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 Food & Compo

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brum
FM
FM


Number of posts : 2808
Age : 77
Localisation : Sandbach Cheshire
Cap Badge : RA/QOH
Places Served : JLRRA (Hereford) Nienburg Paderborn Colchester Munster Maresfield (Cyprus) Hohne Hemer Op Banner x4 Woolwich
Registration date : 2010-03-02

PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 09:40

I must say, my recollections of compo aren't as rosy as some of the contributors on this subject.
At the beginning of the 60s a 10 man pack held held such horrors as "Mutton Jock" (Mutton, Scotch style), "Irish Stew" and "Emmenvee" (Meat & vegetables).
Tins of this stuff were often issued ("one between two") at night and eaten in total darkness. Our Signals Sgt circulated a rumour that one of his Line crew had found a complete sheep's eye in a tin of Mutton Jock, true or not, chewing that stuff in the dark took courage!
Nobody ever had the time to make Pom properly but that could be OK if margarine was mixed into it.
There used to be something that resembled four by two, soaked in lard and wrapped in plastic film. This bore the label "Bacon" - yeah, right ! There were things called "Soya links" too, a sort of artificial sausage.
Things gradually improved, the first delicacy to be taken out of circulation was "Emmenvee", probably the worst of the lot.
You young lads did well to miss that crap, believe me!

brum
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 12:15

I joined up in 1969 and compo was being updated with the new 24 Hour Ration Packs & revised 4 & 10 Man Packs (same contents just differed in quantity)

Here are menu sheets from the 70's


24 Hour GS Ration Pack (Small Tins)
Biscuits were packed in box
Heximin Cooker & Tablets were issued separately


4 & 10 Man Ration Packs (mainly standard tins)
Intended for central feeding, But Heximin Cooker was issued if required
Biscuits or Bread were issued separately, along with fresh vegitables if available.


[The 4/10 man menu sheet is about A4 in size, but this is the only scan I have]

Modern 24 Hour Operational Ration Packs are 'Biol in the bag' with added items, as described here:

http://www.qinetiq.com/home_qcdn/articles.Par.14077.File.pdf


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mjm34
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 13:16


Wow Mike. Long time since I've seen the 10 man sheet, but I think I still have one of those can openers lying around somewhere. Never got issued with a 4 man pack. We, the Tech det at Div, would be issued 1x 10 man pack to last each week of a scheme. Supposedly because we worked shifts and couldn't make it to the "normal" meals, if there was such a thing on scheme.

I joined slightly before your time although the first 3 years was as an Apprentice, so I remember the change in ration packs. As I recall, and my memory is not infallible nowadays Rolling Eyes the only real change was in the letters used. For the temperate ration packs they changed to A to G (were there really that many?) from something like V to Z. As you say much the same contents, although again I don't remember instant coffee in them. We always bought a huge jar from the NAAFI for scheme. The tea was discarded as well because it was tea-leaves, not tea-bags. Too much messing about to brew.

I also notice that the leaflet you show for the 10 man pack is rev 1981. No M&V or Irish Stew etc. Talking of which, earlier in the thread Brum was slagging these off, for good reason. We always used to try and get the Irish Stew pack, not because we were fans of Irish Stew, although it was slightly more palatable than some of the others, but because the other stuff seemed to be better. i.e. fruit gums instead of boiled sweets, fruit & nut instead of Carsons ordinary chocolate etc.

Mike
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 13:42

I know memory is an individul thing, but 10 Man Packs of the 70' & 80's (M&V went out in about 1972ish) The 1981 Menu is only a minor change from the earler 1976 issue.

They did have tea bags and I do not ever remember getting loose tea leaves, but the were BIG Tea Bags to make about a half pint to a pint at a time. Also small packs of coffee.

I have some images I will post later, as I am preparing a page for the BAOR-Locations site on the subject, which I hope will cover WWII to 'Cold War' Rations & RAOC Bread! [Probably a link to the page in preperation]

WANTED - A picture of RAOC Bread Wrapper, plus sad I know, even a wrapper if anyone has one? In fact anything original document wise.

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mjm34
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 16:24


I'm pretty sure that the tea came in the half-size tins and it was just full of tea-leaves, I never saw tea-bags during my time in BAOR. Perhaps the industrial size tea-bags were a separate issue and weren't actually included in the packs. And deffo no instant coffee. As I said we had to buy our own.

BTW, don't forget that before RAOC it was RASC who were responsible for rations.

Mike
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 16:57

Pre 1968 there may have been loose tea, but from 72ish onwards I can only remember teabags in all boxed ration packs, along with foil sachets of coffee, tube or tin of condensed milk or milk powder & suger[tin of in 5/10 packs] but never enough for a CP etc, and we used to have a tin of coffee in our Stores Section as well. Sometimes the coffee was removed by the RQMS Staff!! But not at Combat Supplies Battlion as we shifted it by the pallet load!


Examples of 'mid 1970's' Contents of 4 & 10 Man packs.
Note the Gold coloured tins with printed contents on lids [no labels to lose]

Agree that contents changed over the years, but 'Brew Kit' was added from 1970 onwards with Tea, Coffee, Milk & Suger as standard.

Yes I am aware that the RASC distributed rations prior to 1965, as well as 1st & 2nd Line Combat Supplies, Butchers, Bakers, Pet Ops & Staff Clerks all of which transfered to RAOC after the McLoad re-org.


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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 17:16

To bring subject up to date. Here is a menu list for the 1990 'Boil in the bag' Operational Ration Pack which contained 3 foil packed meals with the same sort of extras you used to get in the 'tinned' 24 hour pack.



Contents were revised again in 2005 for use in Afgainistan.

Still look for more info on older WWII Rations, and 1950 -1960s Packs.


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dandc
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 18:57

the only item i ever remember seeing a lable on was the large tins of red salmon,[mid 60s] another item wich was [in my opinion] quite nice was the chicken supreme. PS the tiffin chocolate was also very acceptable.
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john mcmillan
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   25/7/2010, 23:18

WHO COULD FORGET TUBES OF GREENGAUGE JAM, LOOKED LIKE YOUR TOOTHPASTE HAD GONE OFF!
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Teabag
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 10:04

Religious variants? What happened to take it or leave it? Meat free? Never knew a vegetarian squaddie myself. What happened to the army?
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jim
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 10:15

I loved the RAOC Bread, fresh from the ovens, lovely. I quite like all the compo really, and I remember some of the earlier stuff that Dad used to bring home after being on ex.
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 10:25

Knew you would like that one TeaBag!

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brum
FM
FM


Number of posts : 2808
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Localisation : Sandbach Cheshire
Cap Badge : RA/QOH
Places Served : JLRRA (Hereford) Nienburg Paderborn Colchester Munster Maresfield (Cyprus) Hohne Hemer Op Banner x4 Woolwich
Registration date : 2010-03-02

PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 12:13

The sight of those compo tins takes me back.
I can smell the pine needles and diesel again !
(Oh the joy of "filling up" with Jerricans under a cam net !)
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oldtimer
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 12:31


have been reading with interest and amusment the lists and menus of compo like you brum it takes you back, as a driver a lot of the times we would cook our grub on the move heating up the tins on the engine block.

my favourite was apricot pudding a suet type based pudding no sign of it on any of the menus,if left to long to heat up on the engine you would need a hammer and chisel to eat it.

never been a tea drinker only coffee so on excercise would always have stashed a couple of bottles of camp coffee in my truck but that was in the sixties in the seventies coffee was available.

because we carried the compo out to the excercises we would make sure we got out the choclate and other goodies sorry boys always had a sweet tooth.


paul.
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brum
FM
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Number of posts : 2808
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Localisation : Sandbach Cheshire
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Places Served : JLRRA (Hereford) Nienburg Paderborn Colchester Munster Maresfield (Cyprus) Hohne Hemer Op Banner x4 Woolwich
Registration date : 2010-03-02

PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 12:54

I can't remember an Apricot pudding Paul, the only suet - type delicacy that comes to mind is the good old "Snake & Sid".
We had a genius who thought it would be a good idea to heat the compo up in the exhaust of our 432 Mk 2. Unfortunately he never told me so, after a long static charge, I gave the engine a good "rev" and the cans disappeared into the night !
(No great loss, probably "Mutton Jock" anyway).

brum
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jim
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 12:58

Babies heads, Yum Yum
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brum
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 13:45

Just spotted the "Religious variants" teabag.
When I were a lad it was the cry "Fall in the RCs, C of Es Salvationists, Jews, Agnostics,Buckshees and F***ing Pharisees"!
We got treated the same, whatever we were doing.

brum
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 16:50

Was not Mixed Fruit Pudding (A & E) and Apple Pudding (C & G) not a suet type pudding?

Steak & Kidney Pudding was also know as Snake n' Pygmy or as Jim says Babies Eads'

Tinned Tomarto's was also know as 'Train Crash'

Any others?


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Stephen Lock
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 19:37

I found it amusing that A) compo came with "menus" ("and what will Sir be dining on tonight?" ehehehe) and B) some of you kept the menus, and the compo rations!, as souvenirs!!! Bit of a weird lot we got hanging around here....
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PostSubject: Compo!   26/7/2010, 19:44

Do you remember the tins of chocolate, packed out with Rowntrees Fruit Gums to stop the chocolate from rattling about?
We always exchanged the chocs for fresh eggs when arriving on location for a scheme.
I used to lust after the tinned bacon, although the interleaved cellophane was a bit tough.
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Norman
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 20:31

Steak and Kidney pud was always one of my favourites followed by bacon grill at breakfast. But one one occasion at the end of an exercise the cooks were running short on the last day out and we had to have Steak and Kidney for breakfast. It lost a bit of its appeal at 6 am!!

Noch ein bier,

Norman.
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   26/7/2010, 21:06

Stephen Lock wrote:
I found it amusing that A) compo came with "menus" ("and what will Sir be dining on tonight?" ehehehe) and B) some of you kept the menus, and the compo rations!, as souvenirs!!! Bit of a weird lot we got hanging around here....

I take it you are referring to me sir? as I posted all the menu's and pictures of compo...

So for your information, I will tell you while I do collect papers referring to the former Ordnance Corps, I am also a volunteer and researcher for the RLC Museum, and the compo shots came from my reseach papers.

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jim
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   27/7/2010, 10:43

brrowe wrote:
Do you remember the tins of chocolate, packed out with Rowntrees Fruit Gums to stop the chocolate from rattling about?
We always exchanged the chocs for fresh eggs when arriving on location for a scheme.
I used to lust after the tinned bacon, although the interleaved cellophane was a bit tough.

You were supposed to remove the cellophane I think Wink
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brum
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PostSubject: Re: Food & Compo   27/7/2010, 13:20

We used to get so frustrated with the mess that the whole bacon/plastic caboodle used to end up in the gash pit.
I often wonder how the wild boar used to get on when they tried eating the stuff !
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PostSubject: Compo Bacon!   28/7/2010, 10:00

Strangely, Compo bacon wasn't entirely new to me.
I remember my mother buying tins of the stuff in the early fifties, from our local Co-op.
Must have been WD surplus stock, so I actually enjoyed the stuff, and used to eat it straight out of the tin, on bread (yes, I did remove the cellophane.)
Also the "hard tack" biscuits were an old friend too. I remember seeing a sign outside a shop in the late 40s announcing "Biscuits on sale here". Thinking that I was doing my parents a favour I spent all the money they had given me for whatever I had gone to the shops for originally, and bought about a dozen packets of the things.
You can imagine the result, I had to take the lot back. I think the shopkeeper took pity on me as I was only about nine at that time, he and refunded the money.
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