▶️ Biden invokes Defense Production Act for baby formula shortage

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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden has invoked the Defense Production Act to speed production of infant formula and has authorized flights to import supply from overseas.

He is facing mounting political pressure over a domestic shortage caused by the safety-related closure of the country’s largest formula manufacturing plant.

The Defense Production Act order requires suppliers of formula manufacturers to fulfill those orders before other customers.

Biden is also authorizing the Defense Department to use commercial aircraft to fly overseas formula supplies that meet federal standards to the U.S., in what the White House is calling “Operation Fly Formula.”

“Bypassing regular air freighting routes will speed up the importation and distribution of formula and serve as an immediate support as manufacturers continue to ramp up production,” The White House said in a statement.

RELATED: FDA: Enough baby formula to go around, but not distributed correctly

Moms seeking formula tire of those who say, just breastfeed

Some U.S. moms looking for baby formula that is in short supply are dealing with another layer of stress — people asking why they don’t just breastfeed.

Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended for the first six months of life by major medical entities like the World Health Organization. But it doesn’t work for everyone. Health issues, work schedules and life stress can all make breastfeeding difficult or impossible.

Even bigger barriers exist for women working low-paying jobs, where there may not be time allowed to pump, and in underserved areas with little support.

RELATED: Oregon may investigate baby formula price gouging

House Dems propose $28 million to address formula shortage

House Democrats unveiled a $28 million emergency spending bill to address the shortage of infant formula in the United States.

Rep. Rosa DeLauro, the chair of the House Appropriations Committee, says the bill would help the Food and Drug Administration take important steps to restore the formula supply in a safe and secure manner.

Supporters say the money would increase FDA staffing focused on the formula shortage to boost inspections, prevent fraudulent products from getting onto store shelves and acquire better data on the marketplace.

RELATED: Local mom offers extra breast milk amidst formula shortage

Travis Pittman contributed to this report.

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