Senator Velis weighs in on baby formula shortage

Senator Velis weighs in on baby formula shortage
Senator Velis weighs in on baby formula shortage
Published: May. 14, 2022 at 11:17 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -Congress is pressing manufacturers to find a solution as many parents are struggling to feed their babies.

Western Mass News spoke with Senator John Velis, who shared how this shortage is affecting him personally and what he wants to see done to fix it.

“It’s awful. This is something that is hitting close to home, I’ve got a four-month-old and am experiencing this firsthand,” Sen. Velis shared.

The struggle to find baby formula is continuing nationwide and is hitting close to home for Massachusetts Senator John Velis. He told Western Mass News there are a few contributing factors leading to the shortage.

“There’s the supply chain issue, I think there’s inflation and I think you can also attribute it to some of the recalls that we have seen,” said Sen. Velis.

In February, the largest infant formula manufacturer in the United States issued a recall of several of their formula product lines. Now, 40% of the nation’s baby formula is out of stock.

“Not all families have the ability to nurse, that you know so many of them are relying exclusively on this formula, and this is not something that you can mess around with this problem needed to be fixed yesterday,” Sen. Velis said.

When asked about possible solutions, he told us:

“I guess trying to give my diagnosis of how to fix it, I think we need to increase production, we have to be very clear that price gauging in these instances is not going to be allowed and we have to get rid of a lot of the red tape right now to again increase that production so we can get things to the shelves,” Sen. Velis said.

Velis said that the problem must also be resolved within the Food and Drug Administration since it’s under their jurisdiction, but if it is not fixed, the state senate will take action.

“The FDA is saying they should see this ease up here in the next couple weeks if it does not, I can absolutely see this being some part of the budget that the senate takes up in two weeks where we provide some type of financial relief if we have to,” Sen. Velis said.

President Biden also addressed the baby formula shortage and met with retailers and manufacturers such as Gerber, Walmart, and Target to discuss how they can work together to help families access baby formula.