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Military cooks up new menu for soldiers

[ 2009-06-15 14:05]     字号 [] [] []  
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The military said yesterday it wants a richer protein diet for its troops nationwide, before the 60th anniversary on Oct 1, which commemorates the founding of the People's Republic of China.

The protein project will revamp the menu for the 2.3 million servicemen and women of the People's Liberation Army or PLA from July 1. It will feature a sharp increase of more than 40 percent in meat and another 20 percent in overall calories.

The move is aimed at bringing the PLA's "catering capability" closer to that of other developed nations, said analysts.

Despite costing around one billion yuan a year, experts believe the diet enjoyed by soldiers in the Chinese military still lags behind the nutritional programs offered by the United States and Russian armed forces for diversity and protein levels.

Even the US Army's compact "meals ready-to-eat for individuals", also known as MRI, have around 1,300 calories each - a Chinese soldier would have to eat a full meal of six dishes to consume the same amount of energy.

"It's easy to see the difference," a retired navy marine told China Daily yesterday.

The revised catering guidelines will be drawn up by the General Department of Logistics, which is responsible for the welfare of PLA servicemen and women. It will address the lack of diversity in a Chinese soldier's diet by adding more seafood and milk to the menu, the department said.

It has become common practice for the PLA to improve catering in recent years, with the last time in 2007.

In another move, the military has also boosted the salaries of its servicemen and women. Low-level soldiers and officers received as much as 50 percent extra in the pay reform, around 4,000 yuan a month.

(英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Military cooks up new menu for soldiers

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Military cooks up new menu for soldiers

Siberian-born Kristina Koveshnikova is a freelance journalist from New Zealand who has worked in print, television and film. After completing a BCS degree majoring in journalism, she won an Asia NZ Foundation/Pacific Media Centre award to work for China Daily website. Kristina previously did internships at ABC 7 News in Washington DC and TVNZ in New Zealand and has written for a number of publications, including The New Zealand Herald and East & Bays Courier.