Standards for Meals and Snacks

New York City was the first major city in the country to set nutrition standards for all foods purchased or served by the City.  The standards were created with the goal of improving the health of all New Yorkers served by City agencies by decreasing risk of chronic disease related to poor nutritional intake.

The standards apply to the approximately 250 million meals and snacks per year that are served in places such as schools, senior centers, homeless shelters, child care centers, after school programs, correctional facilities, public hospitals and parks. The standards require City agencies to serve only healthier beverages such as skim or 1 percent milk and water, eliminate deep frying, include two servings of fruits and vegetables in every lunch and dinner, and lower salt content and increase the amount of fiber in meals served. The Standards for Meals/Snacks Purchased and Served were enacted September 2008 and were revised in 2011 and 2015.
Standards for Meals/Snacks Purchased and Served

Implementation Guide for Meals/Snacks Purchased and Served Standards

Use these standards to make your workplace or neighborhood organization healthier! While these standards were developed for New York City agencies, we recommend and encourage their use in other environments such as faith-based organizations, private businesses, non-profit organizations and other community centers.

Learn more about our work in hospitals:
NYC Healthy Hospital Food Initiative

Other Food Standards

New York City has established standards for all beverage and food vending machines contracted by City agencies as well as standards for food served at meetings and events sponsored by City agencies and standards for commissaries in correctional facilities.  All standards are pursuant to Executive Order 122.
Standards for Food Vending Machines 

Implementation Guide for Food Vending Machine Standards 
Standards for Beverage Vending Machines 
Implementation Guide for Beverage Vending Machine Standards 
Standards for Meetings and Events 
Standards for Commissaries 

Healthy Eating Posters and Fact Sheets

The New York City Health Department developed posters and fact sheets to educate clients about the benefits of healthy eating and make them aware of the changes to the meals and snacks served at City agencies.

For more information, please contact:

Local Food Procurement

In June 2012, NYC announced an additional set of guidelines encouraging City agencies to procure more food products grown, produced or harvested in New York State and to work with vendors to track current purchasing of NYS food where information is available.  
Download the New York State Food Purchasing Guidelines
Download the New York State Foods Reference List

Vendor Resources

To help its nonprofit human service partners leverage their purchasing power, and reduce administrative costs, the City has established a Group Purchasing partnership with Essensa.

More information on Group Purchasing

For more resources and information, please visit the Mayor’s Office of Contract Services.