The financial cost of formula feeding an infant until 12 months of age.

The financial cost of formula feeding an infant until  12 months of age.

For an upcoming blog post i realised i needed to calculate the cost of formula feeding. So here it is – the main financial cost of formula feeding (water, the cost of a kettle and electricity excluded).

Formula itself

Notes:
for the sake of ease i have calculated a month as 30 days.
I have used a recommended, but mainstream non specialist milk powder for these calculations.
I have used the package guidelines for feeds to calculate consumption although i do believe these to be flawed because a) a high percentage of formula fed babies are overfed, and b) babies who are weaned according to current guidelines do not drop feeds at 7 months.
There is no way to accurately calculate wastage due to babies not finishing a bottle as babies are unique.
This calculation is for powdered milk, the use of cartons etc would increase the cost significantly.
Due to the above the costing below is a low end estimate, the cost is likely to be significantly higher!

Formula A (brand unimportant) costs £9.49 per 900g tin of powder.

The packaging states that each scoop = 4.6g and every scoop makes 1 fl oz of product. 900\4.6 = 195.6 Allowing the 0.6 for spillages (which is likely an underestimate) leaves 195 scoops or 195 fl oz per tin.

In terms of consumption:

Approx. age: up to 2 weeks, 6 feeds per 24 hours x 3 fl oz.

Total: (daily) 6 x 3 = 18 fl oz
    (fortnight) 14 x 18 = 252 fl oz

Approx. age: 2-4 weeks, 5 feeds per 24 hours x 4 fl oz

Total: (daily) 5 x 4 = 20 fl oz
    (fortnight) 14 x 20 = 280 fl oz

Approx. age: 4-8 weeks, 5 feeds per 24 hours x 5 fl oz.

Total: (daily) 5 x 5 = 25 fl oz
        (month) 30 x 25 = 750 fl oz

 Approx. age: 8-12 weeks, 5 feeds per 24 hours x 6 fl oz.

Total: (daily) 5 x 6 = 30 fl oz
        (month) 30 x 30 = 900 fl oz

 Approx. age: 3-4 months. 5 feeds per 24 hours x 6 fl oz.

Total: (daily) 5 x 6 = 30 fl oz
        (month) 30 x 30 = 900 fl oz

 Approx. age: 4-5 months. 5 feeds per 24 hours x 7 fl oz.

Total: (daily) 5 x 7 = 35 fl oz
        (month) 30 x 35 = 1,050 fl oz

 Approx. age.: 5-6 months, 5 feeds per 24 hours x 7 fl oz.

Total: (daily) 5 x 7 = 35 fl oz
        (month) 30 x 35 = 1,050 fl oz

 Approx. age.: 7-12 months. 3 feeds per 24 hours x 7 fl oz.

Total: (daily) 3 x 7 = 21 fl oz
   (6 months) 180 x 21 = 3,780 fl oz

So for the whole year…
3,780 + 1,050 + 1,050 + 900 + 900 + 750 + 280 + 252 = 8,962 fl oz for the first year.

8,962/195 = 45.9 tins, meaning 46 would need to be bought.

46 x £9.49 = £436.54

Bottles:

Okay, so from online research, most people seem to recommend 8-10 full size and 4-5 half size bottles as a minimum, ranging to double this. For the sake of ease, I’m going to assume 12 full size bottles is the purchase needed.

Choosing again a popular bottle brand, i shopped around online and the cheapest i could find this bottle for was £9.99 for 4 (and that’s on sale!) some places sold the same 4 for around £25!!

12/4= 3 packs
3 x £9.99 = £29.97

This includes slow flow teats. Most babies during the first year will migrate through medium flow to fast flow teats. Having had a look around the average cost of teats is £4.49 for 2.

For the medium flow:
12/2= 6 packs of teats
6 x £4.49 = £26.94

For fast flow:
12/2= 6 packs of teats
6 x £4.49 = £26.94

Total for teats:
£26.94 + £26.94 = £53.88

Bottles and teats cost:
£53.88 + £29.97 = £83.85

Steriliser:
I’ve chosen an electric sterilised in a brand to match bottles, obviously money could be saved by microwave sterilising, boiling or cold sterilising.

Sterilising unit – £39.99 which includes a bottle brush!

Accessories:
There are soooo many bottle feeding accessories out there! I’m pretty sure most are not useful, I’ve costed a few here that most people seem to have.

Milk storage pots (helps to measure the milk powder out in advance): £2.98

Bottle cool bags (for days out): £9.99 for 2

Bottle warmer: £19.99

Total: £19.99 + £9.99 + £2.98 = £32.96

Making the total estimate for the financial cost of formula feeding for one year –

Formula (£436.54) + Bottles (£83.85) + steriliser (£39.99) + accessories (£32.96) = £593.34

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