Sun Meadow Hot Meals -- The meals that heat themselves

5:13 PM, Sep 14, 2005   |    comments
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Hurricanes Katrina and Ophelia may have had you thinking about your own hurricane plans. Would your family be prepared if a storm was headed our way? Many of us in the Bay Area found out last year -- especially after Hurricane Jean -- you can be left without electricity, and a way to cook, for days. But a St. Petersburg company is selling a solution. G.A. Foods owns the rights to a the technology for a self-heating can. The company's crews have been working overtime since Hurricane Katrina, sending cans of their meals to victims in Louisiana and Mississippi. Are their Sun Meadow Hot Meals something you should consider putting in your family's hurricane kits? Marty Matthews and Dave Wirth decided to try them before you buy them. Dave & Marty decided to test out the company's Beef Stew. While they were at room temperature at the beginning of the test, they were supposed to be piping hot in less than ten minutes. The secret to the technology is the stew's packaging. The food is inside a can which is surrounded by another can that is a self-contained heating unit. That unit contains "baked limestone" and when it's mixed with water--which is also in the outer can--it generates heat. The can comes with a metal spike to pierce the outer can -- releasing the water and beginning the heating process. Dave and Marty followed the can's directions and waited about ten minutes for the food to heat. The cans worked exactly as promised. Within a couple of minutes, the heating element started to cook the stew and by the time ten minutes passed, it was hot enough to eat. Plus, Dave, Marty and even Chief Meteorologist Dick Fletcher said the stew tasted very good--comparable to another canned stew, Dinty Moore. The meals are supposed to have a three-year shelf life. G.A. Foods had hoped to have them in stores like Home Depot and Lowes, but with the demand high after Hurricane Katrina, all of the meals are heading directly to storm victims. You can order the cans online. Each is $5.95 or a case of six for $35.70.

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