Padilla Introduces Bipartisan Legislation to Increase Supply of Infant Formula

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senators Alex Padilla (D-Calif.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) and Rick Scott (R-Fla.) led the introduction of the Urgently Feeding America’s Babies Act (S. 4226). The bill would direct the Biden Administration to invoke the Defense Production Act and establish a process to approve the sale of European-produced infant formulas to address the ongoing shortage. Representative Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) has introduced companion legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives.

“It’s unacceptable that families are struggling to find formula for their children,” Padilla said. “There is no time to waste—we must take action on creative solutions to support the safe and rapid increase in the production and availability of baby formula that families rely on.”

“This crisis is putting the lives of America’s babies in jeopardy,” Rubio said. “We must increase the supply of infant formula as quickly as possible, and this legislation would provide the tools to do so. We cannot afford to wait any longer.”

“No parent should struggle to get the formula that they need to feed their babies and keep them healthy and safe,” Hassan said. “This commonsense, bipartisan bill will help increase the availability of baby formula, and I urge my colleagues to pass this legislation quickly. I will also keep pushing manufacturers and the administration to increase supply as fast as possible.”

“As a grandfather to eight young children, I know firsthand that there is no greater concern than parents being able to feed their children,” Buchanan said. “With more than 40 percent of our country’s most popular infant formulas out of stock, we need to use every tool at our disposal to ramp up domestic production as quickly as possible to make sure babies are fed. I look forward to working with Senator Rubio on our legislation, which requires the administration to utilize the Defense Production Act to dramatically increase supply of infant formula and help bring peace of mind to millions of families across the country.”

Specifically, the Urgently Feeding America’s Babies Act would:

  • Direct the President to designate infant formula as a scarce and critical material under the Defense Production Act; and
  • Direct the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to establish a waiver process to approve the sale of infant formulas that are currently approved for sale in the European Union and to publish safety guidelines for each product approved via waiver.

Last week, Senator Padilla called on infant formula manufacturers to increase production and make every effort possible to get parents and families the formula they need to feed their kids and work to prevent future supply chain disruptions.