This kit includes 5 pre-folded wrappers and one unopened pack of Wrigley’s “Big Red” Gum.
For an authentic look, overwrap (or rewrap) your sicks of gum with foil before applying the outer wrapper. The wrappers can be slipped off the gum and reused.
The problem with mint gum in rations became clear early on. It flavored the crackers. Later regulations demanded that mint gum be kept out of the K-ration cellophane cracker packet unless it was made of cinnamon. Other rations that supplied gum often lacked the cellophane wrapper to keep mint taste out of food.
If you ever watch the guys who taste 80-year old rations, they often mention that things have a bit of a minty taste. It’s often from the stick of gum that’s packaged with it.
Wrigley, who was known at the time for Spearmint, and Doublemint gum went to work to create a gum that didn’t flavor the taste of food. Interestingly, Wrigley’s Army Gum did not completely replace the use of Spearmint and Doublemint gum in military rations.
Although Wrigley developed a cinnamon-flavored Army Gum for use in rations, but it would be another 30 years before they would introduce their cinnamon gum to the civilian market. Big Red debuted in 1975.
The inclusion of gum in the prototype K-ration was to “induce a flow of saliva which is a valuable digestive agent.” The Quartermaster Historical Studies on “The Development of Special Rations for the Army”
The gum does NOT come wrapped. The second photo shows you how your gum will look if you wrap it with aluminum foil. You’ll need to open the gum pack and apply the wrappers.