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How to Create a Food Storage Supply for You and your Spouse … For as Little as $5 per Week

supermarketPeople who live in America rarely consider the need for building up a food supply to offset a national crisis, such as a devastating war or a natural disaster, simply because food in the United States is so readily available and easy to obtain.

However, if something terrible did happen and supermarkets did not remain open, people who planned ahead – like you, for instance – would have the ability to survive and overcome the food shortage. This is not to suggest that Armageddon lies ahead, but it is always wise to prepare for the unexpected and the unforeseen.

And now … you can do just that.  A recent article appearing in a survivalist magazine provided the blueprint for building a substantial and nourishing food supply over a 52-week period. Importantly, the foods that can sustain you and your spouse can be bought once each week for about $5 (perhaps a bit more if prices in your area have risen).

Do the math: the cost for building your emergency food supply is going to be very affordable – just $5 per week (approximately) for 52 weeks … a mere $260. That’s not a lot of money, especially when you consider that you can spread the cost out over a full year. And, while the foods may not seem exotic or overly enticing to you (see the list below), they will sustain you and your spouse. And they are nutritious.

Here is the list of purchases you need to make weekly – for One Full Year

Week 1:     6 Pounds of Salt

Week 2:     5 Cans Cream of Chicken Soup

Week 3:     20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 4:     8 Cans Tomato Soup

Week 5:     50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 6:     6 Pounds of Macaroni

Week 7:     20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 8:     8 Cans of Tuna

Week 9:     6 Pounds of Yeast

Week 10:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 11:   8 Cans of Tomato Soup

Week 12:   20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 13:   10 Pounds of Powdered Milk

Week 14:   7 Boxes of Macaroni and Cheese

Week 15:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 16:   5 Cans of Cream of Chicken Soup

Week 17:   1 Bottle of 500 Multi-Vitamins

Week 18:   10 Pounds of Powdered Milk

Week 19:   5 Cans of Cream of Mushroom Soup

Week 20:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 21:   8 Cans of Tomato Soup

Week 22:   20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 23:   8 Cans of Tuna

Week 24:   6 Pounds of Shortening

Week 25:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 26:   5 Pounds o f Honey

Week 27:   10 Pounds of Powdered Milk

Week 28:   20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 29:   5 Pounds of Peanut Butter

Week 30:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 31:   7 Boxes of Macaroni and Cheese

Week 32:   10 Pounds of Powdered Milk

Week 33:   1 Bottle of 500 Aspirin

Week 34:   5 cans of Cream of Chicken Soup

Week 35:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 36:   7 Boxes of Macaroni and Cheese

Week 37:   6 Pounds of Salt

Week 38:   20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 39:   8 Cans of Tomato Soup

Week 40:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 41:   5 Cans of Cream of Chicken Soup

Week 42:   20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 43:   1 Bottle of 500 Multi-Vitamins

Week 44:   8 Cans of Tuna

Week 45:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Week 46:   6 Pounds of Macaroni

Week 47:   20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 48:   5 Cans of Cream of Mushroom Soup

Week 49:   5 Pounds of Honey

Week 50:   20 Pounds of Sugar

Week 51:   8 Cans of Tomato Soup

Week 52:   50 Pounds of Wheat

Now, it should be noted that this list was the creation of a writer by the name of “AZ Pepper.” If you look closely at his suggestions, you’ll see – almost immediately – that they make sense. The supplies he suggests are affordable (perhaps no more than $5 for each weekly purchase, maybe a bit more) and they can last a long time. These foods will not spoil quickly.

Here is something else you need to know, courtesy of “AZ Pepper.” There are some weeks in this process of food accumulation and storage when there will be money left over after your purchase (perhaps some loose change). Don’t spend it. Instead, put it aside for use in the weeks when your purchase exceeds $5. This will help you stick to the budget. In fact, there will also be weeks when the items you want to buy are on sale. Take full advantage of these sales to save money and get ahead.

Clearly, if you follow this shopping strategy, you will be able to meet your one year food storage goal while staying right at – or near – your pre-planned budget. This is something you can do, if you remain motivated and focused.

Now … for the really good news …

Here is What you will have Stored … after just 52 Weeks

You’re about to be surprised, maybe even shocked, at what your 52-Week Food Storage Plan has enabled you to purchase and store for emergencies. You will have accumulated all of the following:

  • 500 Pounds of Wheat
  • 100 Pounds of Sugar
  • 40 Pounds of Powdered Milk
  • 12 Pounds of Salt
  • 10 Pounds of Honey
  • 5 Pounds of Peanut Butter
  • 45 Cans of Tomato Soup
  • 15 Cans of Cream of Mushroom Soup
  • 24 Cans of Tuna
  • 15 Cans of Cream of Chicken Soup
  • 21 Boxes of Macaroni and Cheese
  • 500 Aspirin
  • 1000 Multi-Vitamins
  • 6 Pounds of Yeast
  • 6 Pounds of Shortening
  • 12 Pounds of Macaroni

Here is the BEST NEWS of all: the nutritional value for all of this food is, believe it or not, a whopping 1,249,329 calories (give or take a few calories).  And, based on a daily diet in which you and your spouse each consume 2000 calories, the food listed above can sustain the two of you for about 312 days. That’s the better part of a full year.

At a cost of just $5 per day – just $260 for a full year – this is a bargain you can’t afford to pass up. In fact, it would still be a bargain if you doubled the cost because even if you were to spend $10 a week … the cost to you would still be a very, very modest $40 a month.

In 21st century America, you simply can’t feed two people for such a small sum of money and remain healthy. Well, now you can. Put this amazing one year food storage plan to the test.

Start planning your first weekly purchase today.

Other articles in this issue:

© 2008-2014 Off The Grid News

169 comments

  1. Sugar is high in calories and we all probably eat too much of it but I was surprised to see the quantity in this selection of food to store. Comment?

    • Sugar is a preservative along with salt. If you are having to survive, you will burn off all of those calories in addition to losing weight.

    • The sugar will also give you energy to burn, I would prefer raw sugar, or organic cane sugar.

    • Sugar has medical uses. It can speed healing of wounds and has been known to close decubitus ulcers when all other methods have failed. Used topically it can inhibit infection. Just sprinkle on the wound before covering with a bandage or other dressing.

    • Sugar is not good for you & we now know that cancer thrives on it. Also, that would be a good way to kill your loved ones that are diabetic. Better store a good sugar alternative like the new product made from the Stevia plant……garland

      • Sugar is needed for yeast breads,better then honey.Easy to buy and store.

        • Research has shown 1tsp of sugar depresses your immune system for 24 hours. Suagr is also a cheap food that gives a short term boost but has no long term nutritional value. So only use it if required. Honey is easy to store keeps for years (3000 if what they found in the pyramids is anything to go by!) and has antibacterial properties in addition to being slow release energy that avoids sugar rush mood swings. Something to consider in a stressful situation.

          Not everything on this list is to every ones taste. The thing to take away here is that you do not have to buy everything at once. It also takes very little extra storage space.

          Following divorce I had to start again from scratch and having been raised to always have a reserve I started buying the extra odd tin of what I normally use, take advantage of 2 for 1. That way over time I accumulated a store. The menu of which does not so markedly differ from what I normally eat (I can really cook so do do ready meals, etc) and so avoid the psychological stresses.

          The point of your store is NOT FOR YOU TO LIVE ON! It is to Supplement what you can still find/forage/grow/hunt etc and so make up any deficiencies.
          Unless we are talking nuclear strike (or Zombie Apocalypse! LOL!) which precludes hunting, growing etc.

          Oh, and dont put all your eggs in one basket. Think about a seizure policy or simply theft? Learn to cache, learn to turn over the stock to keep it fresh

        • Regarding bread making, one doesn’t actually have to use sugar at all. You can simply use water, flour and yeast when need be. I know as I make it that way.

    • I was surprised at the quality of food listed such as canned soups, sugar, mac and cheese. A person could save a variety of dried beans in gallon size jars, varieties of rice, noodles, grains (barley,oats,wheat) along with dried foods such as dried meats, herbs, and vegetables such as tomatoes, onions, peppers, potatoes, garlic, etc. . A very hearty AND healthy soup could be made daily with these ingredients. Then stock ingredietns to make breads. The bread would not be a necessity, but would be nice to have.

      • Agreed. Buy dried beans from grainery at about 5.00-8.00 for 50#
        Buy sugar, flours at mennonite store or grainery at about 15.00-20.00 for 50#
        Stock up dried pasta too. And rices, lentils, split peas, and barley and oats
        We buy a cow every couple years, plant garden every other year.
        Buy deer apples and deer carrots at 3.00 for 50# and 50# potatos from farm market for 6.00

    • All Larger quantities can be broken down of go to Sam’s

  2. What do they mean By wheat?

    • They mean flour.

      • Probably whole wheat berries. For flour, you’d need a hand grinder. Whole wheat keeps much longer without refrigeration, is less prone to bugs, which can be more easily found and pulled out. But whole wheat does take a LONG time to cook if not ground. I’d add baking powder, baking soda (1 container each) and a going sourdough starter, for biscuits, pancakes, etc. (The starter would need to be used at least weekly, not stashed away with supplies.)

        • another thing about getting wheat berries is that you can sprout them. That is a wonder and nutritious way to eat it. It takes about 4-5 days but is very easy. All you do is soak them for 24 hours in a mason jar with a screen on it for a lid. Then rinse, gently, and drain, leave sit. Do this for 4-5 days til sprouted about the same length as the berry. Eat or you can grind and make bread out of that. No need for the powerful grinder then since they do grind easier and if they are not ground totally, no problem. Hope this helps.

        • [email protected]

          Mudpie and other food gatherers: I reviewed the list editors list of extra food items for a survival pantry. What ever you eat, just buy more of it. More can meats, too, not just tuna twice a month. Wheat in super pails of 45 pounds cost 66.77 each. If you buy two shipping is free. I just bought a pail of hard white wheat for bread making and a pail of soft white wheat for pastries and cake flour. To accumulate 500 pounds of wheat would cost you 734.47. Then there is the electric mill to grind it into flour. Add another 300.00 more or less.If you just bought store flour it is currently $2.00 a 5-pound bag. That total is 250.00 and no mill is required. I bought Rubbermaid gallon clear jars at Walmart for 2.64 plus tax. Each jar holds a 5-pound bag of flour, it is rectangle in shape and has a screw-on lid. The 6 pounds of yeast is just too much. This person does not bake bread. A 120 pounds of sugar would be enough for a full time cookie baker. That is 2 pounds of sugar a day! I have both prepared flour and nitrogen enoculated super-pails for serious disaster planning. Starting with a few thing is good, then expand it. Don’t forget the extra toilet paper. Happy hunting. Nancy

          • Lame! There are many other grains and rice. You attempt to ‘survive’ on such a diet and your moral would quickly go downhill. Buy more of everything you normaly use except perishables. ROTATE them when you use. Soap, first aid supplies, etc, etc … would also be needed. Trade goods?? >>COFFEE, TOBACCO and ALCOHOL should be some of it.(Canned pipe tobacco, not cigs).None of these 3 would be available in a long term emergency… but the desire for them will remain. WATER .. ‘borrow’ milk crates and fill with 4 gals of distilled water. stack in your basement and cover with plastic to shield from dust..WATER for limited bathing as well as drinking… FIREARMS .. procur and learn to use if you haven’t already! Our ‘civiliztion’ would soon be cast aside if FOOD WAS SHORT! And arm your brain! Practice ‘what ifs’ .. What if food stops coming?( in 8 days food in stores would GONE if deliveries stop!), power goes out, your furnance no longer has fuel.. WATER stops coming.. You can’t drive anywhere, no doctors..THINK! What would happen? What could I do? Example >> Where would you take a ‘dump’? >> one solution, garbage bags to line the toliet (no water, remember?) and bigger ones to put it outside.. BUY SOME WHITE LIME! it can kill smells of accumulating trash, etc.. Rodent control >> Everyone’s trash is piling up outside.. rodent population will increase drastically.. get it? THE LIST IS LONG! Think it thru as you go thru your day.. what if … PEACE

          • The sugar is a great thing! So many of you are dissing it! During a disaster (or even hardship) there will be fruits that you grow, or cheap to buy at a store, or you just get a bunch from a food bank. Sugar is great for jams/jellies/preserves. It makes your fruit last a lot longer. What about canning them? peaches, pears? Sugar provides the PH balance(acid) to preserve them. You don’t have to be a cookie baker to use that much sugar. Water bathing canning is easier and less intimidating to do versus pressure canning. Most of you have everything you need right to water bath can.

            FYI Salt helps with preserving veggies in pressure canning, you don’t need it but it does help to extend shelf life. BOTH salt and sugar are so easy to store, they need nothing but to be in an air tight container. No oxy pack. For whoever wanted to store honey over sugar, that’s a great idea, just know how to adjust your normal recipes for the honey, it’s more liquidy (if thats even a word!).

          • We happen to be beekeepers, so honey is cheap for us (with the exception of the cost of getting started and protective gear…we started this 2 years ago). Maybe start a beehive or two now and youll have great pollinators and yummy raw honey. Although be careful with the use of DE as it will kill many insects (including the beneficials). We use wood ash in our chicken dustbaths rather than DE that many people use.

            For canning, use a ratio of 3 parts water and 1 part honey.

        • Store bags of flour. Or break down into gallon sized freezer bags. Store in freezer 24 hrs. Then put bags into plastic bin with lid. Put in small handful of bay leaves. They will keep all bugs out

      • They actually mean whole wheat, Flour doesn’t store nearly as long and would take up far more space.
        It would be up to you to make it into flour.

    • Actually, I believe he means wheat “berries”, the wheat grain. Wheat berries are what is ground into flour for breads. In this whole form, wheat will last for many years without deterioration. The wheat can also be used for breakfast cereal, as gluten (somewhat like tofu) which can be used as a meat substitute, plus many other uses. However, if whole wheat berries are bought, one must also have a grinder to grind the berries into flour.

    • I have whole wheat flour in my fridge that I have used for at least 3 years in making a very good, believe it or not, healthy chocolate cookie. It is still good and no bugs. I don’t know how long it would last out of the fridge, but so far so good. Also for the sugar, once you are off eating anything with sugar you will be surprised how you do not miss it. See the South Beach Diet. I did this when this diet was first popular and was shocked how quickly a sweet-tooth person like myself could ween off sugar. Lost 18 punds but alas, gained them all back.
      Sugar would be a preservative and a bargaining tool.

    • In several places it says wheat berries. I found a wheat milling place near me and they have it cleaned and in 50 lb bags for less than $9 . My question is this. I have a food vacuum machine and I want to know if i could put those 50 pound bags inside clean heavyweight garbage bags and seal them inside that, would that keep them? Anyone know??

      • NEVER store food you intend to eat in garbage bags. The bags are chemically treated with insecticide and something to help keep the smell down. These chemicals would infect your food!

  3. I would rather stock more honey and add agave to the list rather than buy sugar. I’m surprised that dried or canned beans are not there and dehydrated veggies and fruit. Angel hair pasta cooks in 3 minutes (we take it back-packing), so I would add that to the list with some dried herbs and sun-dried tomatoes. Dried mushrooms would be nice too. Maybe invest in a dehydrater and when things are in season and cheaper, dehydrate, vacuum seal and store for future use…easier to carry in a pack if needed.

    I think you could have tasty nutritious food stockpiled along with high calorie food.

    • You really have to think about base survival here, enough food to get you through a year, nobody said it would be glamorous but you would be alive. This article is also meant as a starting point to show that you can live for a year on not very much money, what else you put into storage is up to your tastes.

  4. As Tc1776 asked above, what is meant by “wheat” ?

  5. I don’t understand why all the sugar on this list. We’re a family of 4 and probably don’t use more than 5 lbs. of sugar in a year. Also, we stopped using boxed mac and cheese several years ago because it seemed to lack any real nutritional value. I’ve just ordered some natural powdered cheddar cheese. I’m going to try it on some whole wheat noodles and also on popcorn.

  6. They probably mean the various types (buckwheat, hard white wheat, hard red wheat, etc.).

  7. Nutrition value and personal tste aside, I think that the premise of this article is great and I have been taking advantage of the 2 for 1 sales at our Publix store for a while and doing just this very thing. I will, however, start adding bulk purchases of salt.

    But, as someone who does a lot of baking, wouldn’t storing that amount of flour and rice result in bugs? I keep all my rice and flour in the refrigerator and for the long term I would think you would need to freeze it. And just so you know, I buy store brand brown rice ans store brand unbleached flour. Any comments on how else to store the large amount of grains?

    • I store flour, rich, etc. I find that to keep the bugs out, I put in a tight container, along with bay leaves. It keeps quite well. You don’t need a lot of bay leaves per container. Works good with most all wheat products. Been doing this for years.

      • I also use bay leaves to preserve wheat, flour, etc. If we have ants I also use bay to deter them from coming in. I put the bay leaves on the shelf in the pantry too. a few sticks of pepperment gum works well to on the pantry shelves to deter the wheat moths.

    • I freeze my flour, pasta, and anything else (not sugar) that may get buggy for 24 hours, then take it out of the freezer and put it into an airtight container or vacuum seal it. It’s my belief that freezing will kill off the larvae. Since starting this process, I have not gotten bugs in my flour-grain stores.

    • Vacuum sealing is a perfect way to store wheat, sugar and flour. It will keep for a few years. I have flour now we rotate that has been stored in excess of 2 years and is just fine when we open it.

    • [email protected]

      Anne, I agree with you. My pantry list is 15 pages long. I just love the Rubbermaid 1/2 gallon and 1 gallon clear plastic rectangle storage jars for all dry shelf foods like rice, beans, sugar (1/2 gallon will take a 4-pound bag of sugar nicely), cornmeal, pearled barley… Every time I go to Walmart I buy more jars. It allows me to store 20 pounds of white sugar in 5 – 1/2 gallon jars; 30 pounds of Jasmine rice is held in 6 – 1 gallon jars; 30 pounds of long-grain regular rice, 30 pounds of an assortment of beans; split peas… they all look beautiful in the pantry and I can see what I have just opening up the doors of the cabinet. I stock my staples and can goods just like the grocery store shelves. With the uncertainty of the economy, having a full pantry quites my fears a little bit. My next project is to have my extended family catch the food saving bug and to show them how easy it is to prepare for emergencies. Good luch and Blessings to you. Nancy

  8. How (where?) does a person safely store that amount of food? (Basement could be too damp; attic subject to extremes of temperature change)

    For more variety, I think I’d substitute rice (and dried beans) for some of the wheat, keeping in mind a person can sprout some of the whole grains for fresh “green” in the diet. I, too, think storing dried/dehydrated apple, carrot and onion is a healthy addition to consider. Since I have a good friend who is LDS, I’ve been invited to their cannery where food like this is prepared for long-term storage.

    I really appreciate having this list. It helps a person figure out how much of which items constitutes an adequate supply.

    • 5 gallon plastic buckets with screw top lids are great for this kind of storage. We get ours at:
      http://www.pleasanthillgrain.com/plastic_bucket_5_gallon_buckets_6_container_gamma_lid_lids.aspx

      you can also buy packets of oxygen absorbing material to extend the life and make the environment not bug friendly
      http://store.honeyvillegrain.com/oxygenabsorbers100cc.aspx

      We have no connection with these vendors, but like their products

    • [email protected]

      Hi Edytjoson, the LDS pantry list is just for you to start a grocery list. The amounts of foods listed are not set in stone. Every thing you normally eat that doesn’t require refregeration.. add extra to you normal grocery list. Beans, rice, can vegetables, chili, Chef-Boy-Arde can pasta, pickles and condiments. As for where to put it all, that is the creative part. The hot garage is out of the question!!! Heat will shorten the life of your new foods. I just remodeled my laundry room with a pantry with doors on both walls near each appliance. I just bought a case of roast beef, a case of cooked ground beef, a case of can Cheddar cheese, two 45-pound pails of nitrogen protected wheat that will stay good for 35 years closed or one year opened. I moved my sofa away from the wall about 15″. The pails of wheat and our family sleeping bags are hidden behind the sofa. The new can meat is still in the box on a book shelf – until I find a more creative home for it. Nancy

    • When emergency first starts you will not want to take a lot of time cooking up things like brown rice and beans because they take up a lot of your time in food preparation. But…If you normally eat such things as: different types of beans and brown rice you can start today creating your own fast foods: quick soups, speedy beans and rice, beans for your smoothies etc.

      Choose a day or two a week and soak a large quantity of beans with 1 tsp lemon juice, next morning early pour out liquid and add fresh water, begin cooking your beans. When they are tender but not mushy let them cool down, drain liquid off and put them on the dehydrater sheets overnight. When your dehydrated beans have all the water dried out of them, let them cool down and then put them into widemouth mason jars. Vacumn seal them or use a oxygen pack to suck out air and they will last years. With brown rice you just cook them as usual and then process them like you did the beans. Your meals will not take a long time to put together because you now only need to open a jar and pour out what you need, sit it in a bowl full of water for 30 minutes. These dehydrated staples taste, look and come back to life as if you just cooked them. Add spices, veggies, meat if you need to and heat them if you just have to have it hot. Enjoy

  9. This list has been around for many years, (my personal original copy is from October 2001) and designed for a average person to go to any grocery store and buy the items off the shelf. Heck, I believe even A.T.Hagen did a updated version of this several years ago. The list of items isn’t bad per say. BUT, there is NO way you can do this list on $5 a week with current Aug. 2010 prices. Last year I went to the local Walmart and priced everything (I cannot find the price list due to computer dump last fall), but it was around $10 – 11 a week. 50lbs of wheat berries in my AO is roughly $34 alone, I just bought a 25lb of sugar from Costco for $11.98.

    For those who think 20lbs of sugar is too much, think again about storing the excess as barter material, many many people will be craving that sugar in a post-economic, post-TSHTF situation. Sugar can also be used to help sweeten herbal medicines that will otherwise taste like animal poop, while natural honey would be better, granulated sugar is cheaper to buy in bulk for the average person.

  10. Great list but where can you buy 50 pounds of wheat for $5.00?

    • I live on a farm in Kansas. A bushel of wheat is 60 pounds. Friday wheat closed at $5.27 where I live, while earlier this spring is was less than $4.00. If you get it from a farmer off the truck it will not be treated. Sometimes they treat it to prevent bugs from eating it. Wheat in Kansas is usually cut from 1st part of June into July depending what part of Kansas you are talking about. They grow wheat in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and north into Canada. Some wheat is raised in other states too. There is spring wheat and winter wheat. Winter wheat is what is mainly used to make the flour for bread, pasta, etc.

  11. Hey, this is article with a way to be prepared. It is not a gourmet list of fine dining. If you want to add to it fine if you want to exchange items with what you find more palatable fine. The main thrust of this article is to be prepared. Start now for five dollars a week. Have you started to prepare?

  12. Anne,
    Bugs and rodents can both be a definite problem with items like grains, rice, flour and other natural foods unless these items are purged of air and sealed.
    As far as long-term storage is concerned, unfortunately, flours, brown rice and other grains or foods with natural oils do not have a long shelf life (some as short as a year or less) unless properly sealed and refrigerated or frozen. It is fine if you will have continuing refrigeration but if you are not off-grid and have an extended power failure other steps must be taken.
    Whole grains, stored in 5 or 6 gallon plastic buckets, purged of oxygen by evacuation, dry ice or oxygen absorbers will store for years without deterioration. You can do this at home or by buying prepackaged foods from various long-term suppliers. Other foods can be stored in a similar manner or dried.

  13. Just so you know, the gov. is already moving to ban the use of RAW honey among other things. Anything “raw” is not acceptable to them for us to eat. Draw your own conclusions…They are going after food co-ops big time right now and raiding them all over the country, mainly going after anything to do with raw dairy. The FDA stated earlier this year in a response to a lawsuit that Americans do NOT have “the right to eat what they want to.” Tell your legislator that they need to rein in the FDA and tell them they are NOT allowed to stomp all over our Constitutional rights (and the USDA, too!). They are moving to take control of ALL food, especially if it’s nutrient dense. Watch for them to also outlaw storing food as “hoarding”. We’re hearing reports of that, too.

    Regarding the above list – it must be on the old side. You cannot buy 20 pounds of sugar for $5 anymore (and be sure to get only bags that say “pure cane sugar” or you end up with sugar that is from GMO sugar beets), and certainly not 50# of wheat unless you can get it straight from the farmer right out of the combine in the field during harvest (which is the best way to do it but most people can’t do it that way) and you would only be able to get it for $5 if the commodity prices are below $4 a bushel for the moment – if wheat jumps up above $10 a bushel like it did a couple of years ago, you sure won’t get it for $5 for 50 pounds anymore. We are wheat farmers by the way. Also be sure to ask if the wheat is GMO or not. Yes, grains such as brown rice and wheat need to be stored in freezers or in sealed containers with no oxygen in them (food grade buckets using dry ice to drive out the air works fine – find the instructions on the internet, easy to do). White rice does not – for obvious reasons – but white rice *can* get bugs so it needs to be stored in an airtight bucket or something. Sugar and salt are very much needed in survival situations, especially salt – GOOD salt, not processed. They both are used for food preservation especially the salt, such as in fermenting foods which are very, very good for you. Check out stock salt in large bags at a feed store – it can be used in many ways and is very cheap.

    The above list is ok for really barely making it but a person would get really tired of the same basic food over and over forever and your mind starts to rebel against it – like being on a strict diet all of the time. And if your body is not used to eating this kind of food, you might have it rebelling in certain ways, too, until it gets used to it. I would add some freeze dried veggies, fruits and meats to this list even though it makes the cost go up about double. There is freeze dried peanut butter, butter, yeast, eggs, cheese, etc. that can really help when you are on such a basic menu. I would also buy some lentils as they store very well and don’t seem to have the problem with bugs that barley, rice, etc. can have. And get some spaghetti noodles instead of all macaroni. You *will* need to store them somehow so that bugs cannot get them – like in a Tupperware container as they *can* get bugs in them if left sitting for a good while. Especially if you are using wheat noodles/macaroni and those are better for you than the white four ones.

    Having whole wheat means you will need to know how to sprout it to get the most nutrition out of it – and if you don’t have a grinder, you can’t make flour very easy either (using a blender, food processor, etc. *can* be tried for small amounts or for making cereal). Know how to make wheat grass juice – very nutritious. Don’t wait to learn until you are starving as you cannot afford to waste precious food on learning. Beans are still fairly *cheap* and very nutrious but they do need to be kept frozen if you want them to stay good for a long while. If you can’t put it in a freezer, buy a good batch and then rotate all the time so you have some put back at all times. Rotating is a good idea for everything anyway. That also means you are eating what you have stored and your body is already getting used to eating that way. Sprouting the beans is also very good to do for survival. Learn to eat sprouts now so that you will already be used to them and enjoy them instead of having to learn to do that in a survival situation.

    • Very sound advice, thank you!

      • You can find hand grinders, wheat, wood stoves, oil lamps, etc. at Lehmans.com an email address and catalogue that supplies specifically for the Amish and those that want to live more simply, books on canning, dehydrating, living in the country, tools,etc. They are based in Kidron, Ohio. Also for those who want to raise, chickens, quail, old breeds of chickens, etc and equipment that is needed feeders, heaters, etc at mcmurrayhatchery.com out of Webster City, Iowa.

    • I would love to know what your list looks like.

    • [email protected]

      Hi Libertymtn: The government may create laws outlawing the storage of food by calling it hording, but the LDS have a religious “order” to do so for the last one hundred years to be prepared for all types of hardship from loosing a job, to a flood or event that takes away your livestock. It is part of the LDS religious “duty” to prepare for the posibility of things that we can’t control so your family will not parish and so you don’t have to depend on the generosity of others… including the government. That is a First Ammendment religious issue. There are lots of urban myths floating out there. The First Ammendment isn’t just going to church on Sunday and praying to your God. It is the exercise of that faith in all its demensions. That includes no interference from government for that exercise. Nancy

  14. Does AZ Pepper or (anyone) have any healthy recipes for these ingredients selected?

  15. OK, sounds like a pretty good list to start… until you actually think about what you will make from it when you can’t get anything else.

    Don’t get me wrong – it’s a great starter list for basic essentials to allow the prep of other food… think meat when you could get it (small game, etc.). It will also allow the prep of veggie meals that don’t get boring very quickly.

    Modify it to suit your individual preferences/circumstances. For me, I’d reduce the refined sugar and incresae the honey – never goes bad, and almost always can be substituted for sugar. Increase the canned meat (tuna) and mix it up – tuna, chicken, spam, hash, etc. As Heather mentioned above, dried/canned beans and other veggies are a necessity. Think also instant coffee, tea, and other drink mixes.

    Consider as well the space required to store this. 500 lbs of flour is a bunch of space for many. For those considering “bulk” buys, you must also consider how to seal what you don’t use at any given time. While having 20 – 30 (or more) 5-gal buckets of supplies in the house during the TEOTWAWKI isn’t a major problem, finding space for it during “normal” times” is much more of one. How many folks can dedicate 1 whole room in the house (apartment?) to this? If you have a LARGE family (or plan on feeding the neighborhood) then this, too must be incorporated in your plan. But then factor in the cost of buckets, good tops ($7 each last I looked) and mylar bags to fit. It all adds up. Also keep one most important factor in mind – no matter how mush food you have stocked, WATER must be the first concern. The main reason why I lean towards canned veggies, etc., – it reduces the amount you have to set aside for cooking.

    Bottom line: evaluate you current situation and planning. Do plan on staying in place? Set up accordingly. Staying in place not an option? Requires a major adjustment in stocking. The key here is to be honest with yourself – and involve the family if you have one. Can you realistically plant and maintain a garden capable of supporting you/yours? Do have the ability (and environment) to hunt small game? Without drawing undue attention?

    I prefer the “tribe” concept. In it, you get with like-minded neighbors and friends (be very picky here) as well as any who you might consider allowing to come to you if necessary. This will usually provide folks with different but complimentary skillsets and equipment. Work out a plan where each concentrates on a different supply list to work on. Use their individual skills to the benefit of the tribe. (No, this is not advocating a commune – it’s a matter of survival). These skillsets should provide for farming/gardening, limited construction/repairs, mechanical, medical (very important), hunting & defense (a major player here – because when the not-so-prepared figure out that y’all are doing ok, some of them will decide that it’s fine for them to come take what they want from you – and not all “hunters” are prepared for the defense mode), cooking (how many actually have had to prepare meals for, say, 10 – 30 folks at a time on a regular basis). Note that this is geared to a rural stay-in-place scenario. There are too many other considerations to list here, but I think you can see the direction it’s going.

    Just some passing thoughts from one who will survive what’s coming.

  16. This is my favorite company for bulk items. They aslo sell food-grade storage buckets and lids.
    http://azurestandard.com/
    They are based on Oregon, but deliver to drop-points. Ours is in the next town over. You’ll need to call them to find out if they have a drop near you, or you can create a drop. We’re to the point where we order almost everything from them (no tax – so shipping charge) and grow our own veggies and buy from local farmers. Most of their products are organic, but costco/trader joes prices. We also order organic feed for our chickens through them.
    It’s a $50 minimum each person ($550 minimum for group order). You’ll need to sign in as a user to see their prices. If you plan right (deliveries are monthly), you can order most everything you need. I also use their Dr. Bronners soap. It’s bio-degradablde and we use it in the shower, hand soap and to wash our black lab. You can also wash dishes with it, etc.

    • went over to the site, can’t find any reference to storage buckets or lids… maybe I missed it, but search turns up no items…

      • Here’s the bucket $4.60:
        http://www.azurestandard.com/shop/product/2638/

        Clamp on lid $1.40
        http://www.azurestandard.com/shop/product/2639/

        Gamma Seal Lid for Plastic Pail $6.50 (pricey, but air-tight)
        http://www.azurestandard.com/shop/product/2640/

        • They are updating their website to be user friendly. If you type in ‘chicken feed’ nothing comes up. If you type in ‘layer’ then the feed comes up. If you’re interetsed in becoming a member for monthly drops, I recommend ordering their catalog so you can leaf through it. It’s 241 pages…so lots of products.

        • Just a couple of questions and a comment:

          +++ What are Gamma Lids and why are they needed;

          +++ Are there any cookbooks to use this stuff? I’m not a cook and would not know what to do with these items if I had them, but I’m going to learn! My wife is an excellent cook but I don’t think she has any recipes for bulk like is on this list;

          +++ Honey will also work to cure cuts and scrapes. Cover it with a band-aid for a day, then air it out after that;

          +++ Go to http://www.emergencyessentials.com for additional survival information and advice.

          Thanks for all the list and the good advice.
          Bob

      • oops… read and hit comment before realizing what it was sorry… now for posting what I was wanting to say. If you want to save $$$ on buckets, go to a Jimmy Johns, Pizza Hut or other fast food place and ask for their empty food buckets. Many of them get pickles and other food stuff shipped to them in this form and they discard them when empty. I get and use them all the time for paint , water and feed buckets, and they are glad to be rid of them. These are already food grade and have rubber seals in the lids. Is free cheap enough? :)

        • great to know-I am around lots of restaurants at this time. thanks!

        • Just be careful getting free buckets from restaurants, stores, bakeries, etc. Try to get only buckets that have had oil, mayo, frosting, and other mild-flavored contents, as pickle buckets, no matter how well you wash them, have pickle flavor embedded in the plastic. It took us a LONG time to eat a 5 gallon bucket of pickle-flavored oatmeal! The bucket of pickle-flavored powdered milk was a little better as we used it mostly in baking and cooking. Drinking it was almost impossible, though!

  17. Another thing you can do if you don’t have a green thumb is grow nutritous weeds (stinging nettle, dandilion, etc.) in your yard or cultivate these where ever you plan on going if you do not plan on staying put. Just plant the seeds and let nature do it’s thing. They are very hardy and easy to grow. Most people wouldn’t think about taking these away from you if they decided to take what they need/want.

    My favorite (free on u-tube) is this series on learning about herbs. I listen to these as I’m cooking dinner, etc. I’m now doing a home study on medicinal herbs and making infusions, tinctures, my own face products, etc. If you learn now, you’ll be better prepared.
    http://www.youtube.com/user/HerbMentor

  18. [email protected]

    Thanks for this article and list, it’s a great start for people who have done nothing, and for people like me who need to do more.

    I suspect many of these items were on the list due to the affordability factor, such as cream of ___ soup.

    I’m single, will divide the portions on the list in half, and do this in 6 months.

    I already have hygiene stuff, rice, pasta, tuna, oatmeal, some dried beans, and peanut butter – so other than catching 1 or 2 on sale and rotating stock, I will delete those and most of the sugar and wheat, and focus on the rest of the list. The wheat, sugar and yeast are to make bread with, I’m sure (no thanks for me). I’ve never met a healthy can of cream of ___ soup yet; so I’ll substitute with something else. If you plan on baking bread, buy only a minimal amount of flour, and get a hand-grinder from survival websites to grind the wheat. Flour goes bad pretty quick; wheat can be stored longer term than flour. Also white rice stores longer than brown.

    Do online searches of weekly grocery flyers for sales, not just in the immediate area but also surrounding areas. Bank your $5 or $10 until you find your item on sale in the weekly sales flyer, then go and get it towards the end of the sale cycle week, or when their truck comes in, so you get the freshest expiry dates so your stock will last longer.

    Don’t forget your spices and canned tomatoes. Chili made with wheat is delicious, just remember the beans, and spices like chili, cumin, dried minced onion, garlic, and canned tomatoes.

    The following additions will probably double my weekly costs, but I’ll buy only on sale, and it’s worth it:

    canned fruit and veggies
    canned and dried beans
    powdered eggs, cheese, and butter
    jerky
    nuts
    canned salmon and chicken
    dehydrated fruit
    barley
    cous cous
    quinoa
    cornmeal
    bulgur
    d-mannose for tea instead of sugar
    a tiny amount of stevia has huge sweetening power (perfect for tight spaces)
    more honey
    coconut and olive oil
    water
    tea

    water purif tablets
    hand grinder for wheat
    camping stoves
    extra camping stove fuel
    garden and herb seeds for planting

    • Was delighted to find another single out there of like-mind. I’m also single, self-sufficient, but I currently live in an apt. I’d like to find other folks, not necessarily single, who’d like to get together and start a farm co-op type arrangement. I live in a great area, and farmland is reasonably priced, but only if one buys 20 acres or so. So with maybe 5-6 of us splitting the cost of the land and one or two wells & septics, plus renting out some space to those whose “getaway” plan is in a self-contained camper, we could be “each-other sufficent,” as long as we were like-minded in other important ways. What do you think? Pat

    • Thanks so much for all your valuable tips. I posted a comment on this site, right under #18′s posting. Please respond if anyone’s interested or anyone can tell me how to go about finding an out-of-the-way small piece of land! In my lil apt. I have a 3-legged glass-topped round table on either side of the bed (K-Mart, $9) with a floor-length skirt under which there are lots of canned goods. On top of the bookcases are 4 hatboxes covered in wallpaper. They hold spices and soaps. I found two old sets of Bi-fold doors, each 24″ wide, and built 2 cabinets with lots of shelves out of 1″x12″s, and fit the doors over them. Because their depth is only 12,” they fit nicely in a hallway, and hold a LOT. My current “coffee table” is a USMarine trunk covered in quilting, and it holds blankets, etc. In the kitchen I have an old handmade “hope chest” which is pushed against a wall, covered with a thick pad, and used in place of a kitchen chair. It holds a lot, also. Hope this helps someone else with a storage problem. Pat

    • and lots of CHOCOLATE!!!!!

    • oil can go rancid, especially if its exposed to light I heard….but I was wondering then, about that natural peanut butter I buy which has the oil separated and on top. Peanut butter expiration is usually pretty long, but I would think that would make it shorter. Does anyone know an alternative to using oil for cooking (and we are talking in the long term, if oil that had been stored was used up…)?

  19. OK, I’ve googled for using dry ice for evacuation, storage, air removal, etc. I find everything BUT the desired article. Does anybody have a link to such an article?

    • Assumig you have freezer space to store it, dry ice is excellent for evac purposes. A small block in a double paper grocery bag will keep a cooler cold enought to evac – and leaves more room in it for essentials. Just remember that it “melts” (evaporates) on exposure to air, hence the paper bag wrap. Also, remember that if you grab it with bare hands, you’ll leave a layer of skin stuck to it. Problem most have is storagae space – and finding it on very short notice can be problematical.

  20. hello..this is a great website with good idea’s. The wheat for storage is wheat berry. This will store indefinately. One does need a grinder though and they can be expensive. Also yeast as well as baking soda;baking powder must be stored. These items don’t store for long period. I am looking into how to make my own yeast. Anyone have idea’s?
    For those who enjoy bacon..try canned yoder’s bacon. I was stunned at how good it is. I like it better than fresh!Although it’s expensive..try to buy ‘ghee’(you can make it yourself’. This is clarified butter and can be stored for long time storage and will do if one doesn’t have cooking oil. Red feather butter is great!! Pleasant hills also offers ground canned beef..worth a try. And Costco has great bargins for cases of soup,canned chicken and canned tuna.Even if one doesn’t eat that much sugar..remember this is an item that barters easily. Another item is begga cheese..this is a chedder cheese that grates easily and melts and is great! Storing food is tedious and expensive and can be discouraging. Especially if one’s storage space is limited and money is tight. But when there’s a will there’s a way. We are retiree’s and have converted one bedroom into a pantry. I do panic when a daughter wants to ‘come home’ until she gets her act together..with her new baby. We will make it work. grrrrrr And pray. One thing i keep reading is the government is not telling how bad our food supply is. With BP and the floods in our food belt..as well as hyperinflation coming i do wonder how badly we all will be affected. Did any ever wonder 20 yr’s back we would be facing what germany faced in 1934..hyperinflation so bad..germans filled wheelbarrows full of money for one loaf of bread! My worry is not feeding family but those who did not plan ..have guns and are willing to use them for their gain.

    • That’s my big worry too. Others not being prepared. We live down a country, one lane, dead end road (4 houses total…each on 5 acres). There’s a winery below us and I think people get curious about the private road ‘keep out’ and drive on up. We have 20 chickens and soon will have 2 milk goats, plus we have a large veggie garden. I’m not comfortable about strangers seeing what we have (we’ve worked hard to create a somewhat self-sustaining living). If we have to buy produce, I take note and purchase seeds to plant now or next season. We’re thinking of asking our neighbors to go in with us on a locked gate.

      For hand grinders for grain/wheat/corn, which one should I look at to purchase? Preferably to grind various sizes. I’ve been looking, but there are many (expensive and cheap to choose from). Hoping for a resonable price, but good heavy-duty quality.

      • a locked gate might only be effective if you then change the dead end road sign to “nuclear plant-danger” or something dangerous coupled with keep out. My parents used to live on a road that had a sign saying “Caution Broken Bridge”, and very few would go down it.

    • I agree that sugar can be a good barter agent, but, as been proven in the past, salt is better (about the only thing better than salt is ammo – but barter that only as a last resort). And it stores easier – ants seem to find sugar no matter how tightly you seal it.

    • [email protected]

      Hi Hanna23: You and I must be looking at the same google sites for food storage and shelf stable food products. I have been considering a trip to home improvement store for shelving brackets that you screw into the wall stud for expanding my pantry goods. Another idea is the metal shelving units that sell from $35-135 each for 18x36x54″ tall. Once you get over the idea that what they photograph in Better-Homes-&-Gardens and the reality of expanded food storage are two different ideas of home beauty. Even those photos of living room tables with a tablecloth could have 300 pounds of food hidden under it! If you have built-in bookcases they are 12″ deep or more… many books are only 8″ deep. You have the potential for lots of can goods behind the small books. Under the bed in pull out trays… A skirt around the bathroom sink can hide a years’ worth of toilet paper. Toilet paper doesn’t go bad from the heat in a garage… that is a good location for non-food stuff. That leaves the sink for something else. Invite you daughter and granchild home. They can help you organize home pantry storage for our new realities. Nancy

    • You don’t have a gun in your home? My philosophy is, “If there is a loaded gun in my house, it will be mine.” And in typical bumper-sticker coloquialism, are you going to be a gun-owner or a victim?

    • You don’t have a gun in your home? My philosophy is, “If there is a loaded gun in my house, it will be mine.” Also, in true bumper-sticker coloquialism, “Are you a gun owner or a victim?”

  21. Thanks everyone for sharing your thoughts; very helpful!
    hpj3 I would like to hear more of your thoughts, suggestions and additional websites, info on a good type of OTG stove…. so we don’t have to wade through sale pitches:-) We are all “here” for the same reason….
    All help appreciated..

    • A simple means to make sure you have a way to cook is to use you tube and watch how to make a soda can alcohol stove and pick up one of those Sterno camp stoves at wal-mart for a few bucks and keep some rubbing alcohol around(remember at least 70%+).

    • The soda can alcohol stove is ok for a couple of days, but with the very thin walls they have today they burn out too quickly. The sterno stoves from wally-world work, but aren’t really geared to a family. They’re cheap, so having a couple around as back-up & emergency is fine. One alternative is the cast-iron hibachi-type grill. They’re small enough for the car, and since you can use charcoal or wood they’re flexible.

      This an excellent option – albeit a little expensive. Small enough for OTG, yet flexible as it uses propane, wood, charcoal, old 2x4s, or whatever other fuel you can come by – and uses it more efficiently than anything else I’ve used. Check it out here: http://www.crisiscooker.com/

      While on the subject of charcoal/wood cookers in all their forms, I strongly recommend that an integral part of your set-up include a charcoal chimney – also from wally-world. They make lighting charcoal a whole lot easier and faster, and work as well on wood chunks. They’re also a huge help in getting wet wood to burn. Another point – avoid the “ready-light” charcoal – use regular briquettes (I prefer hardwood lump, it lasts longer). I also don’t use lighter fluid. It’s OK for lighting a campfire, but not for cooking if your doing so directly over the coals, as with meat. I keep a couple of 30 gal plastic garbage cans full, one with lump and the other with a mix of lump and briquetts. Have another full of chunks of hickory and mesquite.

    • Autumngal – tell me what areas you are interested in and I’ll try to oblige. As for websites, the best option is to search them (I didn’t say google as I refuse to use them), look them over, and cherry-pick what looks/works best for you and your specific circumstances. I usually find some things on most of them that are useful/interesting, and I also find things that for me and my circumstances are junk. Like I said, individual circumstances are the driving factor. I’ll try here to stay as generic as I can so that suggestions fit as many as possible. I’m doing this primarily to get folks thinking about what could happen and ask questions… also, these are just my opinions (based on research, practice, and a lot of old military training). Your mileage may/will vary, and others will no doubt disagree on some points. All I know is what has worked for me in the past, and what I’m comfortable in doing today and in the future. That said, I continue to learn something new regularly. When you think you know it all, that’s usually when you find the mouse in the stew.

      Howard

  22. Here is a list I made up for ten people (one year) short term emergency storage. Obviously, this much stuff will take some imagination to store in a tight space. These items go along with the freeze dried and dehydrated foods, along with water and related items. I am currently working through this list as sales come up, and I get some extra funds. We do use the items frequently, so we never have to throw anything out. The few scraps we have go to our flock of chickens, who repay us in kind with eggs, and love the extra attention! Feel free to change this list around to suit yourself.

    Ten People One Year Basic Emergency Storage
    (Replace 1/10 each year, and rotate)

    -Corn Meal 420 pounds
    -Cornmeal mix-560 lbs
    Grits-114 lbs (If you have to ask what a grit is, never mind) .
    -Pasta 24 pounds
    spaghetti, elbows, egg noodles, spiral noodles, fettuccine, lasagna, rigatoni, cannelloni
    -Rice
    -brown-35 pounds
    -wild-35 pounds
    -Whole Corn 300 pounds
    -Whole Wheat (grains), 1095 pounds
    –Plain Flour, 500 pounds
    –Bread Flour, 500 pounds
    -Oats 600 pounds
    -Barley 420 pounds
    Potatoes, whole, as much as possible, and…
    -freeze dried white-33 pounds
    -freeze dried sweet-33 pounds
    Dry Beans and Peas 600 pounds
    Sugar/brown sugar at least 40 pounds for each person (For personal use and as a bargaining tool), also equivalent honey, and other desired sweeteners.
    Cooking Oil, 40 gallons
    Powdered Milk (figure how many gallons your family uses, then get enough dry milk for one year; add one year for each person you think will seek you out in the event of an emergency).
    Iodized Salt 80 pounds (about 50 26oz. containers). And…As much feed grade fine salt as possible, stored in buckets with tight lids. (Get 50 lbs for about $3.00 at the feed store). You will need this for canning and preserving WTSHTF. If it gets hard you can still use it.
    Peanut Butter 40 pounds
    Freeze dried Soup Mix 50 pounds
    Baking Soda, at least 10 pounds
    Baking powder 10 pounds (more if you make biscuits, etc. every day)
    Vinegar, at least 5 gallons
    Yeast, buy as much as will last until expiration date
    Lard Stand 12 (30 lb each)
    Beef Jerky
    Bullion, all types, dry
    Candy, as desired
    Velveeta 156 (32 oz) boxes (this might sound crazy, but you will crave this stuff when it’s no longer available, and cheez will last a very long time if properly stored.
    Coffee 120 sealed cans (10 cases)
    Seeds in sealed cans

    • Nice list! Thanks! Another thing is you do not need to store eggs in the fridge (unless it was started out that way…like at the store). As long as you don’t wash off the bloom that keeps the bacteria out, eggs will last for 3 weeks or more stored on your kitchen counter. I only store the eggs that I sell in the fridge as most people are used to buying cold eggs.

      • Yes, I agree with you, Heather, but we go through eggs so fast,and give away so many, I just wash them. The Yuk Factor is pretty high with me with fresh eggs, but I can butcher anything and clean it (go figure).

        • If fridge storage is not a factor later, it’s good to know that they will keep without cold storage. Even having just a couple chickens could help out families. I don’t eat chicken or red meat, but would absolutely change my mind if needed. I wash the eggs right before eating and most are free of visible yuk.

          • Here’s one thing I’ve been concerned about, as far a chickens go-how do we get food for them, if feed becomes scarce? My husband says they used to raise corn for them, and all the chickens ran wild all over the place, but not many people can grow their own, and our neighbor would have a fit if we let them loose. I suggested to him that people would do well to have some game chickens and guineas running about, if they could. I think they can survive on much less, and don’t need as much pampering.

  23. @ blueyes49
    I was just out in the garden and I was thinking the same thing (how would I feed 20 chickens?). I considered making my own feed in the past as even organic feed has a lot of soy in it. I’m now purchasing soy-free feed from azure standard that I noted above (I don’t like how soy is processed in the US…most is not fermented and it should be fermented to be edible (soy sause and miso). But the grains needed to store do not store long-term. I can free-range them, but we’ve had bob-cat attacks. Now they are ranging on a pasture along with 2 llamas. We were going to get goats last year…but then the 2 bobcats paid us many visits. I plan on growing orchard grass for the llamas and I could grow wheat, etc. for us and chickens and let them free-range outside the pasture (lots for them to eat), but while I was just out in the garden, I also considered that we would probably have to downsize our flock of 20 if we did not have the means to feed all of them. We’re getting the goats in Sept. after out llamas are gelded at 2 years old. I read that male llamas will try to mount goats (YIKES!). We’re lucky enough to have 5 acres (Mike bought this plave about 15 years ago and it’s paid for). Solar is next and a large water tank. Now I’m thinking that we should plant wheat, etc. this fall too. Many things to do…and weo not have a tractor.

    • Keep one thing in mind re: the bobcat – they taste like chicken!

      • Since I’m on the subject, given the circumstances you describe, y’all might want to think about a few more goats… not only do they help keep the grass/weed down, trhey also eat most scraps (like pigs) and when the time dictates, they are quite tasty… goat is a staple in much of the middle east (where I spent considerable time) and it goes great on the grill.

        • Thanks! We just might do that now that we have the llamas to guard. Maybe a male goat or 2 for breeding, in turn, more milk:)

        • Hi hpj3 – Just a side comment: We do have goats and suprisingly (to me, anyway) they are quite particular in what they consume. I’ve tried numerous times giving them garden things – ie corn, cucumbers, carrots, lettuce, strawberries; various items that one would possibly till back into their gardens – peelings and such…they didn’t want anything to do with that! However, if they get outside of their fence – they are very pleased to eat the leaves off any tree in sight and chew on the tall grass, yet INSIDE the fence if the pasture grass gets too long – we’ve had to mow it to a shorter, more tolerable length for them…Hmmm…forget the tin-can eating animals – ours would rather have fancy feast!

      • Get a donkey. They are used in Kenya to ward off Leopards and here in KY to keep coyotes away from the sheep and goats. It works!

    • [email protected]

      Hi Blue Eyes: You didn’t say if your 20 chickens were a mixed run and half of them roosters… Given normal hatching half would be hens and half would be roosters. If so, of the 10 roosters you will have 8 fryers to dress out for your freezer. That will give your family a little time to dis-associate the critters from pets when you pull out the bird in the freezer. The other two would be the daddys of your next flock of chicks and vicious protecter of his harem. Which ever doesn’t get eaten by the bobcat. Ten years ago my daughter had 10 acres of rural land, three pigs and a flock of chickens. Mountain lions took two of the 100 pound pigs, one each night out of their pen as they cried and squealed. Fox took half the chickens. My daughter sold the last pig to a neighboring farmer who could protect the pig better. I was terrified that the mountain lion would decide tostock my grandchildren when the pigs were no longer available. Your hens should be OK out in the field when you are with them gardening, but they need to be locked up when you go into your own home. Nancy

      • Hi koslinglaw,
        It’s me with the 20 chickens and the bobcat problem. We mainly started out with trying to be self-sufficient and never thought we might have to eat our chickens. At the moment we only have 1 rooster and 2 chicken coops. I would like to get another rooster for the other coop. My other half didn’t want any roosters. He also doesn’t think we need to stock up on so much food. I’m doing it anyway:) He’ll thank me later if we need to use it. We have 4 chickens that are known to go broody, so we’ll have more chicks/chickens running around. All of our chickens have names (we have a blue cochin that we named Marge Simpson) as we think of them as pets, but if things get ugly, I won’t name them anymore. I hope things do not get ugly, but if they do, I want to be prepeared. I’m glad we started doing the self-sustaining route a couple of years ago as it’s a learning curve. We’re ahead of a lot of people, but behind compared to most on this forum.

        • [email protected]

          Hi Heather11. When I was 6 or 7 my parents bought 50 chicks through the mail. The company tossed in a few extra should any die in shipping. None died so they had 54 critters that went into a dirt basement with heat lamps until spring. The chickens were bought for the sole purpose of fryer meat. They were fed and watered under electric lights and heat lamps. They grew and prospered. Even though they were bought for meat, slaughter day was a bad day. Mother set up a fire out in the yard of dirt, (no compustables) in rural New Mexico. Over the fire was a number-2 galvanized wash-tub with boiling water to aid in pulling off the feathers. The tub was our Sunday bathtub, too (did I mention we were out in the country)… As I recall, mother had a neighbor friend just as green in slaughetering animals to help her. The neighbor didn’t last long and found an excuse to leave. I think the men of the house(s) worked overtime that day. It fell to mother to cut their heads off and pin them to the clothesline by their feet to drain the blood. Headless, the chickens still flapped their wings and blood sprayed like a murder crime scene on TV. After the chickens stopped flapping, mother would submerge the chickens in the boiling water to allow pulling off the feathers. Mother looked like Lucy in a pillow factory as feathers of all sizes stuck in her hair and on on her clothes. With blood spatters she truly looked frightening. I don’t watch Halloween scary movies today with that though in my mind. Having said all this, having your 20 chickens provide eggs. That is good. Because you don’t let them free-range you pay for layer mix. Day-in-day-out that is not good. What ever you are paid for your extra eggs, it isn’t enough to pay for the feed. That makes them all pets and the neighbors are being subsidized with free or nealy free eggs. To free-range your chickens, your neighbors can’t have preditor dogs. This type of dog will kill your whole flock in less than 30 minutes and the dog’s owners will defend his dogs in court. Add lawyer’s and court cost to the flock. Find out from your fish and wildlife people how they allow you to defend your flock from the bobcat(s) predators. If allowed, learn to shoot them. Someone in this comment column said they taste like chickenin jest. The idea is the same… kill the predator or suffer the loss. Same for dogs that kill your livestock. I’ve been away from New Mexico a long time, but when I lived there there was a law on the books that protects the livestock owner. If “any” animal becomes a predator of livestock, the livestock owner can kill it without recourse of the dog’s owners and the dog owner is financially responsible for the famer’s loss. Let me know how it works out for you. Nancy

  24. The list in this article is an OK place to start, but you aren’t going to be happy or healthy if you try to go for a year on just what’s in the list. The list has 6 pounds (Yikes!) of yeast. You need baking powder and baking soda instead of some of that yeast. And you need some dried beans since there’s precious little protein included in the list.

    With only the items in this list, you will become appetite fatigued and not want to eat any of this after only a short time. Under a stress situation of the kind that requires you to use your emergency food storage, do you really want to try to make it on mac & cheese, cream soups and some wheat? This list is better than nothing, but I sure wouldn’t want to live for a year on that stuff.

    • Well, it’s a start. Canned fruits and veges can last for 2 years. By mixing some of the pasta, soup, veges you can make pretty good stuff and no one will get tired of it. Bread can be a problem without baking soda. Perhaps we should all practice baking bread the old fashioned way?
      Missing from this list is also cornmeal and good old grits. When in doubt, cook up some grits.

  25. Regarding multivitamins, (and this is important.)
    Around 1993 the FDA changed the recommended daily allowance of vitamins to only a small percentage of what they were. Then the vitamin companies were intimidated to follow suit, lowering the amount of vitamins in their tablets and capsules. Now most multivitamins found in the stores are almost useless except for the trace minerals in them. People who depend on these watered – down versions are endangering their health and possibly the health of their families, according to nutritionists and others. I personally only stock individual vitamins of high dosages and a few bottles of multivitamins because of the important trace minerals in them. If you will research the health food sites, you will see that they concur. Unfortunately, I hear famous doctors on tv occasionally recommend multivitamins. These are medical doctors and little do most of them know about nutrition…especially vitamins. Many would have been teenagers in1993 and would not have known…or cared…about what the FDA did to the vitamin industry.
    Remember, the higher dosage table is a very good buy because you can split them if necessary.
    I find 1000 mg vit C’s and 1000 mg vit D and vit B-100 to be very good amounts for storage. My chosen list of vitamins happens to be a long one, but I have a lot of faith in them.
    About the expiration date: For my family and myself, I choose to ignore it, just as I ignore most dates for meds, except Tetracycline. Desperate times may call for desperate measures.

    • I agree with the general comments on multi-vitamins – if you’re using them as a primary source. As with most things, a relaince on one thing usually results in problems. Using good-quality multi-vitamins as a supplement to your diet is not a bad thing. Consider the diet you’ll have forced on you, stock the high-dosage individual ones, but use the multi-s as a general booster. Every little bit helps.

  26. Lots of good ideas but to be really simple try sardines for protein and long shelf life, not to leave out low cost and small storage space.. Mashed with mustard, dijon..and some onion..it is delicious….also, what is wrong with unleavened bread…it was good enough for the Israelites….make it simple….As for grains, quinoa is a complete protein that is delicious and quick to cook….

  27. mrmatthewcmiller

    For long term grain storage I use “food grade” Diatomaceous Earth available here:
    http://www.dirtworks.net/Diatomaceous-Earth.html

    Diatomaceous Earth Kills Pests Naturally – It is a mineral dust mined from quarries that kills the insects when they come in contact with it. It contains trace minerals so you can leave it in the grain while cooking and eating!

    1 cup of DE will protect 50 lbs of grain
    5 lbs of DE will protect 1500 lbs of grain
    7 lbs of DE will protect 2000 lbs of grain or seed

    In 1962, the PERMA-GUARD COMPANY got a patent on the use of pure “food grade” Diatomaceous Earth, which, when added to grain killed the bugs that were present, and protected the grain from further invasions. And the bugs could not become immune, They were killed by physical action–not chemical !

    Seven pounds of pure, “food grade” Diatomaceous Earth, added to the grain so that every kernel is coated, can protect the grain for as long as needed. Instead of retreating grain every six months as the chemical people do, Perma-Guard Grain Protectant need be added only once, regardless of how long the storage lasts.

    When the grain is to be used, the Diatomaceous Earth can be easily removed, but need not be. Actually, since the product is “food grade,” makes no difference in taste or in cooking quality, and adds 14 trace minerals, why not leave it in?

    • In regards to DE, make sure you get the freshwater diatoms rather than ocean water. There appears to be a difference (food grade vs. feed grade). It should say Codex on the bag. It’s pricier, but this would be consumed by you with the food. It’s also a natural de-wormer for people and animals.

  28. It’s not feasible for $5 per week..
    I like what someone else said…just buy what you like…but much more of the non-perishable foods (and start stocking up NOW). Add lots of salt and sugar/honey for preserving. Learn to do this now. We have a sun oven that we purchased about 1 year ago, but many sites show you how to make one…even from a pizza box……learn this too! But do all of these things now and experiment…so you’re not shell-shocked later:)

    I’m collecting organic canned food (on sale or in bulk as I want the vitamins & minerals…but you don’t have to…this is just what I do…plus we try to grow our own and buy seeds/collect seeds from what we have, etc…

    Also for vitamins…study wild edible plants (stock up on nettle,healing teas, etc for vitamins and minerals). Do this now so you get used to the biter taste (but soooo good for you). So many things to consider…so wish my ‘other half was in-line with me (and family…..) Grrrrr

    Research and strat implementing…so it’s second nature…you’ll be ahead of the game…
    Once you start this and keep researching…implementing…it opens your eyes…and hey, if nothing happens you’re prepared and you have the know how for self-sustaining…WIN / WIN:)

    • By he way…add/grow peppermint (most can’t kill this plant…and most want to get rid of it:) and add it to bitter herbs…very good for your herbal infusions for better taste. also helps with constipation if you need or are forced to not drink coffee.

      PS…asprin used to be made from an herb (actually 2 herbs…one was more previlent at that time…1940′s)…now it’s made from petoleum…YUK…ingeting gasoline basically! Don’t you just ‘love’ the big corporations? I’ll post later about the 2 herbs that aspirin was originally made from…I don’t print everythig out../but I take notes.

  29. Good article but you will find that these recommendations amount to barebones survival at best.

    The premise is 312 days at 4000 calories (kcal) for two adults (2000 per day each). That’s based on the US Government’s estimates of what the average daily allowance should be per person. But we must consider a few additional factors and adjust accordingly.

    First, never trust the government (completely) to decide what YOU need to intake per day. Your average daily calorie intake depends on two basic factors:

    1) Your body size (weight)
    2) Your level of activity.

    If you cannot intake enough to sustain necessary levels of daily activity, the resulting energy deficits will result in inevitable weight loss.

    For example: let us suppose a man is 190 pounds and his wife is about 120 pounds. Both are healthy, not overweight (about 20% body fat each), but live sedentary lives (i.e. they both work in an office and have no regular exercise program). Based on their current level of activity in a stable “world-as-we-know-it,” they should both take in about 13 calories a day per pound of body weight to maintain their present weight (According to Army Regulation 600-9, The Army Weight Control Program, Appendix C): For the male – 2470 calories a day; for the female – 1560 calories a day. Together, they’d need 4030 calories a day to maintain their present weights if they stay sedentary. So, the government’s recommended daily allowance is already short, but not by too much. And the $5-a-week shopping list should prove adequate.

    But what happens in a survival situation? Now, there are routine chores around to complete without motorized or electric labor-saving devices. Those office jobs are probably no longer there, and to earn an income one or both of these adults may have to engage in a labor intensive enterprise outside the home.

    Anyone engaged in moderate levels of exercise will need at least 15 calories per pound per day: For the male – 2850 calories a day; for the female – 1800 calories a day. Grand total: both need 4650 calories a deficit of 650 calories a day. If the deficit is shared equally (325 calories each), then each of them will begin losing about 0.65 pounds per week – around 29 pounds each at the end of 44 weeks. For the female, she is probably very close to her minimum healthy weight and might require medical attention if the crisis continues much longer.

    In extreme circumstances, these two adults may have to adopt highly physical lifestyles to contend with the new rigors of the end of life as we know it. In which case, both may need to boost their caloric intake to a whopping 17 calories per pound per day: For the male – 3230 calories a day for the man and 2040 for the female. Together they will need 5270 calories – a deficit of 635 calories each per day. They will begin losing about 1.27 pounds per week – around 56 pounds each at the end of 44 weeks. By this time, both will be at or below what is accepted as a minimum healthy weight and will require medical attention. They may have long before that found that they are unable to maintain the necessary levels of activity required to contend with their new day-to-day lives.

    So, as a guide, one should plan on at least maintaining 17-18 calories per pound of body weight per day for the duration of the anticipated crisis. For Mr. and Mrs. Sample herein, they should stock at least 5580 calories a day for the duration. Don’t always plan on supplementing your rations in the first year with a one-acre victory garden; there are just too many factors that may prevent you from making up the deficit (weather, pests, thieves, government….sorry, I already covered them under pests and thieves).

    Plan on doubling the amount of calories saved, if you can (36 calories per pound per day). First, you may not be able to safeguard all the food you’ve managed to cache. If half of it is lost, you still have something to fall back on. Also, you will have neighbors who did not have the foresight you did. In order to maintain the exceptional culture that made this nation great, it will be incumbent on us to share a portion of our blessings with those in dire need as WE (not the government) deem necessary.

  30. gloriamariacirolo

    How ridiculous !! You call that eating healthy, it’s so disgusting. What about the hygiene products, where are they?
    I think soap, hand sanitizer, toliet paper, razor blades, paper plates and napkins would be well needed. Where are the drinks, like good old H2o and box juice drinks with added vitamin c for children. Sorry but that list is not reality, if you lived on that for a year you would end up at the doctors for sure!!!!! Consuming such highly processed food with no variety would surely cause GI complications. Let’s get real!!!

  31. I look at this list and I think its a great starter. Most people don’t have a clue about the food supply system in place these days.
    I am a trucker, and let me tell you, these trucks you see running up and down the road? most are carrying store inventory. That’s right, stores actually factor in, what we call JIT or Just-In-Time deliveries as part of the their physical inventory. It wouldn’t take much to disable that supply line. Rising fuel costs, increased regulations to truckers, even the new EPA guidelines that makes trucking so much more expensive. Have you considered what a modern day truckers strike would do to the supply line with so many vendors relying on the JIT deliveries?
    Or how about this? another very real situation would be a possible pandemic. We’ve already had a few (Swine Flu, Bird Flu etc..) that have just petered out. But what about the next possible one? With global transportation and the ever increasing number of imports into this country, what are the odds of a global pandemic affecting this country in a matter of days?
    I read somewhere that the average U.S. household has about 3-5 days worth of food on hand at any given time. There are some that do their grocery shopping every day, or at least every week, and only buy enough food to last them until the next payday. What does one do if there is no next payday? it has been happening more and more with companies that just close up, poof, gone, along with your next paycheck and the little bit of security you had been clinging onto. What if there is a disaster or pandemic that would present a safety risk going out just to find empty shelves or looted stores?
    My family thinks I’m nuts, but I don’t want to be one of those people out scavenging for whatever I can get while I can get it. While I am new to this, I take advantage of sales. My wife hates when I go grocery shopping. I love our local stores 20 for $10.00 on can goods, because I’m coming home with some stuff! I have three kids and my in-laws also depend on me to help them too. My father in law is one of those that likes to go shopping everyday, and it drives me NUTS! I’ve tried to explain that it is not hoarding, that I am not crazy, that when all else fails, I will still have plenty to eat while preparing for garden harvests and hunting. I hear all the time about, “we’ll just grow a garden, feed ourselves..” then I look in the pantry and ask, “yeah? well what the H are you going to eat while you are waiting for you veggies to grow?”
    We have to be more responsible, to ourselves, our families, and our neighbors. While this list is somewhat basic, I still see it as a great starter for somebody that is not doing anything at all! The thing about it is, it will get the mind working in another direction. Once the seed is planted, I believe more people will see the light and find more information and better ways to adopt a plan towards self sufficiency.
    P.S. one thing I have found however, is stocking up on food does become a problem if it is not put away out of sight of hungry teenage boys. I swear they will eat anything and everything that tickles their fancy…..just sayin”…….

  32. I just LOVE this newsltr – have learned a ton of info. We came up with another simple recycling idea the other day that might be of interest. We own a 29 ft camper and are going to use that as our “bug out” place if the SHTF. We buy our shampoo in bulk from Aveda (yes it seems expensive but it only costs us $45 for a liter which lasts us more than a year for two of us and it doesn’t contain harmful chemicals). I emptied a bottle of cough syrup the other day and washed in the dishwasher and am going to use it for a travel size shampoo (those little plastic btls are over $1 at Walmart). I’ve also recently started saving small odd sized jars (glass) since I don’t like using anything plastic because of the PCBs.

  33. I’ve seen lists like this for years, but I’ve yet to see anything on how to use this much wheat or how to cook and live around what has been accumulated.

    What would be great is an article or a link to a website or book that explains how to cook in this manner.

  34. Speaking of Diatomaceous Earth…DE…..the food grade is good for all the things written in this article. Did you know that the food grade is also used as a skin defoliator, to whiten your teeth, but more importantly, when a heaping tablespoonful is taken with juice, water, etc., it lowers blood pressure, triglycerides, and cholesterol. It curbs appetite, keeps bowels regular daily, and more. Go to http://www.earthworkshealth.com and read all about the human, pet, and misc use. It keeps bugs off your gardens, worms your animal, gets rid of fleas, kills insects in your home, and more!!! Several of my friends and I have discovered it this year and all bought 50 pounds and use it for everything. My nails have grown so long and hard, my hair has grown and is so shiny, the brown age spots on my skin have faded….I love this product and I haven’t found anywhere else but this site to buy the Food Grade DE. Please post if you know other places where it is for sale, as shipping can cost more than the product does! Ladybee

  35. I’m sorry, but this is the worst list and mostly B.S. While it contains necessary items it’s woefully inadequate. Look at it. If you only had 1 can of soup a day plus 12 cans of tuna mixed with Macaroni (and God forbid you occasionally added some Cream of Mushroom soup to it for a “casserole” you’d still have (if one person ate this at 1 meal per day) approximately 150 days of some kind of protein “meal” and I’m stretching it to include peanut butter and the honey as “protein” and a whole lot of sugar and wheat leftover for bannick bread I guess-(or perhaps to use as exchange for a can of green beans or sliced pineapple or cocoa mix or a packet of mashed potatoes or rice or dry beans -you know kidney, pinto, navy, black beans? or a can of peaches or deviled ham or chicken or beef bullion or a can of chili con carne….for Pete’s Sake! stuff you should have stored away to begin with!. Get a brain. It looks like a Martian made this list up. Somebody who’s got no idea what it takes to feed two earthlings and certainly not an adult woman who has a family or a husband and is used to keeping them alive with food. Helllooooo
    When those headaches from starvation or lack of decent food kick in the aspirin might come in handy, might not.
    As for the pricing-it’s way off, perhaps not by last century’s standards but it doesn’t reflect prices where I shop now.
    It is not my intention to just be critical. This is serious stuff, surviving, and this incredulous list is not self sustaining and it should be stated so if it is not apparent to you already. If you’re a meat eater, learn to can hamburger, slabs of chicken breast, meat sauces, chili. Things you’d prepare anyway. There is no sense storing things you don’t already eat. You’ll probably starve before you’ll eat it. Don’t believe me? Children and elderly German’s starved after WWII because they would not eat what they called “pig food”. OK , What was “pig food” anyway? It was corn and in Germany only pigs ate corn. These people wanted to live, you can bet on it, but they died because of their druthers. Rule #2 Prepare and store what you already eat.
    Wanna know what Rule #1 is. Water and a water source

  36. freedom from opressors

    Most days breakfast ,oatmeal with” store brand crunchy nuggets “(like grape nuts) only one without HFC. yuk , . so oatmeal crunchy nuggets black strap molasses,dried apple or raisins. whole milk. I cut way back on serving size as this raises my blood sugr. But the molasses is LOADED with minerals.. Do research on food combineing.

  37. I’d like to see the years menu. Using this shopping list.

  38. We are building our survival food storage using a combination of grocery store, food co-op and bulk freeze-dried food purchases. I think the list here is silly; just add $10 or so worth of foods you use — tuna fish, mayo, salt, olive oil, etc. — to your cart each week and store it in a separate food storage area. Then rotate the food out into your main food pantry as the months go by, replacing it with fresher items.

  39. Does anyone know how vacume sealing in mason jars works for keeping dry goods? Would it keep bugs from infesting beans and grains? Also if you are near water a fish basket would help to provide extra protein.

  40. Let me rephrase that last question about the vacume grains in a jar. I know the bugs couldn’t get into the jars after they’re sealed but if they were present when put in would it kill them and prevent an internal infestation?

    • It should. If my memory is correct, at 25-28 inches of vaccum, its like being at 50,000 feet. Nothing that breaths air can survive. I’ve stored beens in mason jars for over ten years. They are so hard that they won’t soak up any water. You would have to cook them in a pressure cooker. A friend who has done the same, cooks them that way. Animal crakers after ten years are as fresh as the day they were sealed. Flour lasted four or five years, was fine and was used. Oatmeal, 7-10 years without a problem.Same for pasta,sugar,rice,ect.. The only problem I’ve really had is getting the lids off those 1 gal. jars. Had to poke a small hole in the lid to release the pressure on it.
      One thing that didn’t work well after 10 or more years was pop-corn. Some poped but most didn’t. At around 5 years most did.

      • Thanks, M14, I have a years supply already and am putting more by. Than may seem like a lot but if I have to take anyone in it will cut it. As for water and the usual on hand you might look at the filters, the Gravidyne will filter 39,000 gallons and you can get replacement filters also. a friend of mine ( also a doc) said he wouldn’t want to be here if the SHTF but I told him I would like to have the option just in case.

      • We bought a 100 pound bag of popcorn years ago and it was dry enough that we had the same problems. We then put some in a quart jar with a teaspoon of water. Nearly every kernel popped after that. It’s the expansion of the moisture inside the kernel that makes it pop.

  41. This is an economical way to go, but there are different issues that many have addressed about storage,preparation (like grinding wheat for flour) bugs, quality of food and then learning how to cook with what you have. It seems to make more sense to buy a little extra of what you normally eat if it is storable. My wife and I tried and we just seem to keep eating up our stored foods. Did some canning also, but it is a lot of work. We have found that purchasing already prepared dehydrated food meals makes the most sense. After researching and tasting a lot of pretty bland stuff we have found a company that produces dehydrated meals that actually taste good and the kids even ask for seconds. Easy to store and will soon be able to be purchased monthly to build up your storage supply. Not as cheap as the above list, but well worth it I believe. You can get a free 3 meal sample package for the cost of shipping at: http://obg.sundanceglobal.com Just copy and paste into your browser. It is set up as a new MLM but the company has been making the food for 10 years. You can also earn more $15 food packages by turning on others to the free offer until 10/20/2010. The packages work out to less that $1 per meal. We can’t wait to taste some of the other meals. Good Luck which ever way you decide. Food storage is a wise decision. Prices will likely rise significantly soon, even more than they have been.

  42. I have lots of food stored but never enough. I have one room in my basement for food storage. We’ve been picking at it slowly and need to re-supply. I agree with an earlier post, #1 would be WATER. I have all I need. Thank God.
    I live a mile off the main road and have many like minded neighbors. Three doctors and two are like minded. My garden just got bigger for next year, but it would be tough to survive on what one could grow. Except for when I was a kid, I can’t remember not having a garden. If SHTF, the people in the cities are not going to do so well. I really feel for them, but the warning signs have been here for a long, long time. I’ve been doing this (prepareing for what if) for 30+ years. I don’t think I’ll ever be ready for a really bad SHTF but my family, including neighbors, “should” get by in pretty good shape. I think we all could if we work hard at it.
    The right mind set and lots of prep work will get us through tough times. Just like our grand parents and great grand parents. They were really tough people living in really tough times. But they got through them tough times and so can we. Victory gardens can help if you know how to plant, grow and store vegtables.
    It gets cold here in northwest Pa. in the winter. So I keep a two year supply of fire wood on hand. It would get pretty bad here with out any heat. How do others plan on staying warm?
    I’m glad I found this web site, its getting me motivated again. I do a lot of reading on survival related things, but this is my first time posting. And everyone is right on that list at the top of the page, yuck. Store what you eat. Can’t be stressed enough.

  43. I think the article and list was FANTASTIC!!!! The responses have taught me more than I have learned in six months of research!!! Way to go OTG!!! And many, many thanks to ALL that have shared their knowledge and insights!

  44. I’m brand new to this site and am just beginning a long term food storage plan. Whew, there’s lots of information out there, any suggestions/websites on the most basic steps to get started. Can I start with just grocery store amounts – buy flour, sugar, pasta, oatmeal, etc. – and vacuum seal. I read that when vac-sealing dry goods, you have to be sure none of the fine particles get in the seal. The manufacturer actually stated putting in a plastic bag and then sealing – wouldn’t that defeat the whole process of vac sealing. Also, what can you vac seal in mason jars using the vac sealer attachment. Is vac sealing a good method for food storage and preservation of dry foods? Also, thinking about getting a dehydrator for fruits and veggies. Is this a good choice or would you recommend another method. There’s just two of us but I think I would also need to put away enough for daughter and her young family (4). Thanks to everyone for the very helpful comments.

    • If you rotate food you eat you dont need to vacume seal.I also store from my grocery store.The big pails of beans and rice is just to much for me amd my husband.Something I started doing a few years ago has worked very well.I bought a few pails and the gamma lids,mylar bags and O2 absorbers from emergency food supply on the net. I buy small 1 and 2 pound bags of rice and beans,lentils split peas etc. Quite a varity will fit.I use a hole punch and punch a few holes in each bag of food. put them in the mylar bag lined pail ,pack tight,seal the bag with my iron after throwing in the O2 absorbers,then seal the top of the pail. I mark the pails 1 2 3 etc. I filled one a month. Now i have used them like i wood if i just bought the bags’ a pail lasts us 3 months of normal use when open.But the sealed pails im using are 5 years old and the food is fine.I then repack and seal the pails when empty,just buying new mylar bags and O2 absorbers.I have 20 pails in a closet upstairs.So in an emergency I have a lot of beans and rice. I of course have other canned and dry food. I find flour and corn meal keeps well in my freezer for over a year and fills the space.I pack sugars and salt in quart food bags,and then pack them tight in coffee cans They keep for ever. Other ten that i just keep a year of all food i use with alot of extras.I buy on sale and find most grocery foods have a year or more shelf life.Pastas also last for five years.Dont for get your pets. I got 4 METAL garbage cans and bought 5 and 10 pound bags of cat and dog food,what ever i could afford and carry.I pack them in the garbage cans as i use them…1 bag of dog food to 2 bags of cat food.The i cover the can and put a brick on top and store in the back of the shed. When i empty 1 can i refill it and rotate it to the back.This was very helpful one winter when the roads were bad and we didnt want to go out. We are a little old and lazy :) This supplys my 1 dog and 3 cats all the food they would need for 8 or more months in an emergency.And by packing the small bags unopened it stays fresher and the cats will eat it.

  45. I have to admit that i sometimes get bored to read the whole thing but i honestly enjoyed what i read. Cheers !

  46. Thank you UPSTATE for your very helpful reply. I’m ordering some of those buckets/gamma lids. This kind of storage will take up less room than the canning jars or vac packs too.

  47. Canadian Doomer @doomerincanada.blogspot.com

    I think this list is silly. Who could live on that food without jumping off a bridge? Seriously – someone who is able and willing to grind flour (without electricity when TSHTF?) and bake bread daily is NOT going to live on 24 cans of tuna and 21 boxes of Kraft Dinner for a year. There’s not a single fruit or vegetable in that list!

    “In 21st century America, you simply can’t feed two people for such a small sum of money and remain healthy.” Exactly.

    I don’t think there’s any easy answer for food storage. No one can hand you a list and say “Store these foods and you’ll be okay.” If you’re thinking in terms of food storage, then change the way you meal plan and cook. The only way for food storage to work for you, and keep you and your family alive, if it’s a natural and rotated part of your pantry.

    Store old-fashioned rolled oats – and eat oatmeal for breakfast, but only if your family will eat it. Store wheat because you have a manual wheat grinder and know how to make a daily loaf of bread. (And learn to make sourdough – yeast is expensive and not sustainable post SHTF). Buy what you normally eat and store, buy it in bulk, and slowly build up your extended pantry. Every time your family uses up one box of salt, or one can of tomato sauce, or one jug of vinegar, go to the store and buy three. Mark them with the date purchased, and when you open them, mark them with the date opened. After a while, you’ll have food storage that your family will actually use.

  48. my goodness….There are a lot of things on this list that my family won’t eat like two of us like tuna and 3 do not so i will substitute canned chicken or turkey or ham. I am grateful that someone went to all the trouble to map this out so i don’t have to re invent the wheel. Remember we have our beautiful intelligence to make thease choices for our selves. Just some food for thought.
    —Teddy

  49. I watched a gardening show once and the host was explaining how to store vegetables and some fruits in outside, underground containers. The containers were simply trash cans- the shiny metal can with a lid. Simply bury the can deep enough but where the lid will still fit on. Place a layer of straw in the bottom. Next place a layer of vegetables on the straw. Continue these alternating layers until you have reached your desired level. Then place a thick layer of straw on top. Then put the lid on and weigh it down so it won’t be blown off or knocked off. According to the host, fresh vegetables like potatoes, carrots, onions, beans, etc. and fruits like apples will keep this way for a long time due to the constant, cool underground temperature and the straw drawing the moisture out.

  50. I know this is an old post, but here are a few answers on some of the questions, above. I dehydrate frozen veggies, (no need to blanch), then vacuum seal. The Wonder Mill Jr. Deluxe,is a fantastic manual grain mill. http://www.honeyvillegrain.com is a fantastic place to purchase storage foods. They will ship for $4.95 regardless of the size or weight of your order.

    Buy powdered shortening for all your baking, powdered eggs can be used for cooking and scrambled for breakfast.

    Can your own bacon. Lay about 20″ of parchment paper on your counter, lay 1 lb. bacon side-by-side medium to thick slices of bacon, (don’t overlap), place another piece of parchment paper on top. Fold paper over at top and bottom, then fold in half and roll tightly. Place in quart jars and pressure cook at 10 lbs. for 90 minutes. I’m at 3,000′ so I use 12 lbs. Let cool, check all seals, then store. It only takes a few minutes to brown it crispy and you’re ready for breakfast.

    Check out the new Sawyer Point Zero 2 water filter kit. it is 0.02 micron, is guaranteed to filter 1 million gallons of water, including viruses. You can filter a 5 gallon bucket of water in 45 minutes with NO PUMPING! And the biggest surprise was the price. Depending on who you order from, the prices range between $120.00 to $145.00. Much less expensive than others. I got mine from Adventure Safety Products and received it in less than a week from my order. Everyone else was priced higher and they were out of stock.

    Keep digging for information. You can get recipes, how-to’s, etc. from Honeyville, Emergency Essentials, blogs, and books from Amazon on how to prep., cook, sprouting, any subject you need. All you have to do is put out the effort to search and read.

    One warning, take most blogs with a grain of salt. I read one that said brown sugar shouldn’t be stored because it would go bad. Hog Wash. If it gets hard, warm it in the oven wrapped in tin foil for a few minutes, or maybe 1/2 minute in the microwave. I’ve used brown sugar in cookies that I’ve had stored for years and it was fine.

    Good luck to all.

  51. wHAT A GREAT SITE.

  52. i’d trade out some of the wheat for self rising flour and swap the yeast for some varied canned meats (salmon). That’s also a LOT of flour and sugar so unless you plan to drink sweet tea and eat biscuits LOL – I dunno. I’d also get the boxed macaroni and cheese instead of just macaroni – you can throw a can of tuna or salmon in one of those dinners and feed two for two days. I’d just vary it up a bit according to your taste but the plan is OUTSTANDING — in a moment of panic pre Y2K I did this same thing and stored enough for 6 months in canned and ohter non perishables rather quickly. STRONGLY recommend

  53. I love this concept…put a little away each week and before you know it you’ve got a years supply. I am curious as to how long certain things keep in cans, though. Especially items with protein…something that is harder to keep than carbs. Carb items (powdered potatos, rice, powdered milk, pasta, etc) are easy to store. But what about things like:

    Spam
    Kipper snacks (fish)
    Canned smoked oysters
    Canned salmon
    etc…etc.

    Your thoughts?

  54. That is true, the material is the key ingredient, also word and mouth from my audience to spread the word for me is also important!

  55. The summary of the quantity of sugar is listed as 100 pounds of sugar, yet the purchase list shows it being purchased 9 times at 20 pounds each for a total of 180 pounds.

  56. The Tuna and soup will only last abut 3 years, corned beef seems to get 5 or 6 for me.

    Most canned soup is a junk food.

    Sea salt is more expensive but has many trace minerals that refined table salt lacks.

    If you get canned foods (expensive and heavy, plus don’t keep well as similar dried foods like dried peas, beans, or even veggies) then get meats, tuna like I said keeps noticeably less well than corned beef which is also more nutritionally dense. Get your meat packed in a fat or oil, there are a lot more calories there. Get some fat or oil too, which was remarkably missing from the above list.

    Mark dates on everything at purchase.

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  78. The amounts of wheat, powdered milk, honey, and several of the other items are nowhere near the 5 bucks he says they cost.. 50 lbs of wheat is not 5 bucks anywhere that I have seen, more like 50. for 50 lbs.. and honey is almost 5 bucks a pound, and powdered milk is about 6-8 bucks a pound.. I would like to know where he suggests we buy this stuff for these prices. Also wondering why no rice, beans or other varieties of very cheap dried foods were not included.. this list needs to be redone and researched more as to today’s prices.. For a long time I did the 5 bucks a week food storage back in Cali when doing earthquake preparedness, and yes over the course of a year you do get quite a bit little by little that way.. but I would opt, like I said, for more variety..

  79. I’d add a gallon of drinking water for a buck to each week. You’d have 50 gallons of potable water at the end of the year.

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