How To Return Baby Formula To Target?

Target has a straightforward return policy that allows for a flexible return and exchange process for most customers. Today, we’re looking at the ins and outs of how to return baby formula to Target.

Baby Formula Target Return Policy

Target’s Return Policy For Baby Formula

Target accepts returns on all unopened and unused baby formula within 90 days of purchase for regular customers. Target RedCard holders receive an additional 30 days for returns (120 days total) if they made their baby food purchase with their RedCard.

Target does not note any exemptions regarding baby food or formula in their return policy, meaning that Target’s standard return policy applies to all baby formula purchases.

Here is a summary of Target’s basic return policy…

  • Customers have 90 days to return most items for a full refund or exchange
  • Technically, returned items must be unused and unopened (however, Target is known for being very flexible on this)
  • Customers are required to provide proof of purchase to receive a full refund (this can be in the form of a sales receipt, packing slip, or online purchase record through your account)

When returning baby formula purchased with WIC or EBT, you can receive a refund to your benefits account or exchange your item for another WIC or EBT-approved item.

How Strict Is Target’s Baby Formula Return Policy?

While Target’s return policy technically does not allow for returns of opened items, this isn’t actually true in practice.

Target absolutely accepts returns on opened or partially eaten baby formula within 90 days of purchase if you were not satisfied with your purchase. In some cases, you can even receive a refund without returning the food item itself if you can explain your situation and reason for requesting a refund.

In short, Target’s return policy is very flexible when it comes to baby food and formula. Simply initiate your return online or in person, explain your situation, and you should have no problem getting your money back.

In the case of recalled baby formula, you can absolutely return the formula to Target at any time to receive a full refund, even if 90 days have passed.

90-Day Return Window

As stated above, Target’s standard return window on most items is 90 days. This means that if you’re a regular Target shopper, you have about three months to return your items and qualify for a full refund.

After this window passes, you can only receive a refund in three scenarios…

  • If you are a Target RedCard shopper and you paid for your item with your RedCard
  • If you received your baby formula through a Target gift registry
  • If your baby formula was recalled

If none of these situations apply to you, you might not have much luck returning your baby formula after 90 days. But it’s still worth a try. Target is known for being quite flexible with their return policy, so you might get lucky.

How To Return Baby Formula

When returning anything to Target, there are two ways to initiate the returns process–online or in person.

If you purchased your baby formula in person at a Target location, you will need to request your refund in person as well. However, you do not need to go back to the same Target location where you made your original purchase.

If you made your purchase online, you can return your item through the mail or in person. You can also initiate your return online and then finish the process in person if you wish. Keep reading to learn more about this process.

To return your baby formula to a Target store, follow these steps:

  1. Bring your baby formula along with your original purchase receipt to any Target location
  2. Find the guest services desk (usually located near the front doors) and let an employee know you would like to initiate a return
  3. Provide your proof of purchase and explain why you would like to return your item
  4. If you meet all of the basic requirements for a full refund, the employee will approve your return request
  5. Your refund will be processed back to your original form of payment

If you purchased your baby formula on or through the Target app, you can initiate your return online by following these steps:

  1. Log in to your account or open the Target app on your mobile device
  2. Select “Orders” ( or “Purchases” (Target app)
  3. Locate and select the order you would like to return
  4. Select “Return an item”
  5. Select either “Return to store” or “Return by mail”
  6. If you choose to return your item to a Target store, you will be provided with a return barcode that you will need to bring with you when you make your return

If you choose to return your item by mail, follow these steps:

  1. Select the item you would like to return
  2. Select a reason for the return
  3. Select “Replace item” or “Refund item”
  4. Enter or select your shipping address
  5. Click “Submit”
  6. Print your prepaid shipping label
  7. Attach the label to the outside of your packaged item and drop it off at any authored UPS location

Once your refund has been approved, it can take several days to show back up in your bank account due to bank processing times. You can contact Target Customer Service by calling 1-800-440-0680 if you have any questions about the returns process.

For a more detailed look at Target’s return-by-mail policy, visit this page on their website.

Returns Without A Receipt

If you do not have any form of proof of purchase for your baby formula, you might still be able to receive a refund, but the process will look a little different.

First, remember that orders placed through or the Target app automatically have a purchase record linked to your Target account. This purchase record can be used as your proof of purchase.

For purchases made in person, a physical sales receipt will be expected. If you cannot provide one, you can still attempt to return your item to a Target location. However, you will likely be offered an exchange only. If you are offered a refund, then it will likely come in the form of store credit or a Target Gift Card.

Target does not generally offer full refunds to customers without receipts. 


If you are granted a refund, you will receive it based on your original form of payment.

If you paid in cash, you will receive your refund immediately in cash when you return your item in person.

However, if you paid with a credit card or debit card, you may have to wait a few days to see the payment refunded to your account. It’s good to allow about 3-7 days for your refund to appear.

When returning items through the mail, the refund process can take several weeks depending on shipping and processing times.

What Happens To Returned Baby Formula?

For health and safety reasons, Target does not resell returned baby food or formula, even if it appears to be unopened.

All baby food and formula returned to Target is destroyed and disposed of to prevent potential hazards and health risks.

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