Baby formula shortage angers Mandurah and Pinjarra mums

A BABY formula shortage has hit Mandurah and Pinjarra, and local mums are outraged.

Chinese buyers are being blamed for the shortage in premium and organic brands of formula.

Brands like Bellamy’s Organic Infant Formula and S26 Gold are becoming scarce.

Bellamy’s is selling for up to $150 on sites like Ebay.

Bellamy's is being sold for up to $150 online.

Pinjarra mum Sam Krieg said she drove to more than five shops looking for a tin of Bellamy’s last week.

“At the chemist the lady said to me that they have a box kept out the back and if I need more to just ask at the counter because they can’t risk it on the shelf,” Sam said.

“I need another tin now and my mum works at Woollies, so I called her and said to keep a couple on hold and I’ll come grab them, but they’re still out of stock so she’s going to try the chemist again for me.

“It’s so unfair on us mums just trying to feed our babies.

“I breastfed Lola until she got to the point where she just wanted more and I couldn’t supply that, so we had to swap to formula.”

Ashton Hay said she went to multiple shops looking for S26 Gold, which she finally found at Farmer Jacks.

She said it is the only formula that her daughter Kairi can use.

“Coles and Big W haven’t had it anytime I’ve been there for two months,” she said.

“It’s annoying because Kairi can’t handle any of the other formulas.

“If the Asians need it, they need it, but I haven’t been able to get formula anywhere for the last month, it is always sold out and we have only been able to get it at Farmer Jacks.”

Woolworths and Coles have signs up saying that only four tins of formula can be bought at a time.

Coles and Woolworths have put up these signs for customers.

“But there’s nothing stopping a person from taking it out to their car and coming back and getting more,” Sam said.

“The good old honesty system doesn’t work these days and what’s stopping them getting more and going through self serve?

“They think (the shortage) will get worse before it gets better.”

In 2008, Chinese babies were poisoned by baby formula contaminated with melamine.

The bare shelves in Mandurah are believed to be caused by foreign parents buying up supplies and Australians selling formula online.

Shelves are completely bare of Bellamy's formula.

Sam is calling for the Australian government to step in and for grocery stores to better police the sale of formula.

However, the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources released a statement today saying the government do not have the power to intervene.

They released a statement today saying that supermarkets “are taking measures to make sure adequate stock of infant formula are available and are talking to their suppliers.

“It’s just insane, what does the government expect us to do?” Sam said.

“It’s not like we can feed our babies something else and we can’t make it, they should stop it from leaving the country.”

Bellamy’s have apologised for the inconvenience this has caused to customers.

They have placed a limit of three tins per customer, per fortnight.

However, it is more expensive to buy directly from their website than from the supermarket.