The marines are automating meal preparation in the field. Currently, field kitchens are set up under tents. The Rapid Deployment Kitchen is a cargo container sized box that can be set up by its 16 Marine crew in under five hours (including the tents that the troops will eat under. Costing about a quarter million dollars, the unit is a modified civilian item and the first ones will go into service by the end of the year. Eventually, the Marines will get 79 of them. The existing field kitchen equipment entered service in 1959. The new unit allows the Marine cooks to serve 800 troops more quickly and with less effort. Good chow in the field has always been a sure way to keep morale up.