SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The worsening baby formula shortage has had parents worried, searching high and low only to find empty store shelves.
22News spoke with parents about the stress the shortage is causing them.
22News also spoke with the CEO of Tapestry Health about how the shortage has created a stigma around people not choosing to breastfeed.
“I bottle feed and I can’t find it anywhere. I have to go all the way to Springfield to get her formula. It’s scary,” said Melissa Rosado of Springfield.
While the Federal Government is passing legislation to boost baby formula manufacturing, some frustrated parents are tired of hearing “just breastfeed” in the meantime.
Christina of Northampton told 22News, “Some misconceptions is that breastfeeding is natural and easy to do. That’s completely inaccurate. There are a lot of reasons why people can’t or don’t choose to breastfeed and that’s their choice, so it’s really sort of not only inaccurate but offensive. Almost just to tell people that they should just breastfeed if they can’t find the formula.”
The CEO of Tapestry Health, Cheryl Zoll explains that breastfeeding isn’t the simple answer to the baby formula shortage, and rather than ‘breast is best,” they are saying “fed is best.”
Cheryl Zoll said, “Breastfeeding is a healthy choice, but it’s not the only choice. For some people, it’s a medical issue. For some, it’s a physical issue. We have parents of every gender and some are able to chest feed. This is another area again you can raise a healthy child in many ways, and it’s really important to respect and support people’s choices, whatever those choices are.”
In the meantime, Zoll recommends people who are struggling to reach out to their pediatrician for help.
Tapestry also provides services if you qualify.