It looks like we might have some picky eaters in the military.
The Department of National Defence is currently looking for a company to supply box lunches to air force personnel in Trenton, ON. But one quick look at its 35-page proposal reveals some pretty specific
For one, the preparation of sandwiches and meal requirements takes up more than 20 pages of the document.
More than twenty pages, to explain how to make a sandwich and prepare a lunch.
The document begins by laying out some ground rules that should apply to all sandwiches. For one, they can’t have any vegetables or onions. (They specify onions next to “no vegetables” even though an onion is a vegetable.) All sandwiches must be spread with margarine and must be cut “DIAGONALLY.”
None of that seems too strange though, right? We’ve only just begun.
The next portion is dedicated to just how much meat is allowed in each sandwich, sorted by weight (better get a scale, pronto).
Then comes instructions for the meal packages, which are just as strict. These sandwiches must now be incorporated into a “nutritional, fulfilling” meal that “meets the standards of the Canadian Food Guide.”
To ensure lunches live up to the department’s standards, two individual packs of mayonnaise are required with each meal, but only one pack of ketchup. And no freaking no-name mayonnaise either, that stuff has to be Hellmann’s or Kraft.
As for any apples on the side, they have to be McIntosh (Granny Smith = fired). And they can’t weigh less than 150 g or more than 250 g (ideally 200 g).
Chips Ahoy cookies and Joe Louis cakes, meanwhile, seem to be the in-demand items for dessert.
While this seems to be the most stringent sandwich order ever, there might be a method behind the madness. Take the department’s obsession with diagonal slicing, for example. A mathematics professor at Vermont Technical College argued in 2009 that sandwiches taste better when prepared that way because it increases the amount of crust-free surface area.
Plus, considering this air force base is home to many Search and Rescue workers, these nitpicky lunches may not be such a bad thing. We want those folks to have everything they need to perform at their best.
We just can’t help but feel a little bad for whatever company has to make lunches to these specifications.