No Desiccants Needed: Federal Fresh-Fire Packs for 5.56

XM855FF30

Preppers may want to pay attention: Federal has gone live with nitrogen-purged “fresh-fire” packs for 5.56 rounds. Federal is packaging 30 rounds (coincidentally ideal for most standard-capacity magazines) of 5.56 in (very) long-term storable containers. The “Fresh Fire” packs (also shipping in .22LR) are purged and then completely sealed in corrosion-resistant packaging.

Both 55 FMJ and 62-grain FMJ LAP rounds are available. The 55-grain pills retail for $18.95 (about .63 cents/round) and the 62-grain rounds retail for $20.95 (.69 cents.round). I have seen the 62-grain in stock for $14.95.

Its a neat solution for preppers, but the round packaging is annoying for dense storage solutions. Is it worth the extra price? I think so for those looking for no-hassle, no-fuss shelf-ready storage.

Video courtesy of Cabela’s:



Nathan S.

One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

Nathan can be reached at Nathan.S@TheFirearmBlog.com

The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.


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  • Kurt

    Why are these necessary? What’s the shelf life on non-nitrogen-stored ammo (assuming you’re not storing it under water or in extreme temps)?

    I have some .22LR that I bought in the late ’70s that still works. It has been sitting in the original boxes in my storage unit and in a closet for 35 years. No failures yet.

    • raz-0

      As a data point, a friend got handed a bunch of ammo from the late 50s early 60s. He tested some before selling it off. It went bang but generated some weird sparks at random. That was 22lr stored in the bottom of a closet in a bedroom in factory cardboard boxes.

      • Sulaco

        I have seen .30-06 ammo from WWI fired with no problem…

        • raz-0

          Oh yeah, I meant more along the lines as that was the closest thing I have seen to ammo “going bad”. I’ve also seen WWII surplus ammo shot out of a genuine WWII 1911 and although it had mixed muzzle report, it all went bang.

          The only thing ammo really needs protection form is contact with lots of water like flooding. That’ll mess up your stash but good.

      • RaunchyDawg

        And i bet that shit still would kill something

  • dan citizen

    I’m still shooting WW1 and WW2 surplus ammo

    • John

      I didn’t know they used 5.56 in either of the world wars.

      • SP mclaughlin

        Damn, I wanted to say that.

        • dan citizen

          They totally had 5.56 in WW1 & 2, only it was called 30 06 back then. Oh, and the bullet used to measure .308 and weighed three times as much, the case was a roomy 63mm long back then.

          Seriously though, selling “specially packaged” ammo is addressing a problem that isn’t there.

          • Grindstone50k

            But it is great targeted marketing.

          • dan citizen

            most definitely. I wonder why they chose the round packaging? Maybe it fits in PVC pipes or something?

          • Giolli Joker

            I guess availability from the supplier… having a bespoke container would be expensive and the round shape makes the sealing much easier to be obtained as you can screw the lid on.

          • shootbrownelk

            It’s called “Stackability”. The same as their .22 ammo in nitrogen purged cans. Just another way to charge you more…IMO

          • go4it

            @ dan citizen: 5.56 used to be 30.06? You’re joking right? 556 is “juiced up” .22 caliber – in bullet weight and velocity. 30.06 is full .30 caliber, industrial-strength, “one decent hit and you’re dead” ordnance – fired from the M1 Garand. They are polar opposites ….

          • RaunchyDawg

            Hahaha did you pass the IQ test to be able to own and operate firearms?

  • Mike N.

    It would be much cheaper and probably not any worse to just throw your ammo in an ammo can and put in one of those desiccant packs. A reusable 40gr desiccant pack is $6 from MidwayUSA. Add $20 for an ammo can, and you’re looking at $0.33 a round with the going rate of XM193 being $0.30 a round in 1k quantities.

    • steveday72

      Or just package them yourself using vaccuum packs and a heat sealer used for storing food.

  • Hanover Fiste

    I suspect the packaging is for those that like to bury supplies in PVC pipes, i.e. morons.

  • Ratcraft

    Great marketing. No real need for it, in my book, but there are those who will buy it to put in their fallout shelter with their saltine crackers from the Korean war..

  • Seerightthere!

    Nice video, but my local Cabela’s never has either of these, especially .22lr

  • RonCatdaddy

    And just WHERE exactly is 22LR available at retail? TWENTY months that stuff has been unavailable. Something CRIMINAL is going on!! The makers claim they are making more than ever…….but yet, the supply chain to my local Wal-mart (and apparently about all others) has been reduced 90% for TWENTY MONTHS!!

    • raz-0

      Lets see. Pre-panic 80 million gun owners split ~1.2 billion rounds of .22lr per year amongst them. About 15 rounds per person. That’s not a lot of capacity to absorb the demands of a market that suddenly wants your product in multiples of a thousand at a much higher ratio than before. Granted the 1.2 billion was an industry estimate, but if you look at the big makers’ claims of capacity back then, it seems a reasonable number for at least the big manufacturers’ output. If you look at claims of capacity today, a lot appear to have about doubled output. So figure about 2.5 billion rounds of 22 split 80 million ways. So we have production capacity of about 32 rounds per gun owner per year.

      If you are seeing only 90% of availability vaporize, you guys are doing great. Around here availability has been reduced by essentially 100%. Essentially, nobody has it, nobody gets it without going mail order or leaving the state. One of the local guns hops was all excited to tell the local crowd they scored a relatively huge supply of .22… a bit over 7000 rounds in various package sizes. rimfire didn’t have a lot of idle capacity to turn on line centerfire did, and it is a lot more manual process.

      By the time I ship any .22 I can find here, at BEST it is a bit over half the price of my .223 reloads.

  • Ken

    I’d still prefer blister packs or battle packs, like Aussie, Swedish, or Danish ammo is packed. They seem like they’ll stack better than these round cans.

  • E M Johnson

    Funny how people with no interest in a product can’t help themselves but to throw out negative comments. Well for us morons that find it prudent to stash some rounds out of sight for rainy days this is an interesting option. As for the saltine crackers I’ll pass. I prefer mountain house packs for those caches.

    • dan citizen

      And why not use the current military fodder that is probably much better prepped for long term storage at a fraction of the cost per round?

      • M

        I would be careful about the military surplus 5.56.
        Something about how a batch of euro 5.56 was making soldiers sick due to the excessive noxious fumes. That ammo IIRC was repackaged and sold here

        • dan citizen

          I don’t shoot much 5.56, but thanx for the valuable info.

        • Fred Johnson

          Noxious fumes? What?

          Chemical weaponry packed in the gun powder?

          At least it ain’t black powder fired indoors . . . cough . . . choke . . .

          • Renegade

            You get enough guys shooting black powder outdoors on a windless day, especially toward sunset, that smoke doesn’t go anywhere. Both cool and annoying at the same time.

  • gggplaya

    Would only be useful in much larger spam cans. Seems like a lot of effort to purge small quantities. Makes more sense to do spam cans of 400+ rounds, people would pay the extra $20 or so for packaging. However, this price for 30 is about 50% increase in cost, doesn’t make sense. Federal should fire their marketing people, who are supposed to study the market better.

    • Leonard

      No they just gave that guy a promotion, because said marketeer realized American’s have an obsession with individually packed, fun sized morsels of whatever -regardless of its increased net cost.

  • Nergyl

    You critics are blind to the needs of Americans who will wait out the apocalypse in timed cryo-vaults. Obviously, they’ll need ammo that can be stored for centuries to hold out against the inevitable mutant hordes.

    • kipy

      Those damn lizard people weren’t counting on nitrogen packed 223!! Tho I wonder if 223 is the best round choice for mutant lizard flesh?….

  • Pete

    Anybody else notice this looks like they started packing ammo on the Planter’s peanut packaging line? This just looks like repurposed food packaging. As for the 30 round bit, I’m sure they’re banking on people buying the novelty and then introducing this “technology” in larger sizes which will suspiciously resemble battle packs or spam cans at a later date…