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Thread: MRE Storage, Etc

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    Buckshot's Avatar
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    MRE Storage, Etc

    Spring is here and we are way overdue for some violent thunderstorms, flooding and tornadoes in our area.

    Thinking about what I have put away for emergencies. Done fairly well on food stuff, fuel for generator/vehicles, medical kits, and other stuff
    one would need. It was/is a good time to store some treated fuel as it is cheap.

    Bought a good generator last fall and wired a cut-off box to feed directly from the generator to the house, so that is done. As I mentioned made sure
    I have plenty of fuel on hand as a generator can use it up in a hurry.

    I bought and stored 15 or so cases of MREs some time back. Some are around 10-11 years old now. They were not cheap and I hate to part with them,
    but can't keep them forever. I know MRE are good beyond their expiration date, maybe some loss of flavor, but how long is too long? They are
    stored in my underground storm shelter, which stays fairly moderate temp wise both in winter and summer. BTW I have stored a number of other food
    items so it is not like I am dependent on just the MREs in an emergency.

    Anyone else currently doing anything on preparing for emergencies? Always nice to get some new ideas.
    Occam's razor, the simplest explanation will be the most plausible

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    Not currently storing anything but it reminds me of an MRE I had in the field in 1999. It had a pack of M&Ms in it that had advertisement for the 1988 Olympics! Lol!
    14EH AIT Instructor-PATRIOT Fire Control Enhanced Operator/Maintainer

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    Quote Originally Posted by scottz63 View Post
    Not currently storing anything but it reminds me of an MRE I had in the field in 1999. It had a pack of M&Ms in it that had advertisement for the 1988 Olympics! Lol!
    I have had some older MREs out on hunting trips where the candy would be a little hard from age, but still tasted good. My hunting friends loved going through the MREs looking for
    things they liked. I am not that worried about taste as long as they are still edible and have food value I might as well keep them, but again how long is too long?
    Last edited by Buckshot; 05-06-2016 at 10:25 AM.
    Occam's razor, the simplest explanation will be the most plausible

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    I would just divide my supply up into say 10ths, and each year consume one of those 10ths and replace it. That way you will replace your entire stock over a period of several years and you will know that everything in your supply is not over 10 years old.
    If you want to make the replacement cycle shorter or longer you just divide up the supply by the number of years you want to keep it.
    This way you keep your supply freshly rotated and only have to face the cost of replacing a smaller portion of your stock each year and you get some use out of it before having to discard it.
    Some people are like a slinky...

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    Quote Originally Posted by rustypirate View Post
    I would just divide my supply up into say 10ths, and each year consume one of those 10ths and replace it. That way you will replace your entire stock over a period of several years and you will know that everything in your supply is not over 10 years old.
    If you want to make the replacement cycle shorter or longer you just divide up the supply by the number of years you want to keep it.
    This way you keep your supply freshly rotated and only have to face the cost of replacing a smaller portion of your stock each year and you get some use out of it before having to discard it.
    Yep, that would be a good rotational system. I think with mine I would have to go on a 5 year cycle, although I have some stuff that would be good much longer. I got the MREs around the same
    date so they would almost all have to be rotated out at the same time. I don't think I will be able to replace them, plus they were not cheap, so hate to let them go.
    Occam's razor, the simplest explanation will be the most plausible

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    Senior Veteran Silvera's Avatar
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    Good question Buckshot.....

    i'd like to know too as I have stored about 6 cases I think the last date code was for 2009 to 2010


    I also use storage containers that are free!! go to your favorite diner and ask for pickle buckets..they are food safe...you can wash the smell out with some bleach (rinse very well) and they are air tight....reduce the trapped air with heat packs/hand warmers they are great for bags of rice, beans and such
    "Listen With Your Eyes"
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    Buck I have a great deal of experience in this area. Properly stored MREs can last past twenty years with ease.
    Keep them in a cool dry place or freeze them. I have eaten frozen MREs that were kept in the freezer since Bill Clinton #1 term

    I use MREs on canoe trips and hiking almost every weekend. We test very old rations I have Reagan rations mid 1980's Panama & Desert Storm Bush Rations to the Bill Clinton Desert Fox Rations of mid 1990's Tony Blairs British Rations from early 2000's
    George Bush Iraq war rations early 2000's
    Red Chinese PLA rations
    A few modern rations except Putin's Syrian Adviser Rations from right now and they good!
    (Just sending Advisers over there Buck, it's not a real war)
    MRE Russian.JPG
    MRE Russian corned beef.JPG

    I have eaten MRE Menus VI (1986) Frankfurter & Beans in 2015 and it was not spoiled
    Only items uneatable were the made in Pennsylvania chocolate bar, coca, coffee creamer grape jelly .

    Beef Frankfurter TS 4 oz
    Green Giant Le Sueur MN 56058
    Code 0809A07 Pink code on foil 08 08 6EST
    Package looked total intact No off smell or color. Took at bite and it tasted just like current production American canned Vienna Sausage. Very salty and greasy. Texture was about the same as Vienna Sausage. Not a real hot dog taste. My son tried a bite and said taste like potted meat formed in a cylinder shape.
    I would say that is why the meal was unpopular. American troops know what both Vienna Sausage and real Hot Dogs taste like
    Have to give credit to the packers for doing a great job sealing up the package. Not rancid

    Beans with Tomato Sauce TS 5 oz
    Shelf Stable foods inc Evansville Indiana 47715
    Code 62833E1
    Package intact and smelled just like current pork and beans. The flavor was that of heavy sweet tomato sauce, slightly BBQ
    The texture of the sauce was paste like and beans mushy. Took two bites and thought they tasted about the same in 1986.
    On a US Pork and Bean taste Rating I would give them a 5 on 1 to 10. Not a good base flavor
    (if they were fresh)
    Still they held up all these years and they were still edible
    from 1986 eaten on March 29 2015
    MRE 1986.JPG

    I ate a 1988 MRE of Corned Beef Hash in September of 2014

    MRE CORNED BEEF MEAL LAID OUT 1988.JPG
    The corned beef smelled 100% fresh. Just like Hormel or Libby's canned corned beef.
    MRE Corned beef 1986.JPG
    Took a small bite and found the taste was totally normal. I compared it to a fresh can of Hormel taste was the same. Very salty, and the potatoes were still firm. Opened the oatmeal block and it seemed like a lifeboat ration. Solid dense and with no smell at all. Took a bite and found it still tasted good. I do not remember this oatmeal bar, but I doubt it was popular. It was very hard to eat.
    Like a block of granite, but the taste was good, sort of maple flavored.
    MRE OATMEAL BLOCK 1988.JPG
    The freeze dried fruit was still tightly sealed. The Strawberry's had not crumbled and were still in a perfect block. The smell was very strong. Just like freeze dried strawberry bits in American Cereal boxes or a fresh jar of Jam. Took a bite and they were still delicious. They were VERY popular in the 1980's.
    MRE FRUIT BAR 1988.JPG
    We would eat them dry. The crackers were still crisp and snapped when broken in two. Salty and no funny after taste.
    The grape Jelly looked suspect, so I only tried a tiny taste. It reminded me of 'old Honey' very gritty and sugary.
    Made coffee with German Esbit Red box and G.I. canteen stove cube. Added coca, creamer and sugar, tasted fresh.
    Grape beverage base was still good.

    The wet napkin was still wet. I decided to heat up the hash browns, with the Esbit and see how they tasted. I ended up eating the entire meal, including the hard as a rock gum. :lol:
    I did not get indigestion , but it was filling as I ate everything except the Jelly
    Last edited by Norton; 05-07-2016 at 09:01 AM.
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    Frankfurter & Beans! Man that was my favorite! Mmmmm........
    14EH AIT Instructor-PATRIOT Fire Control Enhanced Operator/Maintainer

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    Wow, nice report Norton!! Based on what you said and them being stored in decent temp I will just keep them. I am not worried about the candy, etc,
    getting hard and a hungry person isn't picky anyway. Man, I wish I had some old c-rats (LOL).

    A bunch of MREs showed up after Katrina in 2005. The local authorities,( even here we hosted refugees), were given far more MREs than they could use.
    Finally sold them off to make space. When the refugees found out it was a dry county, no booze to spend their govt vouchers on, they didn't hang around
    long (LOL). No doubt they are handed out for regional emergency supplies too.

    I remember being stranded in the 1993 storm of the century and being directed to a school in Tennessee and they had a ton of emergency supplies from food to blankets
    stored in the area. I suspect as they rotate things out many give away or sell the expired stock. I know on the MRE expiration date they actually indicate it is good beyond
    that date if properly stored. I do believe it is more on certain items getting hard or loosing taste than going bad.
    Occam's razor, the simplest explanation will be the most plausible

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