Costco, Walmart, and Other Stores Still Have a Purchase Limit on This Disappearing Item
A shortage of baby formula at grocery stores nationwide has captivated parents and shoppers alike for months now, with no signs of being alleviated. The problem first started earlier in 2022 when a recall of three Abbott Nutrition brands was issued after three infants got sick and one died reportedly from consuming the formula. Combined with the pandemic supply chain issues and shortages soon began popping up at grocery and convenience stores.
In April several chains started putting purchase limits on the number of products left on shelves—nearly 30% of the supply was not available. Unfortunately, the problems have gotten worse, and now up to 50% of popular brands are sold out. This has promoted several big-name chains to keep the purchase limits in place. Here is the details store by store.
Costco is known to have baby and infant formula for cheap compared to other stores, but of its stock right now, members can only buy a few at a time. Eat This, Not That! has contacted the wholesale chain for more information, but Costco.com limits the number of Enfagrow Premium Non-GMO Toddler Next Step Formula to five per purchase. Currently, that is one of five baby and infant food options online.
The Kirkland Signature ProCare with Dual HMO's, Non-GMO Infant Formula is listed as out of stock, while two Orgain kids Protein drinks and a PediaSure Kids Protein Shake are available with no limit.
According to social media reports, warehouses are seeing issues with supply, as well.
America's largest retail chain was one of the stores to only allow shoppers to pick up five baby formula products at a time in mid-April, and reports say that hasn't changed. Eat This, Not That! has reached out to Walmart for confirmation about this, but social media and other news outlets are saying purchase limits are still in place.
Official photos taken in mid-May also show empty shelves and some varieties behind locked glass.
On May 12, President Biden met with leaders from Walmart and other stores, urging them to "do more" so families can access infant formula.
Kroger's website lists some Similac, Comforts, Enfamil, and other baby formula products as sold out and others as in stock, but with a limit of four in response to the massive shortage right now. A spokesperson for the grocery chain confirmed this with Eat This, Not That! saying that purchases are currently limited to four containers per customer.
Target is another national retail chain shoppers can't go to for stocking up on baby formula. According to The New York Times, as of May 11, the company is limiting the number of baby formula products to four per purchase online, but no in-store limits.
Company executives were some of the ones to meet with the White House to discuss the issue, but no official solutions have been outlined.
While this item is hard to find now, several others may be scarce later. Here are 5 Grocery Shortages That Could Happen This Summer.