SIFI is an expert organization in the development and implementation of advanced social and school feeding systems. The Institute gained its professional experience mostly during the implementation of national projects, models of which are universal and equally effective for implementation at the international level.
From 2011 to 2013 the Social and Industrial Foodservice Institute under the contract with the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, conducted the All-Russian monitoring of school feeding.

The Monitoring was based on:
· Instruction of the President of the Russian Federation of 7 June 2011 No. Pr-1580GS;
· Decision of the Working Group on Supporting Experimental Projects for the Organization of Nutrition for Students in General Education Institutions under the Presidential Commission for the Implementation of Priority National Projects and Demographic Policy (Minutes No. 11 of 03.03.2011)
· Joint Order of the Ministry of Healthcare and Social Development of Russia No. 213n, Ministry of Education and Science of Russia No. 178 dated 11.03.2012 "On approval of methodical recommendations for catering for students and pupils of educational institutions".

In our monitoring system we used integrated approach to the assessment of school feeding organisation. We assessed: food; health of schoolchildren; financing; promotion of healthy nutrition; material and technical base; organizers of nutrition; nutrition improvement program; training sites; quality control over; public opinion; training of personnel, etc.

Monitoring was carried out in two ways: visits of experts to the regions and obtaining the necessary data on the state of school meals through electronic data collection. For this purpose, an information and analytical monitoring system was created that allowed remote data entry and analytical work.

The most important component of the monitoring was the visits of specialists to the regions of the Russian Federation. They made it possible to determine the actual state of affairs on the ground and, based on the analysis of the data obtained, give concrete recommendations for improving the state of school feeding in the region.
For 3 years, we visited 70 entities, and on the whole monitoring covered 84% of the subjects of the Russian Federation in 8 federal districts.

As part of the monitoring, SIFI from 2011 to 2013 annually carried out the All-Russian Seminar on the organization of school meals in all regions of the Russian Federation. For effective training of seminar participants, SIFI developed educational and methodological materials for the training of representatives of organizations of Russian regions involved in the implementation of the "Improving the organization of school feeding" programme. .
Experience of SIFI's participation as an operator of organizational and analytical support for the priority national project "Education" for the event "Improving the organization of school feeding" in 2008-2013 in the regions of the Russian Federation and the development of school feeding programs have allowed a new look at the solution of problems in the field of nutrition for children, adolescents and students.

For a long time the problematic issues with the material and technical base of school canteens were not solved in the Russian Federation: equipment was not updated, canteens were not renovated, obsolete cooking technologies, etc. were used. In this regard, in accordance with the instruction of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev in the period from 2008 to 2011, a pilot project was implemented to modernize the school feeding system.

Within the framework of the project, federal budget funds were allocated to the regions under condition of co-financing. These target funds were used to purchase new modern technological equipment for school canteens.

The main task of the pilot project was to develop all aspects of the organization of school meals according to different models:

- technological;
- organizational and managerial;
- personnel issues related to the introduction of modern school feeding technologies;
- financial end economic;
- regulatory and legal;
- promotion of healthy nutrition and conducting educational work with parents and teachers.

For 4 years, the project participants were 44 regions of the Russian Federation (more than 50%), the project directly covered 1858 state and municipal schools and more than 1 million schoolchildren, and the federal funding amounted to 70 million dollars, from regional and local budgets - 82 million $.

Results of pilot projects

• Repair and reconstruction of school kitchens;
• The schools canteens were equipped with modern technological equipment (combi steamers, the newest dispensing lines, refrigeration equipment, neutral equipment from stainless steel, etc.);
• Specialized vehicles were purchased;
• New furniture, utensils for school canteens;
• Rations and exemplary cyclic menus have been developed and approved;
• Cashless payment systems for school meals were introduced;
• Regional training sites have been set up to upgrade the skills of staff in the field of school feeding.

The overall socio-economic effect of the project is a huge number of created jobs, an increase in the amount of subsidies and subventions for the organization of school meals, an increase in the number of students receiving hot feeding.
In 2009, SIFI conducted the methodological research on the topic: "Analysis of the current state, development of forecast and proposals for measures of state regulation of social food production in the Russian Federation for 2010-2012 and the period until 2020" for the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation Federation.

The result of SIFI work was the concept of "Development of social food production and commodity distribution infrastructure in the Russian Federation for 2010-2012 and for the period until 2020", which included the results of a comprehensive analysis of the existing system of catering for schoolchildren and commodity-producing infrastructure, as well as world experience:

  • the analysis of existing normative legal documents in the sphere of state regulation of social nutrition.
  • analysis of requirements for diets, assortment and quality of raw materials and finished products, presented by state and municipal customers of food in the context of socio-demographic groups of the population.
  • calculation of the total demand for the production of agricultural raw materials and food for the organization of social nutrition.
  • a comparative analysis of the needs indicators, calculated on the basis of scientifically based physiological norms of nutrition, and actual consumption of food products in 2008.
  • analysis of opportunities and actual production volumes, quality indicators of functional products and semi-finished products.
  • analysis of assortment, production volumes, sources of supply with raw materials (domestic, imported), quality assurance systems, applied food technologies and technical condition of equipment at existing public catering establishments.
  • analysis of existing federal, departmental and regional programs in the production of social nutrition and provision of its domestic production.
  • analysis of existing and justification of promising methods of production of meat, fish, confectionery, vegetable and dairy semi-finished products and ready meals for the organization of social nutrition.

The main practical purpose of the Concept was the creation of conditions for the formation of a unified system for the production, processing, supply and sale of domestic products for the full provision of social food needs through a network of enterprises operating on modern equipment using innovative technologies.
The project of the Program for the Modernization of the Nutrition System for Schoolchildren in the General Educational Institutions of the Russian Federation was developed by SIFI in 2009 as part of the research work for the Office of the President of the Russian Federation.

The following studies were carried out during the development of the Program:

1. Analysis of the foreign experience of organizing meals for students in general education institutions in the following areas:

- participation of government in the development, implementation and monitoring of school feeding systems at the national, regional and/or local levels;
- control over the state of school meals;
- involvement of commercial structures.
- attraction of local agricultural producers, etc.

2. Analysis of the nutrition system of students in general education institutions in the Russian Federation, including the state of students' health, models of catering, nutritional values of rations, etc.

3. Analysis of the regulatory framework that regulates social nutrition sphere, including the powers of government bodies and local authorities in the field of catering for schoolchildren; funding school meals, responsibilities for catering, as well as requirements for safety and quality of food.

4. Analysis of the implementation of monitoring of pilot projects for catering students in general educational institutions, conducted within the priority national project "Education".

As applied to the competence of federal authorities, proposals have been developed to improve legislation in the field of organizing the schoolchildren's nutrition system in general education institutions.

Based on the analysis of the implementation of the monitoring of pilot projects for catering of students in general education institutions conducted within the framework of the priority national project "Education", recommendations for improving the school feeding management system and improving monitoring were also developed.
At present, the technical regulations of the Eurasian Economic Union provide mandatory requirements for the safety and organization of the production of baby food for children of three main groups: up to 3 years, 3 to 6 years and 6 to 14 years old. At the same time, it should be noted that products (or raw materials and components for their production) of imported production comply a significant share in the Russian market of child food products for younger children.
The development of domestic production of products for child food is possible only if there is a constant demand, which should be formed, first of all, in the organization of nutrition of children in educational organizations, and in the case of children under three years of age when providing specialized products in established cases through the health authorities.

The main problem is that there are no mandatory requirements for the use of such products specifically for the nutrition of children when organizing feeding based on state and municipal orders. In most of the regions of Russian Federation, there are no requirements for compulsory state registration of technical documents for the production of baby food products in the organization of supplies. With rare exceptions, there is no proper, including laboratory, control over the safety and quality of products and its application.
In addition, there are no specific powers of executive authorities at various levels in the organization of child nutrition, which would constitute a system that ensures the fulfillment of the task of providing children with safe and high-quality products of domestic production.

The proposed concept of the federal law was supported at the annual meeting of the Chairman of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation with state secretaries - deputy heads of federal executive bodies. In its most general form it includes the following:

The first is the obligation to establish the requirements for the use of food for children of all age groups for safety in accordance with the requirements of the relevant technical regulations, quality on the basis of technical documents that are publicly available to all manufacturers. The duty to justify such requirements, as well as to ensure their fulfillment in the acceptance of products, still lies with customers, but they interpret this duty differently in the absence of a corresponding law.

Thirdly, the powers of federal and regional executive bodies should be established in relation to the approval of mandatory standards for providing children with food, tariffs for services, the amount of payment, the definition of mandatory requirements for food products used, the formation of a quality control system and security of supply. At the same time, establishing the obligation, and not only the ability to control the quality and safety of baby food when accepting products (compliance with the requirements set in the bidding documents, in no way violates the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union in the area of technical regulation).

Fourth, the definition of measures to ensure the creation of a sufficient production base for child food and its sustainable development.

In this regard, should be determined the production development stages for domestic food for children up to one year of domestic raw materials. These stages should be based on the permissible share of imported raw materials (components) for the transition period, the use of direct and indirect preferences for domestic producers, long-term contracts and public-private partnership.

It seems necessary to increase the very status of the sphere of child food and the production of products for its provision. We conducted a brief analysis of the measures that could help this in comparison with other branches of the agroindustrial complex. We consider it advisable:

  • to establish a food security indicator for the production of child food products (taking into account the use of domestic raw materials and components), which determines the level of the country's food security;
  • to consider the products of child food, raw materials and components for their production to the products on which it is necessary to achieve maximum import substitution in the near future.
It is important to note that in 2017, in accordance with the order of the Ministry of Agriculture of Russia from 25.12.2016 No. 558, import of raw materials for the production of child food products in the volume of about 1 thousand tons was allowed, with most of this raw material being produced in Russia. This is mainly about ordinary products: meat, potatoes, vegetables. For 4 years of existence of import substitution programs the issue has not been resolved.