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HiPP vs Holle: Which formula to choose?

About 83% of parents in the U.S. will turn to baby formula. Two popular choices for European Organic Formulas are HiPP and Holle. Many parents have trouble choosing between them because they're great baby formulas!
If you're interested in learning about HiPP vs. Holle so you can make a final decision, this guide is for you. Let's take a look at this Holle and HiPP baby formula guide. 

What Are the Main Types of Baby Formula?

Baby formula, sometimes called infant formula, is a formula that's designed to provide infants under 12 months old with the nutrients that they need to stay healthy. Baby formula is a replacement for breast milk. Mothers can either breastfeed while using formula or use it on their own. 

There are a couple of different types of formulas out there. The three main types of formulas you'll find include: 

Let's take a closer look. 

Cow Milk Formulas

Cow milk is the standard type of protein used for baby formula. When manufacturers use cow milk, they alter it slightly to resemble breast milk more closely. Doing so ensures that the cow's milk has all the nutrients a newborn needs to stay healthy and thrive. The majority of children do well on cow's milk formula. 

Goat Milk Formulas

Another type of baby formula you'll come across is a goat milk-based formula. This is good if you're looking to add extra protein to your child's diet, as goat's milk has higher protein levels than cow's milk. Goat's milk-based formulas also work well for children who are intolerant to cow’s milk or lactose. It contains additional nutrients such as phosphorus, sodium, and potassium. 

Protein Hydrolyzed Formulas

These types of formulas contain hydrolyzed (broken down) proteins. These proteins are smaller than what you'll find in cow's milk protein. Protein hydrolysate works well for babies who are intolerant to cow's milk formula. 

Why Buy European Baby Formula?

European formula tends to have nutrients closer to breast milk and doesn’t include harmful ingredients such as corn syrup. The challenge with European formulas is that there are many great formulas to choose from! And, as you're about to see in this guide, they have similar benefits and nutrients. With the finer details out of the way, it's time for us to take a look at HiPP and Holle.

The history of HiPP

Hipp European Organic Formula

The HiPP brand was founded in Germany in 1899 and has been an innovation leader in baby food, organic, and ecological businesses ever since. HiPP goes the ‘extra mile’ to ensure its formulas are of the highest organic quality, analyzing all ingredients for traces of over 1,000 substances. They exceed the legal requirements needed to call a product organic. We carry their products because parents can rely on HiPP for a product range developed to nutrition science principles, meals created suitable for their baby’s age, and the most stringent organic quality checks.

A Brief History of Holle

Holle Organic Baby Formula USHolle holds itself to a high standard with its Demeter certification and is a market leader in sourcing organic ingredients from biodynamic farms. Demeter is the top certification for biodynamic farms, requiring annual renewal. Holle baby formula is free from chemicals, preservatives, artificial flavorings, GMOs, and added sugar. This is the basis for the exceptional quality of the Holle baby food. Healthy and happy cows can graze on lush fields and pastures – free of pesticides or chemical fertilizers. Parents love Holle for its holistic quality and nutritious, wholesome ingredients. It's an excellent option for anyone who wants their children to get all the proper nutrients without breast milk.  

HiPP vs. Holle: Carbohydrates 

Carbohydrates are a vital ingredient when looking for infant formula. The main carbohydrate you'll find in breast milk is lactose, which is why it's often included in baby formula. 

Carbohydrates are vital ingredients because they give your baby energy to get through the day. They also help with mental and physical development, maintain good gut bacteria, and improve calcium absorption. What's interesting is that babies are born with the lactase enzyme. That makes it easy for them to digest lactose. European formulas must have at least 30% of their carbohydrates sourced from lactose. That contrasts U.S. manufactured formulas, which don't have to include lactose at all. Moreover, European formulas can't contain table sugar, but U.S. formulas can. 

Holle's organic formulas contain slightly different lactose contents depending on which you buy. Their stage 1 baby formula uses a combination of maltodextrin and lactose as carbohydrate sources. On the other hand, their Bio Stage PRE uses only lactose.

HiPP's organic baby formulas are all based on lactose. The only formula that's specially designed without lactose is their anti-reflux formula. This formula contains maltodextrin to help babies with sensitive stomachs.  

HiPP vs Holle Organic Formulas Organic Formula Shop

Proteins: Holle vs. HiPP

Proteins are also crucial parts of a baby's diet. That's because proteins help little ones get strong and develop their muscles properly. 

However, you can't put any proteins in your baby's formula. Babies need specific proteins to ensure they get all the nutrients they need. Breast milk is made up of whey and casein proteins, although it contains more whey than casein protein. In contrast, cow's milk contains more casein proteins than whey protein. That makes it tough on their stomachs. Please read the ingredients list to make sure you choose a formula your baby can handle. Look for 100% whey proteins or formulas that contain protein hydrolysates. 

Holly baby formulas add whey to them. This helps create a healthy protein ratio for little ones. On top of that, Holle's organic goat milk formulas are a great option for babies with sensitive stomachs. Goat milk proteins are smaller and easier for kids to digest, helping Babies keep the milk down.

Like Holle formulas, most HiPP formulas have proteins similar to a mother's breast milk. 

They also have special formulas, such as their anti-reflux and hypoallergenic formulas. These formulas contain protein hydrolysates to make them easier for your baby to digest. Just keep in mind that these formulas aren't entirely organic. That's because you can't get hydrolyzed milk in organic form. Still, the rest of the ingredients in the formula are completely organic. Plus, the special formula may be just what your child needs if they struggle with cow milk sensitivity. HiPP just launched a new product, the HiPP Goat formula. A long-anticipated launch. This goat milk is Hipp’s (long awaited) answer to that fast-growing demand for this specific kind of product and helps babies with a sensitive tummy.  

HiPP vs. Holle: Prebiotics & Probiotics 

A mother's breast milk has probiotics and prebiotics that support their baby's immune system and digestive tract. Having enough healthy gut bacteria helps reduce colic, eczema, and poor immune responses. 

If you purchase the Holle formula, you won't find any probiotics or prebiotics. These formulas have a short list of ingredients, and these bacteria don't cut. The good news is that you can buy additional prebiotic and probiotic supplements. You can then add these to your baby's formula so that they're getting all the nutrients they need. 

The good news about the HiPP formulas is that they contain prebiotics. The HiPP Dutch Stage 1 and Stage 2, Anti-Reflux(AR), and Hypoallergenic Formulas contain probiotics and prebiotics. All HiPP formulas contain prebiotics, and HiPP Hypoallergenic, Anti-Reflux, Comfort, and Dutch (Stage 1 and Stage 2) formulas contain both prebiotics and probiotics.  

HiPP vs. Holle: DHA & ARA 

DHA is a type of omega-3 fatty acid. ARA is a type of omega-6 fatty acid. Both fatty acids are important for developing your baby's nerves, vision, brain, and immune systems. Manufacturers don't have to include omega-3 or omega-6 fatty acids in U.S. formulas. However, European formulas have to contain DHA. That ensures your baby gets enough nutrients! 

Before 2020, you wouldn't find DHA in any Holle formulas. However, in the last two years, the company began incorporating fish oil into all of its cow's milk formulas. They started using algae in their goat's milk formulas. Thanks to those additions, these formulas now contain ALA, LA, and DHA. 

Unlike Holle, HiPP formulas have always included ARA and DHA in their Stage 1 formula. However, in recent years they've increased those quantities. Today you'll find tons of important ingredients in their formulas, including DHA, choline, and vitamin D. They source these additional ingredients from vegetable and fish oils.  

HiPP vs. Holle: Organic & Grass-Fed

In the United States, regulations about what is considered organic are less strict. On the other hand, Europe has strict standards for what can be called organic. Not only are the ingredients specified that can and cannot be included in the formula, but some rules regulate how these are manufactured. HiPP and Holle are both certified organic in the E.U. There are a few specialty formulas that don't meet this requirement, but that's because they contain specialized ingredients that can't be produced organically.

What's exciting about Holle baby formula is that they're not only organic, they're also Demeter Biodynamic Certified.

Holle Organic Demeter Baby Formula US

This is the top certification that biodynamic farms can achieve.  To maintain its certification status, Holle has to undergo an annual review, ecosystem preservation, biodiversity promotion, and welfare guarantees. Thanks to this extensive process, you can trust that Holle meets stringent eco-friendly and organic farming standards. You know that the team doesn't use harsh chemicals or GMOs that could harm your baby. 

Just about every HiPP formula out there is EU-certified organic. However, you'll remember that some formulas contain hydrolysates. Since hydrolysates can't be produced organically, these formulas are not considered organic. The formulas that aren't organic are HA, AR, and Comfort varieties. All the rest are officially organic formulas.  

HiPP vs. Holle: Specialty Options

While most babies don't have a problem drinking standard formula, some have trouble digesting it. In that case, it can be challenging for parents to find the right formula. The good news is that there are options out there! And Holle and HiPP both have choices for parents whose kids have sensitive tummies.  

Holle has formulas made with goat's milk. Goat's milk is easier for children to digest because it contains proteins more similar to breast milk. This might be a good option if you have a child with lactose sensitivity or who struggles with cow's milk. 

HiPP is the winner when creating formulas for kids with sensitive tummies. The company has hypoallergenic, anti-reflux, and comfort formulas that make it easier for children to process proteins. They also offer options that don't contain corn. This is another good choice for babies who struggle with protein allergies. And since 2022, HiPP has proudly introduced HiPP Goat formulas made with A2 goat milk. 

Downsides About these Formulas

We've covered the key elements of the HiPP and Holle baby formula. Let's take a look at the downsides:

Palm Oil
Palm oil is an ingredient that many parents have been concerned with in recent years. Why? Because palm oil can reduce the amount of calcium the body absorbs. Holle and HiPP both use palm oil in their baby formulas. However, they also dilute the oil with sunflower, coconut, and vegetable oil so that the palm oil content is low. HiPP and Holle include extra vitamin D in their formula to counteract any possible effects of palm oil. Please see our blog about palm oil in baby formula for more information. 

How Much Does Each Formula Cost?

The biggest question in most parents' minds when choosing baby formula is how much it costs. Now, this gets tricky because baby formula can be measured differently! However, when it comes to Holle and HiPP, it's important to know the price differences. Let's look at a couple of cost estimates to give you an idea of what to expect to pay.  

You can purchase both goat milk and cow milk formulas from Holle. Holle's cow milk formula is available for about $0.24 to $0.28 per fluid ounce. On the other hand, Holle's goat milk formula will usually cost you between $0.31 and $0.35 per fluid ounce. 

HiPP formula's prices are much harder to calculate. That's because the prices vary depending on where the product was made and what specialty formula you purchased. Here are a couple of common costs per fluid ounce for HiPP formulas

Both HiPP and Holle offer similar prices per fluid ounce. The most expensive Holle and HiPP formulas are their goat's milk varieties; the manufacturing costs are also the highest for this specific baby formula.  

HiPP vs. Holle: Pros and Cons

Okay, so you've got a good idea of the macros and micros in Holle and HiPP baby formulas. But what does that look like when comparing the two? To help you better understand which is right for you, let's look at a few pros and cons of each formula. 

Benefits of HiPP
There are quite a few benefits of using the HiPP formula. A few of the most important ones include: 

  • It relies on lactose as a sweetener and protein
  • It has a variety of formulas for different baby stages
  • EU approved
  • Free of GMOs
  • Reduced heavy metals
  • It has high fatty acid contents
  • Free of chemicals and pesticides
  • Organic and grass-fed
  • Goat milk options for sensitive tummies
  • It contains prebiotics and probiotics
  • Gluten-free
  • Doesn't contain soy, wheat, or peanuts

All these features can make it an excellent choice for your child’s diet. 

Downsides to HiPP
Despite the many benefits of HiPP, there are a few things to consider: 

  • Palm oil is present in the formula
  • More expensive than most U.S. formula

As you can see, the downsides are minimal when you stack them up against the benefits! The HiPP formulas are amongst the best-rated formulas out there.

Benefits of Holle
There are multiple benefits of using Holle baby formula. Some of the most important ones include the following:

  • Its E.U certified as Organic
  • The formula is GMO-free
  • There are no hormones, preservatives, chemicals, or steroids added
  • Eases constipation
  • Is gentle on the digestive system
  • Contains added minerals, iron, and vitamins
  • Grass-fed 
  • Contains essential fatty acids
  • Comes in goat's milk and cow's milk varieties 
  • No corn syrup, wheat, soy, or peanuts
  • Gluten-free
  • Biodynamic Demeter Farming

With all these benefits, it's no wonder so many people purchase Holle!

Downsides to Holle
Holle also has a few things to consider:

  • Contains palm oil
  • Contains maltodextrin

Despite these downsides, Holle can work well for parents who want to give quality baby formula to their kids. You'll be able to avoid harmful additives and find plenty of variety in the options offered for kids with sensitivities.

Recap: HiPP vs. Holle

Both Holle and HiPP are among the healthiest baby formulas in the world. They offer vital nutrients your little one needs to thrive and meet their milestones. Although there's a lot to know, being well-versed will help you provide your child with the nutrients they need to grow big and strong. Are you ready to get started with HiPP or Holle?

Get in touch with us, and we’ll help you find the best formula for your little one. Please shoot us an email at We’re here to help!