USDA Policy Memos

July 2023 - June 2024

SFSP 07-2024, SP 13-2024 Non-Congregate Meal Service in Rural Areas Questions and Answers

SFSP06-2024 Intern Final Rule State Agency Monitoring in the Summer Food Service Program

SFSP 04-2024, SP 06-2024 Rural Designations in the Summer Meal Programs - Revised

SP03-2024, SP 05-2024: Implementation Guidance for the Rural Non-congregate Option Provisions of the Interim Final Rule, Establishing the Summer EBT Program and Rural Non-Congregate Option in the Summer Meal Programs.

SP03-2024 CN Integrity Rule Memo - Administrative Review (AR) and Food Service Management Company (FSMC) Cycles

SP 04-2024 CN Integrity Rule Memo - Fiscal Action Memo

SFSP 05-2017 revised December 1, 2023 Summer Food Service program Questions and Answers - revised on September 28, 2023, FNS released five memoranda related to Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) unused reimbursement and site proximity, including a revision to "SFSP 05-2017 Summer Food Service Program Questions and Answers". FNS has further revised this memorandum due to technical corrections on pages 10 and 11. 

Regulation Changes Due to the Program Integrity Rule - Milk type and Vegetable subgroup requirements

SP01-2016, CACFP 01-2016, SFSP 01-2016 Procuring Local Meat, Poultry, Seafood, Game, and Eggs for Child Nutrition Programs REVISED

November 2023 Letter from USDA Supporting Indigenous Foods, & Food Sovereignty in Schools

SP02-2024, CACFP 02-2024, SFSP 02-2024 Revised: Crediting Tofu and Soy Yogurt Products in the School Meals Programs, Child and Adult Care Food Program, and Summer Food Service Program

SP01-2024, CACFP01-2024, SFSP01-2024 Clarification of Allowable Flexibilities for Child Nutrition Programs Experiencing Milk Supply Shortages.

TA01-2024 Crediting Traditional Indigenous Foods in Child Nutrition Programs

CACFP 11-2023 Feeding Infants and Meal Pattern Requirements in the Child and Adult Care Food Program; Questions and Answers (Revised September 2023)

SP 22-2023 Community Eligibility Provision: Implementing the New Minimum Identified Student Percentage

SFSP 13-2023 Unused Reimbursement in the Summer Food Service Program

SFSP 14-2023 Best Practices for Managing Unused Reimbursement in the Summer Food Service Program

SFSP 15-2023 Best Practices for Determining Proximity of Sites in the Summer Food Service Program

SFSP 05-2017 Summer Food Service Program Questions and Answers - Revised

SFSP 01-2008 Nationwide Expansion of Summer Food Service Program Simplified Cost Accounting Procedures – Revised

Initial Implementation Memorandum: Child Nutrition Program Integrity Final Rule
Summer EBT Eligibility, Certification, and Verification
Twenty-sixth Release of the Child Nutrition Database (Action Steps for State Agencies, School Food Authorities, and Local Schools: After September 18, 2023, State Agencies, SFAs, and local schools should verify with their nutrient analysis software company to ensure that the software includes the most current).

July 2022- June 2023



SP07-2020: Paid Lunch Equity: Guidance for School Year 2020-2021

This memo provides guidance for the Paid Lunch Equity Tool for SY21.

SP06-2020: School Breakfast Program: Continuation of the Substitution of Vegetables for Fruit Flexibility

This memo discusses that School food authorities (SFAs) participating in the School Breakfast Program (SBP) may continue to credit any vegetable offered, including potatoes and other starchy vegetables, in place of fruit without including vegetables from other subgroups in the weekly menus through June 30, 2021.

SP 05-2020: Questions & Answers Regarding Professional Standards for State and Local School Nutrition Program Personnel 

This Q & A memorandum is designed to provide an overview of the policies related to the Professional Standards regulations for State and local school nutrition program personnel. 


SP 03-2019: NSLP and SBP: Questions and Answers for Charter Schools

FNS is providing updated Questions and Answers for charter school participation in the NSLP, the SBP and other Child Nutrition Programs. Since charter schools are held to the same standards for operating CNPs as traditional public or non-profit private schools, this memorandum does not contain any new CNP policies. Program operators can use the Q&As as a resource to assist charter schools and non-profit private, rural, or small schools that have similar questions to operate successful CNPs. This memorandum supersedes SP 07-2008: Charter School Involvement in the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs, January 15, 2008.

SP 32-2019: Buy American and Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018

This memorandum addresses information in the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 regarding the Buy American requirements in the national school meal programs.

Questions and Answers on the Final Rule Child Nutrition Programs: Flexibilities for Milk, Whole Grains, and Sodium Requirements

This memorandum provides Questions and Answers on the final rule Child Nutrition Programs: Flexibilities for Milk, Whole Grains, and Sodium Requirements (83 FR 63775, December 12, 2018), which provides menu planning flexibilities in the CNPs. These flexibilities went into effect July 1, 2019, for the 2019-202 school year. 

Meal Requirements under the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program: Questions and Answers for Program Operators:

This memorandum includes Questions and Answers updated to incorporate changes codified by two final rules: (1) Child and Adult Care Food Program: Meal Pattern Revisions Related to the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (81 CFR 24348, published April 25, 2016) and (2) Child Nutrition Programs: Flexibilities for Milk, Whole Grains, and Sodium Requirements (83 FR 63775, December 12, 2018). This document also includes updated crediting questions and a new Resources section. Outdated references, citations, and questions have been removed throughout the document, and minor edits were made to clarify content. 

Clarification on the Milk and Water Requirements in the School Meal Programs:

This updated memorandum clarifies regulations that water made available to students in the NSLP and SBP shall not compete with the milk requirement. While water must be made available, schools must not directly or indirectly restrict the sale or marketing of fluid milk.

Smoothies Offered in the Child Nutrition Programs:

This updated memorandum clarifies juice and yogurt allowances based on the childcare and preschool meal pattern updates and incorporates the meal pattern flexibilities related to flavored milk. This memorandum also changes the policy for commercially prepared smoothies. Commercially prepared smoothies can now contribute to the meat/meat alternate, fruit, vegetable, and milk components of the Federal meal requirements for all CNPs.

Salad Bars in the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program:

This memorandum includes policy changes and general updates to outdated resources/website links and updated questions and answers. This memorandum provides State agencies with information on how salad bars can effectively improve the service of reimbursable meals and includes information on portion size, location of the salad bar, production records, and food safety.




SP 37-2017:Flexibility for Co-Mingled Preschool Meals: Questions and Answers 

This memorandum provides guidance on meals served to preschoolers when they are in the same service area at the same time as grade K-5 students, and it includes Questions and Answers.