Food Storage 101 Part I

Sharon March 4th, 2008

Welcome to the very first day of my month-long food storage class.  I’ll be posting material every Tuesday and Wednesday about how and why to preserve and store food.   Today, we’re starting with the very basics – the reasons why I believe everyone should store food, and the very basic hows and whys.  I’ll finish this pairing tomorrow.

First of all, I’ve had a couple of emails asking whether I’m talking about Food Preservation – that is, canning, dehydrating, lactofermenting, etc… or Food Storage (bulk buying, putting food away for some future hard time).  The answer is both – that is I believe it is prudent and wise simply to have a reserve of food for the future, and I also believe that some of that food should come either from your own garden or local food production.  But some of it probably won’t – thus, we need both techniques.  They are inter-related anyway – if you put up the food, you have to know how to store it well, so that you don’t lose it.  Even if you don’t can your own, it is helpful to know something about the process, so you can understand expiration dates.  And whether you are root cellaring your own onions or buying bulk oatmeal, there are real practical questions to be answered.  Where do you put them?  How do you keep them in optimal conditions?  And how, oh how, do you integrate them into your diet regularly?

Food Storage: Not ”Emergency Supplies” but the Stuff of Daily Life 

The one thing this class is NOT about is storing food you don’ t eat – that is, I think that everyone ideally would have a minimum six month food supply, but I also think that ideally, everyone would be eating that food regularly, as part of their regular diet.  That is, it isn’t a matter of rotating, so much as eating all the time the way we should/might need to.  And that means a lot of the discussion will focus on two things – first, how do we eat this way now, and second, how do we store what we (and our families) will actually eat.  For some of us, this is easy.  For others, much, much harder. 

There are, however, compelling reasons to integrate food storage into your diet.  The first is the economic ones.  I’ve posted enough links here recently about rising food costs that I won’t bother repeating them.  But the truth is that bulk buying represents a substantial savings – I recently priced out groceries through amazon groceries (excluding shipping) and bulk prices, and found that bulk purchasing generally saves between 25-70% on food costs.  Given that food prices are inflating rapidly (wheat jumped 25% in one day last month), food you buy now in bulk is likely to be cheaper than food you would buy later.

 The other reason to do so is appetite fatigue.  Several studies from World War II Britain suggest that when people are suddenly forced to shift to an unfamiliar diet, most people will adapt quite well.  But some percentage, usually children, the ill or disabled and the elderly will simply stop eating.  Most of them will start again eventually, but the toll taken by even short term malnutrition on children or already frail people is significant.  And there were some deaths.  That is, if you believe you may ever rely on your food storage, you want to make sure your family is already familiar with the foods you will be eating in a crisis.

Another good reason for this is that some people do discover food allergies or intolerances when they are suddenly exposed to large quantities of a food they have thus far only eaten in small ones.  Wheat is a famous example – many people, especially children, cannot tolerate huge quantities of wheat in their diet.  Some people may have wheat allergies or celiac disease.  These are not things to find out in the middle of a crisis.

 Finally, think back to the last really stressful, miserable, rotten time in your life.  Think about what you wanted to eat.  I’m going to bet that at no point did you want to think “well, this is interesting…”  In difficult times, all of us want our food to provide us with comfort and consolation, and if it doesn’t, that’s just one more straw on the camel’s back.  Why not store food that makes things easier and better, that reminds you of better times and helps your family feel reassured and safe?

  Whether we’re talking about the short term (six months to a year) storage of fresh fruits and vegetables or the long term storage of dried grains and beans, unless your food storage consists primarily of ramen and twinkies (gah!), the odds are good that eating out of food storage will be eating the way we’re supposed to.  That is, lots of whole grains, beans and roots, fewer preservatives, fewer chemicals.  The more we actually eat what we store and store what we eat, the better off we actually are.

What Are We Storing For?

 Ok, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty practicalities of food storage.  How much?   In figuring this out, it helps to sort through what the reasons are for storing food.  Why on earth are we doing this? 

  • - To Save Money – you can get the same amount of food for 25-75% less money
  • -  Self Reliance and independence! Cycles are normal, preparedness makes sense – Don’t Have to Worry about “what If?”
  • - For personal security – in the event of a job loss, a medical crisis or other problem, you don’t have to worry about food, you don’t have to take charity.
  • - For community security – so we won’t be dependent on emergency support that might or might not arrive – Fema/American Red Cross expect us to have 2 weeks of food and water.  For a longer energy/environmental crisis.
  • - To be able to help and share – with family, charitably, in an emergency.
  • - To reduce your impact on the world: to minimize packaging, buy fair trade or direct from farmers, support local and/or organic producers.
  • - Less dependent on fossil fuels: transported in bulk, fewer trips to the store.

It helps to distinguish between these reasons when we look at the question of how much food to store.  If you look at this from the perspective of someone concerned about an emergency, perhaps a short term crisis like an ice storm, hurricane or earthquake, your answer is going to be different than if you look at this through the lens of your long term food budget. 

I think there’s a tendency, when we talk about food storage, to leap immediately to the end of the world, or if you don’t buy those scenarios, to dismiss the value of food storage with the apocalypse.  But that’s not the primary merit of food storage, in my opinion.  The primary merits of food storage are that it saves your family money, gets you better quality food than you could for the same expenditure, and is environmentally sound.  I also think the fact that it can insulate you from a crisis – whether purely personal or national – has merits.  And that’s where many of us start – and where I’m starting today.  But I do want to remind everyone that food storage is as much or more about your day to day diet than about your opinion about the likelihood of any particular crisis.

2 Weeks Minimum Emergency Food Storage

But beginning from the idea of storing for a crisis, it is worth noting that FEMA and the American Red Cross both expect all Americans to have 2 weeks stored of food, water and medications, because some people may not be “gotten to” in a crisis for that long.  Now if Hurricane Katrina didn’t make that point for us, it is worth noting that disasters in which no aid is available for 2 weeks or more are not that uncommon.

For example, after a major earthquake in Kobe, Japan, it was more than 2 weeks before some city-center residents were reached by rescue workers.  This was despite the fact that Kobe famously has one of the best earthquake preparedness programs in the world.  In my own region in 1998, a massive ice storm put out power for 10 days to 3 weeks for thousands of people in the Northeast.  The reality is that every one of my readers should be prepared to care for themselves for a minimum of 2 weeks in an emergency.

A two week supply of food for 4 people would look roughly like this:  

4 people would use

  • - 85 Gallons of Water
  • - 2 weeks of medications
  • - About 25lbs of grains/or equivalent calorie dense root vegetables
  • - 10lbs of beans or other legumes
  • - 3 lbs of sweetener
  • - 12 cans of fish or meat
  • - 5 lbs dry milk
  • - 12 cans of vegetables
  • - 2 lbs dried fruit
  • - 1 quart of oil
  • - Some Treats
  • - Just under 50 multivitamins
  • - Salt, baking soda, vinegar, baking powder, yeast, spices

Estimated Cost,  At the Supermarket (excluding Medications): $158.96

Estimated Cost, Ordered in Bulk (Plus You’d Get Extras): $ 103.50

I should note that this is my own recommendations.  It includes twice as much water as FEMA suggests, but remember, the FEMA minimum (1 gallon per person per day) meets only drinking needs, and includes no extras for very hot weather, cooking, washing, etc… But the truth is that no one, ever wants to go 2 weeks without washing – nor should you for health reasons.  So I strongly recommend the larger quantities.  It isn’t necessary to store this water if you have access to water somewhere else – a spring, a hand or solar pump nearby, etc…  I will write more about the mechanics of storing water in tomorrow’s post.

 I’ve also included foods that aren’t on some other lists – treats and dried fruit.  But if you have to switch diets in an emergency, constipation is a potential concern, and dried fruit makes that transition easier.  And IMHO, treats – whether some nuts to nibble, popcorn or the ingredients for chocolate chip cookies are of important psychological value.  I’ve also included more high-protein foods than are strictly necessary, because protein is valuable when people are ill or under stress, and most rich world denizens probably eat a lot of protein – so this helps soften the transition. 

Now this is emergency food, and the assumption is that these are minimums.  But they do give you the basis of an emergency supply.  If you don’t have a 2 week supply of stored food in your house, a means to cook it without electricity, water, medications, basic first aid materials and other necessities – get them.  Do it as quickly as you can afford to.  Because the simple truth is that none of us is safe from a disaster – and weather related disasters are on the rise.

But as I said, that’s not my primary interest here – yes, I think you need a 2 week emergency supply at a minimum.  But it is only a minimum, and storing two weeks worth of food won’t get you the real benefits of food storage – the money savings, the positive diet, the long term sense of security, the environmental benefits. 

So we’ll talk about that in my next post!

Meanwhile a few links to look at:

Check Out Sue Robishaw’s Solar Dehydrator that works even in humid climates like mine and her solar oven plans: http://www.manytracks.com/Homesteading/SolarFoodDryer.htm

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sharonfoodstorage/message/91

If you don’t know the incomparable Jackie Clay, take a romp through her advice columns and essays in Backwoods Home on food storage and related topics: http://www.backwoodshome.com/advice/advice.html

Alan T. Hagan’s exhaustively researched Prudent Food Storage FAQ contains up to date information about how to store almost everything:

 http://www.survival-center.com/foodfaq/

Pat Meadows wrote a great series a while back about meals in which you can combine grains and legumes – here are some ideas: #2007/06/variations-on-theme-i-food-patterns.html and

#2007/06/variations-on-theme-ii-meal-patterns.html

Shasha Cedar wrote two recent posts about specifically storing rice and black beans here:

http://simplicityfirst.wordpress.com/2008/01/27/storing-and-eating-rice/

http://simplicityfirst.wordpress.com/2008/01/18/storing-and-eating-black-beans/ 

While there are definitely some things in the Mormon Food Storage Calculator that I don’t want to include, it does provide you with some nice basics on how much food actually is required for a family for a year: http://lds.about.com/library/bl/faq/blcalculator.htm

Here’s a source of some terrific food storage recipes: http://www.mormonchic.com/recipe/recipebox/pages/foodstorage.asp 

If you are canning or preserving your own, this site has the most current safety information and a lot of other good stuff: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/

Finally, here are some of my own writings about food preservation and food security:

http://sharonastyk.com/2007/07/12/low-energy-food-preservation/

http://sharonastyk.com/2007/05/04/food-preservation-and-democracy/

 Much more to come today and tomorrow – recipes, links, cookbooks – fun stuff!

Sharon

64 Responses to “Food Storage 101 Part I”

  1. kjnm says:

    Thanks so much for this, Sharon. Just what I needed. Looking forward to more.

  2. Wow, I’ve got my shopping list cut out for me.

    We’ve got enough beans, oil, dried fruit, dry milk, vitamins, salt etc.; almost enough grains and sweetener; 2/3 as much canned fish/protein. What we’re severely lacking, even by the three-day suggestion in California for earthquake preparedness, is water. I had three days worth for a while but began using some of the stock without replenishing.

    There is an urban stream in our back yard (we’re six blocks from the source) but I wouldn’t use it unless we were totally dying of thirst & we had a way to boil/sanitize it (we do have some chlorox in the earthquake kit, doesn’t that help?).

    The issue with water is storing it, and rotating it – I hate using bottled water, all those plastic bottles, when our municipal water is so good.

    But now thanks to your reminder, I will buy more bottled water – it’s on sale at the local supermarket. Guess I could reuse the bottles as I rotate, filling them with tap water, huh? Will also purchase bulghur wheat, organic bread flour, and honey at our local bulk/natural foods/vitamin store. We have plenty of pasta – it’s on sale too, and I stocked up last week.

  3. Ailsa Ek says:

    I’m storing water in rinsed-out two liter soda bottles. I try to rotate them by using the oldest one to refill the dog’s water dish. I really need to add more of them, though, as I’ve only got about eight to ten right now, and we need more than that. 161 two liter bottles are going to take up a lot of space!

  4. Anon says:

    Where does one put all those water bottles exactly? We have about 6 gallons (for 2 people living in an apartment) in the fridge, because originally they were in a closet and the plastic melted (!) and the water leaked after about 3 months, even though there’s no heat in the closet.

    I’m at a loss as to where to put it all and how long before we should start rotating (I like the pet idea because I don’t want to drink water sitting in plastic unless absolutely necessary).

    Thanks for all this important info.

  5. Anon says:

    p.s. and is it even safe to put tap water in rinsed bottle for any period of time? Do you have to put a bit of clorine in first and let it evaporate?

    Anyone know of a good web site that addresses the water issue?

    Thanks

  6. Helen says:

    Thankyou Sharon, I’m looking forward to this series. We keep a reasonable stockpile but it isn’t well planned and doesn’t cover everything we would need. I’m also a newcomer to preserving and am keen to learn more about that.

  7. Sharon said she’d discuss water storage tomorrow (March 5).

    Let me pull from her post to emphasize: whatever you think/conclude/believe about the possibility of a long emergency, storing food and water is good planning.

    Here in California we’re always being told to have our earthquake supplies handy; and since Katrina we’ve all realized that three days probably won’t be nearly enough. But other parts of the country have other disasters/emergencies – weather-related power outages that last a week, for instance. Snow. Flooding. You name it. So it’s a good idea to heed this call and get yourselves organized.

    I recently blogged an article in my local (Calif.) paper about the troubles of pizzerias and bakeries – flour & pasta prices are skyrocketing. Readers of this blog won’t be surprised at the news. Buy pasta now, I counseled (and I see the local supermarket is selling five pound bags of pasta for $3.50; my local bulk staples market sells organic bread flour at 5# for $2. I’ve got some shopping to do)

  8. purrsikat says:

    Thanks so much for making all this information available to the general public. It’s so easy to talk about, yet taking action (or trying to) on food storage has left me a bit .. unorganised & slapdash. Having it all laid out like this will really help & adjustments can be made depending on each different situation.. Great stuff.

    I can’t wait for more information.. I feel like a greedy child! ;)

    I wish there was some way that I could help you in return. :)

  9. tk says:

    Beautiful … now I’m like “Customize it for me, with my dairy allergy/lactose intolerance!” but I suppose I can do that myself if I have to. ;)

  10. kate says:

    Here’s the metric conversion for the 2 weeks food storage:

    • - 320 litres of Water
    • - 2 weeks of medications
    • - About 11kg of grains/or equivalent calorie dense root vegetables
    • - 4.5kg of beans or other legumes
    • - 1.4kg of sweetener
    • - 12 cans of fish or meat
    • - 2.25kg dry milk
    • - 12 cans of vegetables
    • - 900gm dried fruit
    • - 1 litre of oil
    • - Some Treats
    • - Just under 50 multivitamins
    • - Salt, baking soda, vinegar, baking powder, yeast, spices

  11. Sharon says:

    Hi Folks – Thanks for all the great replies. TK, if you can’t use dairy, I would just up the proteins a bit (a couple more cans of things) or store shelf stable soymilk (I don’t know how long that stores, I’m afraid). Also, you might want to make some of your vegetables canned greens – which aren’t the greatest tasting canned things, but would be rich in calcium. But for two weeks, you don’t have to worry that much about low level deficiencies.

    Kate, thank you for converting it to metric – that’s very helpful. We Americans are so archaic – just be glad I didn’t give measurements in hogsheads ;-) .

    Purrskiat, I’m glad you like it – and you are helping me in return – because you are letting me know it is valuable and useful to you. Thank you.

    Ok, let me go get today’s post (including the water information) up.

    Sharon

  12. Ailsa Ek says:

    OK, how many hogsheads of water do we need? ;)

  13. Don’t know about hogsheads conversions, but Google will convert most other measurements for you, and currency, and calculate sums.

    For instance, type

    100 pounds in kg

    directly into Google, hit enter, you get your answer.

    2 teaspoons in ML

    4 kilometers in miles

    17.5 Euros in dollars – will return most recent posted value.

    265/13 or any other math sum.

    It’s very helpful for converting metric recipes to American measurements.

    FYI

  14. Anon says:

    Thanks for this, Sharon.

    Regarding water storage containers, I save the organic apple juice gallon glass bottles I purchase. I currently use and rotate about 50 of them. They are easy to clean and one can fill them with reverse osmosis water (machine at local supermarkets, 30 cents/gal.) or any other water source you may use.

    If you don’t buy organic apple juice ($7.49/gal.) at your local food coop or natural food store, you can still obtain these glass bottles for free by asking the manager of organic cafes or smoothy places to save them for you. They normally recycle them and would willingly save them and give them to you. I did this years ago for hurricane preparedness.

    Although I make my own soymilk with SoyaPower soymilk maker (electric!), I still store cases of organic soymilk. They are always dated. Some of my cases say, “best if used by 26 Dec. 08.”

    ~Vegan

  15. I will be most interested in seeing information for singles/couples who live in small spaces with little storage room and have no gardens.

    As a single urban dweller in a 280 Square foot studio, with no car, transporting and storing a lot of bulk food and water is not very practical for me.

  16. Sharon says:

    Kellia – I know what you mean – I lived in a studio of about that size for some time. And yet, there are still always places to put things ;-) . It is, when viewed 3 dimensionally, a surprising amount of space. So think up, and down – under beds, on vertical shelves, etc…. I know people who have a food storage couch (openable wooden bin with buckets inside) instead of a regular couch (I also know people who have a worm bin bench, but that’s maybe another post ;-) ). We store our squash under our beds. If it is something you care about, you can be creative and find the space, I think.

    As for transport, you’d probably want to have things delivered – or use borrow a bike with a trailer, which can easily hold several hundred pounds.

    Vegan thanks for that tip – free big glass jars – yay!!!

    Sharon

  17. Anthony says:

    Excellent article. Food storage today is thought to be a survivalist or conspiracy thing, it’s not. Growing up in the country, it was once the normal thing. My wife and I grow two med size gardens, and have cattle. plus we’re buying a pig (ready to store) from a local farmer. I could not imagine buying store bought meat, green beans, etc. What we can not raise or fall short we buy from a farmer’s market, like in the case of the drought last year, in bulk. For those that might argue they don’t have time, my wife and I both work full time, plus our cattle. No, I’m not a full time farmer. We can, freeze, and dry enough for us, both my and her parents, one older daughter and her family, and during the season. give away overages to neighbors and friends. Everything prepared from scratch, grown natural, and stored natural. Not bad for 2 middle aged people, one with NHL, which I also manage with natural food and vitamins. It is as simple as turning off the TV. It’s not having time … it’s just proper allotment.

  18. Leila says:

    Rami Zurayk at Land and People blog (he’s the agronomist and food specialist at American U. Beirut) posted about traditional Lebanese food storage last fall. He didn’t go into great detail though. He is very into traditional foods and farming.

    My own relatives live a pretty modern style life in their village which is now a suburb of the nearby city of Sidon; they don’t do much farming any more, except for the olive harvest (which they hire foreign laborers to bring in although I’ve seen photos of some of the American emigres working – nothing like living in America to give you a taste for traditional labor). But everybody keeps food stored. Whenever there is a crisis, like the big one of July-August 2006, they have food and water to cope. our village took in 750 refugees in 2006, for instance. There was food for everybody.

    Back in the 70s my grandmother was the queen of our family’s olive oil distribution. All the olive oil was kept in her store room (and it was big enough to house a family – it had been her living room before they added on to the flat) and when one of the daughters-in-law needed olive oil, she sent large bottles up to my grandmother who would fill them. And of course grandmother would complain if she thought the DILs were too liberal with their olive oil! She also kept flour, bulghur wheat, lentils, chickpeas, vegetable oil (in big tins stamped “A Gift From the People of The United States of America” but we paid for the stuff, it wasn’t free) rice, preserved figs and tomatoes, garlic, and lots of herbs, most of them wildcrafted on our farm. You can imagine the store room smelled strongly of thyme. I’m sure she kept other things too but I was a child and didn’t catalogue what was in there.

    Up until the 1960s, most of these items were produce of our property (wheat yes, rice no). For sweetener, in hard times, they used fig syrup. A relative recently told me when I asked about famine (which has hit Lebanon more than once in the last hundred years) that many in the village could still grow their own wheat, so nobody starved, even during the long civil war of the 1970s-80s. With the rapid development all around us I doubt that’s true today.

  19. Kasa says:

    Ok, one question… canned fish? And meat? Please elaborate because all I can think of here is spam and tuna (and I am, alas, definitely planning on not eating either of them if I can help it).

    Also in regards to containers for water storage, I’ve buy milk from the local dairy at my co-op and just don’t return the glass bottles for the deposit. Just another option to consider.

  20. Sharon says:

    Leila – That’s fascinating. And Anthony – good for you! That’s great – I agree, I can’t imagine eating grocery store stuff much anymore.

    Kasa, we buy cases of wild caught salmon direct from the cannery (FIL goes there, so I can’t give you an internet solution) which is most of our fish. You could also use sustainably farmed catfish and put it up yourself. We also do can some chicken and turkey, along with the broth. I’m sure organic, sustainably raised canned meats are out there somewhere, but I don’t know that much about them. I’ll post some material on canning low acid foods, including meats in the next couple of weeks.

    Spam is way not on our menu ;-) .

    Sharon

  21. feonixrift says:

    Great stuff. I’ve started working lentils&rice into the lifestyle around here, and keeping more stuff in the freezer. Not only is eating differently a big deal, it takes practice to figure out how to cook differently too. There’ve been days where I totally mangled dinner and we ended up ordering pizza.

  22. ct says:

    I did it on the cheap — two $13 50lb bags of white rice from Costco.

  23. “I did it on the cheap — two $13 50lb bags of white rice from Costco.”

    Hope you also stored some good multivitamins, too. ;-)

  24. siamway says:

    I found you searching on Discount Shopping Easy day Thanks for the nice post! and if you want find low price shopping on amazon super store pls go to my site at siamway.com

    thanks

  25. [...] Click here for the first entry in Sharon’s (of Casaubon’s Book) month-long series on food storage. [...]

  26. David Floyd says:

    Sharon-

    Thanks for this very thorough piece and for your most excellent blog. We have a new project going in Rhode Island, and I’ve linked to your stuff almost from the beginning. Looking forward to your books.

  27. [...] Food Storage 101 Part IPutting Up Your OwnGrowing or Buying Fresh Food for Root CellaringWhat Food Storage Can and Can’t Doand for a few chuckles:Screwing It Up – A Manual for the New Home Preserver [...]

  28. Mike says:

    I have a question. I have a family of 5, three children under the age of 7. Based upon online food storage calculators, I need almost 1800 pounds of grains. At 33 lbs per 5 gallon bucket, that is 54 buckets. How does someone store that much? WHere do I put it?

  29. Missy says:

    Just a few thoughts, – If you have a large family, seams as though you need a warehouse to store the food. My husband is a diabetic and that comes with its own problems. Lots of canned meat for us.
    Even though beans store well, they take along time to cook, Yes you have food but you cannot cook it under emergency conditions. I would store a lot of canned beans for the protein. I agree completely with the comfort food assessment. Being married to a diabetic, he sticks to his heath diet, but I always have to keep something small and sweat on hand. ( Mini chocolate chips)(cranberry oatmeal cookies) If someone knows links on how to store water without it going stale- please tell. Our fluids can also come from things that do not have to be alternated like canned juice, soft drinks, ect. I also love Anthony’s post on March 5, we have 27′s acres in the country we are trying to move to. We are learning to garden in Texas and are growing fruit trees. We have to drill through rock to do that. Also since this post is about emergency storage – Learn to double cook every meal and freeze, I do it for every thing, Oatmeal in the morning, soups, stews, etc. This saves, time & money because we all have times when we just cannot cook. Just pull it out of the freezer and microwave. Clean the pot one time for 2 or 3 meals. Make TV dinners out of left overs.
    In addition in an emergency situations think, about how you and your loved ones time will be spent During a crisis and what things to have on hand to handle bordom. Thanks for this wonderful site.
    Take Care to All.
    Missy

  30. Sarah says:

    I love this! Thank you.

  31. Tian says:

    Google has no problem with hogshead conversions either!

    I googled “1 gallon in hogsheads” and was promptly reassured that
    “1 US gallon = 0.0158730159 hogsheads”!

    Thanks for a great post, Sharon!

  32. Anonymous says:

    “Clorox liquid bleach can be used to disinfect water in the event of an emergency. In those instances, only a small amount of the bleach is needed, anywhere from 8 to 16 drops per gallon of water, depending on the condition of the water.”

    Noe Galvan, Ph.D.
    Product Safety, Environmental & Regulatory Compliance

  33. Great site. Learning how to do it and how to use it will help sooo many people. I have a great resource to completement your teacings. My wife has had a book for about 10 years now that fills in the whats, hows and whys. Take a look if you’re interested at http://www.marlenesmagic.com. Their is important info you can download and hundreds of recipies that will help you eat all the good stuff your stored.

  34. Love the website! Another preparedness website that I visit, http://www.apreparedhome.com, has just posted some new food storage calculators that will help YOU figure out what YOUR family eats and what they need to store for a year – from YOUR own recipes – not somebody else’s ideas or eating habits.

    Dawn Van Nosdol, who writes a food storage/preparedness column for her local newspaper, has created some calculators to figure out how much you use of the everyday foods you eat – for a year. She is just now starting her series of six articles explaining how to use them.

    Right now I’m figuring out my menu so that I can be ready for the next installment (All of the caluclators are on-line, but the instructions are coming with each installment.)

  35. Todd says:

    I have seen hundreds of food storages. I have helped organize & consult on what to have
    included in your food storage. I share the ideas that I have accumulated over the years.

    Along with your wheat, beans & rice, your canned foods etc. Some even have MRE’s & freeze
    dried items. Whatever it is you have in your food storage, I just want to give you a few
    ideas & suggestions. I am also open for suggestions, after 17 years, I still come across
    great ideas.

    First, make sure you have a good variety of spices. You can eat the same beans or rice a
    lot easier when one day they taste like taco spices & the next day curry etc. A variety of
    spices will make anything easier to eat long term. I personally have many bottles of
    tobasco. I can eat bugs with tobasco, crickets, worms etc. I am serious.

    In many emergencies clean water is a big problem. You will go through hundreds of gallons
    of water in just a few short weeks. Make sure you have a good water filter with your food
    storage. You use a lot of water to cook with & drink. A water filter that you hand pump will
    turn rain water, canal water or saved water from cooking etc. into good drinking water again.

    Have some good vitamins. Make sure they are good natural vitamins that your body will
    digest & absorb. 90% of vitamins pass through you & end up clogging the sewers. True.
    I came across Lifecaps, that is what I have in my food storage, 72 hour kits & bug out bags.
    They digest & get in your system within 20-25 minutes. All natural.
    You can survive on lifecaps & water alone for months. They have all the vitamins & minerals,
    also iodine & a little natural sugar to keep your blood sugar level stable. I bought 25
    bottles before I found a coupon code & then bought 75 more bottles. The coupon code is
    “healthcap” (save 33%) & you can find out more at lifecaps.net.

    Keep hand sterilizer with your food storage & hydrogen peroxide. In an emergency people get
    sick & die from simple infections. In an emergency, you lose your appetite & forget to drink
    water, under stress. Your immune system suffers tremendously & small infections grow large.
    Under stress TAKE YOUR VITAMINS & DRINK WATER! You will have more energy to deal with the
    emergency & have a healthy immune system. Keep your hands clean when dealing with food &
    use the hydrogen peroxide even on small cuts as a precaution. It can save your life.

  36. Heaps of Good information in your posting, I bookmarked your blog so I can visit again in the near future, Cheers

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  38. Richard says:

    Thanks Sharon for crunching the numbers on this . There are two in my house so I will divide in half your recommendation.

  39. Doktortitel says:

    My developer is trying to convince me to move to .net from PHP. I have always disliked the idea because of the expenses. But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using Movable-type on a number of websites for about a year and am concerned about switching to another platform. I have heard very good things about blogengine.net. Is there a way I can transfer all my wordpress content into it? Any kind of help would be greatly appreciated!

  40. herbatacena says:

    Ja bardzo dużo znamy o herbata cena. ten blog będzie w tym adresie. całuski, pozdrawiam, hej pozdro

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