Food storage is a difficult topic for most people. Even though most folks know how long to keep food in their pantry, refrigerator, or freezer for, most don’t know the concepts about long-term food storage.
See, stockpiling food for a disaster means you have to do much more than just throw some beans and rice in the pantry and call yourself good.
You need to set aside enough food to feed you and your family for one day, and then for three days, and then a week, and then a month, six months, one year, and so on.
You Won’t Be Able To Depend On Your Fridge or Freezer
It doesn’t matter how much meat you currently have filling up your freezer. You cannot rely on ANY of it to get you through a major, cataclysmic and extended disaster such as an EMP attack.
Because your freezer may not even work! In a power grid down scenario, what would you do if your freezer shut off and all of the food in it was ruined? What’s your backup plan in that scenario?
At that point, your best course of action would be to fill up your coolers with ice and all the freezer meat you can, but even then the meat may spoil easily.
Furthermore, EMP attacks are not the only kind of disaster where the power grid may go down. Nuclear attacks, terrorist strikes, civil unrest, rioting, and most natural disasters are all examples of major disasters where the power grid can and will go down.
And since freezers are dependent on the power grid in order to function, you simply cannot rely on them to store your food.
Top Considerations For Food Storage
Here are the top considerations that you need to have when storing food:
MOISTURE AND HUMIDITY
The biggest enemy of food, without question, is moisture and humidity.
Again, cardboard is a poor defense against moisture, and you need to be very selective about the containers that you use.
The best containers to offer a suitable defense against moisture include Mylar bags, food grade plastic buckets, and glass jars.
You should also invest in a dehumidifier and set it up in the same room as where you are storing your food. Desiccant packs will also be a wise thing to throw in with your food buckets.
One of the biggest factors in play with food storage is temperature. Unusually high or cold temperatures can dramatically shorten the lifespan of your food, even if you’re stored staples such as rice and honey and beans.
In fact, there are a few things that have the ability to reduce food shelf life as much as temperature.
It’s for this reason that garages are an absolutely AWFUL place to store food: the temperatures in garages fluctuate wildly and you have literally zero control over it.
The number one piece of advice that can be given on temperature in food storage is that you need to store food at normal room temperature and you need to ensure that that temperature is consistent.
To this end, store food indoors in a designated room, and make sure that that room never gets too warm or too cold.
Many people have limited space, and that could most certainly include you. You may live in a condo or apartment, for example, where you lack the storage space of living on a homestead or even in a suburban house.
Nonetheless, you need space in order to store all that food. How else are you going to store a six months supply of food, for example?
The only solution here, if space is indeed limited for you, is that you need to get creative. You can store food in usual places if you have to, such as in cupboards, in closets, or under beds and couches if space runs out in the pantry
Something else you will need to control besides temperature is oxygen, and you can do this by properly sealing your foods.
Any food that is not sealed properly can and will spoil. The reason for this is because oxygen encourages bacteria to grow, which will cause your food to go putrid and rancid.
Pressure canning is another method you can use to control the amount of oxygen in food, along with oxygen absorbers and vacuum sealers.
Pests such as rodents and insects are another big enemy of food. Who can blame them? Rodents and insects need to eat too, right?
Nonetheless, don’t feel sympathy for them. You and your family come before whatever rats or mice or ants want to get into your food.
Store your food in a place with no history of pest infestation, and check it regularly to confirm that there are no signs of them.
Furthermore, take great care with what packaging and containers you use to store your food in. Cardboard, for example, is a very poor defense against the vast majority of pests, but plastic and glass are far more effective.
The Best Survival Foods To Store For Disaster
Here is a list of foods that you should consider storing for survival. Each and every one of these will last you for a minimum of one year, with most lasting much more than that:
- Apple Cider Vinegar (5 years)
- Barley (8 years)
- Canned Meats (2 years)
- Canned Vegetables (2 years)
- Dehydrated Fruit (2 years)
- Dehydrated Vegetables (2 years)
- Dried Beans (10 years)
- Dried Corn (10 years)
- Flour (6 years)
- Honey (forever)
- Oats (8 years)
- Pasta (6 years)
- Peanut Butter (3 years)
- Powdered Milk (3 years)
- Quinoa (8 years)
- Salt and Pepper (forever)
- White Rice (5 years)
Food is without question one of the most important things that you need to stockpile for disaster. Without it, you’ll feel a severe loss of energy after just one day, and you won’t survive past a week. Strive to have at least one month’s worth of emergency food stored away for you and your family at all times.