If you’re looking for the ideal foods to add to your emergency food supply, you may wish to consider meals ready to eat or MREs as they’re commonly called. These clever meals were originally created by the United States military in an effort to provide a healthy meal to troops who were out in the field, in combat, or in training.
These original meals ready to eat weren’t for sale to the civilians. They were only for military personnel and not allowed to be sold as they were considered to be government property. The meals ready to eat are designed to meet all of the required calories of the troops who are out in the field, in combat or in training.
Why Buy Meals Ready To Eat?
In the year 2000, while many were worried about the Y2K issues, many preplanned emergency food supplies and began to stockpile food. Other reasons that people would stockpile food were in case of a survival situation, blizzards, hurricanes, floods, and other emergency situations that may require evacuation.
Still others, such as hunters, hikers, and campers discovered that having meals ready to eat at the ready, would also stockpile up on the foods as an easy to take along meal for their adventures.
As more people began to seek out meals ready to eat, the manufacturers discovered this and began to produce civilian rations that would help to fill the void in the marketplace. Today, there are many great manufacturers that sell meals ready to eat to civilians.
Are They Healthy?
For those who plan to use meals ready to eat, they can rest assured that these meals provide plenty of quality food and nutrition for their family’s. Packed in easy to store packaging, they are lightweight for storage and can be left in their original packaging which makes them easy to store in a food pantry, camping gear, backpacks, and anywhere else they desire to store them.
The meals offer all of the nutrition for a healthy person and come in different caloric values from 100 for snacks up to 3000 for a full days supply of calories. They include vegetables, fruits, dairy, protein sources and they’re ideal for anyone who wishes to have something healthy to eat in any situation.
Many of the meals contain a flameless ration heater or FRH and all that is required is to add the required amount of water to the meal and then wait about 10 to 15 minutes before consuming them. The water will activate with the flameless ration heater and the meal will be hot and ready.
How Long Do They Last?
Since the meals have a long shelf life of approximately five years, they are ideal for storing for an emergency situation. They’re a great way to stockpile some healthy nutritional food. Store them in a dry pantry in their original packaging or put the original packaging into another plastic container with a lid for best results.
Many of the selections even offer seasonings, desserts and beverages. You can pick and choose what you want in your meals. Some also come with utensils, flameless ration heaters and other things that make them stand out from the crowd.
Many of the manufacturers offer a special each month on particular flavors of entree’s so be sure to sign up for newsletters so that you’ll know what is going to be on sale any given month. Read the website to see if they give cues on what might be on sale the following month.
Can I Really Save Money On MREs?
You’ll save a small fortune when you take advantage of such deals. Each month the manufacturers offer a variety of products on sale and you can stock up and save by taking advantage of such deals. Pick and choose what will work best for your family and their needs.
The manufacturers also offer specials on emergency kits that will feed a person or an entire family for anywhere from three days to a year. Buy as many of these as you need to feed yourself and your family. You can get some great deals when you purchase your meals ready to eat in bulk like this.
If you’re not sure if you’ll like a particular meal, you can always try a sample product and see how you like it. This is also a great way to stock up and save on your meals ready to eat. You don’t have to wait for sales prices when you are trying samples. It’s wise to buy a few different samples and find out what your family likes before you commit to a large order and find out no one in your family likes it.
Will I Need Other Foods?
Meals ready to eat offer all of the required nutrition for anyone to survive in an emergency situation. They come in a variety of flavors and from snacks to entrees you’re sure to find something that you love. You can select from a large variety of entrees and snacks when you buy meals ready to eat.
Many people stockpile not only canned foods but also meals ready to eat in preparation for any emergency that may arise. Meals ready to eat are easier to prepare than canned foods, you don’t require any cookware or other items to prepare them and eat. Even if you don’t believe in a doomsday scenario, you may wish to consider stocking up a bit in case there is a blizzard or other cataclysmic event that may cause you to be housebound for a period of time.
It can be a huge benefit to have all of the food at the ready when you’re stressed about staying warm and other situations in an emergency. That is one less thing that you and your family will have to worry about. You can never be too prepared for an emergency and by being prepared, you won’t stress over what to eat if the power is out or something else happens.
Where Can I Find MREs?
You can find MREs in a variety of locations. You’ll want to explore your options and you may find that you pick and choose your meals ready to eat from a variety of locations. Many people simply watch for deals on meals ready to eat and buy them from several different locations to stockpile their food supply.
You’ll be able to get the hang of it more after you start watching for them. Once you catch on to sales and deals you’ll spot them far more readily when they come up.
Here are some of the more common locations that you can find meals ready to eat.
Here you’ll find meals ready to eat over by the camping gear. They don’t always have a huge selection at these locations, but they usually have a few and you’ll find that they often have samples as well.
Be sure that you inquire as to specials and deals. Sometimes you can buy some camping gear and they’ll add in some meals ready to eat as a special bonus. It never hurts to ask.
Military Surplus Stores
Here you can find some meals ready to eat but keep in mind that these may be older than 5 years. There should be a manufacturers date on the end crimp of the boxes or packaging. You may have to look up on your smartphone how to read this date of the manufacturer so that you’ll be able to read it accurately.
Just because something was manufactured in the last five years doesn’t necessarily make it bad. Just remember that it will lose quality and flavor as it ages. Many of these are still around 25 years later and you’ll find that they are still delicious. It’s all up to you.
You can always go online and go directly to the manufacturer websites. If you do this, be sure that you sign up for their newsletters and read your newsletter each month.
This is where you’ll find deals and steals. Many offers buy one get one deals, and they also have specials each month. These specials offer steep discounts on the products so be sure to see what is on sale each month and stock up.
Manufacturers sites also offer you samples so be sure that you try these to see how you like them. Some are obviously going to be more liked than others so make sure that you try a few before you commit yourself to entire cases of products that you may not like.
Big Box Stores
Many big box stores have meals ready to eat as well. Here you can find them in the camping gear section and sometimes where bulk foods are sold.
Watch for deals on camping gear and see if they’re on sale then. You may also find that if you buy specific camping gear they may throw some in as a bonus. You can also use your store gift cards to buy these.
Amazon also offers these as well. Keep in mind that Amazon isn’t the manufacturer so you’ll want to do some comparison shopping here.
You may find some deals here if you watch for them and keep in mind that gift cards for Amazon will also work for these as well as long as you’re buying directly from the site.
Thrift Stores/2nd Hand Stores…
Any store that sells used goods might have some meals ready to eat. Check for them in the kitchen section, camping section and ask. Many of these types of stores have a list of people that want to be called should such items come in, get on that list.
You may find that the more you get to know a specific store, the more likely they are to set things aside for you too. Again, be sure to check the manufacturer date on the side crimp so that you’re not getting outdated products.
Yard Sales/Estate Sales
If a loved one has passed on many families will have a yard sale or an estate sale. If the person that passed on stockpiled food, the family will sometimes just sell it at the yard sale or estate sale.
Remember to find out the manufactuer date before you buy. There are no returns for such sales so be sure that you know what you’re getting. You should be able to save a lot if you’re buying this route.
Sporting Goods Stores
Just as many camping stores offer meals ready to eat, so do many sporting goods stores. You can often find these in the camping section, backpacking section, and hiking section.
You’ll still find deals here if you ask. You may inquire as to how many they’d be willing to throw in if you buy a specific backpack, camp stove or something else in the store.
eBay offers another alternative to buying meals ready to eat. Here you can find a variety of manufacturers and some military rations as well. Be sure to read the fine print. Many will tell you the details including the manufacturer date.
Keep in mind that many will last well past the manufacturer date as long as they were stored properly. Unopened packages will store for long periods of time. Don’t buy any products that have already been opened. It’s fine if a case was opened, but not the packaging itself.
Again, be sure to read the fine print. Here you’ll learn all the details that you need to know about the products. Again, be aware of the manufacturer date and read the product labels etc. before you buy.
Use proper safety precautions when you’re meeting up with someone to pick up your order. Always meet in a public place and if something seems too good to be true, it just may be wise to pass it up and move on to another way to buy.
Manufacturer Store (Brick And Mortar)
In some larger cities, you’ll find brick and mortar stores that sell meals ready to eat. You can go into the store and ask all of the questions that you may have. Some will even hand out samples.
Again, sign up for the newsletters and any specials that they have. Ask them what is coming up on sale, what is presently on sale and find out as much as you can. Remember, the only stupid question is the one that you don’t ask. Most manufacturers are more than happy to answer your questions and help you find the right products for your needs.
Some church groups offer groups that work together for preparing for disasters. They pool their funds and buy directly from the manufacturer in bulk so that their members in their congregation will be prepared in an emergency.
You can take advantage of such groups and save a lot by purchasing products in bulk. There are huge discounts when products are purchased in bulk. Don’t hesitate to join such a group and save a lot of money. Most churches will allow you to join such a group even if you’re not a member of their congregation.
In similar fashion to those of church groups, neighborhood groups also offer steep discounts if you buy in bulk. You can save a bundle and divide the order up when you’ve received it.
Pool your funds with like-minded neighbors, friends, and family and you can save a lot of money on meals ready to eat for you and your family.
Meals ready to eat are ideal for busy parents who have sporting events and another after-school curriculum to attend. Instead of tossing a quick meal together that is messy or difficult to tote to an event, grab everyone’s favorite meal and make it fun.
Kids will love being able to choose their own dinner and you’ll have a quick and healthy meal that is easy to prepare in just a few minutes for each family member regardless of how much time you have.
After work meetings? No problem, you can still have a healthy meal on the table in short order. These are far more nutritious than fast food restaurants, far more economical and much more delicious. You’ll have a hot and ready meal on the table for your family in no time.
There are many added benefits to meals ready to eat in your food pantry. By purchasing several of the entree’s you can feed even the pickiest of eaters as you’ll be able to serve different entree’s to each family member if you need to.
These are so lightweight and portable that even the tiniest members of the family can carry a few in their own backpacks. This also makes them feel like they’re important if they’re carrying their own meals when hiking, camping, or backpacking.
All of the nutrition a healthy person needs is in the meal so you won’t have to stress over healthy meals and everyone eating properly to stay healthy and well.
Even if you only buy a few cases of meals ready to eat per year, you can add to your stockpile of food quickly and safely without sacrificing money or quality.
It’s amazing the different flavors of entrees that are available today and they are always coming up with new and improved flavors. Your family will enjoy helping you to stock the pantry when you choose to buy these for your stockpile.
You don’t have to be any special religion or group to order or buy these. You’ll be able to rest assured that your family will have a quality hot meal in just a few minutes regardless of the weather, electricity or any other situation.
Perfect to carry in the car for long trips or in case you break down. No need to stress over huge heavy food containers when packing for a trip or camping. These are lightweight, portable and you can stash them underneath of seats, in the trunk, in pockets and cubbyholes in the car.
Regardless of the reason you’re buying these meals, you’ll have a lot of healthy options for meals and you won’t have to go hungry, nor will your family. So go ahead and buy a few of these and keep them on hand in your vehicle, desk drawer, emergency food storage, bug out bags, camping gear, RVs, vacation cabins and anywhere else you can think of.
Your family will thank you and count you wise for having thought of them and prepared ahead. No need to stress over a meal ever again. You’ll sleep better at night knowing that your family will be cared for regardless of the situation.
You can find meals ready to eat for sale in the above-mentioned locations and more. Explore your options and learn all that you can about them and you’ll be well prepared for any situation.
The United States government started an awesome trend when they created these for our military troops. They designed and created these to keep the troops healthy and give them a hot and healthy meal when they were working.
It caught on and today, not only the military uses meals ready to eat, civilians around the world use them too. It’s amazing how something so simple could catch on and become such a huge deal.
Thankfully the manufacturers saw a need and even though they can’t legally sell the military rations (government property) to the public, they found the niche in the market and made it available to the general public. This has worked well for everyone who is trying to be prepeared for any emergency situation.
Meals ready to eat are here to stay and offer up plenty of nutriton for anyone who needs a hot and healthy meal. If you’ve never tried them, buy a few samples and give them a try. You’ll be amazed at how far they’ve come and how delicious they really can be. Meals ready to eat are perfect for everyone to have on hand.