By Ens. Patrick Bolton USS RONALD REAGAN
Standardizing the basic menu options across all platforms leads to an overall reduction in total line items for every ship, this standardization improves fill rates and ensures the Navy can execute a successful push logistics scenario. USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) piloted this program for an entire patrol. To carry this out, a working group was organized with all major stakeholders in fiscal year 2017, to include NAVSUP, Defense Logistics Agency, Military Sealift Command, Type Commanders (TYCOMs), and numerous fleet leads. Each entity provided inputs on what their capabili - ties were with regards to food service. These stakeholders established a working group tasked with planning what changes need to be made to food service aboard naval vessels in a communications-denied environ - ment with limited avenues for replenishment.
In the planning phase, stakeholders had to factor in use of limited or no fresh fruit and vegetables, and market ready bakery items. In addition, line items had to be reduced to fewer than 500, which were subdivided into four groupings. Categories include cargo (~207 line items), endurance (~120 line items), fleet freight (~173 line items), and sustainment items. Cargo items are to be pushed out as frequently as possible, endurance items are pushed out at opportune times, fleet freight items are pushed out at a permissive rate given resource availability, and sustainment items are to be used at a flexible rate based on ability to maintain them on the shelf.
The data from USS Ronald Reagan provided the major stakeholders with demand and consumption data needed to tailor the program for the fleet. This data contributed to an effective battle load tool and master con - sumption file that predicted demand for a push logistics scenario. This program, which was based on a 14-day cycle menu, came to be the daily routine of all the culinary specialists (CS). Reagan led the pack in the food service world.
“It was great to be selected as the piloting ship; we are contributing to big Navy initiatives,” said Food Service Officer Chief Warrant Officer Four Rolando Abad.
As a result of this new program, menus and recipe cards were rewrit - ten and the bakeshop workload increased significantly, reviving fresh baking. This change required more hands-on bakery training. According to Abad, an afloat bakeshop has not seen this amount of work in over 20 years. Fortunately, the change in menu allows for more CSs to move from the galley to the bakeshop. The new program requires use of existing equipment that has seen minimal use in recent years. That said, these changes are all in an effort to boast improvements for all platforms.
As of October 2019, implementation of the Navy Standard Core Menu 2020 (NSCM 2020) has begun across the fleet. TYCOMs continue to work a Joint effort, identifying resources and implementing key improve - ments that will sustain platforms at sea and on station for sustained peri - ods of time. Reagan has successfully executed the NSCM 2020 for 17 months. Now, it’s the fleet’s turn.