‘Empowering Field Army Through Food Technology’ was sponsored by Army Management Studies Board and organised by the ASC Centre and College
12 September 2018, Bangalore: Every army marches on its stomach and it is more so in the case of the gigantic forces like the Indian Army. Indian Army is unlike any other. The diverse cultural diversity of the Indian nation reflects in its army. Unlike armies elsewhere, the Indian palate has diverse tastes, and so does its Army. And given the different terrains it is deployed in, the food supplied to the army also requires diversity, culinary quality, nutrition as well as longevity.
These issues were discussed at a seminar sponsored by Army Management Studies Board and organised by the ASC Centre and College, Bangalore. Experts from the food industry, academia and research institutes from all over the country attended the event which was titled “Empowering Field Army Through Food Technology.
Speaking at the event, Lt Gen Vipan Gupta said that “It was a historic event for ASC Centre and College.” Pointing out that Indian Army personnel serve in high-altitude and super high-altitude environments, dense jungles and deserts, he said that, “in some places, the conditions are so severe that survival becomes a challenge.”
According to Lt Gen Gupta, these conditions can physically and mentally affect a soldier. In order to combat this, the Indian Army is looking at a range of supplements that can help maintain health in the most severe conditions.
The seminar focussed on leveraging food technology to help combat the ill effects of harsh weather and terrain. Institutes such as Central Food Technological Research Institute and Defence Food Research Laboratory showcased their products such as Meals Ready to Eat (MRE) Ration packs for tank and submarine crews and different kinds of cereal bars.
The industry experts, academia and Army personnel seemed to agree that functional foods, nutraceuticals and other dietary supplements in terrain specific rations would go a long way in mitigating ill-effects.