Only US Army Can Make a Sandwich Stay Tasty for 3 Years

sandwichWe've all seen the pictures: the McDonald's Happy Meal that a family kept for months on end to prove that some foods have so many preservatives they'll never decompose. It's enough to put you off food forever. And yet, the news that there's a sandwich that can survive as much as three years and still be super fresh has me yelling "let me at it" this week.

Because this is no ordinary sandwich, folks! It's the U.S. Army's answer to soldiers complaining that their veggie omelets in those MRE containers (that's Meals Ready to Eat for civvies) taste like mushy cardboard. This isn't just food, y'all!

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It's science!

Bizarre, weird, kind of creepy, and yet totally awesome SCIENCE! The Army has actually made this sandwich that has retained the moisture necessary to make a sandwich taste good and yet prevented that wetness from becoming a breeding ground for bacteria. As one of those die-hard "when it expires, it goes in the garbage" gals, I can't help harboring a certain amount of respect for what they've done.

I hate throwing out food. I compost everything from eggshells to moldy bread, so it's not a total loss in my household, but I struggle almost daily to balance the rural, country girl in me who was raised in a "waste not, want not" household and the other part of me who was raised by a nurse practitioner who believed you can prevent many of your health crises by being proactive. So I turn the stale potato chips into "bread crumbs" for my next meatloaf to save money, but I refuse to cut mold spots out of actual bread because I fear for my health. It's a precarious position.

The idea of a sandwich that you can keep for years on end satisfies both desires: thriftiness and health. I could almost kiss the fatigues of the Army creators. But first ... I'd like a taste!

Would you eat a three-year-old sandwich if you knew it was safe? Have you tried some of the MREs out there right now?

 

Image via bobjudge/Flickr

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