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Ask Tom Yang Your Questions

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Are your M&M’s melting? Here’s your chance to ask Tom Yang all about it.

Q: Perla

Have you ever sung karaoke for the army? Who is cooking your new heat-resistant M&M’s? The army or the M&M’s company? Are you interested in creating your own songs?

A: Tom Yang

No, I have never sung karaoke for the army– remember that’s my “secret life” !? When opportunity comes, I will be more than happy to entertain these brave soldiers (provided they can tolerate an amateur singer).
As for the heat-resistant chocolate, it was company’s effort to develop based on our request. There are several ways to do this, and most are proprietary information.
As for the question on whether I will be interested in creating my own songs, I found out, after some soul search, that my talent only limits to singing other people’s songs that are mightily plenty.

Q: Georgia

What is your favorite song to belt out for an audience?

A: Tom Yang

I am a baby boomer with a young heart, so I tend to like old time Rock & Roll such as Elvis’ Blue Suede Shoes, Chuck Berry’s Johhny B. Goode, and Billy Idol’s Rebel Yell, etc. And when I belt out S&G’s Bridge over Troubled Water, I got emotional…

Q: Nadia

What kinds of food are suitable for very cold conditions? And would it be packaged differently than the food that is prepared for soldiers in the desert?

A: Tom Yang

All of our operational rations can be viewed at…, Natick PAM 30-25
Operational Rations of the Department of Defense. Extreme Conditions such as
cold/hot/high altitude requires ration components and/or supplementation
unique from the standard operational ration. Examples include:

The Meal, Cold Weather and the Food Packet, Long Range Patrol (MCW/LRP) are
designed to meet the Joint Service requirements of the United States Marine
Corps (USMC) and the Army Special Operations Forces (SOF). The USMC and SOF
require appropriate nutritional and operational characteristics for extreme
cold environments. They require a restricted calorie ration with a long
shelf life that can be used during initial assault, special operations, and
long-range reconnaissance missions. The ration is lightweight and includes
ready-to-eat components and a freeze dried entrée that can be eaten dry if
necessary. Meal bags for each of the 12 menus contain the dehydrated entrée
and a variety of spreads, crackers, cookies, sports bars, nuts, candy and
powdered beverages with an accessory packet and plastic spoon. Extra drink
mixes are included to encourage water consumption. The shelf life is a
minimum of three years at 80° F (27°C) and six months at 100°F (38°C), but
significantly extended shelf life for the entrée has been demonstrated in storage tests. The MCW is packed in a white meal bag and the LRP in a beige color bag.

The Modular Operational Ration Enhancement (MORE) was developed to augment daily operational rations with additional components tailored to particular environments. There are two types of MORE: one targets high altitude and cold weather while the other is intended for hot
weather operations. Warfighters in extreme environments, such as cold weather, high altitude or elevated temperature, require extra calories beyond the standard operational rations in order to combat weight loss and decreased physical and cognitive abilities. The MORE provides the correct amount of extra calories for these specific environmental scenarios with the right balance of fat, carbohydrate, and protein. The MORE includes food components specifically formulated to improve the mental and physical abilities of Warfighters in demanding, extreme conditions. MORE components are calorically dense and carry a balance of carbohydrates, caffeine, electrolytes, vitamins, antioxidants, and amino acids.

Q: Robert

What was your dream job when you were a kid?

A: Tom Yang

My dream job used to be being a medical doctor like my father. That is a grat job to save human lives and can make a lot of money. Now I am a food technologist with not much money but I can save world hunger.

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Tom Miller

    Tom Miller is the producer of “Secret Life” and co-editor of the site’s blog. His job involves interviewing scientists and engineers, getting them to tell their amazing stories and occasionally trying to get them to sing. It’s a fantastic gig and Tom is extremely grateful for it.