The House Oversight Committee on Thursday sent a letter dated Thursday to Murray S. Kessler, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Perrigo Company, demanding answers on the baby formula crisis.
“The Committee on Oversight and Reform seeks information regarding the steps your company is taking to respond to the shortage of infant formula in the United States,” the letter, signed by committee chairwoman Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and subcommittee on economic and consumer policy chairman Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), read.
The letter highlights the struggle families have had over the past several months in finding baby formula in the wake of national shortages, and consumers finding bare shelves and orders backed up months.
“Following a recall of one company’s powder infant formula products, the national out-of-stock rate has risen to 43%—a 10% increase from last month’s average. In five states, the out-of-stock-rate is greater than 50%,” they wrote, noting that parents are being forced to ration food and outsource, having friends or family members search in other areas of the country for formula to feed their infants.
“The national formula shortage poses a threat to the health and economic security of infants and families in communities throughout the country—particularly those with less income who have historically experienced health inequities, including food insecurity,” the lawmakers wrote, noting that four companies control nearly the entire market for formula manufacturing in the United States, including Perrigo Company.
“It is critical that your company take all possible steps to increase the supply of formula and prevent price gouging,” they continued, asking the company a series of questions, including what steps it is taking to help alleviate the crisis and what supply chain issues it is facing related to this pressing issue.
Mothers across the country have continued to voice their concerns over the crisis as they struggle:
“I have enough formula for two babies for 14 days,” Kayla Zurenko, a mom of four, told Fox News Digital, explaining that she has searched the tri-state area for formula for her babies. “Where am I going to find formula after that?”This was not always an issue for Zurenko, as she breastfed her children up until January 2022, but stopped because she contracted the Chinese coronavirus, thrusting her among other parents who are facing similar panic over shortages of baby formula.
“I sent him [her husband] for a curbside order and the order got canceled,” Zurenko told Fox News Digital, explaining that they were eventually able to find some at Target. After that, she tried to breastfeed again, but she realized that her milk supply “just never came back to a sustainable level” after she contracted the virus.
Watch: Parents Panic as Biden Baby Formula Crisis Hits Shelves
White House economic adviser Brian Deese on Friday said the formula shortage will loom on, explaining that it “is not going to solve itself in a day or week.”