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May 10th, 2024
By Caroline Wilcox, Nutrition Intern and Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, CCNP, Nutrition Manager

On April 24, 2024, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) released updates to Child Nutrition meal patterns for the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) in the Child Nutrition Programs Final Rule: Updates to the CACFP & SFSP Meal Patterns. This change is to more closely align with WIC and school meals based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025.

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October 31, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, CCNP, Nutrition Manager

Food Program Training season is HERE! Starting October 2023, Providers Choice will hold annual Food Program Training workshops in the fall. Trainings will continue to provide 2 hours of Develop approved continuing education and fulfill the annual CACFP and Civil Rights training requirements. If you already attended training this spring, Healthy Habits Count, that training met requirements for fiscal year 2023 and a new CACFP training year started on October 1 for fiscal year 2024.

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September 19, 2023
By Kate Abernathy, MS, RDN, LD, CMP, CCNP, Chief Executive Officer
and Joanne Norman, CMP, CCNP, Compliance and Projects Administrator

As part of our ever-evolving approach at Providers Choice (PCI), we go above and beyond for our providers. From ensuring you get the maximum reimbursement while maintaining the highest integrity to the Food Program Guidelines to interpreting and changing laws for your benefit, we support every aspect of your business. This dedication includes advocating for you at the highest level.

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August 28, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, CCNP, Nutrition Manager

Prioritizing children’s health goes beyond nutrition. Exercise and physical activity are equally as important as the foods children eat, and the importance of physical activity is a focus of Providers Choice’s Healthy Habits Count Food Program Training this year.

5-2-1-0 is a framework for children’s health that encourages 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day, the 2 bite club (a way to encourage hesitant eaters to try new foods), 1 hour of physical activity daily and 0 sugar-sweetened beverages.

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July 25, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, CCNP, Nutrition Manager

We’re in the dog days of summer. Temps are high, days are long and children can get restless. But it’s still important to get those kiddos outside! In fact, eating meals outdoors or on-the-go is a great way to get outside and practice healthy meal planning all at once.

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June 23, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, CCNP, Nutrition Manager

Serving healthy food isn’t always easy or straightforward. One way to ensure you have access to fruits and vegetables is by growing your own! Plus - having a garden saves you money and grocery trips!

For example, even just one tomato plant can be super affordable—think $3 to $5—and provide up to 10 pounds of tomatoes over the season, which otherwise can easily run you $20 or more.

From seasoned gardeners to those just starting out, gardening is a positive activity that provides many benefits.

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June 9, 2023
By Kate Abernathy, MS, RDN, LD, CMP, CCNP, Chief Executive Officer

On May 11, 2023, the U.S. Department of HHS (Health and Human Services) declared the COVID public health emergency over. This means that the recent flexibilities and waivers for the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) are ending soon.

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May 12, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, Nutrition Manager

As we enter spring, we’re reminded of the annoyance outdoor allergies can bring. But for people with food allergies, the annoyance becomes a potentially life-threatening concern that must be focused on every day, all year long. For child care providers specifically, food allergies are a consideration that require constant consideration.

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March 13, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, Nutrition Manager

CACFP Week is a national education and information campaign sponsored by the National CACFP Sponsors Association. It kicks off Monday, March 13 and runs through the end of the week, concluding on Friday, March 17.

CACFP week is all about raising awareness of the USDA Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), highlighting how it works to combat hunger and providing helpful tools to help providers with healthy eating for the children in their care.

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March 1, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, Nutrition Manager

Providers Choice Resource Guide
From feeding the children, to licensing and continuing education, there are many variables to getting it right. PCI has a library of resources that support family child care programs and child care centers. Categories include meal patterns and creditable foods, allergies, shopping lists like creditable cereals and yogurts, recipes, CACFP forms and more.

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February 15, 2023
By Katie Chatfield, MPH, RDN, LD, Nutrition Manager

Healthy Habits Count
This year’s food program training is focused on adopting healthy habits. The early years of children’s lives are an important time to establish positive eating habits, along with other overall healthy habits such as brushing teeth, washing hands, etc. It is much easier to implement these routines earlier in life than fix them later!

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