Federal regulations provide guidance on pricing student and adult meals
Pricing Student Meals
Sponsors may operate as a charge or no-charge program. Charge programs establish and collect student payments. No-charge programs do not collect payments from students.
The sponsor has some discretion in establishing student meal prices. It is recommended that the established charge, at a minimum, cover the cost of producing the meal.
The maximum reduced-price meal charges are established by regulation and are currently $.40 for lunch and $.15 for snack. For School Year 2018-2019 (SY 18/19) you will not be charging for reduced price breakfast. The $0.30 charge for reduced breakfast will be reimbursed to you by the state. Please set your NDFoods and POS systems prices for reduced breakfast to zero. NDFoods will automatically calculate and reimburse you for these meals.
Sponsors may vary the reduced charge within the maximums allowed or choose not to collect it.
The Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act has a provision to gradually raise prices to the amount USDA reimburses for free meals. The following memo has the current formula.
PLE Tool 2018-2019
Pricing Adult Meals
Adult meal prices must be high enough to compensate for the paid reimbursement and the commodity value that USDA does not provide for these meals. The paid reimbursement and commodity value rates increase each school year; adult meal prices may need to be adjusted upward accordingly. For the SY 18/19 the paid reimbursement for lunch is 37 cents and the commodity value is 34 cents. This means the adult lunch meal price must be AT LEAST 71 cents higher than your highest student meal cost
. For the SY 18/19 the paid reimbursement for breakfast is 31 cents and no commodity value. This means the adult breakfast meal price must be AT LEAST 31 cents higher than your highest student meal cost. If the adult meal price has already been set for the school year, sponsors may wait until SY 19/20 to raise adult meal prices.
Pricing Adult Meal Instructions