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Military pizza 3-year shelf life outlasts ubiquitous Twinkies

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Military (MRE) pizza with a three-year shelf life can easily outlast Twinkies, thanks to a group of scientists at a United States military lab in Massachusetts. Despite the urban legends, the golden snack cakes with the sweet cream filling have an expiration date of only 45 days. That's far less than the long-lasting pizza that could be making its way into MREs sometime in the near future. Unfortunately, unlike the famous Twinkies, which are everywhere, the MRE pizza won't be available to just anyone. It's especially formulated for military use.

According to a Feb. 14, 2014 report by Delish, the new military pizza MRE meal has been years in the making. The primary challenge facing scientists who developed the meal was moisture. Without careful planning, moisture from the sauce and cheese would seep into the pizza dough. Changes to the traditional pizza recipe were also made to stunt the growth of bacteria. To prevent air from entering the packaging, iron filings were used in the pouch (not in the pizza itself).

Jill Bates, head of the tasting lab at the United States military lab in Massachusetts responsible for the groundbreaking military MRE pizza, was reportedly pleased with the lab's success. "It pretty much tastes just like a typical pan pizza that you would make at home and take out of the oven or the toaster oven. The only thing missing from that experience would be it's not hot when you eat it. It's room temperature."

Thus far, soldiers who have been longing for military pizza in their MREs have been unable to sample the new offering. It isn't quite ready for the big time yet, but it's closer than ever.



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