Warfighters around the world get to taste a home-cooked meal on Thanksgiving thanks to the efforts of Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support Subsistence supply chain employees.
The preparation for the troops’ holiday meal starts as early as April. Many ingredients for the meals are on hand at prime vendor locations by September, and the overseas locations start receiving high-volume items, like the turkeys and more than 131 tons of trimmings, in October.
“No matter where troops are stationed, they can expect DLA to provide the best possible meal for Thanksgiving,” Army Col. Eric McCoy, DLA Troop Support Subsistence director said. “While it is not exactly the same as being home, it is our job to provide that taste of home to the troops. We take great pride knowing that we are able to provide special holiday meals to warfighters worldwide.”
DLA Troop Support Commander Army Brig. Gen. Gavin Lawrence expressed the importance of making certain this mission is accomplished every Thanksgiving.
“I know the feeling of missing family and friends during the holiday season,” he said. “Our workforce takes great pride in ensuring deployed warfighters have a taste of the holidays while they are protecting our freedoms.”
For over 50 years, DLA Troop Support has been providing traditional Thanksgiving food to field kitchens, dining facilities and galleys at the following locations: Middle East, Europe, Africa, Korea, Japan, Qatar and Honduras.
This year, service members around the world received:
- 4,925 whole turkeys
- 66,741 pounds of roasted turkey
- 80,546 pounds of beef
- 43,648 pounds of ham
- 44,384 pounds of shrimp
- 27,605 pounds of sweet potatoes
- 39,797 pies
- 7,032 cakes
- 5,804 gallons of eggnog
The Subsistence team worked diligently with regional vendors both locally and across the globe to ensure that military food service professionals had what they needed to prepare a festive holiday meal for those away from home this Thanksgiving.