National

Biden seeks overseas help for baby formula shortage, House passes emergency measures

WASHINGTON (WISH) — Members of the U.S. House of Representatives approved emergency measures late Wednesday night aimed at addressing the nationwide baby formula shortage.

Two bills now head to the Senate.

The first measure would provide $28 million in emergency funding to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Part of the money is allocated for more FDA inspectors to speed up the process of getting baby formulas to market.

The second measure is called The Access to Baby Formula Act. It would ensure that families in the special supplemental nutrition program for women, infants, and children (WIC) continue to get formula during an emergency.

President Biden also took action Wednesday by invoking the Defense Production Act. Biden is invoking the act, which gives the government additional control over industrial production in emergency situations, to help ensure baby formula suppliers and manufacturers have the necessary ingredients to make safe and healthy infant formula.

“This would give the government the ability to require suppliers to direct needed resources to infant manufacturers before any other customer who may have ordered it,” Biden said.

The president also moved forward with Operation Fly Formula, which he says will speed up the import of infant formula and start getting more formula in stores as soon as possible.

“I’ve directed the Department of Defense and the Department of Health and Human Services to send aircraft planes overseas to pick up infant formula that meets U.S. health and safety standards, so we can get it on the store shelves faster,” Biden said. “And I’ve directed my team to do everything possible to ensure there’s enough safe baby formula and that it’s quickly reaching families that need it the most.”