Resources for Providers and Centers 


With the new meal patterns that went into effect October 1, 2017, we know it can be hard to determine which food products are #cacfpcreditable. We are working on developing a resource page of creditable foods for providers, centers, and afterschool programs. Check back often for this resource - which is a work in progress!




Each month highlights CACFP best practices and features healthy recipes, nutrition tips, as well as table and physical activities. In addition to this valuable nutrition education resource, each month's calendar page has oversized squares for recording important events.

The Nutrition Calendar & Record Keeping System has additional pages each month for business record-keeping.


Sample CACFP Training Program Pages

Calendars orders are placed in the spring and shipped in August for fourth quarter distribution. They are used across the country by over 50,000 providers! Set your sponsorship apart from others. Give the Calendar & Record Keeping System to your providers.


Order 2020 Circus Acts: Lessons for Life CACFP Training Program & Nutrition Calendar



Child_Nutrition_Today_Preview.jpgChild Nutrition Today Magazine

We are excited to share our Preview Magazine! 

We shipped this 16-page magazine for FREE to all sponsor agencies who ordered the New Meal Pattern materials to distribute to providers and center staff. There is a limited supply of the combo package for bulk orders which includes the reference card, magnets, and notepads. Order Here

Topics featured include: 

  • New Meal Patterns
  • Grain-Based Desserts Policy Summary
  • Tips for Picky Eaters
  • Sesame Street in Communities
  • CACFP Creditable Recipes
  • Grow Healthy Kids, Just Add Water

You may also view this publication online and check out the additional resources:

Child Nutrition Today

At the National CACFP Sponsors Association we regularly get questions from providers on how to find a sponsor. As a service to all providers and a benefit to our members, we offer the Find a Food Program Sponsor tool prominently on our home page so that providers looking to join the food program know who to call. Membership in NCA gives you an added competitive advantage!

Note to Providers: If you are a family child care provider or center and want to learn how you can participate in the Child & Adult Care Food Program, contact a CACFP Sponsor in your state here or by contacting your CACFP state office.

Find a Sponsor



Most days, sweet smiles are all the reward we need. For additional encouragement, download and hang this poster. Refresh each month for a new, motivational message!

Click on the image to get the poster!

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Parent Provider Connections & Activity Pages

These activity newsletters and pages are made available to all members of the child nutrition community. Click on the image to download the PDF.

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Parent Provider Connections Newsletters

We are pleased to provide program members and sponsor member organizations with a library of parent provider activity newsletters for special days throughout the year. As an ongoing project, check back often for new or additional holiday activity newsletters to share with your providers and centers.


Parent Provider Activity Newsletter Members Resource Bank

Click on the member badges on the right to join today to gain access and share with your parents or providers!


National CACFP Sponsors Association Sponsors MyPlate, MyState Healthy Holiday Challenge

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NCA Healthy Holiday Challenge Toolkit



On June 2, 2011, First Lady Michelle Obama and USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack released the federal government’s new food icon, MyPlate, to serve as a reminder to help consumers make healthier food choices. MyPlate is a new generation icon with the intent to prompt consumers to think about building a healthy plate at meal times and to seek more information to help them do that by going to The MyPlate icon emphasizes the fruit, vegetable, grains, protein foods, and dairy groups. Later in 2011, MiPlato was launched as the Spanish-language version of MyPlate. provides practical information to individuals, health professionals, nutrition educators, and the food industry to help consumers build healthier diets with resources and tools for dietary assessment, nutrition education, and other user-friendly nutrition information. As Americans are experiencing epidemic rates of overweight and obesity, the online resources and tools can empower people to make healthier food choices for themselves, their families, and their children.

MyPlate illustrates the five food groups that are the building blocks for a healthy diet using a familiar image – a place setting for a meal. Before you eat, think about what goes on your plate or in your cup or bowl.

As a National Partner, the National CACFP Sponsors Association is happy to provide a link for our sponsors and providers to the resources available for nutrition education and to raise awareness of the work is doing to improve child nutrition.


Grow Healthy Kids: Just Add Water

Get this free providers' guide and water curriculum to have your kids learning, singing, reading, and playing with water! Includes activity books and posters. 

CLICK HERE to let the fun begin. 



How do you CACFP Snack? Tell Us All & Win $100  

We know that the habits child care providers instill in children at an early age will become life-long healthy choices. We also know that it's easy to get into the snack rut. So we're asking everyone, "How Do you CACFP Snack?" Post your healthy CACFP creditable snack to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and tag @NationalCACFP. Then hashtag your photo and share your #ncasupersnack! Whoever has the most likes, shares, or favorites on March 15th will win $100 and be featured in our eNews and conference. We'll make a free, downloadable #ncasupersnack inspiration booklet and everyone wins!



  1. Snack entry must be a CACFP Creditable snack.
  2. Photo of snack should be one that entrant home-made (not copied from another site) and photo must be original with all rights owned by the person submitting it.
  3. Entries need to include #ncasupersnack and tag @NationalCACFP.
  4. Challenge ends March 15, 2017. Winning entry determined by NCA based on number of likes, shares, favorites, or retweets.
  5. Once a photo/recipe is posted for the Super Snack Challenge, NCA reserves the right to use the photo/recipe for any and all future projects.


CACFP is an Indicator of Quality Childcare

Here are some materials for you to share with parents and the community to raise awareness about the Child and Adult Care Food Program and why your participation in it is an indicator of quality child care. 

Looking for more materials? Learn about our program membership!

crediting_handbook.pngQuestion we hear most often?

 "Is it creditable?" 

Here's the answer with guidance from the USDA.

Creditable foods: Foods that may be counted toward meeting the meal pattern requirements for a reimbursable meal. They are or they contain creditable foods as listed in the FBG; They are in compliance with regulations governing the Child Nutrition Programs (in quantity requirements and/or by definition); They are in compliance with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Standards of Identity; They are in compliance with USDA’s standards for meat and meat products (if applicable); and They are in compliance with administrative policy decisions on the crediting of popular foods.

Noncreditable foods: Foods that do not count toward meeting meal pattern requirements because they do not meet criteria. Nevertheless, noncreditable foods often supply additional nutrients and calories that help meet the energy and nutritional needs of participants. For example, the service of a protein-rich food (such as eggs) at breakfast is not required but it contributes additional nutrients, improves the acceptability of meals, and satisfies appetites.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reimburses child and adult care centers, family day care home sponsors, at-risk after school snack programs, and homeless shelters participating in the CACFP for the meals served to young children or adult enrollees, not for individual foods. A meal is reimbursable if it contains those creditable foods in the amounts outlined in the CACFP meal patterns.

The Food Buying Guide for Child Nutrition Programs (FBG) is the principal tool with which to determine the contribution that foods make toward meal requirements regardless if foods are produced on site or purchased commercially. This handbook is a supplementary resource with additional information on creditable foods in child and adult care centers, outside-school-hours care centers, and family day care homes.

Crediting Handbook for the Child and Adult Care Food Program

USDA Food Buying Guide