Rat Packs - BBE Date?

Discussion in 'Weapons, Equipment & Rations' started by Squiddly, Nov 12, 2009.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. This seemed the best place to put it:

    I have a mahoooosive box containing a huge amount of leftovers from Ratpacks/24ORP/whatever, from my time as a STAB.

    For some reason, as a young lad operating on the basis that getting something for nothing was always good, (and the other lads operating on the basis that I was a walking xylophone on account of my very visible ribs, and therefore should be fattened up a little) I invariably came back after training weekends and whatnot with everyone else's unwanted food, be it burger'n'beans, butterscotch dumplings, chicken pate and whatnot...

    When I was 18 (Before I started to grow up ;) ) I figured it'd be a good idea to keep it all around in a big box, in case of drought/flood/alien invasion/nuclear fallout etc, and that same box is sitting right next to me now.

    Now the majority of this stuff will have been issued around 2002/2003. And I was wondering, affectionately remembering being cold, and wet, cheering up with burger + beans, a nice fag, and a brew - how long does this stuff keep?

    If I got drunk and fancied a bnit of remeniscing, for example, could I prepare myself a meal complete with tea/mushroom soup and whatnot without poisoning myself?

    I think I've even got a couple of hexi cookers in there (not sure about the blocks though, I think they took them back)...

    :? :D
  2. Best Before Date? That would imply they were edible......
  4. They seemed edible at the time :twisted: .
    Less so, as time went on and the number of meals consumed increased 8O .
  5. There isn't a Best Before date on the stuff - there's a manufacture date and code on the outer boxes (which you helpfully haven't kept!) The stuff gets tested for survivability periodically and anything which is on the way off is prioritised for use by large batches ...

    More seriously, there is actually good economics on why long-life food is pretty grot - if it is any good it just flies out the back of the warehouses (apart from the simple difficulty of making it taste nice and keep).
  6. If I'd have kept all the boxes (or rather, if the lads offloading the food to me had kept all their boxes, there wouldn't have been room for the food :p .
  7. If the package is torn or a can is swollen its a fair bet it's gone off. If not then crack on.

    I *believe* they have a target of getting them eaten with 4 years of production or so, but to be honest I'd be surprised if it wouldn't last forever.

    Check out http://www.mreinfo.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=3162 for an example of old skool rats being edible!
  8. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    We have had instances of wartime stashes of sam turning up on digs, perfectly edible as the cans hadnt been rusted through, pre WW1 beer in bottles, a little vinigary but the lads still drank it (1975) and I still accept compo donations for the boys camping trips to the woods. Provided the final packaging is intact it will be fine to eat for a very long time!
  9. Test out anything dodgy on local chavs and publish the results on here :wink:
  10. A tin of stew made in the 1840's for the Royal Navy was opened in the 1920's and the contents were edible. I've had current issue rations over 6 yrs old (from my garage shelf) and eaten when I'm out shooting - absolutely fine.
  11. Due to a fcuk-up by EDF, I have had no electricity for two days (an engineer walked of with a solid link, and then lost it TWAT!) so I dug out an old ORP, about 6 years old and fired up the jetboil. The chocolate had gone white, but tasted okay, the bag meals were good and so were the biscuits if a little soft.

    However, I have just had a dump and I think I'll have to redecorate the bathroom if I ever want to get rid of the 'arome de Menu B' :puker:

    I've eaten tinned stuff from the 80s in the 90s and had no problems either. Flavour doesn't last forever, but the food stays safe and edible for a long time.
  12. I have MREs and the old 10-man tins of babies heads etc, and they must be the best part of 10 - 15 years old. Still taste OK on the odd occasion I get the munchies after a session. Agree with previous note about the after-effects. Stella and babies heads just does not bear thinking about, the following day.
  13. I reckon they must last forever!

    I used to have a stack of them in my Grans garage when I was based at Ripon, they came in really handy for all kinds. Still have a few pasta & meatballs and corned beef hash's. In fact I'm going to go around there and dig them out and try one, they've been in there since 2005.

    After exercises we used to go round the 43's and gather up all the left over rats and keep them in a box in the troop lines.

    I caught myself more than once raking through it after a few jars down the town, gopping cnut that I am. Also we'd catch the odd howling pad trying to put a few meals together for his sprogs!
  14. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    There was a Gwar full screw in my Pln who fed his sprog on bacon grill and bacon burgers!
  15. Cheese posessed anyone?

    I thought that got yanked but thats about it.