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Fact Check-UK Government tender notice for operational ration packs is a ‘regular contract’ for the Armed Forces

A UK Government tender notice for operational ration packs, which has been circulating widely on social media, is a regular contract covering the supply of the packs to support the Armed Forces during military operations and exercises until 2030, the Ministry of Defence has told Reuters.

Social media users are sharing a screenshot of the webpage where the notice was published (here) to claim that the government is preparing for a planned food shortage as part of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030).

One Facebook user, whose post has been shared more than 160 times (here), uploaded screengrabs of the tender notice alongside a caption which reads: “My heart sank when I read the contract end date is 31st March 2030. We all know what’s coming, it’s here on their website, why else are contracts worth 250 million pound being offered for ration packs by the Ministry of Defence.”

In the comments below his post, he says: “It’s the dates that stuck out to me. Agenda 2030.”

A similar Twitter post, which has been shared around 400 times (here), claims that the government is “planning food shortages for (the) next 7 years”.

Other examples of posts questioning the purpose of the contract notice can be found on Facebook (here, here and here), where together they have been shared more than 180 times, and on Twitter (here) , (here) , (here) and (here), the last of which has more than 630 shares.

Agenda 2030 is a set of Sustainable Development Goals devised in 2015 at the United Nations General Assembly (sdgs.un.org/2030agenda). They are available to read online and outline objectives like ending hunger, achieving gender equality, and combating climate change.

The initiative has often been falsely accused of being a conspiracy (here) and has previously featured in misinformation regarding alleged plots involving COVID-19 (here) and (here).

Likewise, the topic of planned food shortages has been widely addressed by Reuters Fact Check (here) , (here) , (here) and (here).

However, a Ministry of Defence (MoD) spokesperson told Reuters via email that issuing a tender notice like this is standard practice when acquiring products such as operational ration packs.

“This is a regular contract for the supply of ration packs to support UK Armed Forces personnel while on military operations and exercises, covering until 2030,” they said.

The UK Government page also mentions that the notice has been posted on behalf of the MoD (here).

VERDICT

Missing context. The tender notice is a regular contract put out by the MoD to secure ration packs for the UK Armed Forces. It is unrelated to food shortages or the UN’s Agenda 2030.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here.

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