Organic Formula - Brand Name or Generic?

Updated on August 13, 2010
A.C. asks from Hamilton, OH
8 answers

hi -
I just adopted a 2 week old baby and have thought seriously about using an organic formula (she is currently on Similac Advantage). I have several questions...
1) one of the things I like about the similac advantage is the prebiotics, however I do not care for the 2nd ingredient being sugar. I'm also not crazy about the organic similac due to the sweetener being from evaporated cane juice. Are there any other organic infant formulas with prebiotics?
2) Earths Best formula appear identical to the generic "parent's choice". has anyone used the "generic" brands of organic milk infant formula (e.g. Parents choice from WalMart, President's Choice from Krogers) ? if yes any advantages/disadvantages? i did notice whey as the 1st ingredient and milk was the 3rd


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So What Happened?

Thank you everyone for the wonderful responses! I will look into the milk share program but in the meantime have decided to go with Earth's Best. I originally liked Baby's Own (VERY MUCH) but my pediatrician was not excited about the higher protein content (I think it was 2.6 as opposed to 2.2). The concern was related to kidney function with the higher protein content). Once she is old enough (if I'm not using milk share) I will switch to Baby's Own.

Thanks again – you all are fantastic!

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answers from Cleveland on

Only thing I would suggest in regards to generic, is look at how many bottles it actually makes when compared to name brand formula. In some cases you use more powder per ounce of water with generic, so you actually aren't saving any money. Otherwise my first 3 did just fine on generic.

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answers from Indianapolis on

I'll give you the same advice our pediatrician gave us when I had to start chemo and formula feeding.

The name brands can verify their clinical claims because they've conducted the research and done the studies, submitted them to the FDA and received approval to make those claims. Generic manufacturers can not.

Please don't be concerned with sugar being an ingredient in formula. The nutritional needs of an infant are MUCH different than those of a toddler, child and adult. Sugar is very likely a needed source of energy in addition to the lactose source (carbs).

Please ask your pediatrician to make sure they concur with your concerns and your choices. While there is unlikely to be any forseeable harm, it's always best to discuss with your pediatrician who has guided many families through a similar scenario and has access to clinical studies not made public.

Good luck adjusting to life with your new baby.

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answers from Cleveland on

Congratulations on your baby girl! I'm sure you'll get plenty of info on the formula so I wanted to offer a little different advice. I'm sorry if I'm overstepping here and I don't wan to sound at all judgmental I'm just trying to offer some different advice.

Since you are clearly concerned with what is going into your little one have you considered looking into a source of donor breastmilk? is a great resource. You may be able to skip the formula all together or only have to give her some formula. Also, did you know it was possible to induce lactation and thus be able to breastfeed your child. I have no clue if you'd be at all interested, but if you are I can give you some information about that as well.

Also, you can buy probiotics for infants and add it to her formula so don't let the prebiotics be a limiting factor on trying to give your little one the very best you can.

Oh, and one more thing..LOL.. I'm not sure if you are aware since it can be a little confusing but evaporated cane juice is sugar. I'm not sure why they choose to call it something else when putting it into organic products. Maybe it's because it makes it sound fancier.

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answers from Cincinnati on

Evaporated cane juice is another name for non-processed sugar (it is considered healthier than "sugar," which is usually processed, and is usually the sweetener in organic products since processed sugar is rarely organic).

I would just like to throw another name into the fray: we used Baby's Only Organic Formula, made by Nature's One.

I liked this formula for a couple of reasons. First, metal cans often have a plastic liner that is NOT BPA-free (this includes Earth's Best) and often the included scoop is also NOT BPA-free. Baby's Only includes no BPA in the can or the scoop. You can find the ingredient list here: You can buy it at the Whole Foods in Rookwood Commons.

As a final note, the formula is called "Toddler Formula" instead of "Baby Formula." As you can see from the ingredient list, it is comparable to the other baby formulas on the market. I also personally contacted the company (which you are also welcome to do) and asked them, to make certain that this was appropriate for small infants as well as toddlers. This is because Nature's One likes to encourage breastfeeding for the first year of life. I don't like this propaganda style, particularly, but did not object to the extent that I wouldn't use a wonderful product.

Good luck.

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answers from Indianapolis on

HI there,

Congratulations on your adoption! How exciting! I have two adopted children - one 3 years and one 4 months. I'm so glad Terra mentioned I learned about it with my 2nd and he has been almost exclusively breastfed as a result. I have 3 donor moms who have been so wonderful. With Milkshare, unlike the milk bank, money cannot be exchanged for milk. It's a group dedicated to providing breastmilk to as many as it can. Some women produce way more than their child can consume and they are happy to share. You do need to take time to get to know your donor moms and ask lots of questions about health history etc. Mine have all been very forthcoming with medical info and I feel very comfortable with the matches I've made.
Self lactation is another option and worth looking into. In my adoption support group, which I'd also be happy to tell you more about, some have tried without much success but I've heard it is possible.
When I've had to use formula, I've used Earth's Best but will look into the Baby's Only after reading these posts. Happy first few weeks as a mom...they are crazy but so worth it!

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answers from Fort Wayne on

I switched from a name brand to parent's choice several months ago. My 8 month old does very well on it. We noticed he was even spitting up less. All the formulas have to go through the same testing & requirements from the FDA. So in my opinion it's not worth the extra money just for the name on the packaging. Good luck & congrats on your little one!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Columbus on

Be carefull with the Walmart brand formulas, they have been known to have recalls due to melamine being in the product.

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answers from Minneapolis on

All three of my children used Target brand (now called OneUp I believe?) formula. Almost half the cost :) I also have always used Target brand diapers fyi.
They are now 14, 11 and 1 1/2. All are perfectly healthy and normal size for their age. I asked their pediatrician numerous times and they consistenetly said that it was fine.

And CONGRATS on your little girl! Such a joy. :)

1 mom found this helpful
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