Transporting Formula

Created: March 17, 2004. - Reviewed: May 07, 2016.

Babies have immature immune systems, making them especially vulnerable to food poisoning.  Special care needs to be taken transporting baby formula in anticipation of feeding baby while out and about. 

Transporting Formula
Rowena Bennett

Rowena Bennett

  • Registered Nurse
  • Registered Midwife
  • Child Health Nurse
  • Mental Health Nurse

Rowena over 20 years experience assisting parents to resolve well baby care problems.


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Storing formula


Bacteria require 3 things to flourish; moisture, food and warmth.  Prepared, warmed baby's formula provides an ideal perfect environment to support bacterial growth.  However, you can restrict the growth of bacteria by... 

  • Keeping formula powder and water separate until baby is ready to feed. 
  • Storing prepared formula in the body of a refrigerator, not in the door.


Safety Tips!

  • Don't leave prepared formula sitting on benches.  
  • Don't keep prepared formula more than 24 hours, even though it's been refrigerated.
  • Don't give baby left over formula from a previous feed.  Discard any warmed unused formula within 1 hour. 

Traveling with formula


If you do not have access to a refrigerator while you are out, the safest way to transport formula is to take your baby's bottle with only the measured amount of boiled water.   Carry the correct number of scoops of powdered formula separately in a small container.  Remember bacteria need all three - food, warmth and moisture to flourish.  By carrying the formula powder separately and adding it at the last minute, you reduce the risk of bacterial growth.


Do not carry warm formula when you go out, as bacteria can quickly grow in the warm milk.  If formula is already prepared in the bottle, ensure that it is icy cold before being transported in an insulated container and only heat it just before feeding.


Written by Rowena Bennett

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