FAQs, Frequently Asked Questions
What are MREs?
In 1980 the U.S. Military followed the lead of the U.S. Space Program in recognizing the workability of a brand new food technology. They used it to totally overhaul their food ration program.
They started putting servings of meat, vegetables and fruit into RETORT POUCH instead of the familiar tins cans that had been used for more than 50 years.
The big difference was the TASTE. But look at what else these new MRE pouches offered then, and offer now:
- Shelf Life of 3-10 years (See storage life chart).
- Not Freeze Dried or otherwise Dehydrated! Full moisture, gravy and sauce are retained in natural form.
- Ready to Eat. Hot in 5 minutes with boiling water (contaminated and/or dirty water can work for boiling if used carefully) or 10 minutes with one of our Flameless Heater Pouches.
- The food can be eaten cold in an emergency (contents were fully cooked in the sealed pouch!).
- Specially formulated for maximum nutrition (an average of 55% meat compared with 35% normally, for the meat main dishes, for example).
You can purchase from us the MRE Full Meal, or the individual pieces that make up the meals!
Try some of these MRE pouches to see if they aren't the best tasting, most convenient, long-lasting outdoor and emergency foods available!
Read more About MREs.
How long do MRE products last - what is their Shelf Life?We guarantee our MRE products to last 5 years from the date of purchase if the products are stored in a room temperature environment (70 deg. F), regardless of the production date.
Of course, the production date is visible on all our entrees and on most side dishes, desserts, and other components.
The production date is a four digit number (date code) on each item, example "5156." In this example the 5 represents the year 2005 (a "4" would represent 2004, etc.), the 156 represents the 156th day of the year. See the top of the individual box or look on pouch for the Date Code.
At this time nearly all of our MRE products were manufactured between 2011 and 2012 and have always been kept in a climate-controlled warehouse to ensure freshness.
The official MRE Shelf Life Chart, created by the Army's Natick Research Lab, gives the whole picture and explains why we are prepared to guarantee our products for 5 years from date of sale. It is clear that the wholesomeness of the products extends well beyond 5 years. To see this chart and a more complete discussion of MRE Shelf Life, click here.
How do you Heat an MRE?
One of the great advantages of the MRE is that it CAN be eaten cold, straight out of the package, with no prepartion whatsoever. In fact, U.
S. soldiers and thousands of Emergency Relief workers around the
world have eaten cold MREs in tough situations, and received the nutrition they needed. MREs have served their purpose well with no reheating
in personal, family, and city or state emergencies
(earthquakes, toxic spills, hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards, floods,etc.).
1) Boiling for 3-5 mins.: take the pouch from outer carton and place it in clean boiling water heated from available sources: fire, heating tabs, or stoves.
2) Placing next to a non-liquid heat source: radiator, engine block, or even the human body. Be careful of burning or melting the pouch if kept on the heat source for too long or if the heat source is too hot.
3) Placing in a chemical, non-flame heater: Click here to see our MRE Heater Pouch instructions.
Do your MRE Full Meals come with Heater Pouches?
(We are referring to the standard US Military non-flame, chemical heater pouches which use a simple reaction between water and iron oxide to produce enough heat to heat an MRE food pouch very nicely without any flame or fire of any kind.)
Yes, ALL of our MRE Full Meals come with Heater Pouches. This includes the Eversafe brand, the A-Pack brand, and our premier Long Life Food Depot brand MRE Full Meals.
If you want Heater Pouches separately, we sell them by the bundle of 12.
Click here to see our MRE Heater Pouch instructions.
What do you recommend for Food Storage Programs?
also sell all the meal components separately, so you can study your
needs and order the meal components you prefer.
sell our pouched food by the pouch, case, pallet, or truckload.
Our 72 hour Emergency Kits, one for an individual and one for a family of 4, are the simplest way to make food preparations for a short term emergency. They provide the calories and other nutrients for 3 days of being cut off from normal supply channels. They provide the bare essentials of plastic sporks and accessories such as salt, coffee, sugar, creamer, wet nap, matches and chewing gum. This solution will get you the most for your money..
If you are familiar with our MRE and MRE-Style (civilian versions using the same high-tech pouches) products, you will be comfortable ordering only the exact meal components you are familiar with. We sell our pouches by the pouch and by the case, so you'll receive exactly what you want. With this solution, you will need to provide all the table setting and condiment items.
this solution, just order entrees, side dishes, desserts etc. separately
and dispense with the extra packaging of the MRE Full Meals. In
this case, using the nutritional charts we provide for all the products
we sell, you can calculate how many pouches of which items you want
Many people like the versatility and self-contained sufficiency of the MRE Full Meals. After all, this is the feeding solution used successfully by the US Armed Forces. It certainly does the job. However, if you have table settings and condiment supplies, the MRE Full Meals may be a less cost efficient solution because they involve lots of labor and extra packaging which adds to the cost.
If this solution is for you, we recommend 2 MRE Full Meals per person per day for adults and 1 MRE Full Meal per day for children under age 12. This will provide approximately 2500 daily calories for an adult and approximately 1250 daily calories for a child.
Calculate the number of Full Meals required and divide by 12 to arrive at the number of MRE Full Meal cases you will require.
Do you ship outside the US?
In the past we have experienced great difficulties in shipping small orders to countries outside the U.S. More often than not the packages have been returned to us by foreign Customs services according to various local protective regulations.
large container sized orders, we accept responsibility for delivering
the products to a US port or airport, but leave the export/import
responsibility to the customer.
have many happy customers from Canada and elsewhere who handle the
export problem in this way.
How to Read and Understand Production Dates
The first digit of the 4 digits represents the year, the last 3 digits represent the day of the year.
Example #2: "1221." In this example, the "1" represents the year 2011, the 221 represents the 221st day of the year (about August 8).
First digit definitions:
0 = 2010