What Caused the Baby Formula Shortage?

TW

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Here's an interesting article that talks about the panic buying of formula, just like TP, and the end result. It will explain how we ended up where we are.

How we got here!
 

GBP4EVER

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Supply and demand dictates pricing.
At this point there should be no shortage of TP and no reason to see high prices. In fact the media was at fault the first time in creating a panic that resulted in panic buying and shortages.
 

IronMan

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This is what happens when Big Government gets in its own way, and can't get out of it. When you have an industry heavily regulated, and a problem like this arises, the solutions are few, if any. Under "normal" circumstances, when a problem arises with a company, their competitors jump in to get to the front of the line. There should have been no reason why the competitors of Abbott should not have been able to be able to fill the gap.

The answer? State and federal contracts should be temporarily suspended, and the competitors should have been given the chance to ramp up their production. Then, once Abbott is cleared, and their facility back to normal production levels, the contracts go back in force.

In non-government business contracts, there are usually backup vendors. But, Big Government can't get that into their heads, or get out of its own way.
 

FlaPack

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At this point there should be no shortage of TP and no reason to see high prices. In fact the media was at fault the first time in creating a panic that resulted in panic buying and shortages.
There is no TP Shortage here. None
 

PackerShrine

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This is what happens when Big Government gets in its own way, and can't get out of it. When you have an industry heavily regulated, and a problem like this arises, the solutions are few, if any. Under "normal" circumstances, when a problem arises with a company, their competitors jump in to get to the front of the line. There should have been no reason why the competitors of Abbott should not have been able to be able to fill the gap.

The answer? State and federal contracts should be temporarily suspended, and the competitors should have been given the chance to ramp up their production. Then, once Abbott is cleared, and their facility back to normal production levels, the contracts go back in force.

In non-government business contracts, there are usually backup vendors. But, Big Government can't get that into their heads, or get out of its own way.
In the 80's, Abbott and Bristol Myers controlled 93% of the market. Nestle fought it's way into the industry with opposition from pediatrician groups and those loyal to big Pharma. The FDA made it almost impossible for Nestle to enter the market as it was spun by various factions. By the way, WIC was 20% of all formula purchases back then.

Today, our well intentioned government through a patch work WIC network forces mothers to use formula because the WIC vouchers can only be used for the state specific infant formula. Can't use the money for cereal, food for the family, etc. So, why breastfeed? How about the formula value as a food voucher every time a WIC eligible breast feeding Mom has a good well baby visit?
 

FlaPack

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No saying there was during start of covid and prices got jacked up and have not come down really since then despite shelfs being full.
That’s a combination of a lot of factors. Both on the manufacturer’s side and retailers.
 
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