A Texas restaurant owner is giving away free baby formula amid nationwide shortages, CBS News reported Thursday.
Benji Arslanovski, owner of the Texas-based restaurant Our Place, has purchased baby formula through US Foods, his restaurant’s supplier, and shared that the formula was available via Our Place’s Facebook page, CBS News reported. Arslanovski said he double checked with his supplier to make sure that other retailers and medical centers weren’t asking for the formula supply before he went ahead and purchased it, according to CBS News. Arslanovski purchased 56 cases of Gerber baby formula to give away at his restaurant.
Thus far, he’s given away more than 300 cans of the formula, the outlet reported.
— Caroline Vandergriff (@c_vandergriff) May 17, 2022
Arslanovski spoke with CBS News, telling the outlet he originally planned to charge people for the formula, but changed his mind once he saw their reaction.
“I was originally going to charge the cost [of the formula], but when the moms were so happy that they found some formula, I couldn’t charge them,” he explained to the outlet. (RELATED: Biden Admin Knew The Baby Formula Shortage Was Coming In February)
In addition, Arslanovski shared with USA Today that he wanted to give back to his community because of the kindness they showed him during the COVID-19 shutdowns in 2020.
“The community has been great to me during COVID,” Arslanovski said. “Business would stop by, they would tip servers, even though we weren’t open for dining. Every day was a blessing. So this is my way of returning the favor of how they took care of me.”
A nationwide baby formula shortage has entered its second month with 40 percent of top baby formula products being out of stock as of April 24. President Joe Biden invoked the Defense Production Act (DPA) amid the critical shortages Wednesday.