As of August 1, 2022, California WIC has changed to Similac brand milk-based formulas. Soy formula Enfamil ProSobee will stay the same. Use your WIC App to see your food benefits and check the brand when you shop. The brand, type, size, and number of cans to buy is in your WIC Food Balance.
There are additional options for California WIC families who cannot find formula during the infant formula shortage.
Similac Formulas Offered by California WIC Starting August 1, 2022:
WIC does not require a prescription for these formulas.
If you currently have benefits for Enfamil formula, continue to use your current Enfamil formula benefits until they expire. Your next benefits will include Similac products.
Use your WIC App to see your food benefits and check the formula brand when you shop. Buy the brand, type, size, and number of cans listed in your WIC Food Balance.
Find stores that accept WIC, and call the store before shopping to ask if the formula you’re looking for is available.
If you have issues finding Enfamil products, try shopping at large chain grocery stores to find a wider variety of brands and sizes. For more tips, visit Finding Infant Formula.
Which California WIC Formulas are Not Changing?
Infants receiving soy-based formula with their WIC benefits will continue to receive Enfamil ProSobee. WIC will also continue to provide formulas for medical conditions by prescription when needed. These therapeutic formulas include Enfamil Nutramigen, Enfamil NeuroPro Enfacare, Similac Alimentum, Similac Neosure, and Pediasure.
Other Frequently Asked Questions About the California Formula Change
Most babies easily transition from one brand of formula to another without noticing a difference. All major brand name formulas contain similar ingredients and provide adequate nutrition for babies.
If you think your baby is having a difficult time changing to a new formula, talk to your WIC staff or baby's health care provider.
Remember to always follow mixing instructions on the formula can or as directed by your baby's doctor to safely prepare a bottle for your baby.
All standard formulas for healthy babies are required to meet strict nutritional and quality guidelines put in place by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Similac and Enfamil products contain similar ingredients and most infants can tolerate both brands without any issues.
Always follow proper mixing instructions on the formula can label or as directed by your baby's healthcare provider.
Yes. The amount of formula WIC provides will not change. Check the brand, type, and number of cans included in your WIC Food Balance.
WIC empowers parents to make the best infant feeding decisions for their families. Birthing parents are encouraged to breastfeed or chestfeed infants up to age one and beyond as mutually desired. In addition, breastfeeding and chestfeeding families receive extra support. These additional support WIC services include more foods to meet the lactating parent’s increased nutritional needs, individualized lactation education, and breast pumps when needed.
For breastfeeding and chestfeeding questions and concerns, call the Infant Feeding Helpline at (888) 278-6455, Monday-Friday 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, or text 91997 to connect with a lactation expert.
The United States Department of Agriculture requires each State WIC program to go through a bidding process with formula suppliers. This bidding process reduces costs and ensures California can provide formula to all eligible WIC families. The California Department of Public Health has awarded the contract starting August 1, 2022 for cow’s milk-based formulas to Abbott and the soy-based formula to Mead Johnson.