Revised October, 2007
Idaho Commission on Aging
Location: 3380 Americana Terrace, Suite 120
Boise, ID 83706
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720-0007
Web address: www.idahoaging.com
AREA AGENCY ON AGING
Table of Contents
Section I Congregate Meals 3
Section II Home-delivered Meals 3
Section III Other Participants 4
Section IV Right to Appeal 4
Section I Registered Dietitian 5
Section II Nutrition Services Program Staff 5
Section III Meal Requirements 6
Section IV Menus 6
Section V Special Diet Menus 7
Section VI Nutritional Supplements 7
Section VII Leftovers 7
Section VIII Donated Foodstuffs 7
Section IX Temperatures 8
Section X Food Storage 8
DONATIONS AND FEES
Section I Voluntary Contributions/Donations 10
Section II Meal Fees 11
Section III Meal Tickets 11
Section I Federal, State and Local Laws 12
Section II Documentation 12
Section III Client Registration 13
Section IV Food Costs 13
Section V Grievance Procedures 14
Section VI Liability Coverage 14
Section VII Inventory Control 14
Section VIII Lease Agreements 14
Section IX HCBS Medicaid Waiver 15
Section X Nutrition Education 15
Section XI Potluck Dinners 15
Section XII Quality Assurance 15
Section XIII Reports 15
Section XIV Sales Tax 15
Section XV Nutrition Services Incentive Program (NSIP) 16
Section I Meal Site Operations 19
Section II New Meal Sites 19
Section III Minimum Service Provision 20
Section IV Meal Site Closure 21
Section V Transfer of Inventory and/or Equipment 21
Section VI Expiration Date/Use by Date 22
1. Activities of Daily Living (ADL): Bathing, dressing, toileting, transferring, eating and
2. Assessment Instrument: A comprehensive instrument utilizing uniform criteria to assess a
client’s needs (e.g. assessment of functional level, social skills, physical and mental health, and
unmet needs.) Required for those individuals who receive home-delivered meals in excess of
six weeks in any 12-month period.
3. Congregate Meals: Nutritious meals served to groups of older individuals at a meal site,
senior center or some other congregate setting. The service must include nutrition screening
and, where appropriate, nutrition education and counseling. OAA Sec 339(2)
4. Frail: An older individual is determined to be functionally impaired because the individual (1)
is unable to perform at least two activities of daily living without substantial human assistance,
including verbal reminding, physical cueing, or supervision; or (2) due to a cognitive or other
mental impairment, requires substantial supervision because the individual behaves in a
manner that poses a serious health or safety hazard to the individual or to another individual.
OAA Sec 102(26)(A)(i) & (B)
5. HCBS Medicaid Waiver Meals: Meals authorized and paid for by the Medicaid Waiver for
the Aged and Disabled. These meals are not eligible for NSIP reimbursement.
6. Home-delivered Meals (HDM): Nutritious meals provided in the residence of a homebound
older person who is unable to independently prepare a nutritious meal and unable to participate
in a congregate meal program. The service must include nutrition screening and, where
appropriate, nutrition education and counseling. OAA Sec 339(2)
7. Homebound: A person shall be determined to be homebound if he/she is unable to leave home
without assistance because of a disabling physical, emotional, or environmental condition.
8. Idaho Senior Services Act: Administrative rules, programs and services established in Idaho
Code, Section 67-5001, et seq., Idaho Code.
9. Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL): Meal preparation, money management,
transportation, shopping, using the telephone, medication management, heavy housework, and
10. Nutrition Project: The Nutrition Project is the Planning and Service Area (PSA) of the Area
Agency on Aging (AAA).
11. Nutrition Provider: The primary contractor and/or individual providers of congregate or
HDM that prepares, delivers and serves meals. The term Nutrition Provider does not include a
satellite meal site where congregate meals are served only.
12. Nutrition Services Incentive Program (NSIP): NSIP is the new name for the USDA’s cash
or commodity program, formerly known as the Nutrition Program for the Elderly (NPE). OAA
13. Nutrition Services Program: Congregate and home-delivered meals programs funded under
the Older Americans Act and the Idaho State Senior Services Act.
14. Meal Site: A facility or location where eligible persons assemble for a meal either site
prepared or catered. IDAPA 15.01.21
15. Older Americans Act (OAA): Federal law which authorizes funding to states to provide
supportive and nutrition services for older individuals.
16. Older Individual: An individual who is 60 years of age or older. OAA Sec 102(35)
17. Service Unit: Within the context of the Nutrition Services Program under Title IIIC of the
Older Americans Act, one service unit equals one meal provided per eligible participant.
Each Nutrition Project and Nutrition Provider will adhere to the following standards.
SECTION I – CONGREGATE MEALS
Congregate Meals: Meals served in a group setting, often at senior centers, churches or schools.
To be eligible, a participant must be:
1. 60 years of age or older; or
2. the spouse (may be less than age 60) of a participant aged 60 or older.
SECTION II – HOME-DELIVERED MEALS
Home-delivered Meals: Meals delivered to eligible clients in private homes. IDAPA 15.01.01.10.24
Eligible clients are older individuals who are homebound due to frailty, illness, or some other reason
(including social or cultural isolation), and who are unable to independently prepare a nutritious meal
and unable to participate in a congregate meal program. A client’s eligibility to receive HDM shall be
based upon the degree to which ADLs/IADLs limit ability to independently prepare nutritious meals.
IDAPA 15.01.21.11.01.a The spouse (may be less than age 60) of an individual eligible for HDM may
receive a home-delivered meal if, according to criteria determined by the area agency, receipt of the
meal is in the best interest of the homebound older person. 45 CFR 1321.69(b)
The eligible participant shall agree to contact the program when his/her absence from home is
unavoidable, such as a medical appointment. A meal shall not be delivered if the eligible participant is
Home-delivered meals may be started immediately upon referral provided (1) the participant is 60
years of age or older and otherwise eligible or (2) the recipient is the spouse of an eligible participant.
Eligibility for HDM must be documented on an ICOA approved Client Registration Form and then
forwarded to the AAA.
For those clients who receive HDM in excess of 6 (six) weeks in any twelve (12) month period,
eligibility must be determined by an AAA case manager. An AAA case manager utilizing an ICOA
approved assessment instrument shall determine individual eligibility.
HDM clients shall be reviewed or re-evaluated on a regular basis, but not less frequently than annually.
SECTION III – OTHER PARTICIPANTS
With regard to congregate and home-delivered meals, each Area Agency on Aging shall establish
procedures that will allow Nutrition Providers the option to offer a meal on the same basis as meals are
provided to participating older individuals, to (1) individuals (under age 60) providing volunteer
services during the meal hours; (2) individuals with disabilities (under age 60) who reside at home
with, and accompany, an older individual to a congregate meal site; (3) individuals with disabilities
(under age 60), residing with an older individual eligible for HDM; and (4) individuals with disabilities
(under age 60) who reside in housing facilities occupied primarily by older individuals where
congregate meals are provided. OAA Sec 339(2)
SECTION IV – RIGHT TO APPEAL
For those AAAs that allow the Nutrition Provider to initiate home-delivered meals prior to assessment
by an AAA case manager, the AAA shall ensure a mechanism is in place for applicants who are denied
HDM by the Nutrition Provider. The applicant shall be informed in writing of their right to appeal the
Nutrition Provider’s decision at the AAA.
SECTION I – REGISTERED DIETITIAN
Registered Dietitian: Each AAA and/or Nutrition Provider must have a written agreement with a
registered dietitian or nutritionist to sufficiently provide consultation to each Nutrition Provider at least
annually. OAA Sec339 (2) The dietitian or nutritionist shall:
1. advise the AAA and/or Nutrition Providers,
2. assure nutrition standards are met for Nutrition Providers; and
3. approve or certify all menus for each Nutrition Provider to ensure the menus meet the meal
requirements of the OAA and this manual.
SECTION II - NUTRITION SERVICES PROGRAM STAFF
1. Each Nutrition Provider (license holder) will designate a person in charge and will ensure that a
person in charge is present at the food establishment during all hours of food preparation and
service. Idaho Food Code and IDAPA 16.02.19.201
2. Each food worker, paid and volunteer, shall be properly trained in Food Safety as it relates to
their assigned duties. Idaho Food Code 2-103.11(L)
3. Nutrition Services Program staff, paid and volunteer, shall receive in-service training at least
annually. In-service training shall be specifically designed to increase knowledge and
understanding of the program and improve staff’s skills in performing tasks required to provide
4. Nutrition Providers must maintain comprehensive records identifying dates of training and
training topics covered as a part of each staff person’s personnel file. Individualized in-service
training plans shall be developed for each staff person when their performance evaluation
indicates the need.
5. Required in-service training topics for food service personnel shall include food safety and
sanitation and kitchen operations.
6. Volunteers and program staff, including those who deliver meals, shall be trained to identify
and report to the Nutrition Provider any changes in a meal recipient’s behavior which might
indicate a health problem or other difficulty, or any observed condition of a meal recipient’s
home which could pose a hazard to health and safety.
SECTION III – MEAL REQUIREMENTS
Meal Requirements: Each meal must contain at least one-third of the current daily Recommended
Dietary Allowances (RDA) and comply with the existing Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Nutrition
Providers must also comply with applicable provisions of state and local laws regarding the safe and
sanitary handling of food, equipment, and supplies used in the storage, preparation, service and
delivery of meals to older individuals. OAA Section 339(2) (A) & (F) Snacks or combinations of foods,
which do not meet one-third of the RDA, must not be included in the meal counts reported to AAA.
Each meal provided will include the following:
1. A minimum of 33 1/3 percent of the daily Recommended Dietary Allowances as
established by the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine of the National
Academy of Sciences, if the Nutrition Project or Nutrition Provider serves one (1) meal
2. A minimum of 66 2/3 percent of the daily Recommended Dietary Allowances if the
Nutrition Project or Nutrition Provider serves two (2) meals per day.
3. 100 percent of the daily Recommended Dietary Allowances if the Nutrition Project or
Nutrition Provider serves three (3) meals per day.
OAA Sec 339(2) (A) (ii) (I), (II) & (III)
SECTION IV – MENUS
Menus must meet the following specifications:
1. protein may come from more than one source;
2. menus must be planned and written for a minimum of four (4) weeks and must be
certified or signed by a registered dietitian or nutritionist, certifying that each day’s
meal will contain at least one-third of the daily Recommended Dietary Allowances and
comply with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Menus will be posted two weeks in
3. a variety of foods must be included in each menu cycle;
4. food items within the meat, vegetable, fruit and dessert groups must vary for the same
days of the week, from week to week in order to provide a variety of foods and
nutrients. For example: “Spaghetti Saturday”, “Fish Filet Friday”, “Turkey Thursday”,
etc., will not be regularly scheduled days;
5. serving sizes are not to be reduced when attendance exceeds expectations. Each
Nutrition Provider must have procedures in place to ensure all eligible participants
receive the RDA serving.
6. all foods used in the preparation of meals shall be obtained from sources that comply
with the Idaho Food Code, IDAPA 16.02.19 and shall be of good quality.
SECTION V - SPECIAL DIET MENUS
To the maximum extent practicable, meals may be adjusted to meet any special dietary needs of
program participants. If the Nutrition Provider is made aware of special dietary needs, referral shall be
made to the contracted dietitian for planning special dietary needs. OAA Sec 339(2)(iii)
SECTION VI - NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS
Nutrition Providers may use federal and state funds, and/or voluntary contributions/donations to
provide nutritional supplements for eligible participants. A current signed statement from a doctor
ordering the specific supplement and daily quantity is required and must be maintained in the Nutrition
Provider’s file and the participant’s file. Doctor’s orders must be renewed annually.
SECTION VII - LEFTOVERS
Each Nutrition Provider shall establish procedures to minimize leftover meals at each site. At a
minimum, the procedures should consider: (1) prior attendance considering the day of the week; (2)
weather conditions; and (3) popularity of the proposed menu entrée.
Leftover food at on-site cooking facilities shall be properly refrigerated and incorporated into the
subsequent meals whenever possible. Sites with proper storage facilities may want to freeze leftovers.
Leftover food at facilities that do not have on-site cooking facilities may be offered to all participants
as second helpings to be eaten at the meal site. Second helpings served to an individual at the same
meal service are NOT counted as extra meals for reporting purposes.
Each Nutrition Provider shall establish policies regarding the removal of food served as part of a meal
by participants from congregate meal sites. The policies shall take into account safe and proper
methods for handling foods.
Nutrition staff is not permitted to take home leftover foods from any meal site or preparation facility.
SECTION VIII - DONATED FOODSTUFFS
Nutrition Providers may use only donated foods that meet the same standards of quality, sanitation,
and safety as apply to foodstuffs purchased from commercial sources.
SECTION IX – TEMPERATURES
Food must be served and stored at safe temperatures according to IDAPA 16.02.19.350 and the Idaho
Food Code. Hot foods not maintained at 135 F or above shall not be served. Cold foods not
maintained at 41 F or below shall not be served. Each Nutrition Provider must check the temperature
of food at the time of delivery and serving time. A record of these temperatures will be maintained for
three (3) years.
1. Timely Serving of Hot Food: The period between the end of preparation of hot food and
the beginning of serving will not exceed four (4) hours. Only products that do not need
to be held above 135 F are exempt.
2. Refrigerated storage areas will be maintained between 32 F and 45 F. A record of
temperature readings will be maintained on the outside of the refrigerator and taken
every meal day. Past records will be maintained for three years.
3. Dry storage areas will be maintained between 50 F and 70 F. A record of temperature
readings will be maintained in the storage area and taken every meal day. Past records
will be maintained for three (3) years.
4. Freezer storage areas will be maintained at 0 F or below. A record of temperature
readings will be maintained on the freezer and taken every meal day. Past records will
be maintained for three (3) years.
5. Thermometers will be kept in all dry storage, refrigerators and freezers.
6. Home-delivered meals and meals catered to a congregate setting shall be maintained
during transit at the proper temperature for hot, cold and frozen foods. Nutrition
Projects are encouraged to enter into contracts that limit the amount of time these meals
spend in transit before they are consumed. OAA Sec 339(2)(C)
SECTION X - FOOD STORAGE
The following specifics will be complied with when storing food:
1. storage space will be maintained in good repair;
2. safeguards will be taken to prevent theft;
3. out of condition foods will be appropriately discarded;
4. food items must meet the “expiration date usage” requirements;
5. foods will be stacked off the floor;
6. foods will be stored separately from pesticides, herbicides, cleaning supplies, and other
materials that could contaminate foods;
7. storage will be maintained in a way that prevents accidents and injury; and
8. storage areas will be free from rodent, bird, insect, and other animal infestation.
DONATIONS AND FEES
SECTION I – VOLUNTARY CONTRIBUTIONS/DONATIONS
Nutrition Providers shall solicit voluntary contributions for the Nutrition Services Program. With input
from participants and the AAA, each Nutrition Provider shall establish a suggested voluntary
contribution/donation. The Area Agency on Aging shall ensure that each Nutrition Provider adheres to
the following minimum requirements:
1. The suggested voluntary contribution/donation shall be posted in a prominent
2. Each eligible participant shall have an opportunity to voluntarily contribute toward the
cost of a provided meal.
3. Each eligible participant shall be informed that the contribution is purely voluntary.
4. Each Nutrition Provider shall establish and implement procedures, which will protect
the privacy and confidentiality of the eligible participant’s decision to contribute or not
contribute toward the cost of provided meal(s).
a. With regard to congregate meals, there shall be locked contribution containers,
placed away from the ticket and change table, which shall not be monitored for
contributions, in order to assure the confidentiality of the contribution/donation.
b. With regard to HDM clients, a duplicate receipt shall be provided to all HDM
clients when they submit a voluntary cash contribution/donation to the program.
Receipt records will be retained for three (3) years.
5. Under no circumstances may a Nutrition Provider deny an eligible participant service
because of the participant’s inability or decision not to contribute to the cost of the
6. Written procedures must be established and implemented to safeguard and account for
all fees and voluntary contribution/donations, and shall include the following:
a. Two persons shall count participant contributions each day meals are served, and
both individuals shall sign a form attesting to the correct amount. A copy of such
signed document shall be kept on file;
b. Sealing, written acknowledgement of, and transporting of daily receipts either to
deposit in a financial institution or to a secure storage facility until such deposit can
be arranged; and
c. Reconciliation of deposit receipts and daily collection records by someone other
than the bookkeeper or person responsible for making the deposits.
7. Income derived from voluntary contributions/donations will be used to expand the
Nutrition Services program.
SECTION II – MEAL FEES
Meal Fees for Non-eligible Individuals: Each Nutrition Provider must establish a required fee for
non-eligible individuals. This fee shall cover the cost of raw food, supplies, labor, transportation, and
program administration. Each Nutrition Provider must employ a uniform method for documenting
receipt of required meal fees.
1. Persons under age 60 years of age, who are not the spouse of an eligible participant, shall
pay the full cost of meals, as published by the Nutrition Provider.
2. Paid nutrition staff, under age 60, are not entitled to a free meal if they are not eligible
under the Older Americans Act (OAA) requirements. However, it is customary for an
OAA food service operation to provide meals as a benefit similar to vacation or health
insurance. This benefit is to be factored into the cost of the meal, like wages, health
insurance, food, utilities, etc. Meals provided as a benefit to paid nutrition staff will not be
counted or reported to the AAA for the state and federal program reports or for
3. A caregiver, not otherwise eligible in Chapter 2 of this manual, is considered a non-eligible
individual and must pay the full cost of the meal, as published by the Nutrition Provider.
4. A disabled individual, not otherwise eligible in Chapter 2, Section III of this manual, is
considered a non-eligible individual and must pay the full cost of the meal, as published by
SECTION III - MEAL TICKETS
In order to facilitate gift giving and budgeting, Nutrition Providers may sell meal tickets. Precautions,
such as tickets in different colors, should be taken to insure non-eligible individuals are paying the full
cost of the meal. The system of meal tickets cannot be used to charge an eligible participant for meals;
it is up to the eligible participant to determine the value of each meal ticket purchased.
SECTION I – FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL LAWS
Each Nutrition Provider must:
1. comply with all state and local fire, health, sanitation, safety, building, and zoning laws,
ordinances, or codes; IDAPA 15.01.21
2. comply with Idaho’s Food Safety and Sanitation Standards for Food Establishments and
the Idaho Food Code. IDAPA 16.02.19
3. comply with licensure requirements in accordance with IDAPA 16.02.19.830;
4. comply with Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (O.S.H.A.)
requirements; IDAPA 15.01.21
5. comply with the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (PL 101-336) (ADA
website: www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/adahome1.htm); IDAPA 15.01.21 and
6. comply with applicable provisions of the OAA and Idaho Code together with related
rules and regulations.
SECTION II - DOCUMENTATION
A systematic method for documenting the number of meals served must be established. Meals eligible
for OAA, NSIP and State funding are those meals served to eligible participants. Daily sign-in sheets
or other acceptable documentation identifying eligible participants and guests shall be used for those
receiving congregate or home-delivered meals.
1. Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Program: Nutrition Providers may, but are not
required to, accept EBT vouchers (food stamps) as voluntary contributions/donations
for the meal programs.
2. Emergency (Group) Procedures: Efforts must be documented supporting preparations
for natural or man-made disasters or emergencies. Specific procedures will be
established, in writing, to be followed by staff and participants at the meal site and shall
a. record of annual fire drill;
b. posting of a list of emergency procedures;
c. training for staff and regular volunteers on procedures to be followed in the
event of a disaster;
d. staff and volunteer training procedures on actions to be taken in the event of a
medical or other emergency;
e. arrangements for the availability of services to older persons in weather-related
f. meals provided during an emergency must be documented. A record of what
was prepared, for how many and for whom (sign-in sheet) is required for
SECTION III - CLIENT REGISTRATION
1. The AAA and Nutrition Providers will use an ICOA approved Client Registration form
to register each Nutrition Services Program participant. Nutrition screening must be
included with the registration form. OAA 339(2)(J)
2. A Client Registration form is required for any client who has eaten four (4) congregate
meals within any twelve (12) month period at any one site. Congregate meal
participants shall review their Client Registration form, not less frequently than
annually to ensure the registration information is current. The participant shall sign and
date the form upon review. The signature and date may be added to the bottom of the
SECTION IV - FOOD COSTS
Each Nutrition Provider will calculate and maintain records on the component costs per meal
according to the following categories:
1. average labor cost;
2. average raw food cost, including freight costs for commodities;
3. average other direct expenditures, including but not limited to administration,
management, utilities, etc.
In addition, each Nutrition Provider will calculate and maintain records of receipts in the following
1. average donation;
2. NSIP cash-in-lieu payments; and
3. contract payments.
Nutrition Providers that operate both congregate and home-delivered meals programs must accurately
distribute costs between each of the programs. Only costs directly related to a specific program may
be charged to that program.
SECTION V - GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES
Related to the Nutrition Services Program, each Nutrition Provider must develop written procedures
for participant grievances. The grievance procedures shall include a method for informing participants
of their right to contact the AAA if they are not satisfied with the resolution of a complaint or problem.
SECTION VI – LIABILITY COVERAGE
1. Each Nutrition Provider shall carry liability insurance to cover operations.
2. Nutrition Providers are required to submit proof of bonding insurance for those staff responsible
for collecting and handling participant voluntary contributions and meal fees.
SECTION VII - INVENTORY CONTROL
Each Nutrition Provider must develop and maintain an inventory control system to account for
consumable goods and supplies purchased and used. Nutrition Providers participating in the NSIP
commodities program are responsible to comply with all Idaho Department of Education, Child
Nutrition Program rules and regulations regarding food storage and utilization. Those participating in
NSIP commodities program are required to complete an Annual Storage Facility Self-Evaluation
Form. This form should be kept on file with the participating Nutrition Provider. Consumable goods
should be utilized on a first in, first out basis.
SECTION VIII - LEASE AGREEMENTS
Except for those who own their facility, Nutrition Providers should have written lease agreements with
the owner(s) of the facility where meals are prepared. Any other agreement for use of the facility
should be formalized by a written agreement (e.g., a portion of the facility is sub-leased for the
provision of Nutrition Services). At a minimum, agreements should address the responsibility for:
1. care and maintenance of the facility, specifically rest rooms, kitchen, and common use
areas, if applicable;
2. snow removal and outdoor maintenance;
3. utility costs;
4. fire and safety inspections;
5. mandatory licensing by the District Health Department;
6. security procedures;
7. facility damage; and
8. theft of property.
SECTION IX - HCBS MEDICAID WAIVER MEALS
Participation in the Medicaid Waiver for the Aged and Disabled is authorized if the Nutrition Provider
complies with the requirements of the Department of Education, OAA, and this manual. These meals
are not reimbursable under NSIP or Title IIIC funding of the OAA. Commodities may be used in the
preparation of the Waiver meals if the per meal cost plus the commodity value does not exceed the
Medicaid Waiver meal reimbursement. (USDA Food Commodity Agreement)
SECTION X - NUTRITION EDUCATION
Each Nutrition Provider is encouraged to present nutrition education on at least a semi-annual basis to
congregate and home delivered meal participants. Topics should include, but are not limited to, food
preparation, nutritional needs, individual eating habits, and other behaviors relative to food,
consumerism, and general health issues. OAA Sec 339(2)
SECTION XI - POTLUCK DINNERS
Staff time, foodstuffs or commodities paid for by state or federal funds will not be used to support
“potluck” dining activities.
SECTION XII - QUALITY ASSURANCE
Nutrition Providers shall develop procedures for regularly obtaining participants’ input regarding the
services received. Nutrition Providers must maintain records documenting comments received from
participants, together with documentation of action taken as a result of participants’ comments.
Nutrition Providers are encouraged to design meals that are appealing to program participants, while
maintaining the meal requirements in Chapter 3 of this manual. OAA Sec 339(2)(B)
SECTION XIII - REPORTS
Nutrition Providers shall report the number of meals served to eligible individuals each month to the
SECTION XIV – SALES TAX
Revenue realized from meals sold to non-eligible individuals is taxable. For more information about
Idaho state sales tax, call the Idaho State Tax Commission toll free at 1-800-972-7660. IDAPA
35.01.02.41.09, Idaho Tax Commission, Nonprofit Groups & Churches Brochure 50, Revised 8/00, &
Idaho Tax Commission, Retailers Brochure, Revised 9/00
SECTION XV – NUTRITION SERVICES INCENTIVE PROGRAM (NSIP)
The Nutrition Services Incentive Program (NSIP), currently governed by Section 311 of the Older
Americans Act (OAA), has existed in one form or another since 1978. Until 2003, the program was
administered by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The Consolidated
Appropriations Resolution of 2003 amended the OAA to transfer the NSIP program from the USDA to
the Administration on Aging (AOA) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Title III-C of the OAA provides federal funding to states for elderly nutrition programs. See Section
330 through 339A of the OAA. These programs provide meals to seniors who are over the age of 60 at
either congregate meal sites or home-delivered meals for those who are too frail to attend a meal site.
NSIP provides supplemental funding for these programs. According to Section 311, NSIP is intended
to provide incentives to Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) that efficiently deliver nutritious meals to
older adults. Through this program, AAAs may receive cash grants and commodities from the USDA
to support the OAA nutrition programs.
The NSIP allocation to each state is a proportionate share of the federal fiscal year appropriations
based upon the number of meals served in the state during the prior fiscal year. NSIP eligible meals
are those that satisfy the requirements for Title III-C of the OAA.
Nutrition Providers are able to elect on an annual basis whether they will receive NSIP funds via 100%
cash in lieu of commodities or 80% cash and 20% commodities (IDAPA 15.01.21.11.02). The OAA
defines commodities as foods that are produced in the United States that meet nutrition guidelines set
forth by the federal government and that comply with the requirements of the OAA.
The USDA, together with the Department of Education, administers the commodities and ordering
process. Ordering dates can vary from one year to the next, as can the commodities that are available.
The USDA notifies the Department of Education when commodities are available, and that agency in
turn notifies ICOA and the meal sites. In addition, ICOA notifies the AAAs when ordering is available
for the contracted meal sites.
NSIP cash payments are disbursed by the AOA at random intervals during the year. The payments
generally are made in three installments throughout the federal fiscal year which runs from October 1st
through September 30th. NSIP disbursement trends show that payments tend to be disbursed in late
January, April and September; however, dates/months are not mandated. When NSIP funds become
available, ICOA disburses them to the AAAs, and the AAAs disburses them in a timely manner to the
nutrition providers. These funds must be used to purchase food grown and processed in the United
The following outlines the reporting deadlines for NSIP:
January 10 – Due date for AAAs to submit to ICOA their year-end reports showing how AAAs
managed and disbursed NSIP funds.
March – Annual election made by Nutrition Providers indicating either 100% cash or 80% cash and
May – Total commodity dollar report due to the Department of Education and USDA.
December 1 – Due date for the AAAs to submit to ICOA their NSIP cash distribution plans for the
ICOA NSIP PROGRAM POLICY
1. Nutrition Providers participating in the NSIP commodities program must have a written
agreement with the Idaho State Department of Education – Child Nutrition Division.
2. Each AAA or Nutrition Provider shall choose annually to participate in the NSIP
eighty/twenty (80/20) or one hundred percent (100%) cash-in-lieu commodity program.
3. Any Nutrition Project or Nutrition Provider participating in the NSIP, either 100% cash
or 80/20 cash and commodities must operate in compliance with all federal
requirements and State operating standards pertaining to meal programs.
4. NSIP cash payments shall only be used to purchase United States agricultural
commodities and other foods produced in the United States. OAA 311(d)(2)
5. NSIP cash payments must be used only for serving those participants eligible under the
OAA Title IIIC.
6. New meal sites will not be enrolled in the NSIP commodities portion of the program
until that site has one full federal fiscal year of served meals. However, an AAA can
allow a new meal site to enroll sooner in the NSIP cash portion of the program if the
ICOA NSIP CASH DISBURSEMENT POLICY
1. Annually, the Administration on Aging (AoA) disburses NSIP funding to each state and
tribal organization in the United States. Idaho’s share of this funding is proportional to
the total meals served in Idaho during the previous federal fiscal year compared to the
meals served in all states and tribal organizations.
2. ICOA will disburse NSIP cash to Idaho’s six AAAs based on the number of meals
served in Idaho during the previous federal fiscal year and the annual election of the
each AAA. (100% cash in lieu of commodities or 80% cash 20% commodities split)
3. ICOA will disburse NSIP cash payments promptly to the AAAs following receipt of
funds from the AoA. OAA Section 311(d)(2)
4. ICOA will use SAMs reports to document meals served for the previous year, and to
calculate correct payments to the AAAs. At the time of payment, ICOA will provide
the formula used to arrive at the payment.
5. AAAs must annually submit to ICOA a plan showing how the AAA will disburse cash
payments to contracted nutrition providers. For those AAAs that have a mixture of
providers electing 100% cash in lieu and the 80%/20% cash and commodities split, the
payments should reflect the difference. This plan will be due December 1 of each year
and will be in effect for the current federal fiscal year.
6. ICOA will annually review and respond to each AAA plan with an approval letter or
request further information.
7. All NSIP cash must be liquidated by the AAA within 90 days from the end of the
federal fiscal year. (September 30)
8. AAAs will be required to submit a year-end report due January 10th of the following
year to ICOA showing how the AAA managed and disbursed the funds to their
9. Each AAA may disburse NSIP cash as they determine appropriate as long as it is
equitable, incentive based, conforms to the AAA plan approved by the ICOA, and
meets the guidelines of this policy.
SECTION I – MEAL SITE OPERATIONS
Meal sites, in a rural area, are encouraged to operate at least three (3) hours per day, two (2) days per
week. If the Nutrition Provider also operates a home-delivered meal program, they must offer home-
delivered meals seven (7) days per week. However, if a Nutrition Provider believes it is not feasible to
provide HDM seven (7) days per week, they must file a written request to the AAA justifying their
reasons. If the AAA preliminarily approves the Nutrition Provider’s request, the written request shall
be sent to the ICOA for final approval. Once approved, the waiver shall be in effect for the current
contractual year between the AAA and Nutrition Provider. When entering into a new contract with the
AAA, a new waiver will be required justifying the reasons it is not feasible to provide home-delivered
meals seven days per week.
Meal sites, not in a rural area, are encouraged to operate at least three (3) hours per day, five (5) days
per week. If the Nutrition Provider also operates a home-delivered meal program, they must offer
home-delivered meals seven (7) days per week.
Nutrition Providers, where feasible, are encouraged to make arrangements with schools and other
facilities serving meals to children in order to promote intergenerational meal programs. OAA
Meal sites must be at least seven (7) miles apart. An AAA may grant a waiver to this requirement only
in the following instances:
1. two facilities, in a rural area, must be utilized to effectively serve a defined geographic area for
the required two (2) days per week;
2. two facilities, not in a rural area, must be utilized to effectively serve a defined geographic area
for the required five (5) days per week.
3. several meal sites, under the umbrella of a single Nutrition Project, are located within a
community of 20,000 or more and are necessary to serve the defined geographic area
SECTION II – NEW MEAL SITES
The AAA may increase the number of meal sites for the following purposes:
1. to improve the quality of existing service;
2. to expand current level of service.
Increase in the number of meal sites must meet the following criteria:
1. improve cost effectiveness;
2. improve service impact;
3. provide services appropriate to current circumstances.
The AAA retains the responsibility for approving new meal sites. At such time a new meal site is
being considered, the AAA will inform the ICOA in writing. The following conditions must be met
whenever a new meal site is to be established:
1. The Nutrition Provider or potential meal site must submit to the AAA demographic data
showing a sufficient number of targeted individuals identified in the Older Americans Act
Section 306(a)(4)(B) reside in the area.
2. A minimum of 25 participants will receive meals on days served.
3. All policies and procedures, contained in this manual, which govern the operations of other
Nutrition Providers within the Nutrition Project, must also pertain to the new meal site.
4. The meal site must have adequate equipment to prepare and/or serve meals at the site. The
local health department must approve the site to function as a food establishment.
For participation in the NSIP 80% cash and 20% commodities, the new meal site will be required to
establish one year of meal counts prior to receiving commodities. The commodity entitlement is based
on the number of meal served in the preceding year.
SECTION III - MINIMUM SERVICE PROVISION
1. Each Nutrition Project will offer meals five (5) or more days a week.
2. Meals shall be provided in congregate settings, including adult day care facilities and multi-
generational meal sites, and shall be provided in as close proximity to the majority of eligible
older individuals’ residences as feasible.
OAA Sec 331 & 339(2)
1. Nutrition Providers will offer HDM seven (7) days per week, except as otherwise stated in
Chapter 6, Section I.
2. The home-delivered meals may be hot, cold, frozen, dried, canned, or supplemental foods with a
satisfactory storage life. HDM should spend a minimal amount of time in transit before they are
OAA Sec 336 & 339
SECTION IV - MEAL SITE CLOSURE
When a meal site is to be permanently closed, these procedures must be followed:
1. The Nutrition Provider shall notify the AAA in writing and state the intent to close.
2. The Nutrition Provider shall present the reasons for closing the meal site. Rationale must be
based on one or more of the following: inability to meet minimum standards or other
requirements, loss of resources, other justifiable reasons.
3. The AAA will review the rationale submitted and determine if all options for keeping the meal
site open, or for relocating the meal site, have been exhausted. If there remains a need for the
Nutrition Service Program within the community, efforts must be made to develop a new meal
site or to assist participants to attend another meal site in a neighboring community.
4. The AAA and the Nutrition Provider shall enter into a written agreement for the closure of any
meal sites operating with funds awarded through ICOA. The AAA must notify ICOA
regarding meal site closing in writing 30 days prior to the final day of operation.
5. Participants must be notified of the intent to close the site at least 30 days prior to the final day
6. A written transition plan will be developed to accomplish the proposed changes in a reasonable
and timely manner.
SECTION V - TRANSFER OF INVENTORY AND/OR EQUIPMENT
ICOA has no specific policies regarding the transfer of nutrition services equipment and/or supplies.
However, 45 CFR Sections 92.32 and 33 provide guidelines that must be followed regarding how
equipment /supplies must be managed and disposed of.
In addition, transfers of food must comply with all Department of Health and Welfare and Department
of Education food handling requirements. The following is an excerpt from the Department of
Education’s Inventory Control/Food Quality & Safety guidelines that may be helpful in completing
#1: How can I tell when a product has gone out of condition? Is there a single date I can refer
A: Experts disagree on how long a product can be kept in storage before it goes out of condition.
There is no single date before which most products must be used, and after which they must not be
used. Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. The exception is infant formula. Infant formula and some
baby foods are unique in that they absolutely must not be used after the “use-by” date that appears on
the case and unit.
Some commercial products may display recommended quality dates. A “best-if-used-by” date means
that the manufacturer recommends using the product by this date for the best flavor or quality. At
some point after that date, the product will change very gradually in taste, color, texture, or nutrient
content. But, the product may be wholesome and safe long after that date. You may also see a “sell-
by” date on a food product. This means the manufacturer recommends that a store sell the product by
that date. It is assumed that the product may then be stored for some period of time before it is used.
Therefore, a “sell-by” date would be reached earlier in the life of a product than a “best-if-used-by”
date. These various dating systems do not represent expiration dates, and they do not indicate
when product safety becomes an issue.
#2: How can I tell if a product is safe to eat?
A: Absent any defects in packaging or obvious signs of spoilage and assuming proper storage, you can
be reasonably confident that products are wholesome and safe.
If you have reason to question the wholesomeness or safety of a food product, open a case or
individual package and carefully examine the cans or packages for rust, bulging, broken seals, insect
infestation or other visible defects. If any of these conditions are present, the food is generally
considered NOT fit for human consumption.
If there are no visible signs of spoilage, but you have reason to question the quality of the product, a
sensory evaluation would be appropriate. The food should be opened, defrosted (if necessary), and
cooked (if necessary). Observe the overall condition of the food including color, texture, and smell. If
the food displays acceptable color, texture, and smell, you must use your best judgment regarding the
quality of the food and whether or not to serve it. DO NOT taste any food that you have reasonable
basis to suspect is unwholesome or unsafe.
SECTION VI – EXPIRATION DATE/USE BY DATE
A. If the item is within expiration or “use by” date
Inventory the product name/type, amount, date of expiration, date inventory was done. Clearly
label items with dates if not individually marked. Document the transfer of commodities from
one meal site to another if applicable. Utilize the FIFO management technique. This means
First In, First Out. Follow proper storage techniques as outlined by State Agencies in authority.
B. If the item is out of date/past expiration
Inventory the product name/type, amount, date of expiration, date inventory was done.
Remove item from original packaging and place in plastic garbage bags. Crush cans, boxes,
cases, or pallets so they cannot be reused. Place garbage bags in trash can on the DAY OF
PICK UP only. Make sure original packaging and garbage bags are separated.
Follow trash to landfill (suggested, but optional). Once items are disposed of, document on
inventory that item was destroyed. Retain records for 4 years.
These procedures should be followed so that food items cannot be used by anyone not in
authority to do so.
A helpful link regarding “best if used by” is: www.sde.idaho.gov/child , click on food distribution,
then best if used by.