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MRE Cooking Challenge

MRE Cooking Challenge: Veterans and Local Celebrity Chefs
Serving Up Fun at the California State Fair


WHO:       CalVet, Veterans, Celebrity Chefs from Mulvaney's, The Porch, and Purple Pig Eats

WHAT:     Military and Veteran Appreciation Day "MRE (Meals, Read to Eat)" Cooking Challenge

WHEN:     Thursday, July 18, 2019

       12–1 p.m. Meet the contestants, MRE Samples, History, and Trivia

       3–4 p.m. Chefs' Edible Art

       6–7:30 p.m. Cooking Challenge and Awards Ceremony

WHERE:   California Exposition and State Fair
Cooking Theatre in California Building "B" 
1600 Exposition Boulevard, Sacramento, CA 95815

Event: CalVet will host the seventh annual MRE Cooking Challenge on Thursday July 18. Veterans and local celebrity chefs will face off in a friendly competition to transform randomly selected MREs into culinary delights in just 45 minutes. Each chef will be paired with a military veteran. A panel of distinguished judges will pick the winner based on taste, presentation, skill, and showmanship.

The cooking challenge takes place during the Military and Veteran Appreciation Day, which features a variety of specially designed attractions and exhibits. Veterans and military personnel get in free at the Fair by presenting a valid military ID or a driver license with "VETERAN" designation on July 18. Active duty spouses and dependents have free admission until 3 p.m.

CalVet staff will be available in the Bear Circle section near the South Food Court all day to answer questions about benefits and career opportunities available to California veterans.

Background: MREs are the main operational food ration for the United States Armed Forces. They originated from the c-rations and k-rations from World War II, and later developed into the MCI (Meal, Combat, Individual) rations used in Korea and Vietnam. In 1980, the MRE was developed and is still used as the primary ration today. Generally, a standard MRE will contain an entrée, side dish, cracker or bread, spread, dessert, candy, beverage mix, hot sauce or seasoning, a flameless ration heater, and dining accessories.

Press Release

MRE Cooking Challenge