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Food and Nutrition Assistance Research Database

Project: Infant Formula Prices and Availability
Award Year: 2001
Amount of award, not applicable; conducted by ERS staff.
Institution: Economic Research Service, USDA
Principal Investigator: Victor Oliveira
Status: Ongoing
Detailed Objective: The study examines effects on the infant formula market of USDA's Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, infants, and Children (WIC) infant formula rebate program.

The USDA's Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) infant formula rebate program began in the late 1980s when rising infant formula costs led several States to negotiate contracts with the manufacturers. In exchange for the rebates, the manufacturers are given exclusive rights to provide infant formula to WIC participants, who now account for over half of all infant formula sold in the United States. While net prices to WIC have declined, the retail price of infant formula has continued to increase. In October 2000, Congress directed ERS to report on the "number of suppliers of infant formula in each state or major marketing area, and to compare the cost of formula that is included in the WIC rebate program versus the cost of the formula that is not in the WIC rebate program" (H.R. 106-948).

Topic: Program Operations, WIC
Dataset: IRI Infoscan data
Output:
Oliveira, V., and D. Davis. Recent Trends and Economic Issues in the WIC Infant Formula Rebate Program, Economic Research Report No. 22, USDA, ERS, August 2006.
Oliveira, V., and M. Prell. "Sharing the Economic Burden: Who Pays for WIC's Infant Formula?," Amber Waves, Vol. 2, Issue 4, USDA, ERS, September 2004.
Oliveira, V., M. Prell, D. Smallwood, and E. Frazão. Infant Formula Prices and Availability: Final Report to Congress, E-FAN-02-001, October 2001.
Oliveira, V., M. Prell, D. Smallwood, and E. Frazão. WIC and the Retail Price of Infant Formula, Food Assistance and Nutrition Research Report No. 39, USDA, ERS, June 2004.
Oliveira, V., M. Prell, E. Frazão, and D. Smallwood. Infant Formula Prices and Availability: An Interim Report to Congress, E-FAN-01-006, USDA, ERS, April 2001.
Prell, M. An Economic Model of WIC, the Infant Formula Rebate Program, and the Retail Price of Infant Formula, Food Assistance and Nutrition Research Report No. 39-2, USDA, ERS, December 2004.

Last updated: Thursday, July 05, 2012

For more information contact: Victor Oliveira

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