A field ration, or combat ration, is a canned or pre-packaged meal, easily prepared and eaten, transported by military troops on the battlefield. They are distinguished from regular military rations by virtue of being designed for minimal preparation in the field, using canned, pre-cooked or freeze-dried foods, powdered beverage mixes and concentrated food bars, as well as for long shelf life.
Such meals also prove invaluable for disaster relief operations, where large stocks of these can be ferried and distributed easily, and provide basic nutritional support to victims before kitchens can be set up to produce fresh food.
Most armies in the world today now field some form of pre-packaged combat ration, suitably tailored to meet national or ethnic tastes.
The Ración de Combate (Individual) was introduced in 2003, consising of a gray plastic-foil laminate pouch containing a mix of canned and dehydrated foods, plus minimal supplements, for 1 soldier for 1 day. All products in the RC are domestically produced, commercially available items. Each ration contains: canned meat, small can of meat spread, crackers, instant soup, cereal bar with fruit, a chocolate bar or caramels, instant coffee, orange juice powder, sugar, salt, a heating kit with disposable stove & alcohol-based fuel tablets, disposable butane lighter, resealable plastic bag, and a pack of paper tissues.
Menu # 1 contains: corned beef, meat pate, crisp water crackers, and instant soup with fideo pasta. Menu #2 includes: roasted beef in gravy, meat pate, whole wheat crackers, and quick-cooking polenta in cheese sauce.
Canada provides each soldier with a complete pre-cooked meal known as the IMP (Individual Meal Pack
), packaged inside a heavy-duty folding paper bag. There are 5 breakfast menus, 6 lunch menus, and 6 supper menus. Canadian rations provide generous portions and contain a large number of commercially available items. Like the US ration, the main meal is precooked and ready-to-eat, packed in heavy-duty plastic-foil retort pouches boxed with card board. Typically, the ration contains a meal item (beans & wiener sausages, scalloped potatoes with ham, smoked salmon fillet, macaroni & cheese, cheese omelette with mushrooms, shepherd's pie, etc.), wet-packed (sliced or mashed) fruit in a boxed retort pouch, and depending on the meal a combination of instant soup or cereal, fruit drink crystals, jam or cheese spread, peanut butter, honey, crackers, bread (dinner roll) compressed into a retort pouch, coffee and tea, sugar, commercially available chocolate bars
and hard candy
, a long plastic spoon, paper towels and wet wipes. Canada also makes limited use of a Light Meal Pack containing dried meat or cheese, dried fruit
, a granola
bar, a breakfast cereal square, a chocolate bar, hard candy, hot cocoa mix, and two pouches of instant fruit drink.
Colombia issues the Ración de Campaña, a very dark olive green (almost black) plastic bag weighing between 1092 - 1205 grams and providing between 3097 & 3515 calories. Inside are the MRE-like retort pouch main courses and supplements needed by 1 soldier for 1 day. The individual meals, which cater to South American tastes, consist of a breakfast, a lunch, and a main meal (Tamal
, Envueltos, Lentejas con chorizo, Arvejas con carne, Garbanzo a la madrileña, Arroz atollado, Ajiaco con pollo, Sudado con papas y carne, etc.) plus bread products, beverage mixes, candy & accessories. All items except the beverage mixes require no further preparation and can be eaten either hot or cold. The beverage powders must be mixed with hot or cold water before consumption. Each ration also contains raw sugar, a can of condensed milk, sandwich cookies, sweetened & thickened cream spread, hard candy
or caramels, peanuts or trail mix
or 25 g of roasted almonds, instant coffee
, salt, paper towels, a plastic spoon, 2 water purification tablets, and a multivitamin tablet.
The Mexican defense department (SEDENA) issues the "soldados individuales diarios combaten comidas" box or "individual soldiers daily combat meals box." It is packaged in an olive green and black plastic box with the contents printed on the front, the box contains three individual meal packs containing 3,640 to 4,030 calorie meals which are meant to sustain a soldier for a day. Each individual meal package contains a 2 main retort pouches which are meant to be eaten with each other. The first retort pouch usually contains a meat product (such as beef, pork, sausage, ham, seafood, chicken, tuna, bacon or other meats which are usually mixed with a flavoring sauce and vegetables) the second retort pouch contains a staple food (rice, lentils, noodles, beans, pasta, eggs or more vegetables). Each meal package also contains salt, spices, condensed milk, cream, butter, chorizo spread, dried fruit or preserves, bread, crackers, sugar, custard, cookies, canned fish, cocoa mix, nuts, chocolate or other candies, vitamins, a pouch of drinking water, a pouch of Jumex fruit juice or Coca-cola, biodegradable napkins, plastic untensils and water purification tablets. Some meal packages do not contain the two main retort pouches and instead contain a single pouch with a finished meal such as tamales or steak and eggs but, these are usually only available when close to a base or when the military is operating in an urban area. When these were handed out by the Mexican military during their assistance in the Hurricane Katrina relief operation many Americans who received them gave very high praise about their taste and variety.
The United State's MRE
is packaged similarly to the Canadian ration. Each sealed plastic bag contains one entire precooked meal, with a number of supplements and accessories. The original 12 menus have been expanded to 24 and now contain a variety of ethnic and special request items as well. Kosher/Halal and Vegetarian menus are also provided. Each meal bag contains an 8-oz main course (packaged in a 4-layer plastic & foil laminate retort pouch), 8 hard military crackers
, some form of spread (cheese, peanut butter, or jelly
), a fruit-based beverage powder, some form of dessert (cake, candy
, or fruit), and an accessory packet containing coffee or tea, creamer, sugar, salt, matches, a plastic spoon, and toilet paper. A chemical heater is packed with every meal.
The First Strike Ration (FSR) is a compact, eat-on-the-move ration to be used for no more than 3 days during initial periods of highly intense, highly mobile combat assaults. A single FSR (24 hours food) is about 50% of the size & weight of 3 MREs. Each FSR provides 2900 calories (15% protein, 53% carbohydrates, 34% fat), versus the 3800 calories in 3 MREs, and has a 2-year shelf life when stored at 80°F. An FSR is packed in a single trilaminate bag and contains filled pocket sandwiches, a pouch of tuna or chicken, 2 packets of ERGO high-energy drink mix, 2 high-energy cereal bars (First Strike Bars), a dairy-based calcium-enriched dessert bar, 2 packets of beef jerky (BBQ or Teriyaki flavored), fortified applesauce, nut & fruit mix, caffeinated gum, and an accessory pack containing a beverage mix, salt, matches, tissues, plastic spoon, & cleansing moist towelettes. The FSR comes in 3 menus:
- Menu 1: Bacon-cheddar pocket sandwich; pepperoni pocket sandwich; filled French Toast pocket sandwich; jalapeño cheese spread & wheat snack bread; and apple cider mix.
- Menu 2: Italian pocket sandwich; chicken chunks pouch, tortillas & hot sauce; Cinnamon & brown sugar toaster pastry; peanut butter & crackers, and lemon tea mix.
- Menu 3: Honey BBQ beef pocket sandwich; Albacore tuna pouch, tortillas & mayonnaise; lemon poppy-seed pound cake, cheese spread & crackers; and instant coffee, non-dairy creamer & sugar.
After joining NATO, the Czechs developed a combat ration known as the Bojová Dávka Potravin (BDP). The BDP comes in two versions, type I & II, each holding two ready-to-eat main courses packed in large foil "cans" (beef roast with rice, pork goulash with potato, spicy risotto, pork with carrots & vegetables, etc.), a small plastic cup of lunch meat spread, cheese spread, hard bread, cookies, jam, instant coffee, tea bags, fruit-flavored multivitamin drink tablets, vitamin C enriched fruit drink powder, a chocolate bar, sugar, salt, chewing gum, wet napkins, paper towels, a plastic bag, and a menu & instruction sheet. A modified version of the BDP known as the KDP (Konzervovaná Dávka Potravin) is also used. This contains the same items as the BDP, but adds an aluminium cup, plastic utensils, a folding stove with fuel tablets & matches, and soap.
When (during peacetime) conscript soldiers are not provided with meals cooked either in garrisons or attached field kitchens
, they are provided with rations (colloquially known as sissi
rations) packed in a clear plastic bag. Several different menus exist, all include however foil packed crispbread
, coffee & tea, sugar, chocolate, small tins of beef or pork, chewing gum, dry porridge, energy drink powder etc. Soups & porridges that are meant to be mixed with water and cooked are usually prepared in Trangia
-type portable stoves that are shared by the pair in a fire and maneuver team, or in individual mess kits
The French combat ration, the RCIR (ration de combat individuelle rechauffable) comes in 14 menus packed in a small cardboard box. Inside are 2 precooked, ready-to-eat meal main courses packed in thin metal cans somewhat like oversized sardine tins, and a hors d'oeuvre
in a more conventional can or tin. Current main courses include items such as beef salad, tuna and potatoes, salmon with rice and vegetables, shepherds pie, rabbit casserole, chili con carne
, veau marengo (veal
), navarin d'agneau
), poultry and spring vegetables, etc. Hors d'oeuvres include: salmon terrine, chicken liver, tuna in sauce, fish terrine
, duck mousse, etc. Each meal box also contains a package of instant soup, hard crackers, cheese spread, chocolate, caramels or boiled sweets, instant café-au-lait, sugar, cocoa powder, matches, a disposable folding ration heater and fuel tablets, and water purifying tablets.
Germany uses the Einmannpackung to provide two substantial meals to each soldier. Practice is to provide one hot cooked meal for the other meal whenever possible, but enough food items are contained within the EPA to sustain the soldier if necessary. Currently there are 3 menus with several heavy-duty foil trays containing items such as Lentils with Sausages, Yugoslav Sausage, Goulash
, Beef Patties in tomato sauce, Italian Pasta, or Tofu stir-fry. There are also three smaller foil "cans" of bread spreads such as cheese spread, liver-sausage, dried-meat sausage, or cheese spread with green peppers. The meal box also includes: thinly sliced rye bread, soup crackers (Standard issue, 340 kcal) or hard crackers (Special Forces, 1100 kcal), a foil can of fruit salad, instant cream of wheat, instant fruit juice powder, instant coffee, instant tea, powdered cream, a chocolate bar, sugar, salt, gum, jam, water purifying tablets, two plastic bags, matches, and paper towels.
Ireland fields a 24-hour ration pack somewhat similar to that used by the British. It is packed in a large ziplock plastic bag and contains two pre-cooked main meals and items to be eaten throughout the day. Included are: instant soup, ramen noodles, an oatmeal block, a high-energy protein bar, both brown & fruit biscuits, sweets, and a selection of beverage mixes. Breakfast (bacon & beans or sausage & beans) is packaged in a retort pouch while dinner (Beef Casserole, Irish Stew, Chicken Curry, or a vegetarian main course) comes in either a flat tin or microwaveable plastic tray. Desserts consist of a retort-pouched dessert (chocolate pudding, syrup pudding, fruit dumplings), a Kendal mint bar, & a roll of fruit lozenges. Beverages include tea bags, instant coffee, hot cocoa, and a powdered isotonic drink mix. Also included are a pack of tissues, a small scouring pad, matches, water purification tablets, salt & pepper packets, sugar, dry cream powder, moist towelettes, and individual packets of foot powder.
Italy uses the "Razione Viveri Speciali da Combattimento," consisting of a heavy duty brownish-green plastic bag with 3 thin white cardboard cartons inside, each containing meal items plus accessories. Typically, breakfast consists of: a chocolate bar, fruit candy, crackers or sweet bread, instant coffee, sugar, and a tube of sweetened condensed milk. A lunch will have: 2 pull-ring cans with precooked foods(Tortellini al Ragu, Pasta a Fagioli, Wurstel in Liquido Governo, Tacchino in Gelatina, Insalata di Riso, etc), a small can of fruit cocktail, a multivitamin tablet, energy & fiber tablets, instant coffee, sugar, & a plastic spoon wrapped with a napkin. Dinner will consist of 2 more meal cans plus crackers, an energy bar, instant coffee, & sugar. Accessories are: a folding stove, fuel tablets, water purification tablets, toothpick, matches, &, 3 small disposable toothbrushes with pre-applied tooth powder.
field rations are based on US Army's MRE - they come in 10 menus packed in a dark green plastic bag, and include small chocolate bar, honey (or jam), crispy bread, handful almonds (or hazelnuts), instant drink, tea (or coffee), sugar, moisturizing tissue, matches, moisture-free fuel, a tray for food heating, flameless heater (similar to the US one) and a strap for package tightening.
The Netherlands version of the 24-hour ration, the "Gevechtsrantsoen," includes canned or retort pouched items, plus hard biscuits, jam, cheese spread, 3 cans of meat spread & 1 can of tuna spread, a chocolate bar, a roll of mints, instant coffee, tea, hot chocolate, lemon-flavour energy drink powder, instant soup, a vitamin pill, and supplementary items. The canned main course is packed in a thin aluminium can rather like a large sardine tin, containing 400 g of a precooked item such as rice with vegetables and beef, chicken with rice and curry, potatoes with sausage and green vegetables, or sauerkraut with sausage and green vegetables. The newer retort-pouch contain 350 g of things like brown beans with pork, chili con carne, corned beef hash, or chicken and pasta in tomato sauce. Oddly, the ration pack provides breakfast & lunch only; the two canned or pouched main meals are issued separately.
Norway and Sweden
Norway & Sweden both utilize a 24-hour ration pack (Norwegian "Stridsrasjon" or Swedish "Stridsportion") designed by DryTech, consisting of 2 freeze-dried main meals, a packet of compressed breakfast cereal, packets of instant soup, and supplements. These are packed in 3 green polylaminate bags labelled "Breakfast," "Lunch," or "Dinner," overwrapped in clear plastic and issued as one day's ration. Included are a substantial assortment of beverages (cocoa mix, instant coffee, energy drink powder, and herbal teas), plus thin sliced rye bread and chocolate, chewing gum, a vitamin tablet, and litter bags. Lunch usually consists of chili con carne or pasta in sauce, while dinner is a choice of Beef with Potatoes, Codfish with Dumplings in Sour Cream, Pasta Bolognese, etc. Small tins of fish are often provided separately.
The current Polish combat ration (Zestaw Żywnościowy Indywidualnej Racji Suchej) is packed in a green plastic-foil bag containing: 2 small cans of meat or meat spread or cheese, 2 packages of hard crackers, a tube of sweetened condensed milk, 2 packets of instant coffee, a packet of instant tea, 3 sugar packets, an individually wrapped Vitamin C fortified boiled sweets, a stick of chewing gum, safety matches, a menu & instruction sheet, a plastic bag, and 2 paper towels.
The Russian Federation recently began issuing the Individual Food Ration - Daily (IRP-P). Modelled somewhat upon the French RCIR, the corrugated cardboard box contains an entire day's food, plus a limited number of supplements. Each ration box contains 2 square main-course cans (generally meat with cereal or vegetables), 1 can of stewed beef, 1 can of meat spread (sausage stuffing or liver paté), and 6 packages of hard bread. Also included are a foil pouch of fruit jam, an envelope of beverage powder, 2 packages of instant tea or coffee, 3 packets of sugar, 2 small packs of caramels, 3 x paper towels, and a multivitamin tablet. Also included are a small can opener, a menu & instruction sheet, a disposable folding ration heater, and a blister pack of 4 solid fuel tablets
The Spanish Army issues an individual meal pack, available in 5 different menus, comprising a small cardboard box overwrapped with drab green polyethylene. Inside are 3 canned meals, plus accessories. Typical contents (Menu B) include: stewed steak, pickled mackerel, liver paté with red peppers, an envelope of instant soup, a can of fruit, 2 salt tablets, 2 water purification tablets, a large multivitamin tablet, 10 sheets of general purpose paper, a book of matches, a folding can opener, a small folding ration heater & 2 fuel tablets, and an instruction sheet. Crackers or bread are issued separately.
The UK provides the rather substantial Operational Ration Pack, General Purpose. Packed inside a small cardboard box, each ration has enough retort-pouched and canned foods to feed one soldier for 24 hours. Seven menus provide two precooked meals (Breakfast & Main Meal) plus a midday snack. Example (Menu A) Breakfast: Hamburger & beans, Instant Porridge
. Snack: Oatmeal Block, Fruit Biscuits
, Brown Biscuits (a more compact alternative to bread), cheese spread or meat spread, chocolate (in the form of a specially made Yorkie bar
which is flatter than civilian bars), boiled sweets (hard candy). Main Meal: Instant soup, Chicken with Mushroom and Pasta, Treacle Pudding. Each pack also contains instant coffee, tea bags, creamer, sugar, hot cocoa mix, bouillon powder, lemon/orange powder, matches, toilet paper, chewing-gum, and water purifying tablets. Also available are Kosher/Halal, Vegetarian, and Hindu/Sikh specific menus. Regardless of their contents, these ration packs are referred to as Rat-Packs or Compo (short for Composite Rations) by the soldiers who eat them. In addition to containing the 24 hour ration, the outside of the cardboard box has a range card printed on its side for use by the soldier to record key features and their range from his position. Other variations designed for specific environments exist.
The UK also fields a larger pack of rations intended to feed ten soldiers for 24 hours from centralised but basic preparation; generally similar in content to the single issue ORP but tending to contain larger quantities of food in cylindrical tin cans to be divided up on preparation, rather than individual retort pouches or packets. Even dry materials like sugar or biscuits are often packed in these cans. Ten boxed one-man ORPs are supplied in larger boxes identical in size to the single ten-man pack.
The Ukrainian combat ration is based on a previous Russian version, consisting of commercially available cans & dried foods packed together in a sectioned box (resembles a takeout tray) made of very thin green plastic. Inside are: two 250 g mmin Meal cans (boiled buckwheat groats & buckwheat w/beef); two 100 g cans of meat spread (liver pate & beef in lard); a 160 g can of herring or mackerel; six 50 g packages small, hard crackers (resemble oyster crackers); two foil pouches (20 g each) of jam or jelly; six boiled sweets two tea bags; an envelope of instant cherry juice powder; a chicken flavour bouillon cube; two packets of sugar; and three dining packets, each with a plastic spoon, a napkin, & a moist towelette.
Developed & fielded the Ração Individual de Combate (RIC). Packed in a camouflage cardboard box measuring 10.5" x 6.25" x 19.0" (265 mm x 160 mm x 90 mm) and weighing 1.99 kg (3.4 lbs), the ration provides 3 meals per day. Maximum use is made of off-the-shelf commercial items, including canned main menu items (still with their original labels). A typical RIC (menu 4) will contain: two 415 g "poptop" cans (beef w/vegetsbles & chili con carne), a flat 115 g can of sardines, round 65 g can of liver pate, sweet bread, crackers, packaged bread, 2 pouches of fruit jam, pouch of quince cream, hot chocolate or instant coffee, isotonic drink mix, instant milk powder, chewing gum, boiled sweets, sugar, salt, water purification tablets, matches, 6 fuel tablets, a folding stove, plastic cutlery, a pack of tissues, a plastic bag, and an instruction/menu sheet.
The primary operational ration used in Greece is the so-called "Merida Eidikon Dynameon" (Special Forces' Ration, also known as a 4B-ration), a 24-hour ration pack inside a cardboard box measuring 240 x 140 x 130 mm & weighing 1 kg. Most items are commercially procured, with the main meals in round pull-ring cans. Typical contents include: a 200 g canned meat ("SPAM"); 280 g can of meat w/vegetables (beef & potatoes, etc) (termed Prepared Food With Meat or ΠΦΜΚ); a 280 g can of cooked vegetables (green peas, etc) (Prepared Food Without Meat or ΠΦΑΚ); an 85 g can of cheese; 6 hard biscuits; 40 g honey; three 50 g packages of raisins or chocolate; 30 g sugar; 1.5 g black tea, 2 g instant coffee; 19 g instant milk powder; two small packets of salt; a multivitamin tablet; 4 water purification tablets; a pack of tissues; a disposable ration heater with 5 fuel tablets; and a box of matches. In wartime, packs of locally commandeered cigarettes may also be issued.
The Israeli "battle ration" (Manot Krav) is designed to be shared by four soldiers. It contains: two cans of processed beef, two large or 4 small cans of tuna, canned olives, a can of sweetcorn
, a can of pickled cucumbers, 2 cans of halva
spread or chocolate-halva spread, a can of nuts, dried fruit, candy, jam, fruit flavored drink powder, coffee, tea, sugar, salt, and bread or matzoh
crackers. There is also an "ambush pack" of candy
and high-energy protein bars.
Saudi Arabia uses a combat meal that is packed inside a brown plastic bag about the size and shape of a US MRE pouch. It contains a small can of tuna, a small can of sardines or salmon or beef, a small can of cheese or thickened cream, an envelope of instant noodle soup, hard crackers and dry toast (like baby Zwieback
), a small bag of raisins or dried fruit, a small package of dates, a small bag of nuts, plus instant coffee, tea bags, sugar packets, matches, and a bag of spiced dried chickpea
United Arab Emirates
The UAE utilizes a European-style combat ration pack containing food and accessories for one soldier for 24 hours. Packed in the UAE utilizing imported components, the ration box measures 245 x 195 x 115 mm and weighs 2.0 kg. Inside are 4 resealable (ziplock type) plastic bags, labeled in both Arabic & English, containing Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Miscellaneous.
A typical Breakfast bag has 2 foil-wrapped packages of hard brown biscuits, 1 small jar apricot jam, a can of tuna, and an accessory pack (plastic spoon, salt, pepper, & napkin)
Lunch contains a retort pouch of precooked rice, a retort pouch of chicken curry, a pouch date pudding, and another accessory pack.
Dinner has a retort pouch of pasta rigatoni, an envelope instant soup, and a third accessory pack
The Miscellaneous bag contains a small bag of hard candy, 4 packets of sugar, 4 tea bags, 2 small envelopes of milk powder, and 3 foil envelopes of instant orange juice powder.
Also included are: a can of fruit, a package of ramen noodles, 2 flameless chemical ration heaters, a menu/instruction sheet, 1 pack dried hummus powder, and a book of matches.
The Australians individual combat ration, the CR1M (Combat Ration One Man
), is a complete 24-hour ration pack that provides two substantial meals per day and a wide variety of drinks and snacks for the remainder of the day. Most items, such as Beef Kai Si Ming, Dutch-style Beef with Vegetables, Beef with Spaghetti, Baked Beans, Sausages with Vegetables, or Chicken with pasta and vegetables, are packed in plastic-foil retort pouches. Included with every meal pack is a pouch of instant rice or instant mashed potatoes, a couple of muesli
bars, a fruit & grain bar, 2 envelopes of instant drink powder, some biscuits, an "Anzac bar
," a chocolate bar, M&M's
, coffee, tea, sugar, crackers
, cheese spread, jam, sweetened condensed milk, hard sweets, and Vegemite
Australian Army Cadets
are now allowed to eat army ratons since this years Annual Camp in Singleton, New South Wales. But this is limited to the Cadet Units in New South Wales and Norfolk Island, not all states yet have ration packs.
New Zealand issues an Operational Ration Pack designed to provide one soldier with three complete meals. Based around two ready-to-eat retort pouches (e.g. Beef and Vegetable stew, Chicken Curry), the ORP comes in 4 menus. Also included are: Anzac biscuits
, chocolate bars, URC fruit grains
bars, instant soup powder, instant noodles, muesli cereal, a tube of condensed milk, hard crackers
, cheese spread, cocoa powder, instant coffee, tea bags, instant sport drink powder, sugar, salt, pepper, glucose sweets, jam, ketchup, onion flakes, waterproofed matches, a resealable plastic bag, and a menu sheet.
The Royal Brunei Army uses a 24-hour ration pack that provides a soldier with an entire day's supply of food, plus a limited number of health and hygiene items. Maximum use is made of plastic-foil laminate pouches, and most items can be eaten without further preparation. Currently, four menus are fielded, and all menus are compatible with Muslim dietary restrictions. Example Menu (F): 5 x 170-gram retort pouches (Biriani Chicken, Mutton Curry, Sardines in Tomato Sauce, Bubur Jagong, Pineapple Pajeri); plus individual servings of pineapple jam, instant coffee, teabags, sugar, salt, pepper, steminder powder, hot chili sauce, aji-no-moto
, a multivitamin tablet, tissue paper, scouring pad with soap, and matches.
Indian Armed Forces have a host of Meals Ready To Eat (MRE) including the One Man Compo Pack Ration, Survival Ration, a ration for marine commandos and Main Battle Tank (MBT) Rations. The shelf-life of the ration is 12 months. India has adopted retort processing technology for combat rations.
The Indonesian military has introduced the Composite Ration (24 hour x 1 man) in 6 menus, containing 2 main meals, a light meal, plus a selection of drinks and supplementary items. Main meals are packed in plastic-foil retort pouches, and most items are produced in Indonesia. Typically, contents will include: Beef & Rice in soy sauce, Fish in tomato sauce with rice, mushrooms in heavy syrup, sardines in oil, hard biscuits, jam, instant coffee, tea bags, energy drink powder, sugar, salt, pepper, tissue paper, matches, and a vitamin tablet.
The Royal Malaysian Army version of the 24-hour ration pack is intended to provide one man with sufficient food and supplements for one day. Most items are domestically procured and cater to local tastes and religious dietary requirements. The ration makes extensive use of commercially available canned and dehydrated items. Wherever possible, plastic-foil pouches are used instead of cans. The ration is supplemented with precooked or freeze-dried rice. Example menu C: Beef Kurma, Chicken Masak Merah, Fish Curry, and Sambal Shrimp; Bean Curd and Vegetable mix; long bean stew; canned pineapple and canned papaya
; 2 packages of quick-cooking porridge (black bean porridge
and flour porridge); military biscuits; jam; instant coffee; tea; instant milk powder; sugar; salt; vitamin tablets; matches; and napkins.
People's Republic of China
The Chinese People’s Liberation Army has recently introduced a new ration consisting of pre-packaged 1-man meals. Each meal contains dehydrated or pre-cooked rice, with freeze-dried meat and vegetable supplements. Other items include self-heating fried rice and noodles and a compressed cereal bar.
The Singapore Armed Forces issues three types of combat rations - Type M (Muslim), Type N (Non-Muslim), and Type V (Vegetarian). Each type comes in 4 or 5 different menus, packed in a heavy-duty brown plastic bag similar to a US MRE bag, but measuring 205 mm x 190mm x 115 mm (8" x 7.5" x 4.5") and weighing 1.5 kg (3.3 lbs). Most items are retort-pouched and (except for the hot beverages) can be eaten without further preparation. The ration provides three meals and a variety of between-meal snacks, averaging 3350 calories per day. Each ration bag includes 2 retort-pouched main courses, a dessert, and an accessory pack containing 2 fruit bars, 4 packages of cookies, an envelope of isotonic drink mix powder, an envelope of instant flavored tea mix, a hot beverage (coffee, cocoa, or tea), an envelope of cereal mix, candy, matches, fuel tablets, and tissue paper. A package of instant noodles is provided with every meal pack, but is issued separately. Typical Type M (Menu #1): Rendang Mutton with rice; Tandoori Chicken with rice; Red Bean dessert. Typical Type N (Menu #5): Pasta Bolognese; Yellow Rice with Chicken; Barley Dessert with milk. Typical Type V (Menu #1): Mock Chicken Curry with rice; Vegetarian Fried Noodle; Green Bean dessert with coconut milk.
The primary operational ration used in Sri Lanka is the "jungle ration
," a 24-hour ration pack whose components are produced and assembled in Sri Lanka. It is issued to soldiers at the rate of one per soldier per day, and contains both food and sundry items designed to sustain troops where food storage and preparation facilities are not practical. All meals are precooked, requiring neither cooking nor preparation, and all items are packaged inside sealed plastic packages or lightweight aluminium cans. Precooked rice is included as part of every meal. Typical contents are: chicken curry with potatoes, vegetable curry, precooked rice, hard crackers
, processed cheese, soup cubes, instant milk powder, orange drink powder, and dates or dried pineapple. A sundry pack containing tea bags, sugar, salt, glucose tablets, seasonings, matches, plastic bags, and toilet paper is included with every ration pack.
The modern Korean army issues 2 types of field rations, Type I and Type II. Type I ration has ready-to-eat foods packed in foil-plastic trilaminate pouches, placed in turn inside a thin cardboard box. Typical contents include: 1 pouch (250 g) precooked white rice with meat and vegetables, plus a separate seasoning packet; 1 pouch (250 g) precooked rice with red beans; 1 packet (100 g) of 6 pork sausages in BBQ; 1 packet (100 g) kimchi; and 1 packet (50 g) cooked black beans. The Type II ration is a smaller, lighter, freeze-dried single-meal ration consisting of several small pouches packed inside a larger gray plastic pouch measuring 225 x 200 x 90 mm and weighing 278 g. Typical contents include: freeze dried rice (various flavors, usually with meat and vegetables included), a pouch of instant soup, flavored sesame oil, seasoning and spice packets, dried chives and chocolate.
- Smith, H.G. "Army operational rations". Proceedings of the Nutrition Society Volume 13 (Number 1): pp. 45–48(4). Retrieved on 2007-06-06.