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Smoothies Offered in Child Nutrition Programs

Nutrition Services Division Management Bulletin

Purpose: Policy, Beneficial Information

To: Child Nutrition Program Operators

Attention: Authorized Representatives and Program Directors

Number: CNP-04-2020

Date: February 2020

Reference: USDA Policy Memorandum SP 40-2019, CACFP 17-2019, SFSP 17-2019: Smoothies Offered in the Child Nutrition Programs; USDA Policy Memo SP 37-2019, CACFP 16-2019, Questions and Answers on the Final Rule Child Nutrition Programs: Flexibilities for Milk, Whole Grains, and Sodium Requirements; Assembly Bill No. 2084; USDA Policy Memo SP 37-2017: Flexibility for Co-Mingled Preschool Meals: Questions and Answers

Supersedes: Management Bulletin CNP-11-2015: Smoothies in the Child Nutrition Programs—Revised

Subject: Smoothies Offered in Child Nutrition Programs

This management bulletin (MB) supersedes MB CNP-11-2015 and informs all Child Nutrition Program (CNP) Operators that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued policy memo SP 40-2019, CACFP 17-2019, SFSP 17-2019: Smoothies Offered in the CNPs, accessible on the USDA Smoothies Offered in the CNPs web page located at This updated policy memo, which supersedes USDA Policy Memo SP 10-2014 (v.3), CACFP 05-2014 (v.3), and SFSP 10-2014 (v.3), clarifies juice and yogurt allowances, incorporates the flavored milk meal pattern changes, and provides flexibility for serving commercially prepared smoothies.


Previously, the USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) only allowed program operators to credit milk toward the fluid milk component and yogurt toward the meat/meat alternate component in smoothies prepared in-house. Effective September 23, 2019, program operators may now credit the milk and yogurt in commercially prepared smoothies toward a reimbursable meal. A valid product formulation statement or Child Nutrition label is required to document how the product meets the meal pattern requirements for commercially prepared smoothies.

California Healthy Beverage Law

USDA Policy Memo SP 37-2017 allows schools the flexibility to serve the K–5 National School Lunch Program (NSLP) meal pattern to preschool age children in a co-mingled situation. However, schools serving the K–5 NSLP meal pattern to preschool age children enrolled in licensed child care centers cannot serve flavored milk, even when offered in a smoothie, due to the California Healthy Beverages in Child Care Act restrictions.

For more information on this California Law, please refer to Assembly Bill 2084 (Legislative Session 2009–2010) on the California Legislative Information AB 2084 web page located at


Please refer to the USDA Policy Memo SP 40-2019, CACFP 17-2019, SFSP 17-2019: Smoothies Offered in the CNPs, available on the USDA FNS Documents & Resources web page located at, for a series of questions and answers that provide further clarification on how smoothies are credited in the CNPs.

School Nutrition Programs (SNP) Operators serving smoothies as a competitive food or beverage can refer to the CDE MB SNP-20-2015: Classifying Smoothies-Revised available on the CDE SNP MB web page located at

Contact Information

If you have any questions regarding this subject, please contact your SNP, CACFP, or Summer Meal Service Program (SFSP) specialist.

School Nutrition Programs: The SNP county specialist list is available in the Child Nutrition Information and Payment System (CNIPS) Download Forms section, Form ID Caseload. You may also contact an SNP Office Technician (OT) by phone at 916-322-1450 or 916-322-3005.

Summer Food Service Program: The SFSP specialist list is available in the CNIPS Download Forms section, Form ID SFSP 01. You may also contact the SFSP OT by phone at 916-324-6153.

Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
Last Reviewed: Monday, May 8, 2023
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