The United States Navy has found by experience that the proper amount of food to prepare per man for a mess of N men is not a linear function of N. As this is not in accord with what one Might expect at first sight, it was thought worthwhile to consider the problem from the standpoint of the theory of probability. The Navy Cook Book1 says,
All of the following recipes are intended for 100 men. When the number in any one mess is in excess of this amount, the following reductions are recommended:
300 to 500 men, reduce recipe by 8%
500 to 1,000 men, reduce recipe by 10%
More than 1,000 men, reduce recipe by 12%
In a large mess, considerable saving will result by carefully following the reductions recommended.