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Mon Jun 13, 2022, 08:09 AM

Many baby formula plants weren't inspected because of COVID

U.S. regulators have historically inspected baby formula plants at least once a year, but they did not inspect any of the three biggest manufacturers in 2020, according to federal records reviewed by The Associated Press.

When they finally did get inside an Abbott Nutrition formula plant in Michigan after a two-year gap, they found standing water and lax sanitation procedures. But inspectors offered only voluntary suggestions for fixing the problems, and issued no formal warning.

Inspectors would return five months later after four infants who consumed powdered formula from the plant suffered bacterial infections. They found bacterial contamination inside the factory, leading to a four-month shutdown and turning a festering supply shortage into a full-blown crisis that sent parents scrambling to find formula and forced the U.S. to airlift products from overseas.

The gap in baby formula plant inspections, brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, is getting new scrutiny from Congress and government watchdogs investigating the series of missteps that led to the crisis. A recent bill would require the Food and Drug Administration to inspect infant formula facilities every six months. And the government’s inspector general for health has launched an inquiry into the FDA’s handling of Abbott’s facility, the largest in the U.S.

Abbott resumed production at the plant early this month under a legally binding agreement with the FDA, but the shutdown and nationwide shortage exposed how concentrated the industry has become in the U.S., with a handful of companies accounting for roughly 90% of the market.

https://www.wate.com/news/national-world/many-baby-formula-plants-werent-inspected-because-of-covid/

If people were working in those plants, inspectors could damn well have inspected. Excuses, excuses!

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Reply Many baby formula plants weren't inspected because of COVID (Original post)
Jilly_in_VA Jun 13 OP
BumRushDaShow Jun 13 #1
Jilly_in_VA Jun 13 #2
kacekwl Jun 13 #3

Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Mon Jun 13, 2022, 08:41 AM

1. I hope Congress will be willing to fund that

since the agency has been chronically under-funded for decades (which was partly what lead to Congress authorizing "User Fees" obtained from various regulated industry entities to fund inspections at their facilities... except for food).

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Mon Jun 13, 2022, 08:51 AM

2. Don't forget

that the Slobfather GUTTED the FDA, just like he did all the other federal agencies, but especially regulatory ones.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Mon Jun 13, 2022, 08:58 AM

3. Maybe Abbott should be fined big money snd

some top brass should be charged with crimes. The government should also take a good look at all their operations.

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