For short trips into the field, people usually take fresh food from the station. However, food ration packs are used for emergency use and deep field trips of longer duration.
Known as 'rat packs', food ration packs are light-weight, dried and nutritious, interesting and easy to prepare. They are packed in plastic 'nally' bins and are marked as 12 or 15 day packs for one person. They may be supplemented by additional goodies from a 'supplementary' ration pack. They are sealed with plastic bands when new and marked by date.
'Rat packs' include such items as freeze dried meat and vegetables, rice, pasta, biscuits, dried fruit, soups, muesli bars, desserts, chocolate, tea and coffee.
Emergency rations must always be carried, even on very short trips.
Food has the potential to introduce disease into the wildlife populations, and expeditioners must observe the following practices:
- Take no poultry products (meat, eggs etc.) into the field.
- Do not feed the wildlife, or leave any food scraps around outside. Scraps encourage dependence on free feeds, and also carry the risk of disease. Do not even leave frozen grey water unprotected outside as skuas have been known to eat this!