Navy Gets Three Meals A Day For £1.80
What could you buy for the princely sum of £1.80? Three bars of chocolate, maybe half a pint of beer?
US troops fed on bigger budgets
Well £1.80 is precisely how much Royal Navy chefs have in their daily budget for the breakfast, lunch and dinner of each serviceman and woman onboard their warships.
"It's tough work knocking out decent food on a budget like that, even Jamie Oliver would struggle," a source told Sky News Online.
"Police dogs get fed about four quids' worth of food each day, so that puts it all in perspective."
But despite their limited budget, the Navy chefs do deliver a decent meal, three times a day, for the 240 crew onboard HMS Campbeltown off the coast of Iraq.
Their mission is to provide security and stability on Iraq's territorial waters.
Breakfast consists of cereal, fruit juice, a small fry-up along with tea and coffee. Lunch is simply a baguette, possibly cheese, while dinner is a basic meat and two veg.
And when it comes to maintaining morale, decent food is a pre-requisite.
"There's no doubt that a well-fed ship is a happy ship," said one officer. "Poor food will have an effect on morale, but our chefs do fantastic work."
All at £1.80 a head, three times a day.
In contrast, a visit to the US airbase at al Udeid in Qatar is something of an eye-opener.
The food seems limitless. Pancakes, syrup, a variety of juices, French toast, grilled meats, cereals, yoghurts, muffins, the list goes on.
There is even a Baskin Robbins ice-cream counter. A sign asks politely that ice-creams are limited to two per person.
The "Independence Dining Facility" is pretty much like being in any American diner. There is also a plasma screen in the corner beaming in live footage of the NBA College Play-Offs.
It is quite obvious that whatever the American military's budget for their personnel's daily food is, it is a lot more than £1.80.
And then there is the recreation area: 10 pool tables, three tabletennis tables, an air hockey game, a fridge full of mineral water, a popcorn machine and even a separate room packed with PlayStations and XBox consoles.
"We could only dream of stuff like this on our base," one member of the RAF told me. "If we did have a pool table, the baize would be ripped and we'd probably be sharing cues!"
It seems that when it comes to spending money on its military, the US could teach Britain a thing or two.
NWN: Dogs get more than the navy matelots ? Disgraceful !
I love animals, but crikey.
That should increase naval recruitment no end.
When I was in, the food was excellent , and as much as you wanted.
The yanks food was as it seems to be now. Modern useless rubbish unfit for human consumption , BUT expensive.