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Similac Recall and Formula Shortage Information

 
December 29, 2022

TEMPORARY FORMULA SUBSTITUTION LIST Effective 1/1/23

What can I do if I can’t find my baby’s formula?

  • View the Temporary Formula Substitutions List. The temporary formula substitutions list provides substitutes that you may find available in stores. This list is updated regularly.
  • For participants who are breastfeeding, and formula feeding and wish to increase their milk supply help is available with local WIC staff and WIC breastfeeding peer counselors.
  • Contact your local WIC office for suggestions on where you may be able to find formula. You may also contact your pediatrician as they may have suggestions on how to obtain formula.
  • Check smaller stores or pharmacies for availability. Also, ask your WIC vendors when they typically receive new stock. During the formula shortage it may help to visit stores more frequently and buy formula as it becomes available.
  • If you can afford it, buy formula online until store availability improves. Purchase from well-recognized distributors and pharmacies. Do not buy formula from overseas as these formulas are not FDA (U.S. Food & Drug Administration) reviewed.
  • Check social media groups that are dedicated to infant feeding and formula. Members may have ideas on where to find formula. Always check with your pediatrician regarding any advice provided in social media groups.

Important Information: It is unsafe to overdilute (add more water) formula, make homemade infant formula, or use regular cow’s milk, or other milk substitutes to feed infants. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends feeding infants iron-fortified infant formula during the first year of life when breastmilk is unavailable.

Participants should reach out to their local WIC office for questions. For more information visit With the baby formula shortage, what should I do if I can't find any? - HealthyChildren.org

 

Abbott has issued a recall for Similac powder formulas manufactured in Sturgis, Michigan. These formulas may be contaminated with Cronobacter sakazakii.

The following Abbott formulas are all produced in Sturgis, MI and are affected by the recall:

  • 12.6 oz Total Comfort powder
  • 12.5 oz Similac for Spit Up powder
  • All Elecare powder Infant and Jr.
  • All Alimentum powder
  • Similac PM 60/40 lot # 27032K80 (can) /27032K800 (case)*

The following Abbott formulas are produced in Sturgis, MI as well as other plants and are partially affected by the recall:

  • 12.5 oz Similac Sensitive powder
  • 12.4 oz Similac Advance powder

The following Abbott formulas are not affected by the recall (not produced in Sturgis, MI plant)

  • Isomil
  • Neosure
  • All concentrated and ready to feeds

*If you have this lot of Similac PM 60/40, DO NOT feed to your baby. KEEP the recalled product in a safe place. Visit www.similacrecall.com and type in the lot on the bottom of the product into the lot locator and follow the instructions on how to return your product.

 

What to do if you have a recalled item:

  1. Visit www.similacrecall.com or call 1-800-986-8540 to find out if your formula is included. On the website, go to Check Lot Number to see if your product is affected by this recall.

  2. DO NOT feed your baby formula if it is included in this recall.  Cronobacter bacteria can cause severe, life-threatening infections (sepsis) or meningitis. Symptoms of sepsis and meningitis may include poor feeding, irritability, temperature changes, jaundice (yellow skin and whites of the eyes), grunting breaths, and abnormal movements. For additional information, please view the FDA Announcement and the Abbott press releaseIf your baby is experiencing any symptoms listed above, contact your Health Care Provider immediately and keep your opened or unopened cans of recalled formula in a safe place as they may need to be tested.

  3. If you have recalled cans of formula, regardless of type, you should bring the recalled cans to the store where they were purchased and ask for an exchange for a comparable product. WIC Retailers are working hard to update their inventory in response to this recall. You should be treated like any other customer and provided the same options for return or exchange.  

If you are unsuccessful in exchanging your recalled product at the store, KEEP THE CANS in a safe place and contact your local WIC office for other options.

What to do with current benefits:

  1. Use the temporary formula substitution document to find an approved alternate product for powdered infant formulas. Click HERE for the temporary formula substitution document.  Please be aware that these formula substitutions are allowable on a TEMPORARY basis.

  2. During business hours, when you are in the store and shopping for a comparable formula, scan the product using the WICShopper app to see if it is currently an approved WIC item.  If you have any questions while shopping, please text or call either of the following state cell phone numbers with a photo of the front and the UPC code of the product that you are trying to purchase.  Please provide a picture or screenshot of your current formula benefit balance, to help us determine if the product can be purchased with your benefits.  860-929-2867 or 860-883-2517.

  3. If you are unable to find an alternate infant formula in powder version after following the two actions listed above, contact your local WIC office for additional options.

 

Please note that due to availability concerns we have added larger container sizes than what is typically WIC approved. If you are purchasing a larger container size, you will notice that your WIC benefits will appear to remove more formula than may be expected. This is due to the container size. You will still receive a similar quantity of formula.

 

We understand that this is a challenging situation and is affecting many families across the country. We are working hard to find solutions that work for our Connecticut families.  This webpage will be updated regularly. Please check back frequently for the most up to date information.

 

Please note that it is unsafe to overdilute formula, make homemade infant formula or feed your baby (under one year old) cow’s milk or cow’s milk substitutions.

 

If you are combining breastfeeding and infant formula feeding, breastfeed more often to increase milk supply and reduce the need for infant formula. The more milk that is removed, the more milk will be produced. Reach out to your local WIC office for a WIC breastfeeding specialist or visit USDA WIC Breastfeeding for more information.

Please contact your local WIC office with questions. If you are unable to reach your local WIC office by phone you can send an email.  Find local WIC office phone numbers and emails by clicking HERE.  You can also reach out to the State Agency at ctwic@ct.gov or 1-800-741-2142 for assistance.