Skip to main content
California Department of Education Logo

Procurement in Child Nutrition Programs

Federal and state information for the procurement of food service related goods and services across all federally funded child nutrition programs and the USDA Foods Program.

Introduction

This Web page provides procurement information for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Child Nutrition Programs (CNP) administered by the California Department of Education (CDE), including the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), and the Food Distribution Program (FDP). Procurement requirements apply to all agencies that participate in the CNPs. The CDE is committed to providing ongoing guidance to support CNP agencies with the proper procurement of goods and services, and encourages all CNP agencies to routinely review and use the resources on both this Web page and the Procurement in School Nutrition Programs (SNP) Web page.

Background

The federal government, in an attempt to streamline the administration of federal grants, consolidated several federal regulatory sections into Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations (2 CFR), Part 200 (Super Circular). The Super Circular replaces existing rules in Title 7, Code of Federal Regulations (7 CFR), parts 3015, 3016, 3019, and 3052; and in 2 CFR, parts 215, 220, 225, and 230 (Office of Management and Budget Circulars A-133, A-21, A-87, and A-122, respectively). CNP operators can access the Super Circular on the U.S. Government Publishing Office Electronic Code of Federal Regulations Part 200 Web page External link opens in new window or tab..

The procurement standards in the Super Circular became effective for the NSLP, CACFP, SFSP, and FDP on October 1, 2015.

Overview

Procurement is defined as a multistep process for obtaining goods and services at the lowest possible price. The steps in this process include planning, writing specifications, announcing/advertising the procurement, awarding a contract, and managing the contract. Procurement standards for the CNPs are located in 2 CFR, sections 200.318–200.326 and 7 CFR, parts 210, 225, 226, and 250 (as applicable). At a minimum, the regulations require CNP participating districts and agencies to:

  • Conduct procurements in a manner that promotes full and open competition

  • Develop and maintain a written standard (or code) of conduct that covers conflicts of interest, including organizational conflicts of interest, and governs the performance of employees engaged in the selection, award, and administration of contracts

  • Develop and maintain written procurement procedures designed to avoid the acquisition of unnecessary or duplicative items

Frequently Asked Questions

(Please check frequently for updates.)

  • Procurement in CNPs Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) (Updated Mar-2018)
    This CDE Web page provides answers to FAQs regarding procurement in CNPs. It is meant to aid CNP operators with understanding the requirements surrounding the procurement of goods and services using federal funds. If you are unable to find the answer to your question, please contact the Office Technician from the appropriate program listed in the Contact Information section.

Federal Regulations and California State Laws*

*Not an inclusive list of federal regulations and California state laws.

Resources

The resources listed below provide procurement guidance to CNP districts and agencies.

  • CDE Code of Conduct and Procurement Procedures Checklist (DOC; Updated May-2018)
    Provides agencies with the basic components required in these federally required documents.

  • Procuring Local Foods External link opens in new window or tab.
    This USDA Web page contains a guide, decision tree, policies, resources, and the Finding, Buying, and Serving Local Foods Webinar series, including geographic preference, to help ensure that agencies have the resources and knowledge necessary to incorporate local foods into their day-to-day operations.

School Nutrition Programs

Child and Adult Care Food Program

Summer Food Service Program

Cafeteria Fund

  • Cafeteria Fund Guidance
    This CDE Web page provides information about the cafeteria fund, a restricted account that SNP agencies may use only for the operation and improvement of the nonprofit school food service.

Contact Information

If you have any questions regarding this subject, please contact your Program Specialist. A list of Program Specialists is available in the Download Forms section of the Child Nutrition Information and Payment System External link opens in new window or tab.. You can also contact the following program support staff for assistance:

You can also contact the Nutrition Services Division by phone at 800-952-5609.

Follow @CDENutrition on Twitter.

Questions:   Procurement Resources Unit | NSDProcurementReview@cde.ca.gov | 916-319-0636
Last Reviewed: Monday, July 23, 2018
Related Content
  • School Nutrition
    Meal and milk programs offered at public and private non-profit schools and residential child care institutions.
Recently Posted in Nutrition
  • CNIPS Application Packet (added 20-Feb-2019)
    The School Nutrition Programs (SNP) Child Nutrition Information and Payment System (CNIPS) Application Packet online course.
  • CNIPS Logging On (added 20-Feb-2019)
    The School Nutrition Programs (SNP) Child Nutrition Information and Payment System (CNIPS) Logging On online course.
  • CNIPS Overview (added 20-Feb-2019)
    The School Nutrition Programs (SNP) Child Nutrition Information and Payment System (CNIPS) Overview online course.
  • 2019-20 CNP Reimbursement Rates (added 12-Feb-2019)
    Child Nutrition Program meal reimbursement rates.
  • Recipe for Pico Hummus Gyro (added 12-Feb-2019)
    Mediterranean hummus gyro recipe with California fresh pico de gallo developed by the California Culinary Centers for school food service menu planning.

  • Recipe for Power Up! Caesar Salad (added 12-Feb-2019)
    California fresh Caesar salad recipe with protein rich chicken and kale developed by the California Culinary Centers for school food service menu planning.
  • Recipe for Snappy Peach Salad (added 12-Feb-2019)
    Farmers’ market fresh peach salad recipe with snap peas and sweet chili dressing developed by the California Culinary Centers for school food service menu planning.
  • Recipe for Tofu Teriyaki with Vegetables (added 12-Feb-2019)
    Japanese tofu teriyaki recipe with fresh summer vegetables developed by the California Culinary Centers for school food service menu planning.
  • Recipe for Sandy’s Seasonal Vegetarian Lasagna (added 12-Feb-2019)
    Vegetarian lasagna recipe with a summer vegetable medley and three cheeses developed by the California Culinary Centers for school food service menu planning.
  • Recipe for Chili Con Carne (added 12-Feb-2019)
    Protein packed chili with beans, beef, and fresh vegetables developed by the California Culinary Centers for school food service menu planning.