7 CFR 226.21 - Food service management companies.
(a) Any institution may contract with a food service management company. An institution which contracts with a food service management company shall remain responsible for ensuring that the food service operation conforms to its agreement with the State agency. All procurements of meals from food service management companies shall adhere to the procurement standards set forth in § 226.22. Public institutions shall follow applicable State or local laws governing bid procedures. In the absence of any applicable State or local laws, and in addition to the procurement provisions set forth in § 226.22, the State agency may mandate that each institution with Program meal contracts of an aggregate value in excess of $10,000 formally advertise such contracts and comply with the following procedures intended to prevent fraud, waste, and Program abuse:
(4) Nonfood items shall be excluded from the invitation to bid, except where such items are essential to the conduct of the food service;
(5) The invitation to bid shall not specify special meal requirements to meet ethnic or religious needs unless special requirements are necessary to meet the needs of the participants to be served;
(6) The bid shall be publicly opened;
(7) All bids totaling $50,000 or more shall be submitted to the State agency for approval before acceptance. All bids shall be submitted to the State agency for approval before accepting a bid which exceeds the lowest bid. State agencies shall respond to any request for approval within 10 working days of receipt;
(8) The institutions shall inform the State agency of the reason for selecting the food service management company chosen. State agencies may require institutions to submit copies of all bids submitted under this section.
(b) The institution and the food service management company shall enter into a standard contract as required by § 226.6(i). However, public institutions may, with the approval of the State agency, use their customary form of contract if it incorporates the provisions of § 226.6(i).