Operating from four bases across the United States, Camp Pendleton, Calf., Fort Bragg, N.C., Fort Pickett, Va., and Fort A.P. Hill, Va., the 475th Quartermaster Group hosts the 2013 QLLEX, Quartermaster Liquid Logistics Exercise, from June 1 through 14.

Originally designed as a petroleum exercise, QLLEX has become much more over the years and currently no other other CONUS-based exercise provides such a broad suite of real-world training opportunities for soldiers. QLLEX is a multicomponent exercise that challenges Quartermaster soldiers with real-time operations under combat operations and tempo.

In addition to petroleum operations, QLLEX allows soldiers the opportunity to demonstrate excellence in sustainment areas of water purification, laundry, personal hygiene and food preparation in expeditionary conditions. One of the benefits of the QLLEX exercise is the reliance on military self-sufficiency.

For food service soldiers, QLLEX means the chance to train on their field food preparation capabilities. For Pvt. 1st Class Kennice Parker, from the 611th Quartermaster Company, Baltimore, Md., QLLEX has allowed her to prepare some of her first meals in a field environment, saying, "This is my first time cooking since AIT."

With over 2,700 soldiers participating in this years exercise, it will test the capacity of all the cooks, said Staff Sgt. Michael Harbison from the 298th Transportation Company, based in Franklin, Pa., "Cooking in this environment is a fun challenge," adding, "We are working at the full capacity of our MKT's [Mobile Kitchen Trailer]".