Best Food Preservation and Storage Internet Resources?

Sharon December 20th, 2008

So I’m winding up Independence Days (Hallelujah – ok, 3 books in less than 2 years is too much!), and working on the appendices, and hoping to draw on your expertise.  Since I’ve got slow dial up, I don’t always do as much web surfing as I probably should – far too sloooooow.  So I bet there are some great sources out there I’m missing.  I was hoping you’d offer up your suggestions for the best sites on:

 Bulk food suppliers: I’ve already got a few obvious ones like www.bulkfood.com and www.waltonfeed.com – but what else?  Who else is out there?  Are there niche suppliers you recommend for special diets or particular needs?

Farmers who sell grains and beans directly off the farm in many regions – sources for local products.  Got a favorite place to get soybeans, rice or buckwheat?  Let us know.

Good fair trade sources of spices and herbs

Great recipe sites that emphasize cooking with food storage or with basic whole grains, legumes and mostly storable ingredients.

Food preservation recipe sites: They might specialize in one kind of preserving – lactofermentation, or jam making without sugar.  I’ve got my favorites, but I’d like to add more.

Because the array of available tools and manufacturers for food preservation equipment changes so frequently, if you know sites that review these tools, I’d love to include them – that way, the tools that don’t even exist when the book goes to press might get a fair shake.

Food storage guidelines – I have the LDS calculator, Alan Hagan’s wonderful Prudent Food Storage FAQ,  and several other sites, but I actually think in this case, more information is better. 

Your favorite blogs that emphasize storing and eating from storage, home scale preservation and local, seasonal eating. 

I really appreciate your help!

 Sharon

46 Responses to “Best Food Preservation and Storage Internet Resources?”

  1. Shelley says:

    Sharon,
    Do you want to know local suppliers? There is one lady in Alaska who provides a huge amount of the bulk foods to AK folks through her business.

  2. None says:

    http://www.bulkfoods.com is the correct address

  3. [...] Casaubon’s Book » Blog Archive » Best Food Preservation and Storage Internet Resources? So I’m winding up Independence Days (Hallelujah – ok, 3 books in less than 2 years is too much!), and working on the appendices, and hoping to draw on your expertise. Since I’ve got slow dial up, I don’t always do as much web surfing as I probably should – far too sloooooow. So I bet there are some great sources out there I’m missing. I was hoping you’d offer up your suggestions for the best sites on: [...]

  4. I like Azure Standard for organic bulk foods: http://www.azurestandard.com/

    Here’s a new blog that looks promising: http://www.survival-cooking.blogspot.com/

  5. Hannah Elise says:

    You could put in http://www.localharvest.org/ – they are a resource for locating farmer’s markets, CSAs, grocers, and farms, that are raising organic or at least local products. I know for myself that I have found a local farm that sells wheat – but we haven’t bought any yet, because we don’t have a grinder at this point. But, I think it’s a rather valuable resource website!

  6. Kate says:

    http://www.paulsgrains.com

    Organic grains grown locally in Iowa. (Sadly they are not local for me!)

  7. martin says:

    Hi, anyone have any links for the UK?

    Love, Martin

  8. Diane says:

    Does anyone know why Bulk Foods is much more expensive than Walton Feed? Their rolled oats are higher than at my nearest natural food store and the beans would be cheaper in one pound packages from the supermarket.

  9. Karin says:

    If you are in Maine I recommend Crown Of Maine. It is a distributor for local farmers . Most of the farmers are MOFGA certified. But many of the farmers on the list that are on the non certified list practice biodynamics or organic agriculture but have not yet been certified. They also provide to buying clubs. So buying clubs in Maine can not only get bulk items from Associated buyers in but also fresh produce and local grains from Crown of Maine.

  10. Karin says:

    I just want to add a question. Is it cheaper to order bulk food on the net? It seems to me that once you add the shipping it might take away any savings you could have when buying bulk.
    Just wondering?

  11. Chung says:

    I recommend http://www.pathtofreedom.com

    This incredible family is living off a 10th of an acre in CA.

  12. Marnie says:

    Up here close to Toronto we’ve got Merrylynd Organics for wheat and beef:
    http://www.merrylynd.com/index.htm

    Grimo Nut Nursery (a wonderful resource for northern nut trees, and they sell nuts in season as well):
    http://www.grimonut.com/

    and

    Pristine Gourmet, cold pressed canola and soybean oil (the only ones who do it in Ontario, I believe – quite the find for someone who doesn’t eat dairy. not cheap, but the taste of the canola oil is heavenly!):
    http://www.pristinegourmet.com/default.aspx

    still looking for local, organic dried beans…..it’s my holy grail…..

  13. Shaunta says:

    In the west, Sunflower Market has good prices for organic produce and meats and bulk items. I miss them since we left Las Vegas.

  14. Vikki says:

    Thank you so much for mentioning our blog – http://www.survival-cooking.blogspot.com and soon, we’ll be updating our food preservation site, http://www.food-self-sufficiency.blogspot.com.

    Sam’s Club is where we get our bulk rice, cornmeal, salt, honey and olive oil. We get our dried soybeans from http://www.justtomatoes.com.

    We buy one-lb bags and family-size cans of beans at Wal-Mart when they go cheap because one of us will only eat the canned pork-n-beans. We fix beans/lentils/peas about 3 times a week, not counting the dried soybeans and dehydrated peas.

    Hope this helps. Vikki

  15. Vikki says:

    Sorry about the link in my previous post – for some reason it didn’t work! The food storing and processing blog starting back up soon (including preserving) is: http://www.food-self-sufficiency.blogspot.com – let’s hope the link works this time! V

  16. brad says:

    The only two blogs I check regularly are this one and Throwback at Trapper Creek – #.

    The Matron is amazing and entertaining and does serious amounts of food storage. And I’ve eaten quite a few of her well-raised critters.

  17. dex says:

    I like:

    http://biology.clc.uc.edu/Fankhauser/Cheese\/Cheese.html

    for yogurt/cheese/bread

    and in Oregon:

    http://www.bobsredmill.com

  18. robin says:

    another bulk food and whole grain cooking site:

    http://www.bobsredmill.com

  19. Matriarchy says:

    http://www.usdrybeans.com

    Has a lot of recipes, and lists of bean wholesalers by state, which is good for bulk buying clubs.

  20. Melson says:

    http://www.simplylivingsmart.com/ started off really nice a couple months ago, but appears dead at the moment. Too bad, since the videos and articles they have are pretty educational.

  21. Joanna says:

    Here’s a site to help locate locally grown foods -

    http://www.eatwellguide.org/i.php?pd=Home

    In the NW WA area (Bellingham) we also have an organic mill. They also sell whole grains in bulk, and source as locally as they can (usually from the PNW) – http://www.fairhavenflour.com/

  22. Sara: cultured in rural Alabama says:

    Sharon, One sad thing is that you might want to look at more closely is the demise of food co-ops all over the US.

    Cooperative warehouses all over the country have gone out of business in just the last few years. I began purchasing food through a buying club that purchased from a food cooperative warehouse in 1975, when I was 18, and until the last couple years, (I am 51 now) have purchased most of my food from food co-ops that purchased their food from the cooperative warehouses. Yellow Rose in Austin, Texas, Sevenanda in Atlanta, Georgia, and more recently, Ozark Cooperative Warehouse in Fayetteville, Arkansas, have all folded. I am most familiar with Ozark and observed it’s demise as the folks there dealt with new members who joined to stock up for “Y2K” and then when nothing happened, dropped out, leaving Ozark with surplus foodstuffs they could not move.

    We need to support the folks that work together to ensure we have healthy, local foods.

  23. Sara: cultured in rural Alabama says:

    Happy Hannukah!
    and
    Happy Solstice!

    Their *is* a cooperative warehouse still alive up in Norway, IA called Frontier Natural Products Cooperative (they used to be Frontier Herb Cooperative).

    try googleing
    Frontier Cooperative Herbs. (i can’t figure out how to paste their web address on this blog.)

    They sell lots and lots of natural, organic and bulk herbs, spices, bath and beauty goods, including (i think) the largest grouping of fair trade stuff around.

    I am in a very old buying club that is a member of Frontier. I’m pretty sure they sell to anybody now (buying club, storefront, individual).

    What would life be without chocolate? Brrrr….
    Te Nunca tener hambre, te nunca tener sed!

    L’chiam v a Salud!

    Sara in rural north central Alabama

  24. Gen says:

    For grains and some great mixes, Honeyville Grain.
    http://honeyvillegrain.com/
    They are in Utah and California.
    Also, a bakery supplier in the west:
    http://www.wheatmontana.com

    And San Francisco Herb Company:
    http://www.sfherb.com/

  25. KF says:

    Also for west coasters:

    http://www.goldminenaturalfood.com

    based in San Diego, though they will ship. They are a great source for bulk foods of all kinds: bulgur, rices, quinoa, buckwheat, noodles, tamari/shoyu. You will have to call the company to obtain a bulk price list, and there is a $125 min order amount for buying from the bulk list, but their products are mostly all organic, some fair-trade, and wonderful.

    Also, for WA state:

    http://www.bluebirdgrainfarms.com

    They are an organic, sustainable family-run farm in the Methow (central WA state). Their emmer is amazing and makes great breakfast cereal and pasta. They also grow and sell two kinds of wheat and rye. They have a CSA and will sell bulk quantities at a discount. And, it goes to support a family farm.

    And I give a second or third shout out for http://www.bobsredmill.com.

  26. NormE says:

    Sharon,
    Check out http://www.drygoods.com. Mary Bell has information and cookbooks related to food preservation via dehydration and cooking with dehydrated foods.
    Food dryers can be electric or low-tech DIYS solar. Food keeps well when dried properly.

  27. bill says:

    http://www.somethingbetternaturalfoods.com

    they deliver all over the midwest with their semi and they ROCK.
    their catalog is huge and prices are very reasonable.

  28. Pat Meadows says:

    Bulk food suppliers:

    Bob’s Red Mill, which someone already mentioned – great for gluten-free foods

    Barry Farm – http://www.barryfarm.com – also great for gluten free foods and for many, many other natural foods.

    Twin Valley Mills – grows and sells sorghum and sorghum flour (useful for gluten free baking – http://www.twinvalleymills.com

    Wheat and other grains – wheatmontana.com

    Emergency Essentials – long term storage foods – http://www.beprepared.com

    USA Emergency Supply – 5-gallon buckets, other food storage supplies (at the obvious URL)

    US Plastic – http://www.usplastic.com – 5-gallon buckets, many other useful food containers

    Frankferd Farm – grows some foods, distributes many, including many gluten-free foods; located near Pittsburgh, has own delivery truck for group or large orders in nearby states; also ships via UPS – http://www.frankferd.com

    Wonderful Penzey’s, of course, although I don’t think their products are especially fair trade.

    We buy tea and herb tea from San Francisco Herb, http://www.sfherb.com . (Tea is covered by the Marco Polo Exception – at least it is in this house – my husband must have his cuppa, after all.)

    Fairview Farms – non-GMO soybeans for making soymilk and tofu. http://www.fairviewfarms.com/

    Of them all, the one I need most is Barry Farm. They have the gluten free flours and grains that I need now, plus everything else. Not cheap – no good food is cheap now. Barry Farm grows some of what they sell, they make marvelously good pie fillings and jams too, and other foods (I’ve only tasted the pie fillings and jams though). They are located in Ohio.

    Easterners need to realize – when evaluating prices – that very little grain is grown in the east. One way or another, we’re paying high shipping rates. Often the shipping is more than the grain itself. I’d happily buy locally grown grains if I could.

    Cheers,
    Pat

  29. Pat Meadows says:

    To the person who questioned whether it’s cheaper to buy online:

    For me at least, cheaper (although always nice) isn’t the point in buying foods online. The foods I buy online are not for sale anywhere in my local area. Most of them are probably not for sale within 150 miles of where we live.

    We buy natural, whole foods online – we cannot buy them locally. I need gluten-free grains now; and we cannot buy them locally either.

    Also, there are many times when neither my husband nor I are well enough to go shopping, not even locally. Locally, we have two quite basic supermarkets, and that’s it.

    But even if you live in a more heavily populated area, try going to your local supermarket and buying a 50-sack of sorghum or of millet, or corn, or wheat, or buckwheat – any grain. Or try buying 50 lbs of soybeans locally.

    (Yes, we grind our own grains into cereals, meals, and flour – the soybeans are made into soymilk and tofu, and can be made into tempeh as well.)

    Cheers,
    Pat

  30. Jason says:

    Just so happens I need to work on this too. I appreciate the links given so far. I have some books I am looking at for help.

    Full Moon Feast (Prentice) is a great one about traditional foods around the world and how many cultures converge on similar methods. Some recipes, but mostly important in that useful patterns are apparent.

    Cool Cuisine (Stec and Cordero) examines the energy inputs to the food system, including home storage and preparation with suggested alternatives.

    Self Reliance: A Recipe for the New Millennium (Yeoman) is quirky guide to eating with almost no money required, such as foraging, as well as bulk food storage and odds and ends to consider in case the trucks stop showing up.

    I have an old Rodale publication called Feasting on Raw Foods, from which I will glean low energy methods of “cooking” such as grain soaking and sprouting and taste sauces.

    The Kitchen Gardener’s Companion (Katz) is a handy reference in that common produce and methods are arranged alphabetically–e.g., need some advice on how to use green tomatoes?

  31. Jason says:

    Does anybody have any non-plastic suggestions for the 5 gallon bucket?

    What were kitchens like 100 years ago where hard winters made it essential to keep whole grains and flours in the home and pest free for months at a time?

  32. Sharon says:

    Jason – Well most pantries had drawers, some lined with metal for flours and grains – my 150 year old kitchen has several of these. And pictures of kitchens show barrels and crocks – but these are expensive options by modern standards. A friend of mine has one made out of an entire tree stump that is more than 100 years old. Stoneware crocks used to come in huge sizes – lehmans still sells them, but pricey,

    Gallon glass jars are great, just expensive in any quantity. The plastic bucket is, unfortunately, the cheap solution.

    Sharon

  33. Marj says:

    It is unfortunate about those large cooperatives. I belong to a buying club that started out as a coop member back in the 80′s and now orders through United Natural Foods which is the company that bought out most of those coops. They still support buying clubs, however, as customers rather than members. Their web site is http://www.unitedbuyingclubs.com/. You cannot order directly from them and they are not allowing new clubs at this time, but you can request information on established clubs in your area. Shipping is less costly since delivery is by truck one a month. It’s not the best solution, but works for me for now. It is also a way of finding folks in your area who are resourceful and knowledgeable about local food sources and food preparation and storage.

  34. Raven says:

    I can vouch for the quality of Wheat Montana– I live about 60 miles from their headquarters and buy my flour from them. They’re excellent, though not organic-certified (round these parts no one can afford the certification even if they’re organic). :)

  35. Laura says:

    http://www.beprepared.com

    It’s the website for Emergency Essentials and they sell wheat grinders, bulk food, emergency supplies, etc. They have a free catalog you can sign up for (and there is a special code on the back of each catalog you can punch in if you place an order and get a special, etc.). They also have insight articles on preparedness, food storage, 72-hour kits, water storage, etc.

  36. Carol says:

    For UK readers in a broad area around Sheffield, there is Lembas Wholefoods (http://www.lembas.co.uk/lembas.html). They deliver to buying clubs or individuals willing to make a sufficiently large order. I get 5 kilo bags of organic porridge oats and many other things from them.

  37. Pat Meadows says:

    Jason and Sharon: Within my adult life, many people used ‘lard buckets’ for long-term storage of food. They were a little shorter, and maybe stouter, than the 5-gallon buckets we all have now. There were made out of some type of metal: I don’t know what kind. Lehman’s sold them, and other places did too. They did not seal especially well, IIRC, but they were made out of metal. Kind of like the buckets popcorn comes in now.

    Pat

  38. Rebecca says:

    Another fantastic one is http://www.shelfreliance.com. They have lots of information on emergency preparedness and sell emergency preparedness items and food storage items. In fact, they just had a great mention on a local radio program:

    http://www.ksl.com/?nid=545&sid=5065869

    Also, they are always having some kind of sale or another, or you can use the code save15 to save 15% at checkout.

    http://www.shelfreliance.com

  39. Emily says:

    In southern lower Michigan (or even northern Ohio/Indiana), try Ferris Organic Farm: http://ferrisorganicfarm.com/ Some items – wheat, flour, corn, beans – are grown in Michigan; others are imported (quinoa, chickpeas, etc.). They will send via UPS freight or you can pick up at the farm in Eaton Rapids.

  40. ChristyACB says:

    I’m sure this is probably a dead thread, but I wanted to know if you were going to start up the Independence Days challenge for 2009?

  41. Tyler says:

    Simplastics – http://www.simplastics.com – 5-gallon buckets, many other useful food containers, FDA approved, Made in USA. Also food service trays and carts.

  42. Drew Verdine says:

    Thanks, i never thought about doing it this way.. the search and replace, i did it manually before.. what a fool!! hahaha, thanks a lot.

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