Abbott can launch production in two weeks Business & Financial News

Abbott Laboratories said Wednesday it may resume infant formula production at its troubled Michigan plant in two weeks.

The company recalled some infant formulas in February, including some Similac products made at the Sturgis factory, following complaints that children who ate the products could become infected with the bacteria.

The day before, US retailers, including Target Corp, CVS Health Corp and Walgreens Boots Alliance, said they had limited purchases of the infant formula due to a lack of supply.

Following approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Abbott will first resume production of Alicare, Elementum and Metabolic formulas, followed by Similac and other brands.

Once production resumes, it takes six to eight weeks for the products to return to the shelves.

Abbott was a major supplier of milk powder to the United States, and the recall caused shortages nationwide, forcing several major retailers to block purchases.

The FDA says it is working with manufacturers to reduce supply problems and that most companies have reached or exceeded capacity.

In February, top supplier Abbott Laboratories recalled some infant formulas, including Similac, made at its Michigan plant, following complaints about bacterial infections in infants consuming the products.

The FDA said it was working with Abbott and other manufacturers to reduce supply problems and take a number of steps.

The agency said many infant formula manufacturers are reaching or exceeding capacity levels to meet current demand and are buying more infant formula in April than the month before the recall.

“We are making every effort to ensure that adequate production is available when and where they are needed,” FDA Commissioner Robert Calif said in a statement.

Ben Reich, CEO of data company Datas Assembly, said nearly 40 percent of infant formula products in the US went out of stock last month.

He added that supply chain restrictions, product recalls and historic inflation have exacerbated the shortage.

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