Food served at Camp Lejeune put to the test against other mess halls

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JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - Fueling our nation's heroes is a key component to success on the battlefield and on Wednesday, the efforts of those who help feed our military in the east were put to the test.

Hundreds of Marines from Camp Lejeune got to eat a delicious meal as part of a friendly competition that judges food services on base compared to their counterparts across the country.

Mess Hall Services from Camp Lejeune gathered early in the morning on the Camp Davis Training Grounds to begin preparing a meal for the W.P.T Hill Food Service Competition.

Around 650 Camp Lejeune Marines ate a full course meal that featured a choice of three entrees, several sides, and desserts.

Judges from the National Restaurant Association walked around evaluating the food on sanitation, preparation, presentation and other criteria.

"It means a lot because food service doesn't really get recognized too much, so for us to do such an event as this one right here, it would be meaningful," says Lcpl. Cleary Esperian with Camp Lejeune Food Service Administration.

This is the final round of the competition and Camp Lejeune is competing against Camp Pendleton and Camp Butler.

The other military installations will do their entries in their respective areas of California and Okinawa, Japan later on in March.

The winners will be announced in May at the National Restaurant Association Trade Show.

Last year, Camp Lejeune won the award for best Full Food Service Mess Hall and Best Field Mess.