Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Food Storage

"If ye are prepared, Ye shall not fear"
What a blessing food storage is. It is a sense of comfort to know that your family has means to food in an emergency. I'm not just talking about the "natural disasters" that most fear. (Prayers be with those in Japan! So sad!) I'm also talking about emergencies within the walls of your own home. You just never know when something will happen and your funds are too tight to budget everything in. It's a comfort to know that you have a way to provide food and water for your family. Along with food storage there needs to be water storage. I have noticed that there are people who are concerned about the food part of the food storage that they forget how crucial it is to store water along with your food. It would be hard to cook a bunch of your food without water. A human body cannot live as long with only food as it can with only water. We are no where near a 1 year storage, but we feel comfortable with the rate we are getting things stored up. I'm not trying to say that I think there will be an emergency period where we will be in a pandemic state and need to rely on our food for a year. However, it has got me more concerned as I hear about the poor people across oceans in Japan. I couldn't even imagine if a calamity like that happened here. My heart is heavy for those suffering in Japan, for those who have lost their lives, and for those who have lost loved ones there. There are so many people there that are being told not to leave their homes due to the nuclear crisis over there. That would be horrible to be locked in your home, for who knows how long, with your children crying because they are starving, and having no way to stop their cries for food as there is none. I couldn't even imagine how horrible that would be. So prepare now for the future. It's better to be prepared and not need it, than to need it and not be prepared.
It is important to buy foods that you will eat. If you are going to buy wheat, buy a wheat grinder. Use the wheat. There are tons of recipes that wheat can be used in, or supplemented for all purpose flour. Food storage does not need to be an expensive splurge. The church recommends to slowly build it up.
I had the luxury of going to the cannery this evening with a few ladies from the relief society. I really enjoyed going. I got:
1 lb. Dehydrated Apple Slices
20+ pounds macaroni noodles
2.8 lbs. Dehydrated Carrots
2.4 lbs. Dry Onion (which smelt heavenly as we were canning it)
25 lbs. Potato Flakes
28 oz. Potato Pearls
My order loaded up 4 boxes. I spent about $90, which was more than I had anticipated, but these are foods that we eat often, and will be needed and used. I was grateful to have to opportunity to go today.
I was surprised to find out the 'storage life' for these foods if stored properly (in #10 cans, unopened, in a dry place at or below 75 degrees):
Apple Slices- 30 Years
Carrots- 25 Years
Macaroni- 30 Years
Onions, Dry- 30 Years
Potato Flakes- 30 Years

I found out yesterday that food doesn't last as long in the buckets as they do in the cans. Supposedly if you put some dry ice in your buckets with your food the food will last longer. Also, if you're storing your food on cement, you need to put something in between the buckets and the cement. I have seen people just unfold a box and lie it down on the floor for the padding in between the cement and the buckets. This may be old news to some people, but it's new news to me. :)

Here is the 'storage life' of foods that I did not get. If they are stored properly, the following foods lifespan is 30 years:
Beans, Black
Beans, Pinto
Beans, White
Milk, Nonfat Dry
Rice, White
Sugar, Granulated
Wheat, Hard Red
Wheat, White
Oats, Quick
Oats, Regular

The following items have a 'storage life' of 10 years or less:
Beans, Refried- 5 Years
Cocoa Mix, Hot-2 Years
Flour, White- 10 Years
Fruit Drink Mix- 2 Years

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