Washington DC: Regulators have unveiled their plan to allow foreign baby formula manufacturers to stay on the market long term, an effort to diversify the nation’s tightly concentrated industry and prevent future shortages.
The Food and Drug Administration said recent entrants to the U.S. market will have until October 2025 to make sure their formulas comply with federal standards for nutrition, labeling, and manufacturing. The agency noted that some companies should be able to meet those requirements sooner.
The U.S. has been forced to turn to foreign manufacturers to boost formula supplies since February when FDA inspectors temporarily shuttered the nation’s largest domestic formula factory due to bacterial contamination. In May, the FDA eased federal import regulations and the US brought the equivalent of 300 million bottles of formula into the country, according to the FDA.
“Manufacturers from around the world have demonstrated their commitment to helping bolster U.S. supply and, in turn, we are committed to continuing these flexibilities for their products to safely remain on the market,” FDA Commissioner Robert Califf said in a statement.