October 17, 2019 National School Lunch Program Webinar


[Music] Good afternoon and welcome to the October 2019 National School Lunch Program Webinar. My name is Jessica Spoja and joining me today are Jennifer Butler and Kat Forstie. As we move through today’s presentation please submit any questions by entering them in the chat box. We will answer submitted questions at the end of the presentation. Please remember to track the time spent viewing this webinar towards professional development hours to meet USDA professional standards requirements. We will discuss topics that fall under the key areas of Nutrition, Operations Administration, and Communications. During today’s webinar, we will discuss recently released policy memos, provide program updates, talk about verification, procurement, and we will end the webinar with success stories and fun Halloween lunch ideas. Let’s get started with policy memos. SP16-2019 School Breakfast Programs: Substitution of Vegetables for Fruit was originally issued March 18, 2019. This memo allowed short-term flexibility in serving starchy vegetables without the other subgroups during the week when vegetables were served in place of a fruit at breakfast. This flexibility was effective until September 30th, 2019. However, the short-term flexibility has now been extended through November 21st, 2019. SP36-2019, released on September 23rd, 2019, advises that a suite of memoranda providing updated guidance has been issued. The new memoranda did not include additional requirements, but are intended to help implement regulatory change. These memos include SP37-2019 through SP40-2019, which we will address separately. This memorandum outlines Questions and Answers on the final rule Child Nutrition Programs: Flexibilities for Milk, Whole Grains, and Sodium Requirements. These flexibilities went into effect July 1st, 2019, for the 2019 -2020 school year. We highly recommend reviewing this Q&A if you are looking for further clarification on menu planning flexibilities. USDA answered 107 questions and provided additional resources at the end of the policy memo. This memorandum includes questions and answers updated to incorporate changes codified by two final rules: (One) Child and Adult Care Food Programs:Meal Pattern Revisions Related to the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 and (two) Child Nutrition Programs: Flexibilities for Milk, Whole Grains and Sodium Requirements. This document also includes updated crediting questions and the new resource section. Outdated references, citations, and questions have been removed throughout the document, and minor edits were made to clarify content. Questions include, “Are frozen and dried fruits with added sugar allowed?” and If a school has multiple serving lines with different menu items, must each serving line offer all the vegetable subgroups weekly?” To find out the answers to these questions, be sure to review the policy memo. This memorandum rescinds and replaces SP19- 2018, issued August 6, 2018. This updated memorandum clarifies regulations that water made available to students in the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program 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. This memorandum supersedes all previous guidance on smoothies including SP10- 2014 version three, CACFP 05-2014 version three, and SFSP10-2014 version three. 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 Child Nutrition Programs. This memorandum supersedes policy memo SP31-2013. This revised memorandum includes policy changes and general updates to outdated resources and website links and updated questions and answers. This memorandum discusses 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. We have some important updates to share today. USDA has released the new “And Justice For All” posters! The State agency has ordered the new posters and will be distributing them to sponsors as they become available. In the meantime, do not remove the current poster (revised December 2015) featuring the Statue of Liberty. They will need to be replaced when the updated poster is received. Images of the current 2015 poster should be removed from websites, training presentations, and any pending printed materials as soon as possible. Replace the graphic with the appropriate PDF version available on the USDA Civil Rights and Justice for All Posters website. The newly designed nonprogram food revenue tool has been approved by USDA! It is now available in download forms and can be used for your administrative review. If you have any concerns using the document, please reach out to Jessica. Equipment grant awardees will be announced very shortly! The review team met on Friday and evaluated all the applications. It was a competitive grant process with 23 SFA’s applying. Thank you to all of the applicants. We encourage all sponsors to consider applying next year if you find you need new capital equipment. Keep a look out for the press release announcing the awardees. Administrative review season has begun! If you’re having a review this year, please work on the off-site assessment modules located under the review forms as soon as possible. You can find review forms under review tools. As you can see, there are quite a few modules to complete so please make sure to start early. We ask that you answer every question to the best of your ability. Should you have any questions, review the administrative review notification letter as it lists all of the items you will need to upload in order to complete the modules. If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your lead reviewer. We are frequently out of the office so if you can’t reach us via phone, send us a quick email. The USDA Foods team plans to offer an exciting opportunity for Recipient Agencies interested in attending the 2020 American Commodity Distribution Association (ACDA) 2020 Annual National Conference in April. If you are interested in attending the conference, please watch for the release of a scholarship announcement in the coming weeks! The USDA foods team would like to remind sponsors about the XChange. Currently, there are over 20 products up for grabs including peaches, pears, beef and more. If you decide to claim any items, make sure you do at least one week prior to the next inventory release software system ordering cycle. Remember, you can find the Xchange under Child Nutrition Programs USDA foods and processing select Xchange to access available items. We will now move on to program reminders. As you all know, we are currently in the middle of verification. At this point in time, you should be following up with any non respondents and sending out final notices. Be sure to file all of your verification documents in a separate verification folder. This will come in handy when you have your next administrative review. If you need any assistance with the verification report or have any general questions regarding verification, please contact Melissa Cook at (208)332-6830. Looking ahead, you should be getting ready to send out second verification letters with ten days notice. Additionally, the verification report is due on Friday November 15th. The report can be complex so do not hesitate to reach out to Melissa. Next we’ll hand it over to Kat Forstie for some procurement updates. Hello! Some questions I have received regarding procurement reviews include, What vendors do I include? Any purchase that’s made with the nonprofit food service account, the 290, is what I will be looking for when I conduct procurement reviews. You will only need to send receipts and invoices for those selected from your list. Another question was, Does this include only food purchases? When you add information from the 290 account, this will include fuel, mileage, repairs, supplies, conference fees, etc. What if I belong to a co-op? I have the contracts from each of the co-ops and will review the receipts and invoices you send, to make sure the pricing is what was agreed upon. So no need to upload those contracts please. You will need to attach your Board’s district policies and code of conduct when you receive a procurement review. If there are requirements missing you will be instructed as to what language needs to be added to the written procurement policies and code of conduct per USDA regulations. Any changes that are made need to be approved by the district board before you add them to the policies. Remember, you should always consult with your district’s legal authority and the board before signing or implementing any contract. Thanks Kat! That is all we have for program reminders. Next, we have a success story to share. First lady Teresa Little and state agriculture officials visited the Notus School cafeteria on October 2nd to kick off National Farm to School Month. The Notus event featured bread incorporating Idaho potato flakes! During Farm to School month, the Idaho State Department of Agriculture features local and in-season foods at schools, provides weekly themes, and online tours of dairies through videoconferencing in classrooms. Schools in Idaho can participate in diverse ways, from harvest celebrations in school gardens or on local farms, creating unique, all Idaho meal menus, to student recipe contests. We encourage you to be creative. A huge congratulations to Notus for being featured for Farm to School month! Halloween is just around the corner so we wanted to give you some spooky ideas for lunch service. Here are some eerie entree ideas including bat cheese on a burger, Frankenstein pudding, monster pizzas, mummy dogs, and a ghostly string cheese. Frightful designs are a great way to encourage students to eat their fruits and vegetables. Here we have fruit cups with pumpkin faces, a pumpkin that’s feeling a little green on a tray full of vegetables, and ghostly bananas with oranges disguised as pumpkins. Food service teams across the nation are working together to turn their lunch rooms into creepy cafeterias. Halloween is fun for all ages so be sure to serve up some fun this year! Are you and your team decorating the cafeteria or serving themed food for Halloween? Did you celebrate National School Lunch week with any fun activities? Be sure to take photos of your work and email them to me so you can be featured in our next webinar. Does anyone have any questions at this time? Go ahead and use the chat box on your screen and type your questions. We will answer them as they are entered. Thank you for attending today’s webinar. Please contact Child Nutrition Programs at 208-332-6820 if any additional questions arise regarding the information in this webinar. Please remember that the accuracy of the information shared today is guaranteed only as of the recording date. USDA may issue more guidance or further clarification regarding items discussed in today’s webinar. This concludes today’s webinar, thank you all and have a happy Halloween!

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