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COVID-19: FFVP Operations Questions and Answers


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On October 23, 2020, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released Policy Memorandum SP 03-2021 Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) Operations for School Year (SY) 2020–21 during Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). It provides questions and answers intended to clarify the operations of the FFVP during the COVID-19 public health emergency for SY 2020–21. This Policy Memorandum will be posted to the USDA COVID-19 Questions and Answers for States web page External link opens in new window or tab..

Some of the highlights covered in the USDA Policy Memo SP 03-2021 include:

  • Question #8: FFVP foods may only be provided at elementary schools currently approved to operate the program. However, if the FFVP awarded elementary school is operating as an open site, FFVP foods may be provided to any children attending the site.

  • Question #9: FFVP funds may not be used to purchase fruits and vegetables for the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and Seamless Summer Option (SSO). However, if an FFVP awarded elementary school is operating as an open site, it may provide FFVP foods as a separate benefit, along with the service of SFSP/SSO meals.

  • Question #11: If the FFVP awarded elementary school operating as an open site is delivering SFSP/SSO meals to households, then the FFVP foods can be provided to all children in the household regardless of age.

  • Question #12: FFVP funds from an FFVP awarded elementary school that has ceased operations can be reallocated for use at the remaining open FFVP awarded elementary school(s). Please note that the required per-student funding level of $50–$75 per student for the school year still applies.

    Note: If your school food authority (SFA) would like to reallocate the FFVP funds from a closed FFVP awarded elementary school site to an open FFVP awarded elementary school site, please send an email to ffvp@cde.ca.gov and indicate:

    • The closed FFVP school site(s),
    • The amount that will be reallocated from the closed FFVP school site(s), and
    • To which open FFVP school site(s) you will be reallocating the funds to.

After reviewing and approving the SFA’s request, the California FFVP Team will update the Child Nutrition Information and Payment System for the SFA’s 2020–21 FFVP second allocation.

  • Question #13: FFVP awarded elementary schools that are not open during COVID-19 may not purchase produce with FFVP funds and then provide it to an alternate meal site. However, as stated in Question #12, SFAs may request the California FFVP Team to reallocate the FFVP funds from a closed FFVP awarded elementary school site to an open FFVP awarded elementary school site.

As a reminder, on September 9, 2020, the USDA has granted the California Department of Education (CDE) Nutrition Services Division two waivers for the FFVP for SY 2020–21:

  • The FFVP Parent Pick-up Waiver allows SFAs participating in the FFVP to distribute the FFVP snacks to a parent or guardian on behalf of their eligible child(ren) without the child(ren) being present.

  • The Serving FFVP at Alternate Sites Waiver allows SFAs participating in the FFVP to offer the FFVP snacks to elementary school children at non-FFVP school sites (elementary, middle, or high schools) if the FFVP school is closed or does not have meal service.

If you have not opted-in, but plan to implement the FFVP Parent Pick-up Waiver or the Serving FFVP at Alternate Sites Waiver, please send an email to ffvp@cde.ca.gov to opt-in.

For more comprehensive COVID-19 guidance, please visit the CDE COVID-19 Guidance in Child Nutrition Programs web page.

Flexibility Deadline

The USDA Policy Memo SP 03-2021 is effective for SY 2020–21, and remains in effect until June 30, 2021.

Contact Information

If you have any questions regarding this subject, please contact the CDE FFVP Team by email at ffvp@cde.ca.gov.

Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
Last Reviewed: Friday, October 30, 2020
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