Purchasing for child nutrition programs involves several steps all based on the foundation of open and free competition with the goal of providing with the most nutritious, high-quality and safe meals possible while staying within a budget. Here you will find resources to assist in traveling down the procurement path.
All procurement transactions must be conducted in a manner that follows the principles of good procurement:
- Provide for free and open competition. Free and open competition means that all vendors have a level playing field and the same opportunity to compete.
- Conduct procurement in an environment that provides for fairness and maintain integrity throughout the process. This means employee or agent of the School Food Authority (SFA) or Local Education Agency (LEA) responsible for development, selection, award, and administration of contracts should avoid any conflicts of interests, real or apparent. The employee or agent of the SFA or LEA shall neither solicit nor accept gratuities, favors, or anything of monetary value from vendors or proposed vendors.
- Award contracts to vendors who are eligible, responsive, able, and willing to meet the product specifications, and the terms and conditions provided in the solicitation document.
- Maintain transparency throughout the process. This means records are maintained to establish accountability and cost effectiveness for the federally funded SNP.
2 CFR 200.317-326 Super Circular – Federal Procurement Regulations