Ohio USDA Foods Distribution Program

The Ohio United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Distribution Program distributes donated USDA foods to sponsors participating in the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP),  National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and/or the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). 

USDA foods are staples -- such as meats, cheese, fruits and vegetables -- and are distributed to eligible nutrition program sponsors. These foods are intended to account for no more than approximately 20 percent of a sponsor's total food budget.

How USDA Foods Items are Distributed

The Food Distribution Program allocates food  items to participating schools and/or agencies based on their "entitlement." Entitlement dollars are earned by each program participant (i.e., school district) in accordance with USDA guidelines, and are determined and allocated by the number of student lunches served in the previous year multiplied by the USDA foods reimbursement rate.

Periodically, the USDA and/or the Ohio USDA Food Distribution Program distribute certain USDA foods as a "bonus" to participating schools on a fair-share basis. Bonus USDA foods, offered as they become available through agricultural surpluses and market conditions, do not count against a state’s regular entitlement dollars.

Food Recalls

The best way to received email notifications of all food recalls is by signing up for free email updates from www.recalls.gov. This is a one-stop shop for United States Government recalls. We encourage everyone who needs recall information to sign up today! It’s easy. Follow these few steps and you will receive an instant acknowledgement of your subscription from the Department of Health and Human Services:

  • Log on to www.recalls.gov.
  • Click on the Food tab at the top.
  • Click on “Sign Up for Free Recall Updates by EMail” (in red toward top of page).
  • This takes you to the Department of Health and Human Services signup page, where you will:
    • Enter your e-mail address and confirm same; and,
    • Check the box titled FoodSafety.gov Recalls and Alerts under the FoodSafety.gov Updates section.

An added note for school food service directors, food bank operators, and all local service organizations with a website: Please add these instructions to your website. Food recalls are important to everyone.

Food Safety - Ohio Food Recall Announcements

Guidance, Handbooks, Regulations, and Policy Memorandums

For the most recent guidance and resources, handbooks, policy memos, and regulations on the USDA Commodity Food Program, visit the USDA Food and Nutrition Service websites linked above.

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Last Modified: 2/8/2024 12:21:48 PM