IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI) - Due to many factors in the supply chain and a recent recall on baby formula, a shortage is now plaguing the nation. For nearly 50% of families who are relying on the Women Infant and Children's (WIC) for their formula, the program is trying to help those families find some solutions.
"Fortunately, we're able to offer alternates to the Similac brand, which is then the recall the item. But that transition can be challenging for, for families," Director of WIC for the State of Idaho Leah Sallas said.
Sallas adds while the transition can be challenging, it will keep the baby healthy and happy.
"But sometimes there's a difference in taste or just a preference from from the infant. So the transition sometimes takes a little a little while."
Sallas also says those who participate in the WIC program are being encouraged to find those alternative brands despite the shortage and will continue to provide that aid.
"We're encouraging our families to just purchase whatever formula is on the shelf and will pay for it during this time because we realize that there's not many options out there. So if they find a formula that that will work for them, then we will will pay for that."
Sallas also says making your own homemade formula is a bad idea.
"Homemade infant formula doesn't have the the correct nutrition balance that an infant needs. So they're not able to get all of the nutrients they need for growth and development. And it also could have the wrong dilutions. So that could really cause problems for their kidneys or their stomach or other internal organs. So it can be really detrimental to to do a homemade formula."
With formula being a challenge to find in stores, Ariel Jackson with the Idaho Falls Community Food Basket says they are happy to help where they can.
"We're trying really hard to fill every need, but we rely on donations to get us through our baby needs. We get donations from doctor's offices and and people whose babies aren't using formula anymore," Jackson said.
She says they're grateful they can ease the stress of young parents desperate for finding formula for their little one.
"We even had a gal last week who called and had to search three different cities for a specific formula. And we happened to have some that we could give her," she said. "Well, we're really happy that we can meet that need. I can see it happening more and more. "
Jackson says while they have the supply, parents can come to their distribution center on 245 N Placer Ave in Idaho Falls during their operating hours. She says they also will accept any donations of people in the area who want a chance to help these young parents in need as well at the site.