Project: Child Nutrition Analysis Project (CNAP)
Award Year: 1998
Amount of award, fiscal 1998: $460,000.00
Institution: Food and Nutrition Service, USDA
Principal Investigator: Jay Hirschman
Status: Completed
Detailed Objective: This work conducts research and analysis of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's child nutrition programs. It supports program and policy decisions including research on (1) food and nutrient intake of school-age children and (2) the contribution of child nutrition programs to food and nutrient intakes. The Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) provides reimbursements for snacks and meals served in child day care and adult day care facilities that participate. Not all day care facilities are eligible to participate and not all eligible facilities participate in CACFP. The Food and Nutrition Service needs descriptive information on existing child care facilities participating in the CACFP, expansion potential of CACFP, and potential eligible CACFP, given a program rule change.

Extant data will be collected to provide the most current descriptive profile of child care centers and children participating in those centers. Data will be collected through a search of all national and sub-national sources of reliable data that provide descriptive characteristics of child care centers. The completion date of this work, conducted by RAND, is April, 2001.

States are required to perform nutritional reviews in which they conduct nutritional analyses to determine whether school meals are meeting the established nutrition standards. The School Meals Initiative for Healthy Children (SMI) updated the nutritional requirements that school meals must meet in order to qualify for Federal reimbursement. States are allowed to use any valid nutritional analysis method and record-keeping system they choose. States are not required to report nutritional monitoring data to the Food and Nutrition Service and thus the Department does not know the quality or availability of the data. The SMI requires States to have reviewed nutritional monitoring of State food authorities in 5 years (by the end of school year 2001-2002). However, not every State has started performing reviews, and it is unlikely that States will be done in this time frame. Thus the Food and Nutrition Service has issued a proposed rule (Any Reasonable Means rule) that proposed to extend the current 5 years review to 7 years. A survey will be conducted of State agencies to assess what SMI monitoring data States possess, whether this data can tell Food and Nutrition Service how many SMI reviews required no corrective action to meet the new guidelines, and, if States possess adequate data, how easily can Food and Nutrition Service obtain it. Changes will be identified in State record-keeping that would be necessary so that the Food and Nutrition Service can obtain corrective action and other SMI monitoring data from States, and reporting systems will be identified that States could use to provide the Food and Nutrition Service with corrective action and other SMI monitoring data. The expected completion date of this work, conducted by RAND, is April, 2001.

The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP) are intended to promote good nutrition among children, and meals must meet specific requirements (defined in either food components or nutrients) to be served under these programs. Over time, many factors are likely to have influenced the contribution school meals make in the diets of school- aged children. These include growth in program participation, changes in the nutritional requirements associated with the programs, and overall changes in the dietary patterns of the population over time. The Continuing Survey of Food Intake by Individuals (CSFII) will be used to analyze the food and nutrient intake and change in intakes over time of school-aged children, relative to various dietary standards. The expected completion date of this work, conducted by Mathematica Policy Research, Inc., is April, 2001.

The project cost is $460,000 in fiscal 1998.

Topic: Child Nutrition, Dietary Intake and Quality