Nutrition Programs

Food Distribution Program

The Nutrition Programs Division is responsible for the administration of the USDA Commodity Food Distribution Program, providing approximately $30,000,000 worth of commodity food to schools in Illinois. Active participation in the National School Lunch Program is the primary criteria to be eligible to receive USDA commodity food.
United States Department of Agriculture donated commodities are available to sponsors of National School Lunch and Summer Food Service Programs. Cash in lieu of commodities is provided to day care centers.

  • National School Lunch Program (NSLP)—Commodities are available to schools participating in the National School Lunch Program.
  • Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)—Cash in lieu of commodities is available to approved day care centers.
  • Summer Food Service Program (SFSP)—Commodities are available to sites that serve needy children during summer vacations from school.
  • Disaster Relief—Commodities are made available for distribution to disaster relief agencies, such as the Red Cross, when the President of the United States declares a disaster, as well as in other situations of distress. The commodities are provided to disaster victims through congregate meal service.

bullet USDA Foods and Illinois Commodity System Webinar - December 15, 2011

Video Format

This 2 hour webinar focuses on the Illinois Commodity System, placing the annual commodity order, diversions to processors, Department of Defense (DOD) fresh fruit and vegetable program, and additional monthly processes aimed at teaching better management of commodity entitlement.

bullet Total Value of USDA Foods Received by School

bullet Illinois Commodity System (ICS)

We recommend you visit the ICS site regularly to stay informed about the latest Food Distribution Program news. This site provides you with an online tool making it easier for you to manage your commodities. This is where you will find the Annual Order Form, Monthly Commodity Bulletins, Food Alerts, Lanter's Delivery Schedule, new commodities being offered, commodity values and pack sizes, important dates, and much more. You can also keep your school's address, phone numbers, and contact information up-to-date, as well as modify your monthly delivery if necessary. You can even send an email directly to the Food Distribution Program staff.
ICS Login

bullet Information for Processing Companies

bullet Anticipated Lanter Delivery Schedule

PDF format (10/16)

School Programs USDA Foods Update Newsletter

bullet USDA Commodity Food Network

The first ever one-stop Federal website that provides direct access to all services and resources available for USDA Food Distribution Programs.

bullet USDA Food Distribution Programs

The FD website contains a wide variety of resources on nutrition-related topics. We recommend you explore this site to obtain information useful in administering nutrition and food distribution programs.