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School Menu Planning Options

Information and resources on the new Food-Based Menu Planning (FBMP) approach for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and current menu planning for the School Breakfast program (SBP).

IMPORTANT NOTICE

Effective July 1, 2012, all NSLP sponsors must implement the new FBMP approach. The SBP sponsors will continue to use their current breakfast menu planning with the exception to offering at least two approved milk choices during the 2012­–13 School Year and then fully adopt the new FBMP approach beginning July 1, 2013. Visit Nutrition Requirements for Fluid Milk to see approved milk options. 

For more information on the Final Rule issued January 26, 2012, visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Nutrition Standards for School Meals Web page. External link opens in new window or tab.

Timeline

Implementation Timeline for Final Rule External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)

Meal Patterns

New Food-Based Menu Planning for Lunch

Traditional or Enhanced Food-Based Menu Planning for Breakfast

Nutrient and Assisted Nutrient Standard Menu Planning for Breakfast

Nutrition Requirements for Fluid Milk for Breakfast and Lunch

Comparison of Approaches

Comparison of Previous and Current Regulatory Requirements under Final Rule External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)

Studies and Reports

School Meals: Building Blocks for Healthy Children- Full Report External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)

Nutrition Standards in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs- Proposed Rule External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)

Forms and Guidance

Medical Statement to Request Special Meals and/or Accommodations (DOC; Dated Dated Jun-2012)
CNP 925 - This form is used by parents/guardians to have a medical authority prescribe special meals, or accommodations during meals, which are necessary because of a disability or medical reason.
Available Translations of the Medical Statement to Request Special Meals and/or Accommodations (Dated Jun-2012)

Menu Production Record Forms

Standardized Recipe Form (DOC; Dated Jul-2012)

Vendor Product List Form (DOC; Dated Jun-2012)

USDA Policy Memo SP 31-2013: Salad Bars in the National School Lunch Program (PDF)

Additional Resources

Offer Versus Serve Manual (Pending Update)
The USDA is currently revising the Offer Versus Serve manual for lunch to meet the new FBMP.

Letter to Parents Regarding the New Meal Pattern (NMP) (DOC; Dated Dec-2012)
This letter may be utilized by school food authorities to inform and gain the support of parents/guardians during the implementation of the NMP.

USDA Approved Software External link opens in new window or tab.
The current list of software approved by USDA for menu planning and nutrient analysis.

Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
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