Why is biggest baby formula plant in US STILL shut down after three months?
The biggest baby formula supplier in the U.S. has denied its Michigan plant is responsible for the deaths of two children despite the FDA closing it down.
The plant was shutdown nearly three months ago after a bacterial infection caused the deaths and other serious illnesses.
In mid-February Abbott Laboratories issued a nationwide baby formula recall and ceased operations at its plant in Sturgis, Michigan amid reports of babies contracting bacterial infections from its products.
An Abbott spokesperson told DailyMail.com Tuesday that 'thorough investigation' by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Abbott revealed 'infant formula produced at our Sturgis facility is not the likely source of infection in the reported cases and that there was not an outbreak caused by products from the facility'.
However, despite the findings of the investigation, the plant remains shuttered nearly three months later, fueling the nationwide baby formula shortage.
The FDA - which said it found food safety violations at the plant, as well as five strains of Cronobacter, a bacteria that can cause blood infections and meningitis - has refused to say when the plant can resume operations.
Abbott claims they are 'working closely with the FDA to restart operations' at the plant, with the spokesperson noting: 'We continue to make progress on corrective actions and will be implementing additional actions as we work toward addressing items related to the recent recall'.
The FDA told DailyMail.com it was holding discussions with 'Abbott and other manufacturers to increase production of different specialty and metabolic products' but refused to say when the Sturgis plant could reopen.
The formula shortage, which has become a national crisis, was triggered by supply chain issues, but spiked with the closure of the Abbott plant.