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Ration Packs

Discussion in 'Lovely Grub' started by Darryl of Sussex, Jan 24, 2019.

  1. Darryl of Sussex

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    Has anyone given British Army ration packs a go? I’ve seen some for sale on eBay and was wondering if they’re worth a go.

    Ta,

    Darryl
     
  2. nunzionuk

    nunzionuk Full Member

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    Wonderful things! (best in the world)

    HTH,
    Dan
     
  3. crosslandkelly

    crosslandkelly A somewhat settled

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    Darryl of Sussex likes this.
  4. saxonaxe

    saxonaxe Forager

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    All a matter of taste of course, but I'd be surprised if with the wide range of different menus available you could not find some that would suit you. I use them almost exclusively on my wanderings as I really like them.
    [​IMG]

    There's lighter weight grub available, at a price, if you are walking far,but for day trips or static camping I find them ideal. Shop around though as some of the suppliers sell at inflated prices..:thumbsup:
     
  5. Darryl of Sussex

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    Don’t know exactly how this works but if there’s enough demand for them, is a forum/ group buy thingy possible?

    Apologies if that comes across as being selfish but I was kind of expecting a less positive reaction.

    Otherwise, is eBay the best source for them or are there particular places to go for such things?

    Strangely excited by this prospect.

    Thanks,

    Darryl


    If there’s a bustle in your hedgerow, don’t be alarmed now, it’s just a sprinkling for the May Queen.
     
  6. MrEd

    MrEd Native

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    Yep - they are fine, one 24hr pack will easily do a 2 night camp trip. Everything you need in them.
    Bin the drink powder though, it’s rank.

    US MRE are also excellent, and good for a single meal. Also self heating so no need to carry an extra stove etc

    Only slight downside is cost (US MRE) and weight (Brit ration packs) there is a lot of stuff in there you ‘don’t need’, or is a bit unnecessary for our application - So look up EVAQ8 meals - they are the hot meal component of an MRE and come complete with a flameless ration heater aswell - about £4 each. You can then add accompaniments as you feel you need - I prefer to make my own trail mix etc and take fresh fruit - I don’t need ‘long life’ crackers etc when out for a day in the woods..
     
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  7. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    Excellent stuff, most countries’ rations are nice and very nutricious.
    The only negative is the weight. Ok for two or maybe three days trip if you walk.
     
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  8. dp0001

    dp0001 Forager

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    The French ones are really good.

    With any of them though, if they are out-of-date can you tell or have they been irradiated/treated or in some way altered to stop them rotting? I know they are usually date-stamped, I mean can you judge edible'ity with your nose?
     
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  9. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    Your nose will tell you and if you have a bad nose, your backside....
    :)

    Just joking!

    If stored cool, they will last for much longer. Dry goods like crackers, will last many years over the date, if kept dry.

    Mil grade food is usually of very high quality.

    An Alu/ plastic pouch is just as good as a metal can. A plastic/ paper pouch too.
    Some countries use an Alu container similar to Whiskas cat food.
    Or is it a rebranded Whiskas?
     
    norfolknun and Darryl of Sussex like this.
  10. John Fenna

    John Fenna Lifetime Member & Maker

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    Rat packs - at the right price - are excellent and I use them a lot.
    I prefer fresh food when it is convenient though...
     
  11. Broch

    Broch Full Member

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    In the day, on exercise, they were fine; I quite liked them and could always swap out items that others didn't like - usually because they were rumoured to contain the 'bromine' or something :)
    I do still worry a little about the additive content but I've not looked at the new ones (my experience is based on the late 70's and early 80's and I know they've changed a lot). I also know for certain that back then they contained things like vermifuge (don't ask me how I am so certain :()
    These days I'd much rather make up my own packs from the fantastic range of dried, precooked, and quick cook foods available if I'm travelling or, whenever possible, use fresh if in camp. Cooking, for me, is part of the journeying and campcraft experience.
     
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  12. Darryl of Sussex

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    Agreed that it’s now easily possible to create a ration pack by strolling through any supermarket but I just fancied a bit of a lark with a box of who knows what. The worst that would happen is that i’ll bring some home with me, as i’m planning for a max of 1 night stays at the mo.
     
    santaman2000 likes this.
  13. dp0001

    dp0001 Forager

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    I've used them car camping at car shows but it's been as much a novelty experience as well a a meal. Ie the US MREs have these vacuum packed muffins that start as a flat biscuit shape and slowly morph into shape. We call them self-inflating muffins. The advantage is that you have everything you need but for the water. So you save time on shopping and thinking.

    But you might not like some of the flavours. I've reverted more to 'Look What we Found' boil in the bag range in a German billy can. One boil cooks the meal and provides water for tea.

    As I have a few lying around, I was wondering if they're still ok hence my question. It's really good to know they're probably ok.

    Other observations, there's a lot of sugar crammed in to them.

    Gross alert:
    In the spirit of Bear Grills, drinking his own wee and sticking tubes up his bottom, perhaps vermifuge, provides some bonus protein if you wash off the worms and cook them well :eek:
     
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  14. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    My unit were mainly eating freeze dried packs which I have not seen on the civilian market, but those and the canned ration were very, very fatty. Fat =energy, so a smaller and lighter container for the same amout of energy.
     
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  15. z_bumbi

    z_bumbi Tenderfoot

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    One brand is Turmat from Norway. Mountain Horse from, I belive, Canada is an other.
     
  16. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    Yes, those are good, freeze dried packs. What I meant is that I have not seen exactly that brand and 'flavours' since then.

    Made by a Swdish ompany, came in a compressed, foil/plastic packed, green colour painted square block. I used to (my civilian use) buy the commercial freeze dried stuff once I ran out of my little stash, and compared, the Swedish Army stuff was much more calorie dense.
    The Mil food came in 4 flavours.
    The worst one was Liver Casserole with Rice.
     
    #16 Janne, Jan 29, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2019
  17. MrEd

    MrEd Native

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    Yes definitely. And as most are vacuum packed steer clear of any ‘blown’ packets.

    Trust your nose and tongue, if in doubt hick it out.

    I have eaten 10+ year old rations with no problem, but if your not sure at all then probably not worth the risk
     
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  18. Darryl of Sussex

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    I just gave an MRE vacuum packed Chicken chunks, ‘cheese’, tortilla and hot buffalo sauce a go.
    I’m okay so far. I mean, it wasn’t incredible but at a push (i’m not a fussy eater) it was alright. The chicken was flaky and mashable like tuna from a can.
    In a survival situation or after being drenched and cold in the woods, fine.
    Just ordered UK army ration box.
     
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  19. Woody girl

    Woody girl Full Member

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    I've been checking out the Brexit Box after listening to a peice on radio 4 about possible food shortages in the future. 25yr shelf life freeze dried stuff. Quite pricey but they do individual meal potions too. Might be worth a peruse .
     
  20. Fadcode

    Fadcode Full Member

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    Well if nothing else comes out of Brexit, and they are correct about food shortages, they will have solved the Obesity crisis. So we must be grateful for small ( portions), sorry I meant mercies.
     
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