Soldiers have always been trained to live under harsh conditions and minimum rations. By the early to mid twentieth century they were given tinned food to live on and by 1981 the norm became MREs, Meals Ready to Eat. These were long lasting compressed food packages that endured heat and moisture for a long time so that one sample could last for days and months at a time. The drawback of course was the taste. It was horrible. Now, the U.S. Military is developing a Pizza that not only lasts for up to three years, but also tastes good.
The hard part of course is shielding food from bacteria in the atmosphere that break it down. Mould and fungus develops on food that has been left out in the open for too long, that’s why refrigerators exist, to slow down the process. But even refrigerators can’t keep food fresh for years.
Military scientists have used chemicals called humectants (like sugar, salt and syrups) to stop the pizza getting soggy and providing apt conditions for fungus to grow. Essentially the chemicals will form a cage around the water molecules to stop them from accelerating the reaction that leads to mould and fungus formation. In addition to this, the pH levels of the ingredients have been tweaked to make the environment as unfriendly to the fungi to thrive as possible.
As for the taste, scientists working on it say that it tastes like a normal pan pizza or one that you would get from any pizza parlour with one key difference, it’ll be room temperature, not piping hot.