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Supporting nutrition in early care and education settings: The Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)

Author: Sam Stephens
Publication Date: February 2016

Child care centers, Head Start programs, and family child care providers serving young children--as well as after school programs and homeless shelters that reach older children, adults, and families--are supported in providing healthy meals and snacks by reimbursements through the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP). Administered by the Food and Nutrition Service of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, CACFP provides guidelines to ensure that the food served is nutritious and promotes healthy development, as well as requiring compliance with local health and safety standards. This program--along with several other child nutrition programs--last authorized under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 is currently undergoing review by the Congress, a process that occurs every five years. This Topic of Interest includes recently published resources from the Research Connections collection on child care provider participation in the CACFP program and on the effects of CACFP participation on the nutrition of young children.

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