Formula Shortage In The UK

I just received an email from Aptamil about the recent lack of powdered milk in the UK. I thought I’d share this with you just incase you haven’t received or know the problems that have been caused:

Dear Jodie,
You may have seen news about the limits on buying baby milk this week and, as someone who has shown an interest in Aptamil, I wanted to get in touch with you personally to let you know what’s going on.

But before I go into the detail, I would like to reassure you that I, and everyone at Aptamil, feel a very deep responsibility to make sure that parents in the UK who have chosen our brands can get them easily. I would like to sincerely apologise if you have recently found it difficult to buy our baby milks.

So what’s happening? In recent weeks and months there has been a sudden increase in demand for our powdered baby milk in the UK. As far as we know, the increased demand is a result of unofficial exports to China to satisfy the needs of Chinese parents who want international brands for their babies. In some parts of the UK this means that products meant for UK babies are being bought, in bulk, by these unofficial exporters from the shelves in retail outlets. This can lead to products being temporarily out of stock until the next deliveries arrive at the store.

We are working hard to resolve this situation and this is the number one priority for me and my team. To make sure that parents here get the baby milk they need for their children we have responded to this situation in the following ways:
Firstly, we have already increased, and will continue to increase, our production of baby milk for the UK. Extra supplies of baby milk are arriving all the time and we, and the retailers who sell our products, are working very hard to continually replenish the shelves in store. We are monitoring demand on a daily basis and responding swiftly where needed. This is the absolute priority for our business and will remain so until this situation is resolved.
Secondly, we have been working with the retailers who have now mostly introduced a limit of two packs of powdered formula that a customer can purchase at any one time. This is a precautionary measure intended to limit bulk-buying from retail outlets for commercial purposes.

I would like to apologise to parents for any inconvenience caused by this retail purchasing limit. We know that most parents only buy one pack at a time and so we hope that the impact of this limit on UK parents will be minimal. However I also know that there are some parents who will find it difficult, for example parents of multiple births, and we are putting in place special arrangement to help families who need more.

Finally, I want to reassure you all, we do not export baby miks from the UK as the powdered baby milk formula we sell here is made only for UK babies, and labelled according to UK regulations. The amount of milk we are currently supplying to UK retailers is comfortably enough to meet the needs of UK families and, together with the retailers, we are working hard to ensure that the milks we supply are reserved for UK babies. However, if you are finding it difficult to buy your baby’s usual milk, please try another local store or try re-visiting your usual store on another occasion because new supplies are arriving all the time. I invite you to get in touch with us if you are having problems – we are here to help by free phone, 24/7 on 0800 996 100, email or Live Chat.

In the meantime, I am committed to keeping you informed of progress towards resolving this situation.

John Sykes
Managing Director, Danone Baby Nutrition UK

All I can say is “Go boobie power!!” And I’m so glad I haven’t got the worry of whether my baby will be able to feed next week or tomorrow.

Funny enough whilst I’m writing this a cow and gate advert came on the TV!

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5 comments

  1. Very kind of you to share this, sometimes these emails can be easily overlooked. I too breastfeed so I’m lucky that I don’t have this worry, well he is almost three now anyway! But it is helpful information to anyone that does use formula. *HIGH FIVE* for boobie power and for being kind enough to share information that you know doesn’t concern yourself but may help others x

  2. I’ve just seen your comments on the formula shortage and frankly you should be ashamed. Mothers need to be mutually supportive. Stop gloating over how clever you are to breastfeed and start thinking about how a shortage affects those who don’t have the luxury of choice. Cancer, for example, has stopped a friend of mine breastfeeding and she is tormented daily by pathetic smugness like this, made worse here by the fact it purports to be in the name of sharing information. Think before you speak.

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