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German Rations

Posted: Mon Dec 27, 2004 7:52 pm
by Ironman
From the Vets, What were the contents of field rations and what about the quality? Every German book i read talks of poor quality, while GIs always say the rations were superior to D and K rations. Any input would be appreciated.

Re: German Rations

Posted: Tue Dec 28, 2004 6:04 am
by Brian67
Ironman wrote:From the Vets, What were the contents of field rations and what about the quality? Every German book i read talks of poor quality, while GIs always say the rations were superior to D and K rations. Any input would be appreciated.
About the quality I can't tell you anything, but what a soldier get, I can tell you. Do you understand German or do you need a translation?
source: ... legung.htm
Verpflegung im Kriege

Tagesration: Verpflegungssatz der Wehrmacht - Feldration

a) Kaltverpflegung
- 750 g Brot
- 150 g Fett (Aufgeteilt in: Butter, Schmalz, Margarine als Brotaufstrich etwa 60 - 80 g,

Tier- oder Pflanzenfett für die Zubereitung der Warmkost etwa 70 - 90g)
- 120 g Wurst (frisch oder in Büchsen) oder Fischkonserven oder Käse
- bis zu 200 g Marmelade oder Kunsthonig
- 7 Zigaretten oder 2 Zigarren

b) Zubereitet als Warmverpflegung:
- 1000 g Kartoffeln oder teilweise ersetzt durch
+ 250 g. Frisch-Gemüse oder
+150 g Gemüsekonserven
+ 125 g Teigwaren, Reis, Gries, Sago, Graupen usw.
- bis 250 g Frischfleisch (Fett für Zubereitung aus der bei Kaltverpflegung aufgeführten Menge)
- 15 g Zutaten (Salz, Gewürze usw.)
- 8 g Bohnenkaffee und 10 g Kaffee-Ersatz (oder entsprechende Tee)

Dazu je nach Verfügbarkeit Eier, Obst, Schokolade usw.


Posted: Tue Dec 28, 2004 7:21 pm
by haen1
Oh boy ! Which army was that again ? :wink:
Our rations were usually not so elaborate and more in the style of "if it is chewable, and you can swallow it, enjoy it" :wink:
I never knew we had it so good.

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 2:57 am
by Rudi Welz
Maybe I joined the Army to late, but what you wrote about the Verpflegungssatz - Feldration was just written on paper.
I remember that we didn't get enough food while in training in Leoben/Steiermark and later on the front we had mostly to care ourselves for food. We got it from the farmers or - if we were lucky - wegot some deer by "hunting". It wasn't allowed but nobody cared.
Can you imagine how "Trockengemüse" (dried vegetables) tasted like?
I hope nobody will come in this situation.
BTW, that was the time (April 45) where I made my first prisoner. I was ordered behind the lines to get a rabitt or something else. While I was sneaking through the forest it happened. Suddenly a GI came up und rised his hands. I don't know who of us was more scared! His comrades had left him in the forest while he was doing his normal job after lunch. So I didn't get my rabitt and had to eat some leftovers.

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 10:12 am
by Ironman
No, i don't speak German, but, i get the gist of what was included. Thank you! Thanks vets for the input! Margarine hopefully wasn't supposed to be a meal unto itself?!

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 4:53 pm
by Brian67
Arminius wrote:Maybe I joined the Army to late, but what you wrote about the Verpflegungssatz - Feldration was just written on paper.
Hallo Arminius
Vielen Dank für deine Information. Mir war soweit schon klar, dass es sich - zumal in den letzten Kriegsjahren, aber auch in den diversen Kesselschlachten - um theoretische Angaben handelt, aber allgemein lässt sich das anders ja nicht sagen. Je nach Ort und Zeit (und Dienstgrad??) war die Verpflegung sicher sehr unterschiedlich.
Gruss Brian

Posted: Mon Aug 08, 2005 12:38 pm
by Matzke
Only second hand but my mum spent the latter part of the war attached to a supply column zig-zagging up and down the eastern front (came from a farm in Meklenberg?) the column was trying and eventually got to surrender to the Americans. She remembers getting living on sweets from the troops, but being a skinny 7-8 year old may have had something to do with that.

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 2:41 pm
by Michael N. Ryan
While researching a possible sequel to my novel, I was asking around about German army field rations. I contaced varios re-enactor units. One, an american group re-enacting SS Liebstandarte forwarded me to a Major in charge of a museum I think in Oklahoma. He told me that the German army field rations had not evolved beyond those issued during world war one. Other thant the emergency Iron ration issued to individual soldiers, most Germans were issued the componants. Hardly better than a five in one or ten in one except the various compOnants: Bread, Tinned Meat, Marmalade, etc would be carried by individual members of the squad to be assembled by the unit. If a man was lost, his part of the ration was lost. Many times German soldiers were issued food from captured stocks. Lotsof British Bully Beef was issued after Dunkirk, for example. There were attempts to produce a versioin of the K ration as well as the C ration but allied bombing shot up their railroad lines and factories, destroying their ability to supply their troops in the field.

Other than that they had to rely upon their field kitchens to provide themselves with their equivelent to the B ration. I have read veterans describing the fair as filling and edible but nothing beyond that.

I wish I could tell you more, but my computor had a failure and I lost the E-mail. I would like to thank the fellow, just as I would like to tell you who he is so you might ask him more so as to answer your questions on rthis subject. He is quite the expert.

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 4:32 pm
by knieptang
Michael, is this the Link...? ... tions.html

Otherwise, a search for the so called "Eiserne Ration" provides several hundred links, 99% in german language.


Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 4:54 pm
by Michael N. Ryan
No. I was given the information by e-mail.
But this is a good sight. Very informative.

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 4:59 pm
by knieptang

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 5:08 pm
by knieptang

Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 3:15 pm
by Sani116
Hello gents.

Sorry to dig this thread up, but I'm sort of new here and came across this thread and was compelled to make this my first post.

I belong to a UK re-enactment group, and we are very very interested in the food products that the German soldier was given or (respectively) managed to scrounge. One of our chaps has had a go at re-creating the 'paper' version of the issued rations. I must say, having sampled various countries rations, the German "ideal ration" is very good, however very bulky (I can hardly fit it in my rucksack). The fruit bars and dextrose tablets go down very well :wink:

I was wondering if Haen or Arminius could comment as to our mans efforts and perhaps point out anything which we could improve upon in the future. And perhaps if you were ever issued items like this?

Tom Stewart.

(all of the foods are either identical to the originals or the modern equivelant - so I believe).




(please excuse the sardines - as we do not have a label to reproduce).


Posted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 4:26 pm
by haen2
The only "eiserne rationen" I ever received was a package of zwieback (hardtack) pre-half-cut in about 2cm x 3cm pieces, also containing kummel seeds. This was to be guarded as gold and only eaten when the "normal" (WHAT normal?) rations could not get through.
Needless to say that by the time the 'occassion" for use was there, these wer long gone.
As I said before: Reality check: If you can chew it and swallow it without getting sick, eat it, and live . :(
Oh those góóóód old times. HN

Eiserne Ration

Posted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 4:53 pm
by Rudi S.
I remember what you said about the Eiserne Ration. I believe that we couldn't touch it until 3 days after we received no regular rations. One time, while our tank stood guard at the Narwa Front, our kitchen personnel were finally lucky to drop off an insulated food container (have forgotten the German word for it) a few hundred meters from our tank. I had to retrieve it. Of course, by the time we have gotten it, there was about an inch or so frozen liquid on top of the goulash. We used the Bunsenbrenner (correct word?) to melt the ice and ate some of the goulash. As it was ice-cold and I ate it fast, I got sick in my stomach and gave everything back to mother nature.
At least, it broke the monotony of standing guard in the turret right next to the swamps and forrests.
Are you familiar with the Narwa Front?
Mit besten Grüssen,
Rudi S.