to make it regardless of how unfair or unscrupulous their actions may be.

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Listing of baby formula on EbayScreenshot from Ebay

Hopefully supply chain issues will be resolved soon and products will once again be plentiful on the shelves again. But for parents in Florida with young infants to feed, the continuing shortage of baby formula is undoubtedly a worry.

Have you experienced shortages of goods that used to be cheap and plentiful? Would you pay premium prices if that were the only way of getting things you wanted or needed or do you think that opportunists should be forced to lower prices? Let me know in the comments section below.

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