What are LRPs?

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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.




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  1. The only problem comparing what Freeze Dry Guy is selling compared to a MRE, is that the only thing he is selling is the Entree, not the complete ‘Long Range Patrol/Cold Weather’ Meal.

  2. Check WalMart for Mountain House. Here in Corpus Christi the Lasagna is $5.88 + tax. Other range from Spagetti with meat sause for $4.88 to Chicken Breast with Mashed Potatoes for $6.92. I keep a 30 day reserve of MH with 6 months of LDS canned dry foods for unexpected occasions. I also love MH for camping, Mmmm. Amazon is very overpriced on MH foods. Hope this helps and thanks for all the great articles. P.S. I got your Pocket Guide from Amazon. Great tips!

    1. Thanks for link JacLynn, nice job comparing those food products. In an emergency, ease of preparation is key, but nutritional value is important as well.

  3. What most of us in the combat arms of the different branches did with MREs before someone came up with this plan was we would take our MREs and break them down. We would remove the cardboard packaging, any items we didn’t want such as pepper/salt, coffee packs etc. This would cut the space to almost half that and precious ounces of an unopened package. Some people think MREs have a lot of calories but when you have all that gear on and your on the move you will go through 3 or 4 a day easily and any other snacks or food you managed to pack in there.

    1. Jarhead 03, that makes sense, carrying all that packaging can add unnecessary weight. Plus you’ll likely need all those calories just going about your day when on the move. Thanks for the insight.

  4. I posted this the other day on a differnt site about LRP’s. These are made by Oregon Freeze dried which is the same as the makers of Mountain House. I have also only been able to find these as the entree.

    I’ve tried several and they are as good as any FD food.

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