What's the Deal with Store-brand Formula?

(Photo by JonFeinstein)

I breastfeed my babies, but I've also supplemented in times of stress and sickness. I kept a good supply of top quality formula on hand for those times, and guess what? They were store brand. It never occurred to me, when buying these off-brand formulas, that they would be in any way inferior to their pricier, brand-name counterparts. I read the ingredient list, checked prices, and bought what I thought would be best for my baby -- and my budget. And I was right.

Companies have tried marketing some of the healthier components of formula under different names, but DHA and ARA specifically, are the same -- no matter what you call them. A recent court case further supports the fact that you can get the same nutrition from off-brand formula as you can from the spendy stuff.

You can see the press release that provides details, or see this excerpt for what was concluded in the case:
U.S. District Court Judge James R. Spencer issued his written rulings yesterday following the November 10th jury verdict. Judge Spencer’s written rulings permanently enjoined Mead Johnson from making any false statements concerning PBM's infant formula, including the claims Mead Johnson previously made in Enfamil advertising that "It may be tempting to try a less expensive store brand, but only Enfamil LIPIL is clinically proven to improve brain and eye development," and "there are plenty of other ways to save on baby expenses without cutting back on nutrition." The Court also ordered Mead Johnson to retrieve from the public domain all advertising or promotional materials containing these or any other false claims about PBM's store brand infant formula.
Simply put, companies can't falsely claim that the store-brand products are somehow nutritionally inferior -- if they aren't. If you like buying brand name (especially if you can get coupons or sales that help support your frugal goals), good for you! But if you don't, rest-assured that you aren't doing anything wrong.

*This post made possible by Mom Select who informed me of this groundbreaking news for parents and offered a $25.00 Gift Card... although I would have told you about it, anyway.