President Joe Biden announced on Wednesday (May 18) an airlift and the use of Cold War-era legislation to try to solve the shortage of baby milk in the United States, which has become a political headache. for its administration.
The Department of Defense “will use its contracts with commercial cargo airlines, as it did during the first months of the Covid pandemic, to transport products from factories overseas” meeting US safety standards, the White House said in a statement. This project, called “Operation Fly Formula” (“operation flight of powdered milk”, in French), will make it possible to“accelerate the importation and distribution of baby milk”providing support to “manufacturers who continue to increase production”she added.
Joe Biden also appealed to the “Defense Production Act”, a text inherited from the Cold War, in order to require producers of the ingredients necessary for the production of infant milk to deliver in priority the manufacturers of this essential commodity to the parents of young children. “Asking companies to prioritize and allocate (their resources) production of key baby milk ingredients will facilitate increased production and speed up supply chains”underlines the White House in a press release.
Initially caused by supply chain issues and a lack of labor due to the pandemic, the baby milk shortage was made worse when in February an Abbott factory in Michigan closed, after a product recall suspected of causing the deaths of two infants. The situation has turned into a political crisis for the Biden administration, criticized for its action deemed too late.