Baby formula delivered to woman who ordered pregnancy test
twitter | @melancholynsex

Woman Says She Received Formula Samples After Buying Pregnancy Test

Marketing has gone in some strange, disturbing new directions with the advent of targeted advertising.

One woman on Twitter is sounding the alarm, saying that targeted advertising has gone too far, after receiving an unsolicited package of baby formula after she bought a pregnancy test. Is it weird? Yeah, it's more than a little weird.

Pregnancy tests can be bought at most pharmacies.

Couple holding up a pregnancy test
Unsplash | Jonathan Borba

You know what they look like: essentially beefed-up versions of take-at-home covid tests. They're a tried and true method for women to know if they're pregnant or not.

Nicole, a Twitter user who goes by @melancholynsex, recently purchased one of these tests from her local Walgreens.

Nicole tweeted that shortly after her purchase, she received a box of baby formula.

To clarify, she points out that her doctor instructed her to take the pregnancy test. As for why she received this box of Enfamil baby stuff from Walgreens a week later, it's really hard to say.

Is it tied to her rewards card?

Nicole has a theory that tying the purchase to her rewards card may have triggered this delivery of formula. Other than that, she's at a loss as she hadn't signed up for any promotions or giveaways.

Why are they mailing out unsolicited formula in the first place?

As Nicole points out, there is, in fact, a formula shortage right now in the United States — one that won't be fixed for some time. Considering the circumstances, it's perplexing that a company would mail formula to someone who never asked for it.

It's a truly weird move.

It would make sense to send formula to people who already have kids, but why send it to someone who simply bought a pregnancy test? Given the timeline, the formula would likely be expired before said woman even gave birth.

Nicole brought up some hypothetical scenarios.

The scenarios don't apply to Nicole, but they could apply to other women who are unwittingly sent formula that they never asked for. While she's the only one sounding the alarm, it seems unlikely that she's the only person this has happened to.

It circles back to the abortion controversy.

With the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, the timing of this weird formula situation is a bit suspect. Is it politically motivated or a (relatively) harmless mistake?

Oh, it can be regifted.

It almost seems like Enfamil put 'regiftable' on the box to pre-emptively shut down any criticism of this practice. Like, "here's some formula you never asked for, and if you don't want it, it's on you to find someone who does."

Nicole donated the contents of the box to someone who can use them.

In the end, Nicole chose to wash her hands of the whole thing by regifting the box and calling out both Walgreens and Enfamil on Twitter. So far, it doesn't appear that either company has responded to her.

What do you think of this?

In case you think it's a harmless example of targeted promotions, two things: first off, this level of targeting is creepy and raises privacy concerns. Second, and more importantly, this comes amid reports that Walgreens is denying people access to birth control and condoms.

Let us know what you think of this story in the comments.