Natick, Mass. – Food scientists at a U.S. army lab are testing out some novel food products.
One of the most recent is a caffeinated meat stick.
The Washington Post says the stick looks and tastes much like the average beef jerky stick, but this one contains the equivalent of a cup of coffee’s worth of caffeine.
The aim is to help soldiers increase their performance when they’re under stress or tired, reports the Toronto Star. Caffeine will also help keep more soldiers on the battlefield for longer periods of time and reduce lost time from their missions.
In addition to caffeine, military food scientists are also adding supplements such as omega-3s and curcumin to foods, both of which act as anti-inflammatories.
Currently, a complex carbohydrate called maltodextrin, which gives soldiers a boost of energy, is being served in applesauce, dubbed Zapplesauce, reports the Washington Post.
The meat stick with caffeine is still being tested and is likely one or two years away from being sent out with troops, reports the Toronto Star. First it must be evaluated by a panel to see how it stands up, and then it must be field-tested by the soldiers themselves. It must be approved by selected troops before it is used for everyone.