Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on Friday issued a proclamation allowing the state attorney general to investigate reports of baby formula price gouging. There is a nationwide shortage of baby formula, due in large part to a February recall after a bacterial infection in four children.
Brown’s announcement said the proclamation was in response to reports of unusual price increases. And she’s encouraging Oregonians to report if they believe they have encountered excessive prices.
“Many Oregon families across the state rely on baby formula to nourish their newborns and children, and it is critical that they can easily access this nutrition without abnormally increased prices,” Brown said in a statement. “This proclamation empowers the Attorney General and the Oregon Department of Justice to investigate instances where price gouging on baby formula may be happening, and to take appropriate action if businesses are found to be in violation.”
Anyone who believes they have seen what they consider unusually high prices can contact the Oregon DOJ consumer protection hotline at 877-877-9392. More information can be found at www.OregonConsumer.gov.
Baby formula shortage fueling spike in milk bank interest
The U.S. baby formula shortage has sparked a surge of interest among moms who want to donate breast milk to help bridge the supply gap as well as those seeking to keep their babies fed.
It’s a pathway that won’t work for every formula-fed baby, especially those with special dietary needs, and it comes with challenges because milk banks prioritize feeding medically fragile infants.
GOP’s new midterm attack: Blaming Biden for formula shortage
The nationwide shortage of baby formula is quickly becoming the GOP’s latest election-year attack on President Joe Biden. Republicans are seeking to lay the blame at the feet of an unpopular president heading into the midterm elections.
Biden says there’s “nothing more urgent we’re working on” and has pushed back on criticism that his administration’s response has been lacking. The White House has said using the Defense Production Act is a possibility, something Republicans have said Biden should do.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.