Everyone has heard about MREs (Meals Ready to Eat) as storage food used by the U.S. military. I recently came across an alternative, called LRPs (pronouced “lurps”) that are supposed to be even more portable than MREs.
What are LRPs? Basically, it’s a freeze dried food packet used by the military. LRP stands for “Long Range Patrol.” They are “extended life” rations intended for military personnel who are usually sent into out in the field. Since they may be carried for long distances, they are lighter than MREs: LRPs weigh about 1 pound per ration, while MREs could weigh up to 2 lbs. MREs come with a heater, while LRPs do not. To prepare the food packet, pour the specified amount of hot water and allow to sit and rehydrate. Because of the lighter weight, LRPs are less calorie dense than MREs, running around 1250 calories, while LRPs have around 500 calories.
Availability and Cost
LRPs are not that commonly available; so far I have only seen them carried by Freeze Dry Guy (no relationship with them, just found they are the only store who carries LRPs) while MREs are carried by many sources. A box of 20 LRPs costs $132 ($6.60 each), and I have seen MREs for around $90 for a box of 12 (or $7.50 each).
Just to compare, I looked up Mountain House Lasagna with Meat Sauce, 16 oz. costs around $8.95 for a couple of servings.
As a side note, you may also find them described as CW packets: “CW” stands for Cold Weather rations, which are also light weight but designed for troops out in cold temperatures.
I might consider purchasing a sample of LRP; once I sample one, I will let you know how it turns out.