DSG Cooks Up Recipes for the USDA Food and Nutrition Service, for Use in Daycare Centers

For the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), DSG developed eye-catching designs for standardized Child Nutrition Programs recipes for use at daycare centers. After the design templates were approved for household (6 servings) and quantity recipes (25 to 50 and 50 to 100 servings), DSG poured separate recipes into the templates and edited them for clarity and to FNS style standards. The project required producing multiple iterations of more than 500 documents, 40 of them in Spanish (edited by one of DSG’s Spanish-language experts). Finally, DSG made the recipes PDFs and rendered them 508 compliant for USDA’s website.



The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Child Nutrition Programs needed an attractive design for more than 500 recipes, some of them to serve as few as six people, some to serve as many as a hundred. DSG created several designs and tweaked them until USDA settled on a single design. In midproject, USDA decided it wanted a different design for the recipes that served more people. So DSG’s graphic artist came up with a second design for the more complicated recipes, some of which ran five pages long.

DSG’s editors—expert in book, magazine, and newspaper publishing—had never worked in USDA style before. We learned the style and edited some 500 recipes to food industry standards. A DSG English-to-Spanish expert translated the recipes that needed to appear in two languages.

Each of the 500 recipes was a separate document. DSG produced the project—from original designs to 500 letter-perfect documents to 508-compliant PDFs suitable for daycare center personnel to download and print out—in 10 months. The recipes now serve millions of children and 120,000 older adults.


For more information about the USDA Recipes project or other DSG editorial and graphics works, contact

DSG Project Manager Michael Hopps at 301.951.0056 or mhopps@dsgonline.com