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Welcome to the California

 Child Nutrition Information & Payment System (CNIPS)  

  The CNIPS is the California Department of Education (CDE) Nutrition Services Division's (NSD) Web-based system for administering the federal and state nutrition programs, including the National School Lunch and Breakfast, Food Distribution, Special Milk, Child and Adult Care Food, Summer Food Service, and Seamless Summer Feeding Option Programs.

Questions? Please email at

Or call CNIPS at 1-800-952-5609:
Press 1 for Claims
Press 2 for Civil Rights/Complaints, SNP, and Field Services
Press 3 for CACFP and Summer Food Program
Press 4 for Food Distribution Program
Press 5 for Education and Nutrition Policy
Press 6 for CNIPS Help Desk
Press 7 for Reception

PLEASE NOTE: Due to fiscal year-end processes at the State Controller’s Office, the Payment Summary section of CNIPS will not be updated with new schedule numbers from June 7-26, 2024. Expect reimbursement payment delays for claims submitted during this period. Claiming and weekly processing will proceed as normal throughout the month of June 2024 and regular payment scheduling will resume on June 27, 2024.

The last day to submit April 2024 reimbursement claims in CNIPS is Monday, July 1, 2024

Meal Application and Benefit Issuance Reminder

This is a reminder that California Universal Meals Program requires that School Food Authorities (SFA) continue to abide by all Federal School Nutrition Program requirements. SFAs participating in the programs that are utilizing standard meal counting and claiming procedures are required to conduct outreach for, collect, and process school meal applications to determine individual children eligibility levels. SFAs must continue to track and claim meals served by the appropriate eligibility category. In addition, all SFAs, including those operating the Community Eligibility Provision, must complete direct certification. 

These steps not only ensure that SFAs are in compliance with program regulations, but also ensures that California continues to maximize federal funds that support the School Nutrition Programs. If you have any questions regarding compliance, please contact your Child Nutrition Consultant.

CNIPS Maintenance occurs Fridays from 2 PM to 5 PM. System may not be available during this time frame.  

Need Help?

Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)

  • Effective July 1, 2021, the CACFP and program staff were transferred to the California Department of Social Services. For more information, please contact your CACFP County Specialist. The updated County Specialist list is in the CNIPS Download Forms section: CACFP—Form ID CACFP 01.

    User access to CNIPS will remain the same.

    July 2023 claims are now open for CACFP. To access July 2023 claims, change the “Year” setting to “2022-2023” from the Claims menu.

    The 2023-2024 Program Year (October 2023 – September 2024) is now open in CNIPS for Application Updates. Please follow the procedures listed in the August 1 CACFP Listserv e-mail for details. If changes need to be made to 2022-2023 Program Year application packets or claim submissions for June 2023 and prior, please select the appropriate Year from the Applications or Claims menu. October 2023 claims are expected to open in early November 2023.

School Nutrition Program (SNP)

  • Newly revised Food Service Staff Education and Training web page- The NSD is supporting food service directors and staff, both those that are onboarding into the School Nutrition and Summer Nutrition Programs as well as those looking for resources, through significant updates to the Food Service Staff Education and Training web page. This web page provides a starting point for program operators, including a web guide, overview of each Child Nutrition Program, recommended online trainings, key resources, helpful definitions, and program contact information.  

  • Annual Audit Status Certification (AASC) Form

    Public School Districts, Government Entities (County Offices of Education, County Probation Offices, etc), and Charter Schools do NOT have to complete the Annual Audit Status Certification (AASC) form, this is only a requirement for all private sponsors, including Indian Tribal Councils, private schools, and Private Residential Child Care Institutions (group homes).

  • SNP Administrative Review (AR) Web Page

    The CDE Nutrition Services Division conducts an administrative review (AR) of all district/agencies participating in SNP over a three-year cycle. Keep up-to-date on the latest AR requirements, resources, and helpful tips by visiting the new CDE SNP AR Web page.


  • All Programs
    The point-of-contacts for SNP, CACFP, and SFSP claims have been revised. The current contact list can be located on the CDE’s Nutrition Services web page by selecting the Analyst Directory tab.


  • Child Nutrition Programs COURSE CATALOG web page- The NSD provides a web page that houses online training courses to help program operators participating in the Child Nutrition Programs meet their professional development and program compliance needs. The web page is a one-stop shop for all online courses that the NSD offers. The online courses are grouped by program and organized by the key areas of nutrition, operations, administration, and communication and marketing. We encourage you to browse and use the Child Nutrition Programs Course Catalog web page.

  • Child Nutrition Programs RESOURCE LIBRARY web pageThe NSD is providing a library of online resources for program operators participating in the School Nutrition Program (SNP), the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), and Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). These resources are made available to assist program operators with career development, compliance needs, and to enhance their Child Nutrition Programs (CNP). Topics include recipes, nutrition education, and cooking in the classroom. We are working to update it often with new resources. We encourage you to browse and use the Child Nutrition Programs Resources Library web page.

Summer Food Service Program (SFSP)

  • Important Changes to Application Packet Submission Deadlines

    The CDE requires that all new SFSP applicants and returning sponsors submit complete and correct SFSP application packets through the CNIPS no later than 30 calendar days prior to the first SFSP meal service day, or May 15, whichever comes first. These deadlines do not apply to sponsors applying to serve in areas impacted by an unanticipated school closure during the period from October through April (or at any time of the year in an area with a continuous school calendar).

    For more information, please see the Management Bulletin SFSP-03-2019 Summer Food Service Program Application Deadlines web page.

    Please contact your Summer Meal Programs Specialist or email if you have any questions regarding the new deadlines.

Food Distribution Program

  • USDA Foods Processor Summary End Product Data Schedules (SEPDS) can be found in the Food Distribution Module, under Download Forms.

CNIPS Maintenance and Password Requirements

  • CNIPS is routinely taken down on Friday for Production. The maintenance window is from 2-5 PM. The system is reactivated as soon as the maintenance is complete.

    Your CNIPS password must be between EIGHT (8) and TWELVE (12) characters in length, contain a letter, a number, and a special character (e.g., @,#,$, &,*). We suggest you not use the number "0" or the capital letter "O" in your password to reduce confusion when trying to remember your information. Do not reuse old passwords.