Utah parents struggle to find certain types of baby formula

Dec 19, 2022, 7:12 PM | Updated: 7:39 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — It may be several months since a formula shortage swept the nation, but some Utah families are once again noticing the shelves wiped empty.

Cameron Hyer explained that it’s a constant topic of conversation with his wife. At least a couple times a day, they find themselves talking about how much formula they have left for their 8-month-old baby Emery and if they need to go find more.

“When it is the last can, it’s like well, crap. We have to go search again to find something,” he said.

It can turn into a wild goose chase to find it. Recently, they found themselves driving all over the place with no luck.

“We had gone to the Smith’s in Bountiful. There’s a Smith’s over by us. There’s a WinCo over in Herriman,” Hyer said.

He said they bounced around to every store they could think of.

“None of them had any of it left.”

That’s because he was looking for a specific kind of formula. Emery can only have hypoallergenic baby formula, which right now can be hard to get.

Utah WIC said Monday that non-standard infant formulas haven’t recovered from the huge supply shortage earlier in the year. Standard formula is fine, and Utah WIC said all retailers, including stores like Costco and Sam’s Club, have a healthy supply of standard formulas.

“Formula manufacturers have assured Utah WIC that production at all U.S. plants is running at full capacity with no delays,” wrote JoDell Geilmann-Parke, vendor manager of Utah WIC.

She said the currently supply of infant formula across Utah has greatly improved from the previous 10 months. But for parents like Hyer, it’s that non-standard kind that they can’t substitute for anything else, that seems difficult to track down in stores.

“Supply of non-standard infant formulas is not yet back to a consistent and reliable level,” Geilmann-Parke said in an email to KSL TV. “Special formulas include those made for babies with allergies or who have digestive or metabolic challenges.”

Hyer and his wife have had to ask around when the shelves are empty.

“We have family in Florida,” he said. “They’ve been able to find it a couple times, and they’ll send it all the way over here to us because we can’t find here.”

In recent weeks, he’s posted in Facebook groups like Formula Shortage-Utah to find people selling extra cans from their cupboards.

“I actually had to travel out to Eagle Mountain, about 40 minutes away,” he said.

Hyer said it ended up being about a two-hour trip for three cans of formula.

“We tried to meet up with someone else in Bountiful that had some more, so we’ve had to kind of jump all across the valley.”

For families who can’t find the formula they need, Utah WIC suggests calling their medical provider. They said doctors can often provide samples or guide patients to alternative options.

Utah WIC also recommends calling ahead to stores before shopping to see if formula is in stock, or when a shipment is set to arrive.

There are also groups on Facebook, like what Hyer has found, where people will post what they need and others will post where they’re finding formula.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Unsheltered individuals seek warmth in the makeshift warming tent provided by advocates during bitt...
Ashley Fredde

County opens warming center after Salt Lake homeless advocates build unsanctioned tent

Temperatures became dangerously low across the state, making people without housing particularly vulnerable.
13 hours ago
(File) Police Lights responding to a scene....
Eliza Pace

Two employees dead at Northrop Grumman Magna facility

Two employees are dead at the Northrop Grumman facility.
13 hours ago
Eliza Pace

Hawaii family safe after boulder crashes through home

A woman is safe after a very close call with a boulder crashing through her home in Honolulu.
13 hours ago
(Salt Lake City Police Department/Twitter)...
Shelby Lofton and Josh Ellis, KSL TV

1 dead, 1 injured after two auto-pedestrian crashes at same SLC intersection

Police say one person has died following an auto-pedestrian crash near 1200 West and 600 North.
13 hours ago
Utah Rep. Ryan Wilcox, R-Ogden, wants to create better criteria for issuing Amber Alerts, saying "o...
Bridger Beal-Cvetko, KSL.com

Does the state of Utah issue too many Amber Alerts?

If you tend to ignore notifications about Amber Alerts because of their frequency, you may not be alone.
13 hours ago
(KSL TV)...
Josh Ellis

Two killed in Taylorsville shooting; police searching for suspect

Police say two men were shot and killed at a Taylorsville apartment complex late Monday night, and officers are still searching for the suspect.
13 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t Let a Ransomware Attack Get You Down | Protect Your Workplace Today with Cyber Insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Utah parents struggle to find certain types of baby formula