How did you discover MREs?

Discussions about US MREs and other US rations
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Post by rational » Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:32 pm

How did I get started on MRE's...the boys are a lot bigger now, and so there are precious few leftovers after dinner, so I started looking for single-serving items at the grocery store. Since I was already into WWII repro as an hobby, I thought why not check out modern rations? I found MRE INFO (many thanks!!) which had both info and menus, so first I bought some from the local surplus store, then from ebay, then by the I'm hooked and have eaten them one or two meals a day for many months. Lots more protein than canned stuff, and besides...they're cool. Handy stuff - while we went in to Home Depot, I left a Chicken Tetrazinni to warm up in the car window; we had a nice lunch before getting to work on the house.
MRE's are health food compared to, say, a Marie Callender's frozen Chicken Pie - my trusty Chicken Tetrazinni has 35 fat calories vs. about 400!

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Post by DIRTYDAVE » Mon Aug 08, 2005 11:34 pm

LOL, that is funny rational, I do the same thing with throwing the main entree in the window to heat works great! Especially living here in FL with the 90 degree temperatures lately.

Great story! If you have any pics of your WWII repro, I would like to check them out.

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Post by Zizka » Sat Aug 13, 2005 10:38 am

Hello !

My first reply on this forum.

I discovered MRE back in the early 90´s through a an article in
"Raids Magazine"(very good Military magazine before they closed down the english version).
I was very active in Swedish army (home guard = Swedish form of Natiopnal Guard) back then and Swedish rations consisted on 3 principal feeding system:

1: Cooks deliver hot food in canteens (usually very good chow, conscript cooks serving 7,5 months, sometimes better than on the regioment).

2: Tin of food for individual heating.
One dreaded meal was "Dead man´s fingers" = White beans and sausages. The norm was that first you place the food in mobilization depots for 10-20 years before the poos conscripts got it in the field.
Sometimes you wondered if you could actually eat something that is
20 years old but as long there no dents or rust on the canteen you
In 1988 I was on a submarine hunt (Russian maybe ??) in the northern Sweden and we were supposed to guard an Island so the Navy could hunt
the boats and divers that was supposed to be there.
We got live ammo, flares and grenades and of course a big box of food.
When we opened the box we found out that all we got was food based on some sort of beans... Not very pleasant to wake up in the morning smellig 20 guys farts in the tent, one match and we all be blown to pieces.
By the end of the week we had not seen any mysterious but was screaming for home-cooked food not based on beans.

3: Freeze-dried meals.
Those we had back then you had to boil for 15-20 minutes before eating and that is not always tactical so you lived on crackers, paté and chocolate until the evening before you could get some hot food.

So searching for something to eat and go I found the MRE and since then always carry with me a ration or two when on manouvers, fishing, hiking,
working late or just need some fast good meal.
I cant say I have a favorit among the meals but I am mote of a meat guy than chicken or vegetarian.

Best regards to all/
Zizka :D

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Post by DIRTYDAVE » Sat Aug 13, 2005 5:57 pm

Welcome to the forum zizka! Thanks for the interesting story.

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Post by DemolitionMan » Tue Sep 06, 2005 8:14 am

Hi everybody, my first post here!

I discovered MREs indirectly during my service time in the german army 2002-2003...there I made my first contact with legendary EPa, and I kept some items from them after I left the army. I became interested in everything military then and found the website which features a test of EPA vs. MRE. This made me interested in MREs as I read they have many different meals compared to EPA and through a forum I heard about this site. Great one, unique on the internet!
I didn´t find time to get some personally but recently I read a topic about survival rations and thought I´d look for MRE on ebay. I was lucky to get 7 meals(1,2 two times,5,8,9,18 from 2000) though I bid for only 6 :D And I made a good price compared to online shops. So I´m looking forward to my first real taste...opened a no.2 Boneless Pork Chop and only tasted the pound cake(yummy) and the vegetable crackers(not so tasty). The entree will follow soon. I really envy american soldiers for the candy as we germans have only 50g of chocolate for one day! Lucky you!

Thats for my first post I hope you liked reading it.
"Let others rise to take our place until the earth is free!"
-Les Misérables-

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Post by DIRTYDAVE » Tue Sep 06, 2005 10:17 am

Hello DemolitionMan, welcome to the forums! Thanks for sharing your story. Since you like chocolate, be on the lookout for the Chocolate brownie in Menu 3 (Beef Ravioli) of the 2004 is DELICIOUS!


Post by jdavidb » Tue Sep 06, 2005 4:50 pm

I first heard of MREs during the Gulf War, in a Doonesbury comic strip. Apparently Gary Trudeau thought the name was hilarious, and found the fact that military personnel were handing out MREs to starving Kuwaitis (or somebody) was also funny. I actually thought at the time that he had made up the name and acronym.

Somewhere along the line I learned the name was real, and eventually I saw MREs at our local army navy store. Looked interesting, although we didn't have much reason to buy them, so we didn't. Should've taken some on our backpacking trips. I remember thinking it was interesting that they had so many menu choices; I had expected something more like a granola bar. :)

Not long ago someone on another site I frequent was talking about MREs in the context of survivalists stockpiling them. I read the MRE article on Wikipedia, which linked here.

Now I'm thinking I need to try these out some day, but I guess I'll wait till the hurricane survivors are selling their surplus and the bottom falls out of the market. :)


Post by jdavidb » Tue Sep 06, 2005 4:52 pm

Whoops; I left out the part about how sad I was to discover that our local army navy store doesn't sell MREs anymore. We were there shortly after I got interested in the subject and asked.

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Post by DIRTYDAVE » Tue Sep 06, 2005 11:01 pm

All military surplus stores in my area sell the MREs but they are asking too much for them. Average price is about $8.99 for one meal... :shock: You just have to keep an eye on There is a lady that is always selling them on there for $45 a case plus shipping. For me it comes close to $60, or $5 a meal. When I cannot find a better price I usually go with her. Her name is CajunClara and she is always on there giving two cases of MREs away every month by having a drawing of names that have bought from her, or so she says! I have ordered two cases from her and although the shipping to me was very slow she was reliable. But hell, she is in Louisiana, no word on if she made it through the Hurricane ok. I will have to check it out.

sgt mike rtd
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First M.R.E

Post by sgt mike rtd » Thu Sep 08, 2005 11:06 am

hi there
my first mre was way back when they had the dark brown bag. i thought it was pretty good at the time as i was still in the army then and had to lug around australian ration packs , and belive me guys they can weigh you down a bit if your carrying anymore than 3 days worth. the one i got back then was dried meat of some sort had no idea what pork i think , was supposed to rehydrate the thing , but didnt have time so ate it on the move. turned out wasnt to bad. ive tried the new mre,s in the tan bag , and they are quite yummy. little hard to get here tho, but that dont stop me from looking on ebay. anyway that was my first time with mre,s

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