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INDIANAPOLIS — The first international shipment of baby formula will soon be hitting U.S. store shelves. The first batch from Operation Fly Formula landed in Indianapolis on Sunday aboard an Air Force C-17 cargo plane from Germany.

The formula came from the Nestle baby formula factory in Zurich, Switzerland.

The 78,000 pounds of Nestle infant formula is the equivalent of more than 500,000 eight-ounce bottles. According to the White House, that’s enough formula to fill about 15 percent of the need for formula nationwide. More flights are expected in the coming days.

“I’m told this shipment provides enough formula to take care of 9,000 babies and 18,000 toddlers for a week,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, said.

There are some who are perplexed by the formula shortage asking why mothers can’t just breastfeed. Well, Dr. Emily Webber with Riley Hospital for Children was at the airport when the shipment arrived and said for many mothers and their babies it’s not that simple.

“If a baby was allergic to milk protein, which is what happened with some of these kiddos, they can present with things like vomiting, or electro abnormalities, or even their bellies can get swollen,” Webber said.

Also, there are many mothers across the U.S who are unable to breastfeed.

Vilsack expects supply shortages of baby formula to start subsiding soon.

“In a matter of a week or so, we should start seeing some supply, but over the course of the next several weeks we should see an ever-increasing supply,” Vilsack said. “So, I would say in the next 30 days we should start seeing an abatement of this situation.”

That’s coupled with the likelihood that a baby formula plant in Sturgis, Michigan will be starting up production of formula in the next week or so after having been shut down for the last two months due to bacteria contamination.