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additional $0.51 cost to serve an enhanced snack instead of a regular snack to the 14–18-year-olds.

Factors Contributing to the Increased Food Cost

In view of the substantial increase in food cost that would be expected to result from recommendations that improve the alignment of CACFP meals with the Dietary Guidelines, the committee performed three additional analyses. The intent was to provide information that could be useful to USDA in determining cost-cutting measures, if necessary. The first analysis provides estimates for the change in costs of the baseline and revised meal component composites, by eating occasion (Table 8-4), using data for the largest age group (2–4 years). The second analysis provides estimates of the range of unit costs of the revised meal components by eating occasion, across all the age groups except infants (Table 8-5). The third analysis provides estimates of the cost per standard unit for selected meal component subgroups and of selected grain foods that would be increased or decreased in the recommended meal patterns (Table 8-6).

Change in Unit Cost of the Composites

The unit costs of the baseline breakfast, lunch, and snack composite differ because different foods were included in the composites at the different

TABLE 8-4 Comparison of Average Unit Cost ($) of Baseline Meal Component Composites and Composites Revised to Align with Recommended Meal Requirementsa for Children Ages 2–4 Years, Based on 2003–2004 Prices

Meal Component

Unit

Breakfast Composites

Lunch/Supper Composites

Snack Composites

Baseline

Revised

Baseline

Revised

Baseline

Revised

Fruits and vegetables

1 cb

0.44

00.47

0.55

0.77

0.23

0.39

Grain

1 oz eq

0.12

0.17

0.08

0.09

0.14

0.14

Meat/meat alternate

1 oz eq

NAc

0.22

0.17

0.18

0.20

0.19

Milk

8 fl oz

0.23

0.24

0.22

0.19

0.22

0.23

NOTE: c = cup; fl oz = fluid ounce; oz eq = ounce equivalent.

aFor the method of estimating the cost of the menu component composites, see Appendix I.

bThis value represents the amount of fruits and vegetables combined.

cThe current breakfast pattern does not include meat/meat alternate.

SOURCE: Cost data based on representative food composites from Minute Menu Systems, LLC (based on data obtained from family day care homes during August 2009 and February 2010) (Minute Menu Systems, LLC, 2008) and USDA/CNPP Price Database, 2003–2004 prices (USDA/CNPP, 2009) (see Appendix I).



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