Nearly two decades of uniform upheaval will wind down in 2018, as the Navy implements the first year of the two-year rollout plan for putting the new green Navy Working Uniform Type IIIs in every sailor’s seabag.

The transition officially started Oct. 1, 2017, and will be complete on the same date in 2019, when everyone in the service will have ditched the “blueberries” and will be required to wear the green uniform.

Recruits started getting the new duds at Great Lakes in October and are now beginning to report to their commands in green.

The uniforms are ready for purchase at exchange uniform stores in Navy Region Southwest. The rollout will hit the East Coast in January 2018, when Navy Region Southeast’s exchanges stock the new gear, and will continue expanding in July, when Navy Region Mid-Atlantic and Naval District, Washington join the club

Sailors will see the first of a two-year plus-up in their annual clothing replacement allowances for buying the new uniforms when they become available. How much a sailor actually gets depends on paygrade and time in service.

The Type III uniform is intended for wear ashore, in port and in environments that do not require special clothing, such as flame-resistant uniforms. Officials say it may also be worn at sea for special events at the CO’s discretion

Mark D. Faram is a former reporter for Navy Times. He was a senior writer covering personnel, cultural and historical issues. A nine-year active duty Navy veteran, Faram served from 1978 to 1987 as a Navy Diver and photographer.

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