Commodity Supplemental Food Program

To improve the health and nutritional status of low-income pregnant, postpartum and breastfeeding women, infants, and children up to age of 6, and elderly persons age 60 years and older through the donation of supplemental foods.

Agency - Department of Agriculture

Established in 1862, the Department of Agriculture serves all Americans through anti-hunger efforts, stewardship of nearly 200 million acres of national forest and rangelands, and through product safety and conservation efforts. The USDA opens markets for American farmers and ranchers and provides food for needy people around the world.

Office - See Food and Nutrition Service Regional Offices listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog.

Program Accomplishments

For FY 07, average monthly participation was 33,270 women, infants, and children, and 432,910 senior persons.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Administrative grants are made to State agencies, Indian tribes or tribal organizations recognized by the Department of the Interior, or, the appropriate area office of the Indian Health Service of the Department of Health and Human Services.

These agencies distribute funds to participating local public or private nonprofit agencies.

Federal funding for administrative costs may only be used in making these donated foods and nutrition education available to eligible beneficiaries.

Donated foods can only be made available to eligible beneficiaries and cannot be sold, exchanged, or otherwise disposed of without prior specific approval by the Department.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Agreements are made between the Department and the State agency, an Indian tribe or tribal organization recognized by the Department of the Interior for the administration of the program ot the appropriate area office of the Indian Health Service of the Department of Health and Human Services.

Beneficiary Eligibility

To be certified as eligible to receive supplemental foods, each applicant must be categorically eligible as an infant, child up to age six, a pregnant, postpartum or breastfeeding woman, or an elderly person 60 years of age or older, residing in an area where the program operates. Women, infants, and children, must have income at or below 185 percent of Federal poverty income guidelines, or, at State discretion, be income eligible under existing Federal, State, or local food, health, or welfare programs for low-income persons. Women, infants or children who receive Special Nutrition Assistance Program benefits, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, or Medicaid are considered automatically eligible for CSFP. Elderly persons must have income at or below 130 percent of Federal poverty income guidelines. States may require that participants be at nutritional risk, as determined by a physician or local agency staff. States may also require that an individual reside within the service area of the local agency at the time of application for CSFP benefits. However, States may not require that the individual reside within the area for any fixed period of time.


Participants are provided donated foods by local agency personnel or its designee. Costs will be determined in accordance with 2 CFR Part 225 (OMB Circular No. A-87) and 2 CFR Part 230 (OMB Circular No. A-122).

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

Application is made through submission of a State Plan as required by the Federal agency.

This program is eligible for coverage under E.O.

12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Application Procedures

The State agency must require each agency that desires approval as a local agency, to submit an application that contains sufficient information to enable the State agency to make a determination of eligibility for that agency. Individual participants may apply for program benefits at an approved local agency.

Award Procedures

Funds are awarded by the Department to State agencies in accordance with the priorities and funding formulas set forth in program regulations and legislation; State agencies, in turn, distribute administrative funds to the local level.


Approved State plans are considered permanent and updated as needed. A State plan for a new State seeking to participate in the program during the next FY is required by August 15.


Agriculture and Consumer Protection Act of 1973, Section 4(a) and 5, as amended, Public Law 93-86, 7 U.S.C. 612c (note); Food and Agriculture Act of 1977, as amended, Public Law 95-113, 91 Stat. 980; Public Law 97-98, 95 Stat. 1293; Public Law 98-8, 97 Stat. 35; Public Law 98-92, 97 Stat. 611; Public Law 99-198, 99 Stat. 1590; Public Law 100-202; Public Law 101-624, 101 Stat. 3806; Public Law 104-127, 110 Stat. 1028; Public Law 107-171.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

A determination will be made within 30 days of submission of a completed plan.


Local agency appeals: The State agency provides a hearing appeal procedure for a local agency adversely affected by a State agency action. The right to appeal is granted whenever an action would adversely affect participation. Individual participant appeals: The State agency provides a hearing appeal procedure for any individual who receives an adverse action which may include the denial or discontinuance of program benefits, disqualification from the program, or a claim to repay the value of commodities received as the result of fraud.



Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Administrative Funds: Public Law 107-171 requires the USDA to provide State agencies with a grant per assigned caseload slot to pay for administrative program costs. There are no Federal matching requirements.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Commodities are made available on an ongoing basis. Cash assistance is released annually each FY.

Post Assistance Requirements


Financial, Program, Inventory, and Civil Rights Reports must be submitted as required by FNS at a frequency prescribed by FNS.


In accordance with the provision of OMB Circular No. A-133, "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Nonprofit Organizations," State and local governments, and nonprofit organizations that expend Federal financial assistance of $500,000 or more within any FY must have either a single or (in certain cases) a program specific audit made for that year. Audits may be conducted less frequently under conditions specified in OMB Circular No. A-133.


Each State agency must maintain accurate and complete records of all receipts and dispositions as detailed in 7 CFR 247.29(a). Records must be retained for 3 FYs from the end of the FY to which they pertain, or if they are related to unsolved claims, actions, audits or investigations until those activities have been resolved.

Financial Information

Account Identification



FY 07 $107,828,081; FY 08 est $139,830,000; and FY 09 est not reported.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

On average, $831,437 in approprited administrative funding was allocated to each State for FY 07. Funding ranged from $6,091 to $4,682,278 per State.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

7 CFR Part 247 is available without charge from the Department.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

See Food and Nutrition Service Regional Offices listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog.

Headquarters Office

Food Distribution Division, Food and Nutrition Service, Department of Agriculture, Alexandria, VA 22302. Contact: Cathie McCullough, Director. Telephone: (703) 305-2680.

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