Tuesday Morning - June 27, 2017

An Update on Federal and State Policy Issues
from SNA

Table of Contents

Federal Policy

USDA Memo on 2017 NSLP Equipment Assistance Grants                                            
USDA Foods State of Origin Report for 2015 Released          
"Turnip the Beet" Recognition Program for Summer Meals       
Promote Presidential Active Lifestyle Award Participation This Summer        

State Snapshots

Texas Food Donation
SNA Member-Only State Affiliate Advocacy Resources
SY 2016-17 State Meal Mandates and Reimbursements

Mark Your Calendars

FRAC Meals Matter Webinars

Federal Policy

USDA Memo on 2017 NSLP Equipment Assistance Grants

In the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017, $25 million in equipment assistance grants was awarded to School Food Authorities (SFAs). The USDA recently released a memo to distribute the funding allocations of that $25 million, which are laid out in this attachment. The funds are intended to help SFAs purchase equipment that will allow them to serve healthier foods, expand access and improve food safety. The memo goes on to provide guidance on the specific terms and conditions, period of performance, timelines, funding goals, and reporting requirements for these grants. FNS Regional Financial Management Offices are responsible for completing the FNS-529 and the Terms and Conditions document for each State agency, and templates and instructions for completing these documents can be found here.

USDA Foods State of Origin Report for 2015 Released

In FY 2015, USDA purchased over 2 billion pounds of food for over $2 billion. These purchases ranged from raw foods like meats and fruits to finished food products like cereal and pasta. The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) released a report that analyzed the State of Origin data for the year, which breaks down the states where food was purchased during FY 2015 for Food Distribution Programs. The report is filled with interesting statistics so be sure to check it out!

"Turnip the Beet" Recognition Program for Summer Meals

The USDA created an award called " Turnip the Beet," which recognizes outstanding summer meal program sponsors every year. Summer meal programs are vital in combatting food insecurity among children, but they also promote nutrition and healthy eating habits that positively affect children's growth and development. The goal of the Turnip the Beet program is to recognize sponsors who go above and beyond to ensure they are serving nutritious and appetizing meals. Examples can include fresh produce bars, themed menus, and even taste tests and cooking lessons. States volunteer to participate and all sumer meal program sponsors are eligible to apply. Winners can fall into bronze, silver or gold award category. Here is a list of the 2016 winners, as well as more information about the program. Stay tuned for more information about the 2017 awards criteria and nominations, which will be available soon!

Promote Presidential Active Lifestyle Award Participation This Summer

Summer is a great time to promote participation in the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award (PALA+) program. The program promotes physical activity and good nutrition in order to lead a healthy lifestyle, and is part of the President's Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. Taking place over a nine-week period, PALA+ helps to develop a commitment to regular physical activity, move towards a healthier eating pattern and track progress in a fun, interactive way using SuperTracker's Physical Activity and Food Tracker. PALA+ is recommended for anyone aged six or older, and users are eligible for awards as they add their information and practice healthy lifestyle choices. The PALA+ User Guide is a great place to start to learn more about the program and get started working toward healthy lifetime goals.

State Snapshots

Texas Food Donation

SB 725 has passed the Texas legislature and was signed by Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) on June 9th. Beginning in SY 2017-18, a school district may elect to donate food to nonprofit organizations. The bill allows for donated food to be received, stored and distributed on the campus and details the kinds of food eligible for donation.

SNA Members-Only State Affiliate Advocacy Resources

Did you know SNA offers state advocacy resources available in the members-only State Support Center? Log in to find a regularly updated #StoptheBlock PowerPoint to use at your local conferences and meetings, as well as media talking points, an elevator pitch advocacy speech and other useful tools.

SY2016-17 State Meal Mandates and Reimbursements

SNA has updated its State School Meal Mandates and Reimbursements report for School Year 2016-17, which is a comprehensive summary of each state's mandates and financial support accompanied with a comprehensive reference table.

The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP) are federally funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Each year, the USDA sets rates to cover the cost of free and reduced meals, as well as partial support for paid meals. Many states provide additional reimbursement which can range from per meal reimbursements, to salary support, to general funds which assist with program operations. It is up to each state if participation in these programs is optional or mandated, and there is variability among states. SNA government affairs staff collected the updated information from state agencies across the country.

Mark Your Calendars

FRAC’s Summer Meals Matter Webinars

The Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) provides its Meals Matter webinar series to assist in the operation and expansion of school meal programs.

Developing Menus and Serving High-Quality Meals
Thursday, July 6, 2017, 1:00 pm EST
Menus that include variety and healthy food while addressing cultural preferences are important to incorporate into your summer program. Other considerations that come into play as you design your menus are how to budget for the best quality meal and what to do about curbing waste. Hear from program providers on what they do to develop their summer menus, how they've improved quality, and how to get feedback from the children being served at sites.

Engaging Educators in Breakfast After the Bell
Thursday, July 13, 2017, 1:00 pm EST
Educators are key to implementing breakfast after the bell programs. Join this webinar to learn how you can engage teachers, principles and administrators to create effective and sustainable programs, such as breakfast in the classroom, "grab and go," and second chance. Resources will also be shared to help ensure your school's transition to a breakfast after the bell program is smooth and successful.

Innovative Afterschool Partnerships
Thursday, July 20, 2017, 1:00 pm EST
School is around the corner it is an excellent time to reach out to potential partners who can assist you in building a stronger Afterschool Meals Program. Libraries are moving from serving summer meals to also participating in afterschool meals programs. Mayors are running city-wide efforts to increase participation and there are opportunities to partner with groups that are offering innovative afterschool programming. Join this call to learn more about the innovative partnerships that are happening across the country.

Cafeteria Chat Corner

Countdown to ANC: 12 Days!
The idea of an organization name change was first discussed at the 2003 ANC in Reno. The "American School Food Service Association" just didn't seem to reflect the group's mission of being recognized as "the voice of child nutrition," so they wanted to rebrand and rename. At the Annual National Conference in Reno, the House of Delegates was asked their thoughts about a name change, and what name they would recommend. "Nutrition" was a word that came up over and over again. By the following ANC in 2004, all but five of the 139 delegates voted to change the organization name to the School Nutrition Association! Attending this annual event is a great way to stay up to date on everything happening within and surrounding the Association, so be sure to register today to attend!

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