The first flights of infant formula from Europe, authorized by President Joe Biden to address the deepening U.S. deficit, will arrive in Indiana aboard a military aircraft this weekend, the White House said Friday.
The White House says 132 Nestle Health Science pallets Alfamino Infant and Alfamino Junior will leave Rammstein Air Force Base in Germany and arrive in the United States this weekend. It is expected that 114 more pallets of Gerber Good Start Extensive HA formula will arrive in the coming days. In total, about 1.5 million 8-ounce bottles of the three mixtures, which are hypoallergenic for children allergic to cow’s milk protein, will arrive this week.
While Biden originally asked the Pentagon to use a commercially chartered aircraft to move the formula from Europe to the U.S., the White House said there were no commercial flights this weekend. Instead, the original batch of formulas will be carried by U.S. Air Force aircraft.
The Biden administration called the effort “Operation Fly Formula” as it struggles to address a nationwide shortage of formula, especially hypoallergenic varieties, following the closure of the country’s largest domestic plant in February due to security concerns.
U.S. regulators and manufacturer Abbott hope the plant in Michigan will reopen next week, but it will take about two months before the product is ready for delivery.
This week, the Office of Food and Drug Administration eased import requirements for infant formulas to try to ease supply constraints, which left some brands on store shelves and some retailers rationed supplies for parents who are nervous about feeding their children. .