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e-CFR data is current as of December 2, 2020

Title 7Subtitle BChapter IISubchapter BPart 250Subpart C → §250.30


Title 7: Agriculture
PART 250—DONATION OF FOODS FOR USE IN THE UNITED STATES, ITS TERRITORIES AND POSSESSIONS AND AREAS UNDER ITS JURISDICTION
Subpart C—Processing of Donated Foods


§250.30   Processing of donated foods into end products.

(a) Purpose of processing donated foods. Donated foods are most commonly provided to processors to process into approved end products for use in school lunch programs or other food services provided by recipient agencies. The ability to divert donated foods for processing provides recipient agencies with more options for using donated foods in their programs. For example, donated foods such as whole chickens or chicken parts may be processed into precooked grilled chicken strips for use in the National School Lunch Program. In some cases, donated foods are provided to processors to prepare meals or for repackaging. Use of a commercial facility to repackage donated foods, or to use donated foods in the preparation of meals, is considered processing in this part.

(b) Agreement requirement. The processing of donated foods must be performed in accordance with an agreement between the processor and FNS, between the processor and the distributing agency, or, if allowed by the distributing agency, between the processor and a recipient agency or subdistributing agency. However, a processing agreement will not obligate any party to provide donated foods to a processor for processing. The agreements described below are required in addition to, not in lieu of, competitively procured contracts required in accordance with §250.31. The processing agreement must be signed by an authorized individual for the processor. The different types of processing agreements are described in this section.

(c) National Processing Agreement. A multi-State processor must enter into a National Processing Agreement with FNS in order to process donated foods into end products in accordance with end product data schedules approved by FNS. FNS also holds and manages such processor's performance bond or letter of credit under its National Processing Agreement, in accordance with §250.32. FNS does not itself procure or purchase end products under a National Processing Agreement. A multi-State processor must also enter into a State Participation Agreement with the distributing agency in order to sell nationally approved end products in the State, in accordance with paragraph (d) of this section.

(d) State Participation Agreement. The distributing agency must enter into a State Participation Agreement with a multi-State processor to permit the sale of end products produced under the processor's National Processing Agreement to eligible recipient agencies in the State or to directly purchase such end products. The distributing agency may include other State-specific processing requirements in its State Participation Agreement, such as the methods of end product sales permitted, in accordance with §250.36, or the use of labels attesting to fulfillment of meal pattern requirements in child nutrition programs. The distributing agency must utilize the following criteria in its selection of processors with which it enters into agreements. These criteria will be reviewed by the appropriate FNS Regional Office during the management evaluation review of the distributing agency.

(1) The nutritional contribution provided by end products;

(2) The marketability or acceptability of end products;

(3) The means by which end products will be distributed;

(4) Price competitiveness of end products and processing yields of donated foods;

(5) Any applicable labeling requirements; and

(6) The processor's record of ethics and integrity, and capacity to meet regulatory requirements.

(e) In-State Processing Agreement. A distributing agency must enter into an In-State Processing Agreement with an in-State processor to process donated foods into finished end products, unless it permits recipient agencies to enter into Recipient Agency Processing Agreements for such purpose, in accordance with paragraph (f) of this section. Under an In-State Processing Agreement, the distributing agency approves end product data schedules (except red meat and poultry) submitted by the processor, holds and manages the processor's performance bond or letter of credit, in accordance with §250.32, and assures compliance with other processing requirements. The distributing agency may also purchase the finished end products for distribution to eligible recipient agencies in the State under an In-State Processing Agreement, or may permit recipient agencies to purchase such end products, in accordance with applicable procurement requirements. In the latter case, the In-State Processing Agreement is often called a “master agreement.” A distributing agency that procures end products on behalf of recipient agencies, or that limits recipient agencies' access to the procurement of specific end products through its master agreements, must utilize the following criteria in its selection of processors with which it enters into agreements. These criteria will be reviewed by the appropriate FNS Regional Office during the management evaluation review of the distributing agency.

(1) The nutritional contribution provided by end products;

(2) The marketability or acceptability of end products;

(3) The means by which end products will be distributed;

(4) Price competitiveness of end products and processing yields of donated foods;

(5) Any applicable labeling requirements; and

(6) The processor's record of ethics and integrity, and capacity to meet regulatory requirements.

(f) Recipient Agency Processing Agreement. The distributing agency may permit a recipient agency to enter into an agreement with an in-State processor to process donated foods and to purchase the finished end products in accordance with a Recipient Agency Processing Agreement. A recipient agency may also enter into a Recipient Agency Processing Agreement on behalf of other recipient agencies, in accordance with an agreement between the parties. The distributing agency may also delegate a recipient agency to approve end product data schedules or select nationally approved end product data schedules, review in-State processor performance reports, manage the performance bond or letter of credit of an in-State processor, and monitor other processing activities under a Recipient Agency Processing Agreement. All such activities must be performed in accordance with the requirements of this part. All Recipient Agency Processing Agreements must be reviewed and approved by the distributing agency. All recipient agencies must utilize the following criteria in its selection of processors with which it enters into agreements:

(1) The nutritional contribution provided by end products;

(2) The marketability or acceptability of end products;

(3) The means by which end products will be distributed;

(4) Price competitiveness of end products and processing yields of donated foods;

(5) Any applicable labeling requirements; and

(6) The processor's record of ethics and integrity, and capacity to meet regulatory requirements.

(g) Ensuring acceptability of end products. A distributing agency that procures end products on behalf of recipient agencies, or that otherwise limits recipient agencies' access to the procurement of specific end products, must provide for testing of end products to ensure their acceptability by recipient agencies, prior to entering into processing agreements. End products that have previously been tested, or that are otherwise determined to be acceptable, need not be tested. However, such a distributing agency must monitor product acceptability on an ongoing basis.

(h) Prohibition against subcontracting. A processor may not assign any processing activities under its processing agreement or subcontract to another entity to perform any aspect of processing, without the specific written consent of the other party to the agreement (i.e., distributing or recipient agency, or FNS, as appropriate). The distributing agency may, for example, provide the required consent as part of its State Participation Agreement or In-State Processing Agreement with the processor.

(i) Agreements between processors and distributors. A processor providing end products containing donated foods to a distributor must enter into a written agreement with the distributor. The agreement must reference, at a minimum, the financial liability (i.e., who must pay) for the replacement value of donated foods, not less than monthly end product sales reporting frequency, requirements under §250.11, and the applicable value pass through system to ensure that the value of donated foods and finished end products are properly credited to recipient agencies. Distributing agencies can set additional requirements.

(j) Duration of agreements. In-State Processing Agreements and Recipient Agency Processing Agreements may be up to five years in duration. State Participation Agreements may be permanent. National Processing Agreements are permanent. Amendments to any agreements may be made, as needed, with the concurrence of both parties to the agreement. Such amendments will be effective for the duration of the agreement, unless otherwise indicated.

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