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CACFP Administrative Manual Section 16.1

Child and Adult Care Food Program Administrative Manual Section 16.1: Administrative Review Process for Compliance with the CACFP Meal Patterns.
Important Notice: CACFP Program Moved to CDSS

The Early Childhood Development Act of 2020 (Senate Bill (SB) 98, Chapter 24, Statutes of 2020) authorized the transfer of child care and development programs administered by the California Department of Education to the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) effective July 1, 2021. The content on this page may not be current and involves the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) that has moved to CDSS. Visit the CDSS CACFP web page External link opens in new window or tab. or call 1-833-559-2420 for more information.

Table of Contents
Terms, Definitions, and Acronyms

Section 16: Administrative Review Process for Compliance with the CACFP Meal Patterns

The CDE modified the CACFP administrative review process to address compliance with the updated CACFP meal patterns. This section will address how reviewers will determine whether the meal pattern requirements were met during the month of the administrative review and the day of the onsite meal observation. It also provides a link to the CDE Meal Patterns web page and references.

16.1 Analyzing the Menu for the Administrative Review Month

Reviewers will identify the administrative month of review (defined as the last month the CACFP Operator submitted a claim for reimbursement) with input from the CACFP Operator.

Reviewers will analyze the menu for the administrative month of review to ensure that:

  • All food components for a reimbursable meal and snack were included.

  • Milk types (unflavored or flavored) and fat content (whole, 1 percent, or fat-free) of milk served was documented on the menu for each age group.

  • Meat/meat alternates were not substituted for the grain component at breakfast more than three times per week.

  • Fruit or vegetable juice was not served more than once each day to meet the fruit or vegetable requirement.

  • At least one whole grain-rich (WGR) food item per day was served and documented on the menu.

  • Grain-based desserts were not served on the menu to meet the requirement for the grain component. Note: Grain-based desserts are denoted with a superscript of 3 or 4 in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Buying Guide (FBG) Exhibit A: Grain Requirements for Child Nutrition Programs table.

  • Deep-fat fried foods (i.e., food submerged in hot oil) prepared onsite were not on the menu as part of a reimbursable meal.

  • For adult day care centers only, yogurt was not substituted for milk more than once per day.

  • Child Nutrition (CN) Labels or signed product formulation statements (PFS) are available for all processed foods that are not listed in the USDA FBG (e.g., pizza, corn dogs, chicken nuggets). Note: To credit a processed food listed in the USDA FBG, such as canned beans and soups, the name of the food on the product label must exactly match the name in the “Food as Purchased, AP” column in the FBG.

References: CACFP Regulations,7 CFR sections 226.15 and 226.20; California Healthy Beverages Act, California Health and Safety Code Section 1596.808

Questions:   Child and Adult Care Food Programs Branch | 800-952-5609, Option 3
Last Reviewed: Monday, June 28, 2021
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    A guide to the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) critical compliance standards for centers and day care home (DCH) sponsors.
  • CACFP Meal Patterns
    Includes meal patterns, upcoming workshop and conference information, online courses, resources, policy guidance, compliance, frequently asked questions, and contact information for CACFP Operators.
  • Child and Adult Care Food Program
    This web page includes background information, steps on how to apply, the Administrative Manual, meal pattern requirements, claiming information, policy guidance, compliance, trainings, resources, and contacts for program operators.
  • How to Apply to the CACFP
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