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#1 Rick

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 1736 PM

Was reading about WW2 Soviet, German, an U.S.  infantry companies. One book stated that the Red Army did away with them and concentrated such support at the battalion level. It didn't state if they reinstated them in 1945. Was wondering with canned rations and chemical heat, was the company level field kitchen needed?


Edited by Rick, 03 January 2018 - 1737 PM.

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#2 rmgill

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 1742 PM

British Practice in WWII Was compo rations in the form of canned and other packaged foods, the larger standard being 14 man - 1 day compo ration crates. They had something like 15 or so standard mixes of food items.

The British didn't have any mobile field kitchen trailers, instead they were affairs setup out of 60 cwt and 3 ton trucks.

Ovens were constructed on site with sheet metal and other parts specific for the task and then fired with wood.

I gather that freshly made food, locally cooked bread and hot, fresh food was preferable to living off of canned food.




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#3 rmgill

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 1750 PM

US kit for smaller unit cooking is described here.



The British had cookers for small examples down to individual AFV crews (No2 Cooker)

DSCN5783.jpg

There was also a larger 2 burner No 3 unit. And even larger units that I'm aware of but not certain if they were specific to WWII or just after. 

s-l300.jpg

there was also a large modular No1 Cooker that had a petrol fired burner with a 2 gallon fuel tank and a pressurizing lever. It could heat a series of cooking containers on a stand. 

59dcb7ab6e5d4_cookerNo1.jpg.37a1f5554007

Apparently they were deemed unsafe in the Uk after the 60s or so. I can't see why.... 


 


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#4 Colin

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 1951 PM

We had Flying Kitchens based on Deuces, later went to a trailer type. 

 

good pictures here http://www.mapleleaf...ead.php?t=18042

 

Detachment level in the artillery we had a tent, lantern, colmen stove and grub box to compliment our hard rations. 

 

$_57.JPG?set_id=8800005007


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#5 Murph

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 2002 PM

You know its funny, I never had a bad meal cooked in the field. Yeah spam got monotonous but our battalion cooks did a great job in the 1980’s.
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#6 R011

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 2004 PM

Yep. IMPs cooked in a pressure cooker on a Coleman stove or bacon and eggs and brewed coffee.


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#7 rmgill

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 2026 PM

You know its funny, I never had a bad meal cooked in the field. Yeah spam got monotonous but our battalion cooks did a great job in the 1980’s.

I think some of that is that when you've been out in the cold and wet, hot food that has protein, fat, and carbs and warm drinks that have sugars and caffeine in it taste like ambrosia. 
 


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#8 R011

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 2044 PM

My experience of Canadian Army food in the field was simple, everyday, home-cooked food, cooked competently, served warm, and in generous quantities.  Most often, fresh food came from a mess hall and delivered in thermal containers ("hay boxes") by the Squadron Sergeant Major or SQMS.  The only time we got bad food was when they'd contract out cooking to lowest bidder contractors.

 

Had US Army food once at Camp Grayling.  It was OK, but not quite as good as our messes.


Edited by R011, 03 January 2018 - 2048 PM.

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#9 DougRichards

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 0456 AM

Much depended on terrain:

=================================

 

then there was this, which tends to correlate with other reports:

 

http://ajrp.awm.gov....EE?OpenDocument

 

 

 

=====================================

 

Remembering the war in New Guinea
What did the soldiers eat? (QnA)
Module name: Unknown theme (All groups perspective)
This page was contributed by Mr Stephen Robinson (Department of Veteran's Affairs)

 

Australian

Australian rations were initially of low quality, and included biscuits, bully beef, chocolate, tea and sugar. To make matters worse, however, much of the supply had been stacked in the open and spoiled in the intense heat. In late 1942, new ration types replaced the "bully beef and biscuits" standard ration, and included tinned fruit, dried potatoes, sausages, vegetables, jam, butter and beans. Dehydrated mutton was also a standard ration and was considered one of the finest foods of the campaign.

During the Kokoda campaign rations were scarce because all supplies were unloaded at Port Moresby from a single wharf that was ill-equipped to handle the volume of cargo and was subject to frequent air attack.

One method for food to reach Kokoda from Port Moresby was by Papuan carriers. This was impractical, however, because in the eight days it would take to complete the walk the carrier would consume a large proportion of his own load in food. It was more practical for carriers to bring in other items such as ammunition. Transporting supplies by vehicle was also out of the question as what roads there were quickly became pack-horse trails and then walking tracks as the jungle closed in. Building adequate roads would have been impossible given the time constraints and the terrain, and so the clear solution to the issue of supplies was large-scale air transport. Planes could land at Kokoda airstrip or drop supplies by parachute. When the 39th Battalion moved north to meet the Japanese at Kokoda, logistical command at Port Moresby planned to air drop their supplies. Flights were made that each carried 4,200 pounds of ration packs, and the transport planes became know as "biscuit Bombers".

On 16 August 1942, a devastating Japanese air raid hit the airfields at Port Moresby and all transport aircraft were destroyed or damaged. More serious than the loss of other aircraft, the destruction of the "biscuit Bombers" compromised the Australian supply situation. Brigadier Potts could not deploy his battalions as a consolidated force because he could only feed his companies one at a time.

The supply situation improved when the 2/4th Company AASC arrived in New Guinea and began sorting and packing supplies: one million rations in case lots had to be broken into stacks of forty each with 25,000 rations. Australians on the Kokoda Track could get food at staging posts that were stationed at strategic points along the trail. One such post was Uberi, which consisted of six or eight huts where soldiers could rest and have a meal. Hot coffee and cake was provided by the Salvation Army at Red Shield posts along the trail.

There were, however, severe shortages of food at times, and front-line units did capture and cook Japanese rice. In early August 1942, captured rice was the only food available to A Company of the 39th Battalion. While there were shortages, resupply of standard rations was largely achieved, even when the Australian supply lines were stretched to their limit.

Japanese

Standard Japanese rations consisted of polished rice, biscuits and other preserved foods. Rations could also include vegetables, meat, fish, soy sauce, sugar, barely, soy bean paste, beer and sake. Meat was usually rationed to once or twice per week. In New Guinea, covers were placed over food due to the wet climate and there were rules not to mix wet rice and with dry rice. Wet rice was to be cooked first by roasting it into hard rice balls.

The Japanese largely failed to adequately supply rations for their troops. This was caused initially by false assumptions about the nature of the campaign. The Japanese had little knowledge of the interior of New Guinea where the decisive battles on the Kokoda trail were to be fought, and assumed wrongly that it would be possible for their troops to scavenge or forage for food along the way. Their invasion plan was for the South Seas Force to land at Buna, quickly advance overland to Kokoda and then capture Port Moresby. Ryuto Force was to land near Buna and establish a supply base for the South Seas Force. Major General HORII’s force was only allocated two weeks of supplies.

The Sakigawa Transport Unit was responsible for creating food dumps (mainly rice), road creation and maintenance, and transport of food. Disaster struck this unit on 1 August 1942 when the transport ship Kotoku Maru was bombed and went down with 11 vehicles and many personnel. Later, the Sakigawa Transport Unit acquired ten trucks and began transporting rice from the landing areas to new supply dumps. It was estimated that carriers could deliver three tons of supplies a day, regardless of weather. When a resupply mission was accomplished, however, it was often the case that the forward Japanese units had already advanced out of the area. At this stage, the first signs of concern began to show over the amount of food reaching front-line units.

In early September 1942, the South Seas Force reached Ioribaiwa, near the edge of the Owen Stanley Range. It had suffered hundreds of casualties in battle and from sickness and those remaining were weary from the effort and starving because supply lines had broken down. As the supply situation worsened, the Japanese began to supplement their rations with Papuan food and in many cases were able to acquire local produce such as tomatoes, papayas, bananas, sago, yams, cassava, coconuts and sugarcane, as well as pigs, chickens and ducks from villages. The Japanese discovered sweet potatoes along the coast – the most important cash crop and staple food for most Papuans – and appear to have assumed that similar food could be found growing wild inland, resulting in more ammunition than food being sent to the front.. Ultimately, the native foods of the jungle were inadequate to sustain the thousands of men and the severe lack of food caused starvation, malnutrition and desperation among the Japanese

In September 1942, HORII ordered serious ration restrictions. Rice rations were reduced to two-thirds of a pint for the physically active and half a pint for others. Commanders were urged to capture food supplies and live off the land. Foraging parties were organised. A few parachute drops of supplies were made but there was no real attempt to use aircraft to solve the supply problem. By October, requisitioning food from Papuans was failing as a strategy and even dried roots were being eaten. Discipline was breaking down – bags of rice were being stolen and supply units were consuming food intended for front-line units. Grass, roots and fruits that Papuans and Australians knew were inedible were being eaten by the Japanese. In mid-October a 41st Regiment document stated "officers and men realise the present condition of the formation cannot be helped. However, the men are gradually weakening in their physical condition due to lack of food and the continuous rain with no chance of recovery." The Japanese captured tainted rations along the Kokoda Trail and ate them quickly resulting in stomach pains, internal problems and widespread dysentery.

The Japanese retreat back down the Kokoda Track was pitiful. They were famished, ill and weary. Unable to carry much, they left a trail of discarded equipment and comrades who were too badly wounded or sick to carry on. The Japanese were so short of rations that some had resorted to cannibalism. On the overland retreat from Sio to Wewak, tens of thousands of Japanese soldiers perished, mostly as a result of sickness and malnutrition. New Guinea was the place, "where soldiers are sent into the jungle without supplies." This seems to have proven the Japanese saying that, "Java is heaven, Burma is hell, but you never come back alive from New Guinea."

The supply situation was different on the coast at Buna and Gona, however, thanks to a reliable Navy supply system. While the Japanese were incapable of adequately supplying the front line, Australians advancing towards Buna in December 1942 found large quantities of Japanese rice – bags of rice were even used to strengthen the walls of Japanese positions. After fighting Japanese troops weakened from hunger on their retreat from Kokoda, the Australians who advanced to the coast were shocked to discover that Japanese forces in the Buna-Gona area were determined and well supplied.

The nature of the Pacific War left many Japanese formations behind on islands. Japanese forces isolated on remote islands received no supplies from Japan and faced a battle against starvation. In 1944, the 55,000 men of the 18th Army were severed from the lines of supply and were fighting a solitary battle. The 18th Army was ordered to "simply carry out general holding operations to sustain key areas in the region". With only enough supplies in store to last two months, they were forced to become self-sufficient for supplies. Self-sufficiency could not be attained, however, for a force the size of the 18th Army even if the entire arable land that fed the 15,000 local inhabitants was confiscated. It was estimated that three months’ supplies could be obtained by felling and burning the virgin forests. These conditions were expressed by the Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General YOSHIHARA: "There is death in staying, and death in going. We are facing disaster both in retreat and in advance."

The communication line between Rabaul and Japan was cut off in February 1943. From then on, all Japanese were forced to grow vegetables to complement the food shortage. The Japanese command in the isolated Island of Rabaul enforced a strict daily routine for soldiers: 40 per cent of the working day was dedicated to exercise, 30 per cent to fortress construction, and 30 per cent to garden work in order to achieve self-sufficiency in food. Wartime Japan was not yet fully industrialised and many of the servicemen had agricultural or small industry backgrounds. Therefore, their skills and diligence enabled them to survive the shortage of supplies. After the war, a member of the South East Force General Staff Office said: "Rabaul was almost like a small independent country after supplies from Japan had stopped". Japanese servicemen largely established self-sufficiency in Rabaul. By June 1943 Rabaul could produce 12 tonnes of food per day.


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#10 Murph

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 0659 AM

You have a point, plus it was not C rations.

 

You know its funny, I never had a bad meal cooked in the field. Yeah spam got monotonous but our battalion cooks did a great job in the 1980’s.

I think some of that is that when you've been out in the cold and wet, hot food that has protein, fat, and carbs and warm drinks that have sugars and caffeine in it taste like ambrosia. 
 

 


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#11 shep854

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 1007 AM

You know its funny, I never had a bad meal cooked in the field. Yeah spam got monotonous but our battalion cooks did a great job in the 1980’s.


I think some of that is that when you've been out in the cold and wet, hot food that has protein, fat, and carbs and warm drinks that have sugars and caffeine in it taste like ambrosia.
In a documentary on the Chosin Reservoir breakout, one Marine described a pack of graham crackers and a cup of coffee as the finest meal he ever had.
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#12 Sardaukar

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 0910 AM

Finnish field kitchen m/29 (they were later modernized a bit, but still in use)

 

Finnish_field_kitchen_M_1929.JPG


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#13 rmgill

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 1136 AM

How common is the term "Gulash Cannon" in Europe for those sorts of things? 


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#14 BansheeOne

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 1252 PM

It certainly is in German usage, which is unsurprising given that it was coined here for the locally-developed early types.


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#15 bojan

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 1731 PM

It certainly is in German usage, which is unsurprising given that it was coined here for the locally-developed early types.

 

Term was in use in Austro-Hungary of at least as early as 1878.


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#16 Sardaukar

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 2145 PM

Latest model in Finland is:

 

http://www.teuvan.co...fk2000/?lang=en

 

FEATURES

– Multi-fuel kitchen: diesel, kerosene, LP gas, and solid fuels including wood.
– Powerful diesel generator, sound insulated.
– Integrated detachable tenting for weather protection and camouflage.
– Based on standard components with worldwide availability.
– Can be coupled to modular accessory cold storage or food preparation and serving units.

KITCHEN

– Wide range of cooking, boiling, and frying equipment: 150 litre and 140 litre double wall kettles, other kettles for cooking, steaming, frying, deep frying, and grilling. Cooking equipment combinations are easily interchanged as required.
– All Stainless steel cooking surfaces.
– Optional 150 litre convection oven suitable for baked meals.
– All temperature adjustments via electronic thermostats.
– Excellent lighting in work areas with blackout mode.
– Capacity: three meals per day with a staff of three persons, feeding 300 people with a multiple choice menu, 500 people with a simple menu.

TRANSPORTATION

– Extremely agile mobile field kitchen for demanding conditions. Ideal for rapid deployment.
– Suitable for compact loading, 1.5 tons, 4.8m x 1.7m x 2.2m.
– Adjustable tow bar – can be towed by any vehicle.
– Configured to cook on the move, while in tow.


Edited by Sardaukar, 08 January 2018 - 2148 PM.

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#17 BansheeOne

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 0627 AM

Term was in use in Austro-Hungary of at least as early as 1878.

 

I thought it would have been, due to the goulash part.


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#18 DougRichards

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 0701 AM

Different sides

 

Form follows function

 

PI000000150430.jpg

 

 

 

 

000000007086.jpg


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#19 bojan

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 0800 AM

Serbian WW1 model, practically identical to the German:

Poljska_kuhinja_I_sv_rat_NS.jpg

Small and large model (100 and 200l capacity IIRC) of an old M50something (M58 IIRC) that were repainted:

Triperi_2008_08_2_bik_e.jpg

 

M78, small model (200l capacity):

vojna-pokretna-kuhinja-prohromski-kazani

M78, large model, 300l capacity:

M-78_poljska_kuhinja_VS2.jpg


Edited by bojan, 09 January 2018 - 0802 AM.

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#20 Harold Jones

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 1019 AM

In WW1 the US used the Liberty Rolling Kitchen 

http://www.phmc.stat...eld-kitchen.jpg

 

Video of it in use

https://youtu.be/lQJPQ4YGv4M

 

In WW2 the army used a mess tent and continued to do so up until the MKT trailer was introduced in the late 70s early 80s

https://cdn.dvidshub...7/1000w_q95.jpg

 

It looks like now the MKTs are being refurbished or in some cases being replaced by a containerized field kitchen.

https://www.army.mil...46867/size0.jpg


Edited by Harold Jones, 09 January 2018 - 1022 AM.

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