Millions of people plan ahead for health issues, car accidents or death by purchasing various forms of insurance, but far too few keep an adequate emergency supply of food and water. Being prepared for an emergency is a necessity, as you never know when a calamity will occur, be it a job loss or natural disaster. Regardless of the type of catastrophe, you need to be ready to weather any storms that come your way. Having an emergency food supply to carry you through troubled times will insure that your family won’t go hungry regardless of the turmoil around them.
Picture Credit Owl Haven- Summer Pantry Challenge
Begin With the Basics:
Food storage can be divided into two categories—long-term and short-term. When you’re just beginning, you may want to focus on your family’s short-term needs until you get a few days’ supply and then work on adding long-term food storage.
Some short-term items to consider:
- Bottled water
- Foods your family will eat that don’t require cooking (crackers, granola, dried fruit)
- Wheat/wheat grinder or flour
- Cooking necessities (sugar, oil/shortening, salt, etc.)
Start small and keep at it:
When you start compiling your emergency food supply, set realistic goals for yourself. If you think you need to have a year’s food storage right away, you’ll set yourself up for failure before you get off the ground. Try starting with one month. If that seems impossible, work on a one-week supply. No matter what your goal is, remember that partial storage is better than no food storage at all.
Acquire food storage within your current budget:
If you’re not already a bargain hunter, it’s a great time to start. Buying food when it’s on sale will allow you to stock up within your budget.
Picture Credit: Prepared LDS Family
If you’re interested in buying food cheap but don’t have the time to clip coupons, try price-matching. There are some terrific websites that help you price match so that you don’t have to take multiple grocery store ads on your shopping trip. Check your store’s policy in case they do require actual ads.
Store a variety of foods that your family will eat:
In addition to storing the basics, make sure you have some “fun” foods in your emergency food supply. If your kids like a particular cold cereal, keep a few boxes on hand. Keep in mind that cold cereal has an average unopened shelf life of one year, so be sure and rotate those boxes regularly.
Keep a food storage list:
Keeping a list of all your food storage items is vital so that you don’t have food spoil in your pantry. Check your list frequently. If you have some items that will expire before they can be used, give them to your local homeless shelter. It’s better to donate your food than throw it in the trash.
Where to put your food storage when you’re low on space:
This is a problem many families face. Whether you’re an apartment dweller or just live in a tiny house, with a little creativity, you can keep an emergency food supply. One often overlooked area is under beds. Another easy-to-access location is in closets. If you’re low on closet space, try stacking a couple of boxes and covering them with a tablecloth. Remember that a garage or attic isn’t ideal because you can’t control their temperature.
Acquiring an emergency food supply can be a fun challenge, particularly if you involve your family. You will derive a lot of satisfaction from knowing that you’re taking care of your family’s needs and becoming more self-reliant when you work on your food storage.
Food Storage/Year Supply for under 5 bucks a week! Tells you exactly what to buy each week! Photo Credit Pinterest