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USA: Baby milk shortage sparks political offensive against Biden administration

The White House today pledged measures to address the severe shortage of infant milk in the United States, a problem that has sparked a political offensive by the Republican opposition against President Joe Biden.

According to consumption data platform Datasembly, the baby formula shortage rate reached 43% at the end of last week.

The US government did not specify when or how it will announce promised actions to combat shortages. According to the White House, Biden will meet with representatives from retail trade and baby milk producers.

The Republican opposition, with a view to campaigning for the midterm elections in November, took advantage of the topic to criticize the government.

Congresswoman Elise Stefanik assured, during a press conference, that she made contact with the responsible authority, the Food and Drug Regulatory Agency (FDA), in February: “Joe Biden has no plan. [.. .] When we asked the White House about the shortage, they laughed. It’s embarrassing,” he said.

“Missouri is one of six states in the United States where more than half of baby milk is sold out,” said another Republican lawmaker, Ann Wagner, adding that young mothers are asking on Facebook to get the product.

Randy Feenstra, the representative of Iowa, said that in his region, “families travel 50, 75, even 100 miles [from 80 to 160 kilometers] to try to find” infant formula.

On February 17, after the deaths of two babies, pharmaceutical company Abbott announced the “voluntary withdrawal” of milk powder production from its Michigan plant. An official investigation determined that the product was not related to the deaths, but its production has not resumed, aggravating a shortage caused mainly by problems in the supply chain and the lack of manpower.

Source: With Agencies

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