A claim linking billionaire Bill Gates with the shortage of baby formula in the United States has surfaced on social media. As per the claim, the shortage was created following Gates' investment in the lab-produced breast milk company.
For several weeks now, the US is grappling with the shortage of baby formula as a result of pandemic-related shortages coupled with the formulas being recalled due to a series of complaints.
Is Bill Gates Fueling Shortage of Baby Formula?
The controversy surrounding Gates' involvement in the shortage of baby formula gained momentum after Conservative commentator Candace Owens tweeted, "Doesn't Bill Gates just have the best luck? Just like with the COVID vaccineâ he makes an investment, and then suddenly there is a pandemic or shortage and everyone must line up for his product. Of course he's invested in lab produced breast milk."
Owens retweeted the tweet of John Rich, while commenting on the issue. "Bill Gates is heavily invested in lab produced breast milk? And now we have a baby formula shortage? Uh...ok...anyone gonna cover this story?" Rich had tweeted.
"It has come to my attention that bill gates is marketing a baby formula, remember he owns the civid 19 virus and the vaccine. now the formula shortage makes sence," tweeted a user.
"Bill Gates buys up hundreds of thousand acres of prime farm land in USA. Food shortages predicted. Dozens of food processing plants burn down in USA. Bill Gates buys baby formula company (not verified). Shortage of baby formula," read another tweet.
Here is the Truth
In June 2020, Breakthrough Energy ventures, a firm founded by the Microsoft co-founder to fund and support innovations, invested in BIOMILQ. The North Carolina-based company has claimed that the their product, lab-produced breast milk, is "three-to-five years" away from being introduced in the market.
Debunking the claim being fueled on social media, Reuters Fact Check reported that the shortage was due to Gates' investment in BIOMILQ. "The baby formula shortage experienced in the United States started after major suppliers recalled products. The shortage has been compounded by supply chain challenges and inflation. A fund backed by Gates invested in BIOMILQ in 2020 and the company has said its product will not be on the market for at least three years," stated the outlet.
Earlier, the baby formula shortage was also linked to the ongoing controversy over the abortion laws in the U.S. A large number of women activists and women rights groups criticized the Biden administration for forcing them to give birth to babies when the country is unable to provide adequate formula milk for infants.
In February, Abbott Laboratories, recalled some baby formulas, including Similac manufactured at its Michigan-based plant following reports about infants developing a bacterial infection following the consumption of the product.