'I don’t know how I’m supposed to feed my baby': growing concern over baby formula shortage

In the past couple of weeks, the supply of baby formula is getting thinner and thinner and that's inducing a lot of anxiety for parents throughout the country.

Some moms are unable to produce breast milk while others have transition from breast milk to formula. As those shelves thin out, parents are growing scared about how they'll feed their babies.

Cara Tatarelli never imagined she'd be scrambling to feed her 9-month-old.

What's driving the baby formula shortage?

"It’s really scary. I was in tears in the aisles at all the stores panicking. I don’t know how I’m supposed to feed my baby," she said. "Yesterday I went to three different Kroger‘s, a Meijer, a Target, two CVS‘s...all over the place and I couldn’t find it anywhere. I even had my mom in Plymouth drive to a few different stores."

Tatarelli says she posted on Facebook for help and, fortunately, someone was able to donate some cans.

"Then someone else was able to find some formula out in Lake Orion so she drove out there to pick some up for me," Tatarelli said.

According to Data Assembly, baby formula has plummeted by 43% due to supply chain issues, product recalls, and inflation.

While there may be some formula on the shelves, Tatarelli says its not as simple as just buying what's left.

White House directs FDA to import more baby formula amid nationwide shortage

"When I first started I had to go through four different brands to find what was best for her," she said.

At Destined for Greatness on Detroit's east side, executive director Shadora Ford says they're working to help moms in need. She says they first started to struggle with formula supplies before the pandemic but the demand now is unrelenting.

"It keeps me up at night it wakes me up early in the morning wondering how and where will I get my next can of Infamil for the baby that’s in need," Ford said. "We have run out of formula many of times at giveaways because they’re such a great need. WIC, the state of Michigan, a lot of people are giving out our number and we just don’t have the supplies we need."

Destine for Greatness typically relies on donations but says they're also raising money to buy from a vendor as well. To help, check out their website here.

Abbott says it will be at least two months before baby formula from shuttered plant hits shelves