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Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Few Tips On Food Storage

By now you should realize that some quantity of food storage is essential to surviving a disaster.  So just how does one go about getting this stored food supply started?  Well there are a few things you must keep in mind.  First off, store what you eat. If you are thinking about MRE's then I would suggest buying one at a local surplus store before going out and buying a few cases.  The easiest way to get your food storage started is to buy what you normally do, just one or two extras each time you buy it.  Keep diversity in mind.  Concentrating on one type of food, then the next, then the next, etc can lead to being caught in a situation where you have a year's worth of pasta and no sauce to put on it.  Canned foods are great to have on hand.  Most need only heating and can actually be eaten at room temperature right out of the can.  Dehydrated foods are great when it comes to storage space.  Dried veggies & beans make great soup & stew ingredients.  The disadvantages to dried foods are that you will need to store extra water and you will have to have a way to cook them, as most will need longer cooking time than heat n serve types of food.  Remember FIFO...First In First Out.  When you buy what you would normally eat, then rotation becomes easy.  There is nothing worse than having piles of food you don't like than having piles of stale food that you don't like even when fresh.  Review your food groups.  You can stock pile canned tuna and spam, but beans and nuts are a great substitute for meat.  If you know any vegetarians, ask them about substitute proteins.  Don't forget your non edibles...by this I mean food products that are used for cooking and not eaten by themselves.  Cooking oils or lard will be needed and a good supply of spices & herbs will greatly improve the flavor of your supplies and increase your morale.  Accessories cannot be forgotten either.  Get a manual can opener, or better yet, two or more.  If you store coffee beans or wheat berries, have a way to grind them without electricity.  Keep your food stored in tight fitting containers.  Dry goods stored in baggies or cereals in their original cardboard boxes are an invitation to rodents and spoilage from moisture.  Keep preparation abilities in mind.  If you can't light a fire and only have a sterno stove to cook with, then don't store ingredients for long simmering stews.  All in all, if you store your food properly, and stick with buying what you eat, and rotating it through day to day cooking, before you know it, you will be able to go shopping and buy only what is on sale and never run out of anything.

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