Life sciences giant Abbott is sending up to 50 flights a week from Ireland to the US carrying infant formula to help alleviate a shortage of the product.
During a recent committee meeting in the US House of Representatives, Abbott senior vice president Christopher Calamari revealed the amount of product being shipped from Ireland to help alleviate the formula crisis.
The hearing allowed US Congress leaders to urge infant formula makers and US regulators to find out what happened to the country’s supply.
During the hearing, Calamari said Abbott flies product from its Cootehill, Co Cavan facility to 12 US airports. Those flights will continue for as long as necessary, he added.
The U.S. baby formula shortage was initially caused by supply chain issues, but the shortage worsened significantly in February following a nationwide recall and the closure of one of Abbott’s manufacturing facilities, which produced a significant amount of U.S.-consumed infant formula.
Abbott said it has increased the volume it produces in Ireland for the US market. It’s an average of six to eight flights a day from Ireland carrying around 132,000 cans.
Since February, the Cootehill plant has produced five million kilos of Similac formula for the United States. In June alone, another 2.1 million kilos are to be produced for the US market.
“This year we will more than double the volume of Similac Advance powder formulation shipped from Ireland,” said Abbott.
“We are grateful for the dedication of our colleagues at our facilities, including Cootehill, who are doing everything we can to help mothers, fathers and carers receive the quality nutrition they need for their babies.”
Cootehill sources ingredients from around 1,000 Irish dairy farms and processes 500,000 liters of milk per day.
https://www.independent.ie/business/world/abbott-is-flying-50-planes-a-week-from-ireland-to-us-to-help-infant-formula-shortfall-41741497.html Abbott flies 50 planes a week from Ireland to the US to help address infant formula shortages