Marines master new field kitchen
CAMP KINSER, OKINAWA, Japan -- Food service specialists with Combat Logistics Regiment 37 tested and evaluated the capabilities of the new Expeditionary Field Kitchen Sept. 9-20 at Camp Kinser.
The EFK is set to replace the current Field Food Service System.
The new field kitchen provides Marines a way to prepare food as they would with conventional kitchen equipment. Food service specialists are able to roast, bake, boil, grill or pan-fry hot meals for hungry service members.
“In the field, the EFK will be able to feed more than 400 Marines in a four-hour time frame,” said Master Sgt. Reynaldo Miranda, a new-equipment training team instructor overseeing the employment and training of the EFK. “The equipment can be set up by six Marines, which essentially makes the process of preparing the equipment and the food faster than the older food service systems.”
The kitchen is more compact and efficient than the older systems, according to Sgt. Dwayne Z. Pete, a food service specialist with CLR-37, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force.
“In the old food systems, the field sanitation unit would be separate from the kitchen section of the FFSS,” said Pete. “With the EFK, everything is in the same facility, which drastically reduces the potential of exposing equipment and food to contaminants.”
During the orientation training, the Marines performed various tasks involving the EFKs, such as functions checks, familiarizing themselves with the nomenclature of each part, and preparing field-mess meals.
“We provide classes for the Marines that go into full detail of each aspect of the EFK,” said Gunnery Sgt. Richard Nelson, a NETT instructor. “At the end of each day, we go through all of the functions of the EFKs and test the Marines on their knowledge of the units.
“We have to be sure that they know all of the aspects of the EFK, inside and out, and understand the importance of the equipment they are dealing with,” said Nelson.
Marine Corps Systems Command has allocated the fielding of 18 EFKs to III MEF.
“Providing Marines with warm meals improves morale in the field,” said Master Sgt. Anthony J. Gonzales, a food service operations chief with CLR-37. “Most people don’t realize it, but it does improve their attitude in the field, and the EFKs will be a huge contribution to that.”