SDE: Evaluating Foods for Compliance with Connecticut Nutrition Standards

Evaluating Foods for Compliance with Connecticut Nutrition Standards

School Nutrition Programs   Program Guidance  |  Forms  |  Resources  |  Nutrition Education

{boy eating bowl of fruit salad}

Public schools that choose the healthy food option of HFC under Section 10-215f of the Connecticut General Statutes must follow the Connecticut Nutrition Standards (CNS) for all foods sold to students separately from reimbursable school meals. The CNS applies to all sources of food sales on school premises at all times including, but not limited to, school stores, vending machines, school cafeterias, and any non-exempt fundraising activities on school premises. For information on the requirements for fundraisers, review the CSDE's Fundraiser handout.

The handouts and resources below provide information to assist schools with determining whether purchased and school-made foods comply with the CNS. Schools must determine compliance of all food items before selling them to students.

Purchased Foods School-made Foods

The Connecticut State Department of Education's (CSDE) worksheets below can be used to evaluate products for compliance with the CNS. While these worksheets are useful in identifying if new products comply with the CNS, the CSDE strongly encourages districts to use the List of Acceptable Foods and Beverages to ensure that commercially available items comply with the CNS and state beverage requirements.

Please submit the nutrition information for any new products not included on the List of Acceptable Foods and Beverages to the CSDE for review. The handout, Submitting Foods and Beverage Products for Approval, summarizes the information needed by the CSDE to review foods and beverages for compliance with the state requirements.

To ensure compliance with the CNS, schools must conduct a nutrient analysis of all recipes used to prepare food items sold to students separately from reimbursable meals (except for entree items that are sold as part of reimbursable meals and also sold a la carte the same day). School-made foods include:

  1. foods that are prepared from scratch using a recipe, e.g., entrees sold only a la carte, soup, baked goods, cooked grains and vegetables; or
  2. foods that require some additional processing by adding other ingredients after purchasing, e.g., assembling a sandwich, popping popcorn kernels in oil or making cookies from a mix and adding butter and eggs.
{cookbook and pot}

To determine whether a recipe complies with the CNS, calculate the recipe's nutrition information using worksheet 9, then enter this information into the appropriate worksheet for the food category (see CNS worksheets 1-8 below). If the recipe is missing nutrition information for trans fat or sugars, calculate this information using CNS worksheets 10 and 11.

CNS Worksheets
CONTACT:  Susan S. Fiore, M.S., R.D. at or 860-807-2075
Connecticut State Department of Education
Bureau of Health, Nutrition, Family Services and Adult Education
Child Nutrition Programs
450 Columbus Boulevard, Suite 504
Hartford, CT 06103-1841

Nondiscrimination Statements (USDA and CSDE)

Content Last Modified on 4/17/2017 2:25:50 PM