After five years of research and development, the U.S. Army has finally achieved the Holy Grail of meal pouches and created a ready-to-eat pizza that can last three years without going bad.
According to Tech Insider, the US Army's Natick Soldier Research, Development, and Engineering Center has been working for years to create pizza version of the military’s meals-ready-to-eat (MRE) rations, but it was difficult to develop a piece of pizza that could sit on a shelf for three years in 80-degree temperatures and still be edible when opened. Pizza was a specific goal, though, because it appeals to many soldiers and could hopefully lift morale in a combat zone.
"We've actually had feedback from the warfighter for years," said food technologist Lauren Oleksysk. "Pizza just seems appealing to all."
Oleksysk says the pizza is “a fully assembled and baked piece of pizza in one package.” It can be eaten cold or heated up with a water-activated heater that comes with the MRE. The pizza might not taste quite as good as a fresh slice, but it’s a passable approximation of day-old pizza, or the pizza one might get from a school cafeteria. It has reportedly “received high marks” from soldiers.
The pizza MREs are expected to be on the menu for soldiers sometime in 2017.