EL PASO, TX (KTSM) – El Paso is seeing the effects of the baby formula shortage as it is no exception to what’s happening across the nation.

KTSM 9 News crews went inside a local grocery store to show firsthand that there were some formulas on the shelves, however, there were also plenty of empty shelf space.

The Chief Medical Officer from El Paso Children’s Hospital said it may be necessary for some El Paso families to switch to a different formula. He does make a note that there can also be dangers in changing your baby’s formula.


If you’re on a regular formula just off a shelf or somewhere you could probably substitute things like that. But if you’re on a very specialized formula it could be very dangerous to try a different formula.

Jeffrey Schuster, Chief Medical Officer, El Paso Children’s Hospital

If I change formula my doctor told me that she will get sick because her stomach is very sensitive and no, I wouldn’t want to change the formula on my baby.

Jasmin Estrada, a mother

President Biden said on Friday that changes are being implemented to the Woman Infant and Children Program (WIC) to allow more flexibility in the type of formula parents can get.

In addition, President Biden also said that the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) is working to allow imports of formula from other countries around Europe.

An economics professor from the University of Texas at El Paso explained why these imports haven’t been allowed prior.

There’s a lot of perfectly good formula out there that American babies could consume but because of administrative issues and red tape companies here in the United States cannot bring products in from abroad.

Tom Fullerton, Economics professor, UTEP

Fullerton explains that one of the factors contributing to the shortage is supply change issues in addition to other factors.

“All of that has been complicated by the demographic factors associated with higher births than anticipated this year. And in combination with that the plant shut down and the product recalls in the United States and the difficulties in trying to import products from abroad,” said Fullerton.

While the formula is hard to find in El Paso, Fullerton does say that there is a good supply of formula in Juarez.

“There’s a lot of perfectly good formula out there that American babies could consume but because of administrative issues and red tape companies here in the united states cannot bring products in from abroad,” said Fullerton.

He adds that if a high number of El Pasoans go to Juarez and start buying up all the baby formula, Juarez could also face a shortage.

President Biden also said that a website has been created to help parents navigate the shortage and the availability of formula. You can find that website by clicking here.

For local and breaking news, sports, weather alerts, videos, and more, download the FREE KTSM 9 News App from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store