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This post is sponsored by Bobbie Baby Formula.
When it comes to choosing the right formula for your baby, you have probably noticed that there are many choices on the market. It’s not easy sorting through the formula options, deliberating over the nutritional contents and ingredients, and trusting the company that produces the baby formula. I get it!
One of the most common questions I am asked is what is the best baby formula on the market? Many parents have been turning to European baby formulas to avoid certain ingredients commonly found in baby formulas made in the USA like corn syrup, maltodextrin, and brown rice syrup. However, not all parents are comfortable importing EU formulas because they are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and importing is not safe and can be unreliable.
Enter: Bobbie baby formula, the first USDA Organic, European-style formula manufactured in the US that meets FDA requirements.
About Bobbie Organic Baby Formula
Bobbie was established in 2018 by a team of moms who were frustrated with the baby formula options available to them. Founded by Laura Modi after her own struggles with breastfeeding, Bobbie is actually the only female-founded and led organic baby formula on the market (and I love that it’s even possible for a mom to take on the big formula companies).
Laura is pretty outspoken about how the stigma around baby formula lets down mothers who can’t breastfeed, and while I’m always pro-breastfeeding, I’m ultimately pro-mom, and I have to agree with her. I struggled on my breastfeeding journey (hello, undiagnosed lip ties) and I know it’s hard. I also recognize that there are other reasons that new parents choose or need to use baby formula. And that’s why I wanted to write this Bobbie formula review; not just to tell you about the ingredients, but also to support the mission of changing the narrative.
In addition to being a parent-run company, they have a strong in-house Medical Advisory Team which includes female pediatricians, scientists, OBGYNs, pediatric nutritionists, lactation consultants, and doulas—a strong community of moms that you can trust. And while we’re talking about the company, let me point out that the company culture is built around flexibility and compassion for parents, which is something to celebrate. More than 50% of their staff has had a baby within the last two years!
Mom empowerment for the win.
Why Choose Bobbie Formula?
We know you have plenty of choices for baby formula, so why choose Bobbie? If you have high ingredient standards (and I know you do because you’re reading this article), but don’t feel comfortable importing European baby formula, Bobbie is a great choice. And even if European formula isn’t on your radar but you just want an easily accessible, US-made formula with clean ingredients, you can rest assured that the Bobbie is a great choice for its clean ingredients, nutritional value, and easy digestion.
Bobbie is conveniently available by subscription on the company’s website. Bobbie is also available in more than 1,700 Target stores across the country. On Target shelves, Bobbie will be available in two sizes— the original 14.1 oz can and a new, larger 23.9 oz can. Bobbie will be the only US FDA regulated European-style baby formula offered in Target.
A European-Style Infant Formula Made in the US
One of the biggest reasons parents flock to this formula is its European approach of simplicity in ingredients. European formula is known for its high standards, clean ingredients, and its superior nutritional value, and until recently this was hard to come by in the US.
For starters, Bobbie formula uses lactose as the primary carbohydrate whereas many American formulas use substitutes like corn syrup and maltodextrin, which is not something you want your baby to consume daily.
European formula includes ingredients that meet EU standards. This means that European formula is organic and doesn’t use GMOs, pesticides, antibiotics, or hormones. Bobbie’s infant formula recipe is formulated with these same EU nutrition standards in mind. Each ingredient in Bobbie’s formula is organic and non-GMO. While many US baby formulas contain ingredients like GMOs, corn syrup, or palm oil, Bobbie has purposefully excluded these in their European-inspired formula — yay!
And, like European formulas, the brand works closely with its trustworthy suppliers who provide ingredients from local farms and small-batch operations. For many parents, this is important to ensure the quality and safety of the final product.
Bobbie Sources Clean Ingredients
As you may already know, European formulas have certain requirements for key ingredients, but they also have requirements for how those ingredients are sourced, which is why EU formulas are generally considered cleaner than American formulas. The US simply does not have the same requirements in place, leaving it to the manufacturer to decide if they want to go above and beyond US regulations. (Hint: many don’t.)
Bobbie’s ingredient sourcing practices ensure that the safety, quality, and farming practices are taken into account when using them in their formulas. They handpick each ingredient, understanding both its source and nutritional value. They use reputable suppliers and farmers, and they source ingredients from small-batch operations whenever possible to ensure higher quality.
Pasture-Raised Dairy from Organic Valley
Bobbie is the only US formula that sources its milk from cows who meet both organic and pasture-raised criteria. Bobbie has partnered with Organic Valley® to bring organic milk to their formula. This also means that Bobbie receives its dairy ingredients from small family farms that are USDA organic certified. This is important when it comes to something your baby is consuming every day!
Lactose + Whey
Staying small and local, Bobbie sources its lactose and whey from organic farms in the United States. Again, they prioritize small-batch processing. Note that lactose is the only source of carbohydrates for Bobbie. Some US formulas add carbohydrates (aka sugars). Another huge plus!
Bobbie uses top-notch DHA in its formula. They actually sought out DHA from algae oil, which is naturally a high producer of DHA. This DHA is an omega-3, long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid critical for an infant’s rapid brain development and meets EU standards. Note that in the US, there is no required amount of DHA.
Bobbie’s Non-GMO, USDA organic, plant-based oils are sourced from all over the globe. They use organic safflower or sunflower oil, organic soybean oil, and organic coconut oil. While Bobbie does contain soybean oil, it does not contain palm oil, which is a relief. Palm oil can be so hard on a baby’s digestion and it’s best avoided when possible.
“Some infant formulas use palm oil because it provides a high amount of palmitic acid, which is also found in large amounts in breast milk,” says Elieke Kearns, Ph.D., Registered Dietitian, and Medical Lead at Bobbie. “But, palmitic acid from palm oil can be harder to absorb, especially for young babies, meaning that it’s more likely there will be leftover palmitic acid in baby’s intestines which could cause digestive discomfort.”
Bobbie Leaves Out Unwanted Ingredients
What’s also important is what they don’t include in their formula. Bobbie does not use any of the following:
- NO Corn Syrup
- NO Fillers
- NO Palm Oil
- NO Maltodextrin
- NO Gluten
- NO Persistent Pesticides
- NO Antibiotics
Bobbie is Clean Formula
Bobbie is the first baby formula to receive two awards from The Clean Label Project, a nonprofit organization providing consumers with cleaner, more transparent product label information. The Clean Label Project Purity Award coupled with their Pesticide-Free certification makes this brand a winner in our books.
Nutritional Value of Bobbie
Here is the breakdown of Bobbie’s nutritional content:
Carbohydrates’ sole job is to provide energy. In Bobbie, you will find organic lactose as the only carbohydrate. This is a great thing because lactose is actually the main carbohydrate in breast milk! This keeps the energy source simple, effective, and remarkably similar to breast milk.
Fat is an important nutrient that your baby needs for growth and development. Bobbie uses a blend of organic oils to provide a variety of fatty acids that support your little one. You’ll find organic coconut oil, organic soybean oil, and organic soy lecithin. You will also find a significant amount of DHA and ARA to support brain and eye development. DHA, omega-3, is derived from Schizachyrium oil. And ARA, omega-6, is derived from mortierella Alpina oil, a nontoxic fungus.
Organic whey concentrate is a great source of protein in the formula. It makes the whey: casein ratio similar to what you will find in breast milk.
2% Vitamins and Minerals
Essential to baby formula, you will find all the vitamins and minerals your baby needs to support his development and growth. These include:
Minerals: calcium phosphate, magnesium chloride, calcium hydroxide, sodium chloride, calcium carbonate, potassium citrate, potassium hydroxide, potassium phosphate, potassium bicarbonate, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, cupric sulfate, manganese sulfate, potassium iodide, and sodium selenite.
Vitamins: ascorbyl palmitate, vitamin A palmitate, ascorbic acid, mixed tocopherol concentrate, DL-alpha tocopherol acetate, niacinamide, calcium pantothenate, riboflavin, thiamine hydrochloride, folic acid, phytonadione, biotin, cholecalciferol, and cyanocobalamin.
Bobbie Supports Easy Digestion
While Bobbie is most known for its European-inspired style, another huge perk that comes with that is the digestive support it gives to your little one’s belly. There are a few reasons why this formula is easy to digest.
Bobbie’s formula uses organic lactose as the only carbohydrate, which is easily broken down by a baby’s digestive system. This is also the type of carbohydrate produced in breast milk! This is ideal for baby formula because it’s designed to be digested. Most babies have lactase enzymes to digest lactose effectively.
Lactose also has a low glycemic index, which means it’s slow to metabolize and doesn’t increase blood sugar levels nearly as fast as other sugars commonly used in baby formulas. A steady energy source – nice!
Note that Bobbie follows a simple recipe and does not contain added prebiotics or probiotics. While some parents prefer these added components, you don’t always know their effectiveness when included in the formula. Probiotics are also not a one-size-fits-all, so I actually like that they left this out of their formula. I recommend that parents who would like to include probiotics in their infants’ diet look into a separate probiotic supplement.
Whey to Casein Protein Ratio
Whey is the main protein in Bobbie’s formula; it’s also the same protein found in breast milk. As you know, protein is a very important macronutrient in a baby’s diet. It helps your baby grow and develop muscles, bones, and immune systems.
There are two main proteins in both formula and breast milk: whey and casein. Both of these proteins are high-quality and provide all the required support for infant growth and development. The GI tract digests these proteins in different ways. Whey is naturally very easy to digest as it stays a liquid in the gut and is easily digestible. Casein, however, forms curds or clots (you can envision these as little small spheres) and forms in the digestive system. Gradually the acidity of the stomach breaks the casein down and will move through the digestive system.
Mature breast milk has more whey than casein (about 60:40 whey to casein ratio in mature breast milk, and 80:20 in early-stage breast milk). To meet this same ratio, a good baby formula will add whey and casein to the formula to keep the same ratio (cow’s milk, for example, naturally has a higher amount of casein). Adding whey makes the formula easier to digest and keeps those little tummies much happier!
Bobbie formula has a 60:40 whey to casein ratio, which means there is more of the digestible whey protein and has a really remarkable similarity to that of breast milk.
Pros and Cons of Bobbie Formula
As with any product, there are both pros and cons. While most of the Bobbie formula sits in the pros column, there is one disadvantage I’d like to call out and that is soy. There are two soy-based ingredients in their formula: soybean oil and soy lecithin. Soy lecithin doesn’t contain any soy protein, so this is usually not something I worry about at all. I don’t go out of my way to avoid soy lecithin.
The soybean oil and soy lecithin function as fat and an emulsifier, and both are organic and non-GMO.
For what it’s worth, I fully understand the soy concern, but I also appreciate that it’s organic, non-GMO, and is not the primary source of fat.
On another note, you will find that the Bobbie formula is a tad more expensive than other US brands. That said, it’s reasonable, especially considering the quality of the ingredients such as using Organic Valley® as their milk source.
- Organic lactose is the only carbohydrate. This keeps the energy source simple and effective!
- Whey is the main protein.
- Whey: casein ratio is similar to breast milk.
- Does not contain palm oil.
- Clean ingredients certified by Clean Label Project.
- Safe and meets all FDA and most EU formula standards.
- Bobbie meets the EU requirement for DHA in infant formula.
- Supports easy and effective digestion.
- Contains soy ingredients.
- More expensive than some US formula brands.
Give Bobbie a Try!
I think Bobbie baby formula is a great option if you are using or supplementing with formula. I really appreciate their ability to bring European standards to a baby formula made and manufactured in the United States (Vermont and Ohio!) that meets FDA standards.
They truly are raising the bar for baby formula in the US. I love that they source their ingredients from local farms and use small-batch operations to ensure quality ingredients with high nutritional content.
Their team of experts has crafted this formula to meet or exceed the most stringent standards. It is extremely digestible and tolerated by most infants, which means less gas, less fuss, and happier bellies!
More questions about Bobbie formula? Read on!
Is Bobbie baby formula FDA approved? Is it EU-approved?
So it’s important to know that no baby formula is “FDA approved”.
However, infant formula requires a thorough review by the FDA in order to be sold in the United States. This includes a deep dive into a company’s manufacturing process, facility, and ingredients. Bobbie has been reviewed and meets all the FDA standards.
The formula also meets most EU standards, but it is not “EU-approved.”
Where is Bobbie’s formula made?
Bobbie’s formula is manufactured in an FDA-registered facility in Vermont and Ohio by Perrigo, a manufacturer with a quality heritage.
How do I know that Bobbie’s formula is safe?
Every parent wants to make sure that what they feed their baby is safe. Bobbie prides itself on transparency and ensures that they meet all quality standards. Each batch of Bobbie must pass over 2000 quality tests to make sure each batch is safe. This is in addition to meeting or exceeding all USDA Organic, Kosher, and FDA quality and nutritional standards.
Is Bobbie tested for heavy metals?
Yes! Bobbie is tested for heavy metals by a third party.
How do I order Bobbie formula?
You can order Bobbie formula on their website. You can place a one-time order or you can join their subscription plan, which sends formula to your doorstep every month.
Have you tried Bobbie formula? I’d love to hear how your baby enjoyed it!
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