7. Emergency Food Storage: How to make five essentials last 30+ years

The most fundamental reassurance that any of us can hold is knowing we have the ability to feed ourselves and our families over the long-term. Most of us currently have the luxury of shopping for groceries on a daily/weekly/monthly basis, and can re-supply our needed items at local grocery stores like Walmart and Kroger, if not from Amazon.

This reassurance has only recently returned though, having had widespread shortages and empty stores earlier this year. Hopefully our economy’s market and trade routes see long-lasting stability, but hoping for the best and planning for the worst is now a necessity.

The past 11 months of 2020 have been concerning to say the least, and we’ve now had the opportunity to see what happens when pandora’s box has gone unlatched.

Though most of us survived the long lines outside of Sams Clubs and were able to scrounge enough resources together to make it through, the shortages revealed the frailty of our complex market.

We caught a glimpse into how a more menacing disaster could uproot our society’s intricate food production and distribution processes.

This article covers how-to efficiently seal (dried food products), while extending shelf-life well beyond original expiration dates. I also provide 5 examples of affordable food products that you can easily start storing anytime.

Essential Foods to Prep

I personally chose to store these items in bulk because they’re affordable, store well, and can be found at almost any local grocery store.

This is not intended to be a complete list, as I’ve prepared these 5 foods through the described process below, along with my pet’s food, and will provide updates as I make new additions.

Consider these 5 items essential to your survival, and a solid foundation for your own supply. Be sure to check out the additional links at the bottom of this post to learn more about versifying your stash.

The items listed below are portioned to a single adult, per daily intake:

LONG-GRAIN RICE

  • normal shelf life VS prepped:
    • 2 years vs 30+ years
  • cost: $30
  • amount: 75 lbs.
  • Will last: 3 months

PINTO BEANS

  • normal shelf life VS prepped:
    • 2-3 years vs 30 years
  • cost: $29
  • amount: 35 lbs.
  • Will last: 3 months

PASTA

  • normal shelf life VS prepped:
    • 2 years vs 30 years
  • cost: $84
  • amount: 63 lbs.
  • Will last: 3 months

SALT

  • normal shelf life VS prepped:
    • 5 years vs indefinite
  • cost: $10
  • amount: 10 lbs.
  • Will last: 6 months
  • *Do Not Use O2 absorbers*

SUGAR

  • normal shelf life VS prepped:
    • 2 years vs 30+ years
  • cost: $13
  • amount: 20 lbs..
  • Will last: 4-6 months
  • *Do Not Use O2 absorbers*

How-To Store

These tools and materials can be found at almost any local hardware and/or grocery store. I’ve personally used the tools and methods listed below.

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases. I only recommend products which I would use myself, and strive to bring you the best and most affordable list of options.

Tools:

(Optional)

  • Vacuum Sealer
  • https://amzn.to/39RdUQA
    • (used to reseal unused oxygen absorbers, coffee, toilet paper, matches, clothes, or anything else imaginable)

Materials:

Directions:

  1. Place mylar bag in 5 gallon bucket.
  2. Fold edges of bag over bucket edge, ensuring bag has a rounded snug fit inside.
  3. Fill bag with chosen dried good, approx 4/5th’s of the way full.
  4. Gently shake bucket until content fills entire space inside of bucket/bag.
  5. Place oxygen absorber inside bag.
  6. unfold exposed edges.
  7. pinch corners of bag to form uniform line across mylar bag.
  8. Cut excess bag with scissors, leaving 2-3 inches for error.
  9. Push down on bag to allow as much oxygen to escape as possible.
  10. lightly heat edges with device, allowing 45 secs to create an air-tight seal, repeat along full line.
  11. Once properly sealed, cut final excess mylar with scissors.
  12. lightly pound edges of bucket to fit top snugly in place.

If you can’t get the lid on the bucket because there’s too much air after you complete the seal process, don’t worry. The oxygen absorber will slowly condense the bag down significantly within 24-48 hours.

If you need the lid on ASAP, just cut a small corner of the mylar bag, push more air out, than repeat the seal process, or simply empty out a portion of the container).

Please feel free to leave comments and questions in the reply thread below. I do my best to answer any and all feedback, and replying on this page helps the process go much smoother and faster.

If you enjoyed reading this article and would like to see future posts, don’t forget to subscribe using the follow button at the bottom of this page, and follow me on Facebook.

Rocky Mountain Preparedness is veteran owned and operated. All site related costs are paid out of pocket, and any donation amount is greatly appreciated. Thanks for visiting my site.”

-Michael

Additional Resources

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One thought on “7. Emergency Food Storage: How to make five essentials last 30+ years

  1. Pingback: Stocking Your Pantry: Pandemic Shopping, Emergency Preparedness, and Winter Food Storage – Cedar Swamp Homestead

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