Meals ready to eat are getting to be a very popular option for people wanting to stock up their emergency disaster kits. And why not? If it is good enough for the U.S. military to feed the soldiers in the field, it should be good enough for civilians as well. However, the problem is that military MREs aren’t available for commercial resale to the public. However, that hasn’t stopped cases of military MREs from appearing for sale online or in army surplus stores. Obviously, if there is a demand for the stuff, people will supply it.
Seeing as how there is a demand for MREs for the general public, manufacturers are also producing a civilian version of these convenient meals. The question is, how do civilian MREs compare with military MREs? The answer is, there is not much of a difference. After all, it’s the same companies who supply the U.S. military with their MREs. They are just expanding their market to civilians.
While military MREs go through more stringent testing with their packaging requirements, you also have to realize that they are made to withstand parachute drops and extreme ranges of temperature. You have to ask yourself, do you really need to drop your food from at an altitude of thousands of feet? Or go through minus temperatures or extreme heat? If the answer is no, then you don’t need military MREs.
You might also be wondering about the caloric differences between the civilian version and the military version. While it is true that military meals average about 1200 calories each, the civilian versions are not far off at 1000 calories. This is for one individual package. If you have one for each of your three meals, you’ll be consuming 3000 calories for the day which is more than enough for even an active male individual.
Civilian MREs are a good choice for the public as there really is no need to go all out with a military version. In fact, when you buy civilian MREs, you will probably be getting a better quality product because you don’t know where the military MRE came from or how it was stored since it wasn’t purchased from a direct source.
Those are the pros and cons for military and civilian MREs. Whichever MRE version you choose, it is always a good idea to keep a case in the house for emergency situations.