A grain ounce equivalent is the amount of food product considered to equal one ounce from the grain group. As of October 1, 2021, all food program participants must use grain ounce equivalents when serving Bread/Alt and Infant Cereal food items. This is to account for different levels of water content in different grains, which affects the amount of actual grain content in the food. For example, cooked pasta and rice has higher water content than crackers or bread. Ounce equivalents aims to ensure that the appropriate amounts of grains are served.
Independent centers can enable this requirement in the Center Settings. Once you enable grains ounce equivalents, the following changes will be applied:
- You will be able to add grain ounce equivalent calculations to Bread/Alt and Infant Cereal food items on your food list. Each food that falls into these two meal components must have an equation on file. Error # will display on the Office Error report for claimed Bread/Alt and Infant Cereal foods that do not have an equation saved to the food list.
- All quantities for Bread/Alt and Infant Cereal food items will reference grain ounce equivalents when estimating required quantities, recording actual quantities and leftover quantities (if you do so), and when viewing reports such as the Menu Production Record, Weekly Quantities Required report, and the Infant Feeding report. Claims processing will also reference the new ounce equivalent serving requirements as outlined by the USDA.
Required Permissions: You must have the View/Modify Center Staff permission to access and update center settings. If you are a sponsored center, your food program sponsor must enable this requirement for you.
- From the menu to the left, click . The Settings page opens.
- In the Center Settings section, click next to Do you want to use ounce equivalents when recording Bread/Alt & Infant Cereal foods? If you do not record actual quantities served, you do not need to adjust any other settings. If you do record actual quantities served, continue to Step 3.
- When you require actual quantities, Do you want to use the food list calculation to record actual quantities for Bread/Alt & Infant Cereal foods? is set to Yes by default. This means that quantities recorded will utilize the calculation saved to your food list when your staff enters a common unit of measure. If you set this to no, staff will be required to input all quantities as ounce equivalents.