Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Reviews of other US rations - MCW, LRP, MCI, FSR, etc.
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Bypah
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Re: Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Postby Bypah » Tue Mar 29, 2011 2:37 pm

Treesuit wrote:Hungryman,

I guess I'm not understanding fully what the context of your argument is?

If your saying that the relative ease of troops getting junk food is pretty bad then "yes" I agree. I see it everyday and the Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) is the conglomerate that has a stranglehold on everything in and out of the country on every US military base. They do provide a critical service to the troops who want this stuff and sometimes rather than going across the street to the Dining Hall which is better,some troops would like to have Burger King, Pizza Hut or something else readily filling. If you want to argue that point I doubt it will much difference you'll be a mouse fighting a gorilla.


All of this happened whee DOD and the goverment allowed the claws of privatization to dig in....they let the privateers of the big corporations go in for the "hunt" of the soldier's $$$$$$.thats when AAFES was created. Before the goverment controled everything in the PX and the Commisaries. Another example of the privateers is the TRicare, the HMO type heatlh care..... :roll: :?
"Live long and prosper..."

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Treesuit
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Re: Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Postby Treesuit » Tue Mar 29, 2011 4:19 pm

Bypah,

I already knew all that, but thanks. I was trying to post a question to HUNGRYMAN's reply. Kind of answer a question with a question and get his response.

So here's my take on the MORE ration. Natick Labs are trying to put more familiar foods in the MORE rations that have an additional caloric count to them in response to the request from the SOCOM and SF requests. So if they readily put energy gels and OTC beef jerky snacks in them is that so dextrimental to a soldier and contributing to the so called "junk food" problem and obsiety? I don't think so, because with all the strenuous activity involved in high altitude, cold weather operations you'll be burning all those calories off and then want a MRE rather than going hungry.

Dingleberry Johnston
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Re: Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Postby Dingleberry Johnston » Tue Mar 29, 2011 7:19 pm

For all to keep in mind, also...

The folks developing rations don't have a very easy job. It's a tricky balancing act. They have to find/develop foods that have the right balance of nutrition (protien, fat, carbs, vitamins & minerals)...it has to have a decent "shelf-life" and must retain it's nutrition after processing/packaging...it must be able to be eaten with minimal preparation (ready-to-eat, heat-and-eat, etc.)...it must appeal to a very wide range of people who are used to different diets...it must be lightweight...it must be calorie-dense.

I could go on, but I think folks get the point.

As the tastebuds of our modern-day soldiers change, the food we serve them has to change also. If people are used to eating certain foods, it's good to have familiarity for morale's sake. Some of the latest "familiar foods" also happen to be calorie dense, easily eaten with little-to-no preparation, lightweight and have a decent shelf life...like the chocolate/candies, cookies, cheese nips crackers, beef jerky, energy gels, etc.

I think what they're doing is a good thing...not only for our military, but also for those of us in the "civilian market", too. I'm sure the companies developing this stuff for the gov't will want to appeal to the civilian marketplace as well. So, we all win.

HungryMan
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Re: Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Postby HungryMan » Tue Mar 29, 2011 11:16 pm

Treesuit wrote:Hungryman,

I guess I'm not understanding fully what the context of your argument is?

If your saying that the relative ease of troops getting junk food is pretty bad then "yes" I agree. I see it everyday and the Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) is the conglomerate that has a stranglehold on everything in and out of the country on every US military base. They do provide a critical service to the troops who want this stuff and sometimes rather than going across the street to the Dining Hall which is better,some troops would like to have Burger King, Pizza Hut or something else readily filling. If you want to argue that point I doubt it will much difference you'll be a mouse fighting a gorilla.

Now if your saying that Natick Labs are putting more junk food in the high altitude rations than I think that's a stretch, in the report dated May 2010 it said that the SOCOM and Special Forces folks who were operating at high altitudes in the A-Stan requested supplemental ration packs becuase the standard 3 MRE's a day weren't cutting it as far as caloric intake. Most of what I found in the report stated that they wanted to construct rations with existing MRE parts and then maybe go to some existing OTC foods that were readily noticeable. If the folks at Natick Labs whipped something up and made it readily satisfying and somewhat nutritious, then put it out, then that's a win-win situation. What I was trying to figure out was what readily accessible over the counter foods they put into the MORE packs. All I saw in those PPT slides were tan pouches and sliver tubes with generic labels on them. They weren't much help to garner some ideas or try and do some research for all of us here on the forum.


Hi Treesuit,

I lost (didn't save) a more lengthy reply to your question, but in a nutshell...I'm just not that impressed with the 'new' high altitude FSR progress report:

1) No way on God's green earth it takes 10 plus years to figure this all out for the money/manpower that this country throws at these kind of problems.

2) (and most importantly)...the kids suffering and still complaining from this decade long ineptness are up there right now playing the highest stakes games imaginable while needing an answer to this 10 years ago.

3) No research should be accepted that does not consider a wide range of foods which can be quickly added (previously tested) unless they are some 'superfood' that nobody including the military has never dreamed of creating.

I'm all for the OTC foods for these specialized rations and could care less if they are categorized as 'junk' or not.

Yet don't run a report (and time frame) like the above by me and expect us all to believe that some brave soul on a mountaintop tonight really believes that it takes over 10 years to not only get his caloric intake right...but that the final tweak actually turns out to be something from his local 7/11 to boot (meanwhile, he's still up on the mountaintop and still doesn't have what he needs).

As far as junk food in the mess hall for the masses?

It's no different than a boss or salesman on the road trying to impress...these guys have an unlimited expense account for keeping people happy and care about production and general bliss as opposed to using those dollars as the general public or business is forced to. If we wanted it changed, we could...but it's like fighting a motorcycle helmet or noise level law...nobody's paying for it and nobody's bothered by it! (or so they say). :D

HungryMan
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Re: Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Postby HungryMan » Wed Mar 30, 2011 7:42 pm

Dingleberry Johnston wrote:For all to keep in mind, also...

The folks developing rations don't have a very easy job. It's a tricky balancing act. They have to find/develop foods that have the right balance of nutrition (protien, fat, carbs, vitamins & minerals)...it has to have a decent "shelf-life" and must retain it's nutrition after processing/packaging...it must be able to be eaten with minimal preparation (ready-to-eat, heat-and-eat, etc.)...it must appeal to a very wide range of people who are used to different diets...it must be lightweight...it must be calorie-dense.

I could go on, but I think folks get the point.

As the tastebuds of our modern-day soldiers change, the food we serve them has to change also. If people are used to eating certain foods, it's good to have familiarity for morale's sake. Some of the latest "familiar foods" also happen to be calorie dense, easily eaten with little-to-no preparation, lightweight and have a decent shelf life...like the chocolate/candies, cookies, cheese nips crackers, beef jerky, energy gels, etc.

I think what they're doing is a good thing...not only for our military, but also for those of us in the "civilian market", too. I'm sure the companies developing this stuff for the gov't will want to appeal to the civilian marketplace as well. So, we all win.


I guess that I'll just have to respectfully disagree.

We are fighting a war on at least 4 fronts at the moment...and if any department or division of any company in America failed to produce what was needed with this much on the line given even half the amount of time and resources thrown at a similiar problem...you and I both know what would happen.

As with the rest of the country, our saving grace will soon be some kind of realization that we are indeed dead flat broke.
Suppliers may finally be allowed to simply provide what has already been previously researched (I say this because nobody seems to be naming the current OTC 'superfood' to be included in these kits that could not possibly have been considered or tested previously) without an act of God and another 2 years of delayed purchase orders for absolutely no reason whatsoever.

As with the about to be debated social entitlements here in the U.S., if we can't cut the crap out of basic procurement 'research' and get what the soldier needs in his or her hands any quicker than this...God help us.

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Treesuit
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Re: Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Postby Treesuit » Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:09 pm

Hungryman,

Okay, after reading your response and pondering it for a while I will try and reply to your reply, so here goes:

1) Somethings do take 10 + years to make and put out. I won't go into detail on everything but for example, the development between the MCI's and the first run MRE's, that took quite awhile. As far as we know with the MORE rations it looks like they might still be in the development phase. And "yes' it might take a lot of money thrown at the problem just to find out it was something simple in the first place. And you have to remember that there are other funded projects that will take prescendence over rations and food development.

2) As far as I can tell and read in a lot of technical reports, after action reports and journal articles there are no servicemembers suffering or complaining about the level of food they get. Other than soldiers complaining that they have to eat an MRE instead of a five course gourmet meal, they are going to complain about something, it's human nature. If you re-read the PPT slides again you'll see the requests came from the SOF, SOCOM, and the Special Forces Community that Natick Labs come up with something to supplement the MRE's at dry, cold elevations because the 3 MRE's a day weren't cutting it and the operators working at those high altitudes were needing something in addition. Also I can't find any so called "ineptness" that somebody suffered while having a MRE. The only "ineptness" I found is how the politicians are running the war. Is that what your refering to? Lastly, "yes" it is a "high stakes game" out there in the A-stan or in another hot-spot, that's what those SOF operators and soldiers get paid to do.

3) As far as research goes that would include a wide range of foods that can be quickly added. Well, I think Natick Labs already did that with the FSR and it worked okay. What sort of "Superfood" would you like and where can I get it?

HUNGRYMAN, I'll tell you this, somethings do take a few years to get right and there is a lot of "trial and error". We would probably not have had the MRE's unless somebody had a brillant idea and stole a copy of space food from NASA and put it to work. That was in the early 1960's-70's and now look at what we have. I have been around a few old time soldiers and Marines in my career and many comment on the way food and rations were "back in the days". They will tell you outright that is was pretty rough back then and it's 100x better today.

As far as the OTC foods, I just believe that Natick has finally listened to the common soldier and decided to put some time and money into figuring out what a person WILL EAT rather than being FORCED TO EAT something. If it comes from the local 7/11 then why not. Natick Labs can't fix something if they don't know what's broken. Who knows it might just a temporary fix.

As far as the quality of food in the dining facilities: Well, everybody has their opinion on that. Also, I never said "junk food" in the dining facility, I commented on the retail outlets near dining facilities serving up "junk food". Big Difference.

HungryMan
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Re: Looks like new FSR's are on the way!

Postby HungryMan » Sat Apr 16, 2011 9:05 pm

Treesuit wrote:Hungryman,

Okay, after reading your response and pondering it for a while I will try and reply to your reply, so here goes:

1) Somethings do take 10 + years to make and put out. I won't go into detail on everything but for example, the development between the MCI's and the first run MRE's, that took quite awhile. As far as we know with the MORE rations it looks like they might still be in the development phase. And "yes' it might take a lot of money thrown at the problem just to find out it was something simple in the first place. And you have to remember that there are other funded projects that will take prescendence over rations and food development..


Again, I will have to respectfully disagree.
"The government" may have felt (for decades now) that 10 plus years to solve the most basic of operational problems (when did the first tanks make it to Afghanistan?) is acceptable.
The government is now (and has been for quite some time)...for all intents and purposes... 'broke'.
End result?
Creating multi-year 'developmental programs' out of a simple and urgent need to procur a few additional items which don't even need to be developed or researched (should have been already)... has suddenly become just plain 'un'acceptable in the fiscal and multi-front problems that we presently face.

Treesuit wrote:"...2) As far as I can tell and read in a lot of technical reports, after action reports and journal articles there are no servicemembers suffering or complaining about the level of food they get. Other than soldiers complaining that they have to eat an MRE instead of a five course gourmet meal, they are going to complain about something, it's human nature. If you re-read the PPT slides again you'll see the requests came from the SOF, SOCOM, and the Special Forces Community that Natick Labs come up with something to supplement the MRE's at dry, cold elevations because the 3 MRE's a day weren't cutting it and the operators working at those high altitudes were needing something in addition..."


I guess that I simply find the first and last statement above to be in conflict with each other.

Treesuit wrote:"...Also I can't find any so called "ineptness" that somebody suffered while having a MRE. The only "ineptness" I found is how the politicians are running the war. Is that what your refering to?..."


We've been fighting at high altitude and pouring millions into food related research surrounding same for over 10 years now...yet are still in the 'development phase' to acquire 'over-the-counter' items (of all things) to 'try' and finally get the job done right for those up there suffering every one of those 3,650 days or more. Politicians don't often witness such ineptness in person and I can't imagine anybody else doing so either without saying something about it publicly.

Treesuit wrote:"...3) As far as research goes that would include a wide range of foods that can be quickly added. Well, I think Natick Labs already did that with the FSR and it worked okay. What sort of "Superfood" would you like and where can I get it?..."



If they have already researched all of these foods that can quickly be added (or should have the first time)...and there truly 'is' no superfood up and coming (my original point)...why does it take two MORE years to add something that they have absolutely no shame in describing as 'over-the-counter' in nature (and that they are in dire need of...today?).

Again, I hope that I am respectfully disagreeing here and actually respect your opinion on the matter more than my own since you've obviously had more experience in this area.

What I can't fathom is that this appears to be yet another government agency creating 'career' projects out of the simplest of problems (ie. adding a few more calories to most likely hundreds of millions in research dollars previously spent)...while trying to picture our SF guy up on that mountaintop 'still' not getting what he needs every single day. :?


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