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Posted by: Charles May 15 2018, 04:02 PM
Coles moves baby formula behind the counter to ward off bulk-buying for resale in China

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Photo: Parents have struggled to find formula for their children due to bulk-buying. (ABC Rural: Brett Worthington)

Baby formula will be joining razors and cigarettes behind the counter at some NSW supermarkets to ensure Australian parents have enough to feed their infants.

It comes after reports that some baby formula brands, worth between $25-$35 for a 1 kilogram tin, were being bought in bulk from Australian supermarkets and on-sold to China for a profit of $100 per tin.

Over recent years Aussie mums have turned to social media and other platforms to express their frustration about not being able to get the brands their babies like, or need because they have dietary issues.

A series of fatal formula scares in China in recent years has made Chinese parents desperate to get their hands on safe products.

Coles says tins of baby formula will now be kept on shelves behind service desks or tagged with Electronic Article Surveillance lids in some stores, a supermarket spokeswoman said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Coles is committed to ensuring that our customers with a genuine need for infant formula have access to this product," the statement said.

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Photo: Coles is taking preventative measures to stop the bulk-buying of baby formula. (Reddit: puppy2010)

Woolworths won't be following Coles, saying it is not in its policy to have baby formula behind their shelves or locked away.

"Baby formula remains available on the shelf for customers in Woolworths stores," a spokesman said.

"We're continuing to work with our suppliers to increase the supply of these essential family items."

Both Coles and Woolworths have a two-tin limit for customers.

At the Coles in Sydney's Five Dock, a sign has been erected in the formula aisle saying the removal was to provide "equal opportunity" to shoppers and to deter theft.

While not commenting on the ethnicity of the shoppers, I have seen customers taking trolleys, filled with tins of baby formula, through the self-serve section. The young assistants on duty never make an effort to stop them. So much for a two-tin limit for customers.

Posted by: Alicia May 15 2018, 05:05 PM
I thought that a few of the Australian dairies were sold to Chinese companies a while back. I would have thought that there would be a lot of baby formula going into China from these dairy companies. I suppose those dairies that sold their cows and left the industry would love to be in dairying now. Strange how things turn out some times. A numbers game I suppose.

Posted by: scepo May 16 2018, 09:43 AM
China probably has more mothers and babies than we have dairy cows Alicia.

Posted by: Alicia May 16 2018, 09:49 AM
Had thought about that, but thought that most mothers have two you know whats. I suppose they have to get back to work fairly promptly after giving birth. It’s a shame that they can’t trust Chinese manufactured formula milk. Still, not many do trust Made in China.

Posted by: scepo May 16 2018, 05:49 PM
I've got to admit Alicia I have no idea how many Chinese mothers breast feed or rush back to work. All I know is that it seems they are prepared to pay an exorbitant price for baby formula from Australia. Plenty of demand.

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