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Local community groups helping to address baby formula shortage

MONTEREY COUNTY, Calif.  (KION-TV)-  The need for baby formula is getting worse. Across the country, parents are struggling to find it.

Costs are up.

“Those that we serve are getting both hits at the pump and also in rent, but also at the grocery store,” said Melissa Kendrick, the Executive Director of the Food Bank for Monterey County.

“We are seeing more of those turning to us. Specifically, we have a critical need for formula and baby products.”

To help parents, the Food Bank for Monterey County launched the Diapers and Dignity program which partners with other groups like All-In Monterey.

“Now with the formula shortage we have people calling us who are saying I'll pay you for formula because they can't find it at the grocery store,” said Tanya Kosta, president and founder of All-In Monterey. “With any extra donations we have, we buy formula.”

But supply slowdowns are a problem. The food banks says, once the formula come in, it's gone.

“We are continuously ordering these products but we have long lead times now,” said Kendrick.

The food bank and other community groups are not just seeing the need for formula, it’s also seeing the need for diapers and women's feminine products.

“It's always been formula, diapers, and feminine products,” said Kosta.

The FDA advises parents to not make their own formula but instead check in with their child's healthcare provider to see if their feeding routine needs to be changed.

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Ana Torrea

Weekend Anchor/Reporter for KION News Channel 5/46

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