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Health News Florida

Many baby formula plants weren’t inspected because of COVID

baby formula shortage AP.jpeg
The Florida Channel
The gap in baby formula plant inspections, brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, is getting new scrutiny from Congress and government watchdogs investigating the series of missteps that led to the shortage.

U.S. regulators have historically inspected baby formula plants at least once a year, but they did not inspect any of the three biggest manufacturers in 2020, according to federal records reviewed by AP.

U.S. regulators have historically inspected baby formula plants at least once a year, but they did not inspect any of the three biggest manufacturers in 2020, according to federal records reviewed by the Associated Press.

The FDA has consistently inspected infant formula facilities annually. But in early 2020, the FDA pulled most of its safety inspectors from the field because of the COVID pandemic. So it skipped thousands of routine plant inspections.

The gap in baby formula plant inspections is getting new scrutiny from Congress and government watchdogs after a Michigan factory had to be closed for contamination, turning a supply shortage into a crisis that sent parents scrambling to find formula.

Click here to read more of this report from the Associated Press.