Purchasing

The purpose of the Child Nutrition purchasing department is to purchase quality food and supply items, at the best value possible, for the children of the Baton Rouge Diocese School System. We strive to plan a variety of nutritious, appetizing and affordable meals meeting all state and federal guidelines.

The United States Department of Agriculture supports the Child Nutrition Program by distributing food items to our school district. These foods are of high quality and help to eliminate surplus foods from the farming industry. Some of the food items that we receive are applesauce, peaches, rice, flour, vegetable oil, turkey roast, chicken, pork roast and cheese.  All of these items are of the highest quality and are stored and delivered under strict sanitation regulations.

We follow the Traditional Food Based Menu Planning Option in the Baton Rouge Diocese School System. All schools use a four-week menu cycle for breakfast, lunch and snack. High Schools are offered 4 to 5 entree choices daily and Elementary/Middle Schools are offered 3 entree choices daily. All cafeterias operate using an "Offer vs. Serve" program, meaning the student can choose three or more of the five meal components offered. The meal components are determined by USDA guidelines.

Bids

All items are purchased through the competitive bid process. Bid specifications are submitted by the Child Nutrition Program Purchasing Department. The Purchasing Department prepares the bids according to State Board Rules and Louisiana Statues and Federal Law. The Purchasing Department solicits bids, sets time frames and opens bids. Bidders must have an approved application on file in the Purchasing Department prior to receiving an invitation to bid. Bid items are purchased only from vendors who have been awarded items for the appropriate bid cycle. A vendor application may be obtained by calling 225-387-6421.

All Child Nutrition Program bids are for direct delivery to the individual schools.  Foods are ordered by CNP managers and delivered directly to school cafeterias. 

Bid items for Direct Delivery

  • Bakery Products
  • Fruit Juice
  • Milk and Milk Products
  • Non-Refrigerated Foods
  • Produce
  • Refrigerated /Frozen Foods
  • Chemicals
  • Small Equipment
  • Paper
  • Linen Service

Approval of Products

Product testing is done in various ways depending on the product.  Supervisory personnel evaluates the items in-house and all food items that are pre-approved are then tested by students.  Some items are tested by small groups of students and others are tested by students at all grade levels in different areas of the school system. A Request for Review of New Food Item Form must be completed so that products may be pre-approved by the CNP.  Food items must meet the Diocese of Baton Rouge Wellness Guidelines and the Department of Education Nutrition Policies.

The following documentation is required for product evaluation:

  • nutritional documentation
  • product specification
  • contribution to a reimbursable meal
  • approximate cost

Contact Brenda Landry at 225-387-6421 or Brad Ray for a Request for Review of New Food Item Form.   The review form must be completed and submitted with nutritional and specification information before a student test can be done.

After the item has been approved, the Child Nutrition staff will arrange for a student taste test.  Food items are prepared and served by Child Nutrition employees.  Vendors, brokers or manufacturer’s representatives are not permitted to attend the taste test.

Items to be tested must be delivered in a full case, standard pack with approved label attached.  Items to be tested should be delivered to: 

 

Diocese of Baton Rouge Child Nutrition Program

3300 Hundred Oaks Ave.

Baton Rouge, LA 70808

 Attention: Holly Leonards

 

Approved items will be noted on the official bid document.

After the bid has been awarded, food items may be selected for testing at an independent laboratory to verify nutritional information.   Food items that do not meet nutritional requirements or nutritional claims of documentation will be removed from the approved brands list.

Food items may be selected for quality checks.  Foods that do not meet the quality and grade specified in the bid document will be picked up and replaced at the bidder’s expense.Bids are awarded to the vendor providing the lowest price, meeting product specifications and providing acceptable minimums for shipment quantities. Bids may be awarded by line item or aggregate – as specified in the solicitation.

All vendors and manufacturers must provide documentation of their HACCP program following food safety compliance. Proof of Insurance as required in the solicitation must be provided and maintained.

Current product specifications are the result of nutritional analysis and guidelines and product testing and acceptability. Child Nutrition (CN) labeling and/or documentation of meal contribution are considered.

Proposals are awarded to the vendor providing the best solution to the District based on the evaluation criteria stated in the proposal.