Eighteen governors call on Biden White House to solve baby formula crisis

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves is among those asking Biden to be more aggressive in acquiring baby formula for parents across the country.

Updated: May 27, 2022 - 11:44pm

Eighteen governors are asking President Joe Biden to be more aggressive in acquiring baby formula for parents across the country.

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves joined the group that wrote a letter asking the White House to take action that will increase the supply of baby formula and take a deeper look at regulatory barriers on the product that has been disappearing from shelves.

“Baby formula,” the governors wrote, “is essential to 8.2 million Americans who regularly purchase liquid or powdered formula and the estimated 53% of infants aged three months old who receive formula at some point. After months of inaction, the out-of-stock rate for baby formula now stands at 40% nationwide and up to 50% in six of our states, a crisis exacerbated by surging inflation and the rising cost of consumer goods.”

Reeves, in a post on his Facebook page, said the supply chain is “truly broken.”

“I joined 18 fellow Republican governors across America in calling on President Biden to enact solutions to this crisis including the suspension of tariffs and trade restrictions on infant formula, updating labeling standards, and improving FDA procedures,” Reeves said in the post.

The governors in their letter pointed to “no singular source of nourishment” is needed for the welfare and health of the country more than “nutrition provided to our infants.”

The governors urge the president in the letter to expand the production of baby formula by using the Defense Production Act, while also urging the White House to find regulatory barriers that causes the crisis to be extended.

In the letter, the Biden administration is asked to suspend red tape that currently reduced importing baby formula from other nations. However, importing baby formula would be a short-term solution until domestic companies can fulfill the needs of the market.

The governors want the White House to lift tariffs, quotas, and other trade restrictions on baby formula until the crisis ends, and immediately updating the U.S. Food & Drug Administration’s labeling standards on foreign formula so that the needs of the American people are met.