When choosing infant formula, parents usually decide based on the nutrition, safety record, range of products, availability and prices. This is an unbiased comparison of Similac and Enfamil, the two largest baby formula manufacturers, on these parameters.
edit Products Available
Enfamil offers a wide range of formulas. Expecta R Lipil is for pregnant women, and supports baby eye and brain development during pregnancy. 16 products are available for infants between 0 and 1 years, including Enfamil R Premium (supports overall development), Enfamil R Restfull (helps infants feel full longer), and Enfamil R EnfaCare (for premature infants). Enfamil has 3 brands for todders age 10 to 36 months: Enfagrow Gentlease R Next Step, Enfagrow Soy Next Step, and Enfagrow Premium Next Step. It also has 1 product for toddlers age 1 to 3 years: Enfagros Premium Flavors.
Similac also offers a wide range of products. Similac Prenatal provides vitamins, minerals and DHA for pregnant women. They offer 11 products for infants, include Similac Advance, Similac Sensitive and Similac Expert Care NeoSure. They also have a range for toddlers to ensure they receive balanced nutrition.
edit Types of Infant formula
Both Enfamil and Similac are available in various forms like milk based, soy based, (in case there's a milk protein allergy) iron fortified etc. In the following video, Helen Counts, MD discusses the different types of infant formula available and what is best for a newborn.
The nutritional value of Enfamil varies depending on the product. Enfamil PREMIUM formula for newborns has 2.1g of protein, 5.3g of fat, 11.2g of carbohydrates, 860 mg of linoleic acid, 300IU of vitamin A, 75 IU of vitamin D, 16 mcg of folic acid and 17mg of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) per 5 fluid ounces.
The nutritional value of Similac also varies depending on the product. Similac Advance has 2.07g of protein, 5.4g of fat, 11.2g of carbohydrate, 1000mg of linoleic acid, 300 IU of vitamin A, 75 IU of vitamin D, 15 mcg of folic acid, and an unspecified amount of DHA per 5 fluid ounces.
Enfamil products vary in price, but they cost approximately $25 per 23.2 oz.
Similac products also vary in price, but standard formula costs approximately $25 per 23.2 oz.
Both Enfamil and Similac have a storefront on Amazon.com, and the current prices for their products can be found on Amazon's website.
Availability of Enfamil products varies by country. They are available in North and South America, Europe, and East and South-East Asia.
Similac is sold in the United State, Canada, the Caribbean, Ireland, Pakistan and other countries.
In the United States, both Enfamil and Similac are sold by all major retailers like WalMart, Costco (limited variety) etc. as well as online retailers like Amazon.com and on the product websites enfamil.com / similac.com.
edit Safety Recall Incidents
In December 2011, Walmart pulled a batch of Enfamil infant formula from stores after a newborn boy in Missouri died from a rare bacterial infection. However, the FDA later said this was unnecessary and that there was no trace of the bacteria in the products.
While there are several options available for both Enfamil and Similac, viz.. powder vs concentrated liquid vs ready to drink, milk or soy based etc. the following video provides some general guidelines in choosing a baby formula: