First lady Jill Biden and Surgeon General Vivek Murthy are slated to meet the second flight carrying infant formula from overseas when it arrives at Dulles International Airport just outside the nation’s capital on Wednesday, the White House announced.
The military plane is taking off from Ramstein Air Base in Germany and is expected to transport more than 100,000 pounds of infant formula, or roughly 1 million 8-ounce bottles of Nestlé formula, the White House said in an announcement Tuesday. FedEx Express, which is operating the flight, will then move the formula to a Nestlé distribution center in Pennsylvania.
This is the second such flight to arrive in the U.S. as part of “Operation Fly Formula,” a program President Biden launched last week to expedite shipments of baby formula from overseas to mitigate a national shortage.
The first flight landed in Indiana on Sunday and was greeted by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.
The first lady is fresh off a trip to Latin America, having arrived back at the White House on Monday. Biden is on his way back from his first presidential trip to Asia.
The White House has been grappling with the baby formula shortage amid pressure to address the problem.
In addition to ordering the formula flights, Biden also invoked the Defense Production Act to speed up production of formula domestically.
The shortage stems from the shutdown of an Abbott Nutrition factory in February due to safety concerns about certain formulas produced at the plant in Michigan.
Earlier this month, the Biden administration reached an agreement with Abbott to reopen the facility. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Robert Califf said last week that it would be a matter of weeks before the Abbott plant is up and running again.
Source: The Hill