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Start Your Food Storage Now With These Cheap and Easy to Store Foods

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A few weeks ago a friend (a normal friend, not a prepper) said she'd been watching the show Doomsday Preppers. And it made her think about how little their family had in the way of preparations like that. Like basically none. She said it even made her consider having some stored food at home.

That inspired me to think of some ways an ordinary family (or person) could begin to store food with minimal effort. The conversation was also my inspiration to start building this website — which I'd been thinking about doing for a long time (the welcome page was already written) but hadn't got around to.

The average modern person has perhaps three days of food at home, maybe a week or two if they're lucky. That's really not very long if (or when) the food in the shops runs out. Here are some very easy ways you can start to store food.

A few foods are cheap, easily available, and store for a very long time. White rice and tinned food are the two I think of first as foods to get started with.


White rice well packed can last 30 years at room temperature. It takes some effort to pack it that well, but even just in the bags staight from the supermarket shelf it will last a long time. Brown rice has a much higher nutritional content when fresh, but the much higher fat/oil content makes it go rancid much faster, like in about a year perhaps.

Tinned Food

Most tinned food will last almost forever if it's kept in a half-decent environment, and perhaps even if it's not. As long as the tin isn't damaged (like puctured, or rusted through) it will last almost forever.

Believe it or not, there was a case where a sunken steamboat was found, and 109 year-old tinned food from the shipwreck was tested and found to be perfectly edible! Some of the tinned foods found were brandied peaches, oysters, plum tomatoes, honey, and mixed vegetables.

The cans were tested by chemists at the US National Food Processors Association. They found the food still had considerble nutritional value. Significant amounts of some nutrients like vitamin C and A had been lost. But protein levels were high, and calcium levels were essentially as good as when it was freshly tinned. The tins' contents had zero microbial growth, and were deemed to be as safe to eat as when they were canned over 100 years before.

A few tinned foods, like tomatoes (which rot through the cans eventually, I think because of the acid) and fish, would not keep for as long as that.

Half-Price Specials

My one-sentence of advice to my friend above was when the local supermarket has half price offers (which is pretty often), it's very easy to throw some extra rice or tinned food in your supermarket trolley.

Beans, Pasta, and Potatoes

Also dried beans store for a long time. Pasta stores for a few years. Potatoes store for up to a few months (less in a hot summer room, but still a lot more than 3 days).

Categories Storage,Skills,Needs,Food
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