Community Healthcare Network


Baby Formula Shortage: Advice for Parents

Baby being fed from a baby bottle by their mother.

As a parent, you may have worries or concerns right now about feeding your baby during the current formula shortage. At CHN, we are here to help and offer support. Here are some important tips to follow if you can’t find regular formula:


  • Consider trying different formula brands. There are less well-known brands that are the same quality and have the nutrients your baby needs. These include: Carnation Good Start, Parent’s Choice, and store brands.
  • Try the smaller stores that sell formula. Call ahead first to see if they have formula available.
  • Do an “even switch.” This means if you were giving your baby a cow’s milk-based formula, switch to a cow’s milk one in a different brand. If your baby takes special formula for a medical reason, switch to one in a different brand.
  • Talk with a CHN provider if you have more questions. If you are interested in getting started with breastfeeding, ask to speak to a nutritionist. They can provide advice and support.


  • Do not dilute (water down) formula to make it last longer. Prepare the formula with the amount of water and powder it says on the package instructions.
  • Do not try to make your own formula at home. “Homemade formula” recipes do not have the nutrients needed for your baby. Bacteria (germs) can also easily get into homemade formula.
  • Do not use formula for toddlers if your baby is younger than 9 months old.
  • Do not give them cows milk unless your baby is 11 months old or older.

Important to know

It may take a few days for your baby to get used to a new brand of formula. This is normal. You may see changes in your baby’s stool (poop) or that your baby may try to reject the formula, but this should go away with time.

Resources for if you can’t afford formula

Ver en español