Over the weekend, the first shipment of infant formula imported from outside as part of Operation Fly Formula landed in the United States.
As the country grapples with an ongoing infant formula scarcity, President Joe Biden revealed on Twitter on Sunday that the first overseas supply was expected to arrive.
Nestlé Health Science Alfamino Infant and Alfamino Junior infant formulas were transported on the plane that was delivering the package.
A second aircraft of Gerber Good Start Extensive HA formula is scheduled to arrive later this week.
Each formula is hypoallergenic and designed for newborns with cow’s milk protein allergies.
The first aircraft, which took off from Germany’s Ramstein Air Base, brought the much-needed formula to Indiana. The site was chosen because it has a Nestlé distribution center.
The infant formula was placed into FedEx vans when the plane arrived. Nestlé will now take part in a regular quality control check on the delivery before it is distributed, according to the outlet, citing an administration official who was present during the drop-off.
The nationwide infant formula scarcity is becoming worse by the day, according to new data from Datasembly, which shows the national out-of-stock rate reached a high of 43% in the first week of May.
While several formulas ran out of stock last year owing to the pandemic, the problem has worsened due to supply chain issues, product recalls by some American manufacturers, and inflation.
Last Monday, Biden declared that he will use the Defense Manufacture Act to increase formula production in the United States.
The president announced on Sunday that the leftover Gerber formula will be transported to Washington Dulles International Airport on a second Operation Fly Formula airplane. After that, the baby formula will be sent to a Nestlé factory in Pennsylvania.