Navy Is Dumping “Blueberry Camouflage” Uniform081107-N-9999X-002 NORFOLK, Va. (Nov. 7, 2008) Sailors wear the Navy working uniform (NWU) at Naval Air Station Oceana. The NWU is intended for year-round wear and will be the standard working uniform ashore by October 2010. The NWU will replace working utilities, tropical working uniforms, wash khakis, winter working blue, aviation working green, and non-tactical/environmental usage of camouflage utility uniforms. Unless otherwise prescribed by the regional commander, the NWU is authorized to be worn at all facilities on base. (U.S. Navy Photo/Released)
What some call the U.S. military’s most pointless and criticized uniforms are being done away with, Navy officials announced Thursday.
The blue and gray camouflage patterned Navy working uniform Type 1, also known as “Blueberries,” which was first introduced in 2009, is being dumped October 1, but will take three years to fully fade out. The uniform will be replaced by the NWU Type III which has a woodland camouflage appearance.
Sailors will be given the option to wear either the NWU Type 1 or NWU Type III by October 1, but will be required to wear the NWU Type III as the primary uniform ashore by October 1, 2019.
The NWU Type III is known for being more comfortable and the switch could save a lot of money according to officials.
“They want uniforms that are comfortable, lightweight, breathable … and they want fewer of them. We have heard the feedback and we are acting on it. As a direct result of Sailors’ input, effective Oct. 1, we will transition from the NWU Type I to the NWU Type III as our primary shore working uniform,” Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus said in a statement.
The green woodland cammies will begin to be issued to recruits by October, 2017.
The Clothing Replacement Allowance will be adjusted for enlisted so that they can get the woodland cammies, but commissioned officers will have to pay out of pocket because they receive a one-time only career uniform stipend.
Getting rid of the NWU Type I will save the military $10 million a year.