Justice department investigates formula plant

The U.S. Justice Department is investigating the Abbott Laboratories infant-formula plant in Sturgis, which was shut down for months last year due to contamination, the company confirmed.

The factory’s closure in February 2022 was a key cause of a nationwide baby formula shortage that forced parents to seek formula from food banks, friends and doctor’s offices. Production restarted in June.

The Justice Department has informed Abbott of its investigation and the company is cooperating fully.

The North Centerville Road plant closed after the Food and Drug Administration began investigating four bacterial infections among infants who consumed powdered formula from the plant. Inspectors uncovered several violations at the plant, including bacterial contamination, a leaky roof and lax safety protocols.

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