Greenville babies in crisis

The baby formula crisis sweeping the nation has firmly landed in Greenville.

The wait for certain types of powdered baby formula continues to unnerve new parents.

Babies who have certain food allergies or sensitivities are in dire straits across the entire country and it is prevalent in Greenville.

Supply chain issues with shipments of infant formula, coupled with the voluntary recall by the largest producer of infant formula, Abbott Nutrition, has sent parents scrambling.

Abbott’s most popular powdered formula brands, Similac, Alimentum and Elecare, were recalled back in February of this year due to potential salmonella poisoning.

This has placed American parents in an unprecedented position.

The Alabama Department of Public Health is currently monitoring the available supply of formula, but they have no control over distribution.

Locally, every parent dependent on infant formula has been hit by the shortage.

Phillip Graham, the manager of the local Piggly Wiggly grocery store located at 205 Cedar Street in Greenville, said, “As soon as we get any in, it flies off the shelves.”

The Piggly Wiggly has been out  for three weeks now and has no idea when a new shipment will arrive.

The manager at the Super Foods grocery store, located at 175 Greenville By-pass, did not wish to speak on the record about the shortage.

He did show the bare shelves that are usually stocked with formula and expressed his concerns for the parents in our community.

The shelves at the local Walmart Superstore at 501 Willow Lane in Greenville, were as bare as the rest.

The manager there could not speak to the press due to corporate guidelines.

The mothers standing in front of the empty formula shelves all had the same questions and concerns: When will they get some more? Where can I find my baby’s formula?

Certain Facebook groups are now set up specifically for this problem.

They are open to the public and address the issue by recommending breast milk or alternatives to cows’ milk, such as goats’ milk.

Breast milk is donated by nursing mothers in the hope of helping other mothers through this emergency.

If you would like to try this option, you can find a donation site near Greenville.

Baptist Medical Center South, (334)288-2100 and East, (334)277-8330 in Montgomery, both offer donated breast milk; as well as Jackson Hospital (334)293-8000, also located in Montgomery.

UAB Hospital, (205)934-3411 also offers breast milk if you’re traveling to the Birmingham area.

Mother’s Milk Depot, located at 2016 S. Alabama Avenue in Monroeville, is also a place to pick up donated breast milk close to Greenville. Appointments are necessary and they can be reached at (251)575-3108.

If you are a nursing mother, and you can share any extra milk that you may have, depot centers are located throughout the state.

Jackson Hospital in Montgomery is the closest one to Greenville, and Birmingham offers Monogram Maternity, (205)212-6667.

Families may also try local food banks, both here in Greenville and Montgomery.

The Butler County Health Department may be able to offer some assistance in directing parents where they can go for help.

Parents can also consult their child’s doctor or nurse practitioner to see if they have any samples in their inventory.

Another option is to contact Lindsay Gray, the Executive Director of Bundles Diaper Bank, at (205)607-2112.

Although they specialize in giving diapers and wipes free to those in need, it would be worth going to their website at www.bundlesdiaperbank.org to check.

While they are located in Fountain Heights in Birmingham, their staff may be able to answer your questions or offer suggestions.

You can contact Piggly Wiggly at (334)382-3771 and on their website at www.foodgiant.com. The number for Super Foods is (334)382-6031. Walmart can be reached at (334)382-2655 and at www.walmart.com.