Putting combat rations packaging on a diet

Lauri Kline, with the Advanced Materials Engineering Team with the Department of Defense Combat Feeding Directorate at the Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center, Mass., conducts rain testing on packaging materials in the Doriot Climatic Chamber. (U.S. Army photo by David Kamm)

Lauri Kline, with the Advanced Materials Engineering Team with the Department of Defense Combat Feeding Directorate at the Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center, Mass., conducts rain testing on packaging materials in the Doriot Climatic Chamber. (U.S. Army photo by David Kamm)

NATICK, Mass. (Sept. 23, 2013) — When it comes to combat rations packaging, Lauri Kline would like to put the Defense Department on something of a diet.

Kline, project officer and packaging scientist for the Advanced Materials Engineering Team with the DOD Combat Feeding Directorate at the Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center here, has been working on incorporating alternative materials for the pallets, stretch wrap and carton straps for the millions of cases of Meals, Ready to Eat, or MREs, annually provided to service members overseas.

“We consume so many rations, there’s obviously packaging waste,” Kline said. “So that’s what my team is trying to address.

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