It will probably be July before parents don’t have to scramble to find baby formula on store shelves.
In the meantime, that shortage has some parents scrambling to find alternatives. But not all of those alternatives are on the up and up.
News4JAX found some social media posts that seemed to provide a viable alternative. Are they too good to be true? We put the claim through the Trust Index.
Posts are circulating on social media, saying, if you have trouble finding baby formula, there’s a trick you can use through Amazon. The posts say that all you have to do is go to Amazon’s website, scroll to settings and change your country to Canada or the United Kingdom, and you’ll be able to order as much as you need. The posts warn that there is a charge for a currency change and that it’s not available for every seller.
We tried to order two different brands of popular infant formula, but when you go to buy them, an error pops up saying it cannot ship to the United States address.
Amazon has a separate site for those in Canada called amazon.ca, and under its policies listed on the website, orders must have a Canadian address.
So we are labeling this Amazon hack as not true.
It’s also important to note that while the shortage is not as severe, Canada is also having some supply issues when it comes to baby formula.
Advice for parents amid formula shortage
While this hack doesn’t work, what can parents do?
“All of our pediatricians are receiving numerous calls from parents that they can’t find their specific formula brand or formula for their babies, it’s not on the shelves. What we want them to do is we want them to look for a similar brand, it may not be the same brand, and try generic,” said Dr. Richard So, with Cleveland Clinic Children’s.
Pediatricians say generic brands are perfectly safe, especially since the ingredients are the same. They say liquid formula is another safe alternative, but it is normally more expensive.
And the American Academy of Pediatrics now says most babies older than 6 months can have up to 24 ounces of whole cow’s milk a day.
But like we’ve said before, parents are discouraged from making homemade formulas or adding water to formula to make it last longer.
Experts also say part of the problem is hoarding, so doctors advise only buying two weeks’ worth at a time.
If you’re looking for formula, the government has set up a website for you. It’s hhs.gov/formula.