FBI Awards Federal Premium Contract For Practice Ammo

Here at Bearing Arms, we’ve documented the troubles Federal Premium has undergone of late. There’s been no joy in writing about any of it, in part because I’ve shot a lot of Federal through the years and have been very pleased by the ammo. The idea of the company being in a tough spot is anything but good news.


What is good news is the contract they just picked up which should definitely help ease any pain they might still be feeling.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has awarded Vista Outdoor a contract to supply FBI and other Federal Government Agencies with a high-performance Federal Premium 9mm handgun training round specifically designed to support their mission.

The IDIQ (indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity) contract, which has four option years, is for up to $19 million in 9mm handgun training rounds. This ammunition is built distinctively to FBI’s specifications using Federal Premium’s precision manufacturing and testing methods, innovative technology, and industry-leading components.

“We are extremely proud of this important contract, which continues Federal Premium’s long-running tradition of supplying law enforcement, military personnel and civilians worldwide with the most reliable ammunition possible,” said Federal Premium President Jason Vanderbrink. “This high-value, optimized training round utilizes a new match-grade bullet designed specifically for the FBI to maximize accuracy, along with Federal Premium’s Catalyst lead-free primer formulation to provide reliable, consistent ignition.”

Since 1922, Federal Premium Ammunition has been a staple for shooters wanting high-quality shotshell, centerfire and rimfire ammunition. The company’s relentless pursuit of excellence and innovation has resulted in numerous technological breakthroughs, such as the patented Catalyst primer used in the new FBI training round.

The extremely clean-burning Catalyst primer creates more uniform and complete propellant combustion, yielding minimal velocity variation and consistent bullet launch for improved accuracy. It is also non-hydrophilic, so it does not attract water molecules like DDNP-based mixes found in most lead-free primers, resulting in better reliability. The Federal Premium proprietary Catalyst primer provides the cleanest, most consistent ignition possible.

Civilians and other Law Enforcement agencies looking for similar high-performance primers in their range ammunition can find it in Federal’s full lineup of lead-free American Eagle and Syntech ammunition. The polymer-encapsulated Syntech bullet prevents metal-on-metal contact between the bullet and bore, which can shorten barrel life and rob accuracy, while also eliminating copper and lead fouling. Combined with specialized clean-burning powders, your gun will stay cleaner longer, so you can shoot more – and shoot better.

Federal Premium is a brand of Vista Outdoor Inc., an outdoor sports and recreation company. For more information on Federal Premium, go to www.federalpremium.com.


Now $19 million doesn’t sound like a lot when it comes to government contracts, but it’s nothing to sneeze at. Further, it’s not like Federal Premium isn’t still selling to non-law enforcement buyers. In other words, it’s not the only thing they have going for them at the moment. It’s merely a nice line of income over and above what they’re already selling.

It’s also interesting to see the FBI going back to the 9mm round. After the Miami shootout all those years ago, the FBI swore off the round, feeling it wasn’t sufficient for their needs. Now it seems they’re moving back in that direction. As a 9mm fan myself, I’m down with that action.

This will, undoubtedly, reignite all the caliber wars the gun forums have spent years trying to stamp down.

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