Ration Law and Legal Definition

Rationing is the managed distribution of resources and scarce goods or services. Rationing places restrictions on how much people are allowed to buy or consume. Rationing has been used on numerous commodities, such a food, gasoline, and cigarettes.

The first Navy ration law is found in a act of Congress passed in 1794, which provided for a daily fixed allowance of food items for each day of the week. A typical day’s ration was one pound of hard bread, one and one-half pounds of salt beef and one-half pint of rice. Included with this ration was a half-pint of distilled spirits or one-quart of beer.