Omaha parents continue to struggle finding baby formula

And with people turning to social media to find baby formula, so are scammers
Omaha families are still struggling to find baby formula. Now add scammers and price hikes to their challenges.
Published: Jul. 20, 2022 at 6:59 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Omaha families are still struggling to find baby formula. Now add scammers and price hikes to their challenges.

Shelves at Walmart from Wednesday were sparse. It’s even worse for parents that have babies that need specialty formula.

Ann Lasovich is a parent to a 10-month-old baby that needs specialty formula.

“The specialty formula is very hard to find. So if you’ve got babies with tummy problems, it’s very hard to find that. If you’re on regular formula, you’re still having a little bit of a hard time, but it’s available,” said Lasovich.

“It’s very difficult if you’re on Nutramigen, to get Nutramigen. It’s just not available for everybody. Once you get the picture of it on [Facebook], you’ve got 10 mothers to go out to get it. And there’s only four cans.”

According to IRI Worldwide, which is a data analytics company, about 73% of the expected baby formula demand was met in early July.

That still leaves some parents scrambling.

And with people turning to social media to find baby formula, so are scammers. They’re pretending to have formula themselves and asking people to pay on apps like Cash App, Venmo, and Zelle.

The Better Business Bureau is familiar with these scams.

“The reason scammers so frequently turn to these payment methods is because they’re irreversible. So, even if you are found to be a victim of a scam, once that money has been sent, that money is not coming back,” said Josh Planos, Vice President of Communications and Public Relations for the BBB.

Omaha parents also complain of price hikes. Ann said she can find one can of specialty formula for $30. But she saw an independent pharmacy selling that same can for $60.

“Doubling that price is not fair to parents who cannot afford to do this,” she said.

Planos from the BBB says, “Price-gouging is alive and well. Unfortunately, it’s not specific to baby formula.”

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