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Rescission of Collection of Race & Ethnicity Data


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued guidance that visual observation and identification is no longer an allowable practice in obtaining race and ethnicity data from Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) and Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) participants.

The USDA received reports that program participants do not want to have their race or ethnicity determined for them. Moreover, a third party’s observation of an individual’s appearance is not a reliable means to capture how a participant self-identifies their own racial or ethnic identity. The USDA acknowledges the challenges this may cause in the collection of demographic data. The preferred method remains to be self-identification and self-reporting.

For more information, please review the USDA policy memoExternal link opens in new window or tab. (PDF).

Contact Information

For questions regarding this subject, please contact the Community Nutrition Programs Unit by email at CACFP@cde.ca.gov.

Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
Last Reviewed: Thursday, June 3, 2021
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