Parents in Louisiana would drive 604 miles to secure baby formula, survey reveals

Published 10:18 am Wednesday, October 19, 2022

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  • 10% of Louisiana parents admit that when they find these baby products, they purchase more than they need and stockpile them.
  • The average parent said they would drive 288 miles to secure their stock of baby formula.
  • Interactive map included showing the distance parents in each state are prepared to travel for baby formula. 

Half a year into the nationwide baby formula shortage and with no foreseeable end in sight, parents are still struggling among scarcity of these products. In the six weeks leading up to July 24th, more than one-fifth of formula products were out of stock and in states like Colorado and Kansas, stock levels dropped below 60% in July. Scouring for alternative solutions, desperate parents were forced to drive hours on end in search of supplies for their children; paying expensive courier costs to ship products from out of state, or scammed into paying exorbitant prices to fraudulent suppliers.

Faced with this dilemma, just how far are desperate parents willing to drive to secure baby formula? It is a question posed to 4,008 parents in a survey commissioned by CouponBirds. The survey revealed that parents in Louisiana would drive 604 miles for baby formula among the shortage. This is compared to a national average of 288 miles.

Broken down by states, Vermont parents appear the most desperate, saying they would drive a significant 813 miles on average to get baby formula – that’s approximately the distance to Pennsylvania and back (over 11 hours!). This figure was comparatively lowest in West Virginia, with the average parent saying they would drive just 66 miles for formula.

Interactive map showing the distance parents in each state are prepared to travel for baby formula (click on ’embed’ to host on your site)

It’s perhaps natural for parents to want to buy in bulk when they do have luck finding stock of formula products, however, are they buying more than they actually need? While some suggest global supply chain issues as the cause of the formula product scarcity, and others blame the government. Could stockpiling by anxious parents be further exacerbating the problem?

It was also revealed that 1 in 10 (10%) Louisiana parents admit that when they find these baby products, they purchase more than they need and stockpile them. This is compared to a national average of 22%.

Among a stock crisis of formula products, it is understandable why parents would be tempted to hoard and stockpile these items when they do happen to find them available,” says Tricia Smith of CouponBirds. ‘However, it’s important to understand that stockpiling formula products – especially in a nationwide shortage – can further exacerbate supply issues and leave other parents without supplies for their children.”