How to Donate Baby Formula

When you give birth in a hospital, you may get a gift bag full of formula samples, or the company may mail some samples to your home. You may not need them because you plan to breastfeed or because you don't prefer that type of formula. If you do choose to use formula, you may end up with extra because you overbought at one point or your baby outgrew a certain brand. Whatever the reason, if you have extra formula, you can donate it to a charity or a family in need.

Check the expiration date on your extra formula. Each brand of formula has a different shelf life, so you can't assume it's still good, even if it's only a few months old. Make sure you check the date before you pass it on.

Inspect the packaging to make sure the formula has not been opened. The KidsHealth website says that, if formula is opened, bacteria can get inside, which can make a child sick.

Look up recall information to make sure the formula has not been recalled. You can find up-to-date information on product recalls, including formula, at the Consumer Product Safety Commission website 2.

Call local food banks to find out whether they accept donations of formula. Ask about the procedure for dropping off donations, such as whether you need to be there during certain hours or to meet with a specific person.

Contact local shelters, including homeless shelters and women's shelters. Again, ask about the procedure for dropping off donations to make sure your donation goes to the right place.

Reach out to other agencies in your area that may accept formula donations. Possibilities include churches, children's hospitals and charities that serve needy people in developing countries.


You may be able to mail your donations to some overseas charities. Contact the charity to find out the procedure for sending your formula, which may vary depending on if it is powdered formula or ready-to-use formula.

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