The Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) is a federal child nutrition program administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The program provides a subsidy to eligible child care centers, preschools, after-school programs, head start and home child care providers for serving nutritious meals and snacks to infants and children in child care. In Iowa, CACFP is administered in Iowa by the Department of Educations' Bureau of Nutrition and Health Services. This program plays an important role in improving the quality of child care and making care affordable for all.

Child & Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)


Who is eligible to participate in CACFP?


  Child Care Centers (CCC) & Preschools Outreach Flyer - please contact the Iowa Department of Education for eligibility requirements and reimbursement rates.

  Child Development Home (CDH) Brochure - providers are only allowed to participate in this program under the sponsorship of a local Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) administering agency or sponsor. Providers must be DHS registered or accept Child Care Assistance.

Support Your Future

Professional Development


  Online Training Opportunities for Centers

  Online Training Opportunities for Homes

  Joining the CACFP Online Course - "Joining the CACFP" training provides step-by-step guidance to apply for CACFP. The training is available on i-PoWeR, providing 1 hour DHS credit hour for center staff. Child Development Homes only need to complete lesson one and are not eligible to earn credit hours for completion of this informational lesson.

  Find other CCR&R training opportunities

Benefits of CACFP


  • CACFP participation is an indicator of high-quality child care

  • Gives your program a competitive edge when parents know you serve
    healthy meals and snacks (34% use CACFP as a selling point)

  • CACFP offers free, DHS approved training on program administration,
    menu planning, nutrition education and more

  • Menu ideas and child-friendly recipes are available through CACFP

Nondiscrimination Statement:

In accordance with federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity.

Program information may be made available in languages other than English. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication to obtain program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language), should contact the responsible state or local agency that administers the program or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.

To file a program discrimination complaint, a Complainant should complete a Form AD-3027, USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form which can be obtained online at:, from any USDA office, by calling (866) 632-9992, or by writing a letter addressed to USDA. The letter must contain the complainant’s name, address, telephone number, and a written description of the alleged discriminatory action in sufficient detail to inform the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) about the nature and date of an alleged civil rights violation. The completed AD-3027 form or letter must be submitted to USDA by:

  1. mail:
    U.S. Department of Agriculture
    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
    1400 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; or
  2. fax:
    (833) 256-1665 or (202) 690-7442; or
  3. email:

 This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Iowa Non-Discrimination Notice: “It is the policy of this CNP provider not to discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or religion in its programs, activities, or employment practices as required by the Iowa Code section 216.6, 216.7, and 216.9. If you have questions or grievances related to compliance with this policy by this CNP Provider, please contact the Iowa Civil Rights Commission, Grimes State Office building, 400 E. 14th St. Des Moines, IA 50319-1004; phone number 515-281-4121, 800-457-4416; website:”