Tuesday, April 1, 2008

An Emergency Food Storage Plan: Getting Started

Have you thought about gathering an emergency food storage stash in your home? In the case of a job layoff, natural disaster, crop shortage, power outage or other crisis, having thought ahead could make a huge difference for your family and allow you to continue to eat well even with limited funds or lessened food availability.

I've been reading Making the Best of Basics: Family Preparedness Handbook and it's an excellent resource. If you feel overwhelmed, start with the LDS food storage calculator, which is very simple. However, the amounts seem to be a bit less than the recommendations in Making the Best of Basics.

With the rising price of grain, building an emergency food storage is more expensive than it used to be, but possibly cheaper than it will be for some time. The key is to buy whole natural foods, in bulk, at the best price you can find. My mother-in-law bought my wheat in Kentucky because it is $10 cheaper per 50-lb. bag there than it is where I live. I found bulk peanut butter online, and bought it at $2.20/lb. before finding it at Trader Joe's for $1.69/lb.

I found bulk coconut oil and other natural products at Wilderness Family Naturals, which I recommend. Definitely go for a quality oil rather than cheap soybean oil which will NOT nourish your family. The five-gallon expeller pressed coconut oil is an excellent buy. Shop around and build your reserves up; you'll never know when you might need it most.

Want to get started on your own emergency food storage? Here's an in-depth primer: How to Store Food for Long-Term Survival.