If I am unable to breastfeed and I want to avoid dairy-based products, what are my options for formula?
There are soy formulas that are suitable for infants from birth. For example, SMA Wysoy Soya Infant formula
However, soy formulas are reinforced with vitamins and minerals and some of these (vitamin D) contain animal derivatives (lanolin, sheep's wool) which make them not vegan.
There are breastmilk banks where lactating women donate their breast milk for mothers who are struggling to produce their own. It would be worth searching for that in your area.
There is now a vegan infant formula made by French company Prémibio. The product is rice-based and is called Prémiriz. There are three stages available:
- stage 1 - 0-6 months
- stage 2 - 6-12 months
- stage 3 - 12-36 months
Prémiriz covers all your baby's needs, including proteins and essential amino acids. Similarly, Prémiriz ensures an intake of calcium and vitamin D3 exclusively from plant origin sources. Prémiriz is a certified vegan formula and thus does not contain any animal product or by-product.
Prémiriz is suitable for vegan babies.
Prémiriz supply of nutrients is identical to regular infant milk based on cow's or goat's milk protein.
The first site mentioned above apparently ships pretty much anywhere. Other online shops seem to carry it too so I guess it's gained in popularity and become easier to get hold of since I originally wrote this answer, which is great news.