How Many Ration Packs Does the UK Military Use Each Year?

How Many Are Used?

Did you know that approximately two (2) million operational ration packs (ORPs) are used by the UK military per year.

What About Unused ORPs?

Typically, less than 1% of the stock of ORPs requires disposal.

The MOD does not sell or auction ORPs that have expired or are close to their expiry date, but will dispose of them through one of two avenues:

  • Through waste (aka landfill); or
  • To FareShare.

What is FareShare?

FareShare is a charity which distributes food to approximately 10,000 UK charities, including community groups, homeless hostels, and lunch groups for the elderly.

The MOD has been in partnership with FareShare since 2019.

The MOD’s Logistics Support Operating Centre (LSOC) Commissioning and Managing Organisation (CMO) distributes ORPs to FareShare who then distribute them via their network.

Is it Legal to Purchase an ORP?

Simple Answer: Maybe.

Longer Answer:

The wording on ORP packaging states:


Unless otherwise directed by the MOD, this ration pack and its contents remain the property of the MOD. Any unauthorised sale, dealing or other use inconsistent with the MOD’s proprietary rights is prohibited and may constitute a criminal offence.

The MOD states that once ORPs have been “disposed of officially”, the ‘unless otherwise directed by the MOD’ caveat does not apply and, yes, you can then purchase an ORP.


FOI 2022/00899 dated 14 February 2022.


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