-   Q-talk (
-   -   Shirtpocket Guide to Food Storage (

willkat98 09-09-2004 02:57 PM

Shirtpocket Guide to Food Storage
Some of the brothers have been PM'ing me about my survivalist guide to food storage.

Figure I'd share with everyone

The Full Pantry
A shirtpocket guide to food storage
Published by:
609 E. Davis St.
Luling, TX 78648

At the present time we live in a world of plenty where supermarkets
are filled with copious supplies of food. In the event of a true energy
crisis, an economic collapse, a drastic weather change or following a
general nuclear war, such supplies will not exist. Each family group will
have to provide itself with such food as it requires either by producing
it themselves or by trading some skills for the food produced by others.
There are numerous books written on how you can produce your own food,
as indeed each family has produced their own for most of history. The
problem comes during the period of transition from a time when there is
plenty of food, to the time when each is producing his own. This period
will be marked by civil, social, economic and other types of unrest and
instability, where it may well be imagined that each family's survival will
depend on how well it has prepared for the transition.
As a minimum, there will be a period of time between the end of the
supermarket days until the garden can produce. As a maximum, gangs of
looters may disrupt 'normal' life for a year or more.
This booklet is concerned with the storage of food for use during such a
period of transition.

The security of stored food means that you can feed your family
regardless of what occurs. If you can feed your family for a year or two
without having to run to the grocery store, you are essentially free of
worry. If you lose your job, if your business goes bankrupt, if you cannot
get gasoline to drive you car, you will still be able to feed the children.

If you could see a list of all the groceries you purchased last year,
you might assume that merely purchasing all of these items for storage
would be a good thing to do. But it would not work. The bulk of the food
you consumed was fresh -- vegetables, meats, bread and dairy products.
These will not keep beyond a very short period of time. And if your
electricity goes off so that you cannot freeze things, their life is
shorter still. Consequently, your storage program must include items which
are especially packaged for long term storage.
Any program of food storage, which is the subject of this brochure,
must assume the worst possible situation and be prepared to handle it. If
the situation does not turn out to be quite as critical, you may stop the
consumption of stored foods at any time and/or supplement it with foods
added to it as you are able.
The worst possible situation might be visualized as the same one which
faced the American settlers. That is, starting at some time, you must feed
your family from the foods you have in storage until you can begin
producing your own. It presumes that never again will you be able to go to
the grocery store. In practice it doesn't seem likely that such a thing
will happen, hut if you plan for the worst, anything better is easier.
To design any storage program, it is necessary to make some
assumptions. The validity of these assumptions must he questioned from time
to time with other preparations that you might make. The following
assumptions were made with regard to the storage of foods:

a. Security--You must have a safe place to eat. Save from hands ofthugs who would steal your food, safe from freezing or earthquakes, and all
of the rest. If the reasons for going into your stored supply of food are
personal, i.e. you lose your job and cannot buy more food, then your
present home may he quite safe. If, on the other hand, you are eating
stored foods because of a general collapse, such as a nuclear war, economic
disaster, then you may have to move to yours own enclave where you can
insure your own security.

b. Fuel--Most of the foods involved here require cooking. To use them
effectively you must have some source of heat.

c. Water--You must have a supply of good water, You could store quite
a hit, it wouldn't last forever.

d. Equipment--Nearly all of the foods discussed here require some sort
of equipment for their preparation. While you probably have most
of this in your kitchen, some, such as a wheat grinder may be
missing and will have to be supplied.

Food storage is a preparation for an emergency. It is always hoped
that such preparations are done unnecessarily. But emergencies of a nature
which would require you to eat your stored food supply happen nearly
everyday somewhere around the world.
Such emergencies can be characterized by how long they last. Short term
emergencies, such as might be caused by the weather don't last long because
the government and relief agencies immediately come into the area with
food. Other kinds of emergencies, such as might be caused by a nuclear war
could last forever. Your food program should be able to handle any of these
to give you the security you want. It should be looked at from a standpoint
of having several stages to be consumed in order as follows:

1. First eat the food in your refrigerator. With a power outage, this
food will last only a day or two.

2. Then eat the food in your freezer. Without power, the freezer will
keep food frozen for about 72 hours (while you clean out the
refrigerator), and then you have a few days before this food

3. Conventional wet packed canned goods, and foods with a medium term
life come next.

4. Your long term supply comes next. This is food stuffs which will
keep indefinitely until you need
5. Eventually you have to re-establish a source of fresh foods. You
can't store enough for the rest of your natural life and that of
your children. The Enclave recommended supply includes specially
packaged cans of vegetable seed to plant a garden which will
sustain you indefinitely. One can is enough, the second is cheap
insurance in the event of crop failure.

How much food to store is always a problem. The answer is simple. If
there is no emergency, you need not store anymore than you require for
dinner today. If there is a total collapse of the economy, you cannot
possibly have enough stored.
The Enclave recommendation is a basic core of food designed for
long-term storage which will feed you and your family for a period of at
least one year. In addition, this should be supplemented by The Basic Four
and by a rotating program of conventional foods.
In looking over the list of foods recommended by Enclave, note the
number of servings which are given. These servings are all measured to be
1/2 cup or 4 fluid ounces--about what you get in a TV dinner. It is quite
possible to eat this years supply' in six months or less. The supply of
foods is enough to sustain you for a year, and to sustain you quite well
while you are doing a fairly minimal amount of work. You should consider
this to be a years emergency rations.' Any supplementing you can do during
this year will be a help, as will any adding to this list that you care to
make. It will take you quite a lot of selfdiscipline to hold yourself to
the diet permitted by the 'years supply'. Even so, the Enclave recommended
supply is significantly greater than that recommended by commercial storage
In the first year of a total collapse, you probably can't plan on
supplementing your stored food with fresh. The supplements will come from
foods listed in items 1, 2 and 3 outlined above. During the first year of
a drastic crisis, there will be too many desperate people hunting for any
scrap of food, killing any animal they can find for meat, and quite likely
starving to death.

A number of books have been written to expound a philosophy of food
storage which revolves around 'The Basic Four'. These four foods are wheat,
dry milk, honey and salt. The error here is these four foods alone are
considered to be sufficient for survival. For a short while it is enough.
But not for long. The number of dietary deficiencies inherent in this
program are too numerous to mention.
To be sure, these foods are good basic foods and should be included in your
storage program. But they alone are not sufficient (and you have to wonder
how many people store wheat without a grinding mill). If you can supplement
these basics with some fresh vegetables, perhaps some occasional fresh meat
(bird, fish, deer or whatever) you could survive.
The amounts of such foods recommended by Enclave for each person are:

Wheat 250 pounds
Dry Whole Milk 100 pounds
Honey 75 pounds
Salt 5 pounds

The amounts of these items will give you a quick and inexpensive hedge
against starvation. If you wish a minimum amount of security, the basic
four is a minimum. The life of the milk, honey and salt is indefinite.
Wheat is a very inexpensive commodity. It can he packed for indefinite long
term storage, but such packaging is more expensive stored for long life .
The remainder can be purchased in hulk, stored in plastic cans or sacks,
and inspected annually. If kept dry and cool, it will last a very long
time. If your inspection shows deterioration, replace it. Such occasional
replacing is cheaper than the long life packing. Besides, you may find that
you like to occasionally bake a loaf of bread with fresh ground wheat. The
only advantage of long-life packaging is that its will last virtually
forever without the necessity such annual inspections.

A sizable savings in your food budget, as well as an increase in your
eating security can he obtained simply by purchasing your normal food
requirements in larger quantities. If your family normally eats mushroom
soup, for example, buy it in case lots rather than single cans. You will
save approximately 15% on the price, and if you just increase your supply
at home, you have begun your supply without wrecking your budget. Simply
store the food in unopened cases until you need it. Open a case and replace
it with another. Put the newest case in back of the open one to be used
last. Gradually increase your pantry and consider this to be a supplement
to the basic four.
By such a rotating system, the food on your shelf shouldn't be more
than a year or 80 old, and still be safe and satisfactory. Do not attempt
to keep such normally packaged foods for long term storage. Long term
storage foods are approximately 25% more expensive than the foods found in
grocery stores. They are designed for indefinite storage 80 they can be
kept for 20 years or more and then used. By this time the regularly
packaged canned goods have lost all of their nutrition and may even contain
harmful agents.

While the intake of extra vitamins is quite common in this country,
the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the AMA, the food industry and
various consumer groups say that with a normal diet, they are not
necessary. There appears to he little investigation of what the effect of
eating a survival diet might have on nutrition. After some consultation,
Enclave recommends a supply of multi-vitamins he stored and taken under
survival conditions. These should be capable of supplying 100% of the FDA
recommended daily allowances.

Since mankind has been eating for millions of years, it would seem
that all of the problems concerning nutrition would have been solved many
years ago. But this is not the case. Numerous books and magazine articles
can be found which purport to solve all of your health problems with
dietary supplements, vitamins, organic or health foods and other ideas.
There is no question that millions of people are convinced that the average
American diet is harmful to their health. The supplementary food products
business sells millions of dollars of goods a year. And, needless to say,
they can back their claims of the desirability of their products with all
kinds of 'research'.
With all this confusion, there does not seem to be any research at all
carried out on the nutritional value of foods after long term storage.
What, if indeed anything, happens to foods that are dried, packaged and
stored for years before consumption? This does not seem to be a concern of
the government and they seem convinced there will always be a ready supply
of fresh foods. Even the military is concerned with storable foods only for
use in short emergencies, until regular foods are re-established in the
main diet.
The only people who claim to have researched this area at all are the
companies who sell storable foods. Each of these companies in this area put
out a recommended 'years supply'. Enclave had originally hoped these
recommendations would be a suitable guide for members to use. Instead, a
careful analysis of the recommendations made by all of the companies we can
find, show there is little similarity in their choice of food stuffs. It
is clear that each company has assembled their 'years supply' which is
composed of foods they produce. Enclave cannot go so far as to claim that
you would not survive on the recommended survival food lists put out by
commercial companies in the field . Yet, we have felt it is necessary to
assemble a recommended "years supply" which is made up of foods selected
from various companies, and indeed from companies who use drastically
different techniques.
In considering your own food storage program, or in comparing the
recommended foods here, or other sources, Enclave suggests you use the
following information in making your decisions. This is believed to be the
most accurate and pertinent information available in one single source. The
recommendations are conservative in nature, as there is no room for error.
If you find yourself in a situation where your survival depends on your
stored foods, it is better to have over-prepared than to not have enough.
If you hold a responsible opinion which you may think would cause us to
alter our recommendations to members, please communicate them to us.

The presence of moisture in foods is the main reason for spoilage, so
the essential step in preparing foods for long term storage is drying. The
drying of foods is usually done in one of two major ways, as follows:

This process involves the drying of the food in the presence of air,
at room or slightly elevated temperature. Two steps are often necessary -
evaporating the moisture out of the food to a moisture content of
approximately 10% to 20% (these may be marketed as evaporated or
low-moisture foods). The second step is de-hydrating the food to
approximately 2% to 4% moisture content which is done with heat or vacuum.

In this process the food is first frozen and then dried by vacuum to
the required moisture content (again about 2%. The whole process is done
at freezing temperatures. The freeze-drying process is just all-out the
only way to dry meats which will retain their normal appearance and taste.
Beef Jerky with its characteristic dry/tough content is an example of what
happens when you de-hydrate meat, while a freeze-dried hamburger patty is
indistinguishable from the regular frozen item.

De-hydrating vs Freeze-drying
The freeze-dry process produces better tasting foods than the
de-hydrating method in nearly all cases. In meats, this difference is so
dramatic that (except for beef jerky) there are virtually no dehydrated
meats. In fruits and vegetables, the final product is not so
distinguishable. As an example; two apple pies made together by the same
person, using the same recipe with one made of freeze-dried apples and the
other made with de-hydrated apples, the pie made with freeze-dried apples
will taste better. But, if the de-hydrated apple pie were made by a 'good'
cook and the freeze-dried pie by a "not-so-good" cook--you would probably
prefer the de-hydrated apple pie.
If all other factors were equal, there would he no conclusion hut to
recommend the freeze-dried apples. But this is not the case. A can of
freeze-dried apples and a can of de-hydrated apples cost about the same.
However, when fruits and vegetables are freeze-dried, they do not change
their shape. When they are dehydrated, they shrink. So, a #10 can (about
a gallon) of freeze-dried apples contain five ounces of apples, while the
same sized can of de-hydrated apples contain 240 ounces. This is almost
four times as much. Both of these are considering the amount of apples you
get after water has been added to restore them to normal. The de-hydrated
product is therefore cheaper and takes less storage space.
Enclave recommends the use of de-hydrated fruits and vegetables,
except in the case of those items (such as pineapples and strawberries)
which cannot be dehydrated and must be freeze-dried.

Normal grocery store packaging of dried foods is in cardboard boxes.
These foods have a moisture content of around 20%. In order to retard their
spoilage, preservatives are added. These are usually on the Food and Drug
Administrations GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) list. The evidence is
these additives are safe, except that occasionally a substance is taken off
of this list. Items removed with a good bit of national attention in recent
years include Red Dye #l, Red Dye #2 (which came into being when #l was
removed from the list), saccharin, etc. Some varieties of molds can live
in these foods, and the Enclave recommendation is that they not be stored
for longer than one year or two.
Long term storage foods are packaged in large tin cans. Note that
other foods are also packaged in tin cans as well, but this shouldn't be
confusing as a careful reading of the label will tell you which are long
term and which are short term packaged.
The most critical piece of information to be found on the label is the
moisture content. Not many companies specify on their labels that the food
is guaranteed to have a low or so moisture content. If the label does not
specify a low moisture content by number, it is generally too high. Some
few companies will specify a low moisture content in other writing, but why
take a chance.
The second most critical point for long term packaging, is the oxygen
content of the air in the can. Normal air is approximately 80% nitrogen and
18% oxygen. For long term storage, the oxygen should be replaced with
nitrogen. There are two processes commonly used to replace the oxygen. The
most common way is to lower a tube into the can during the canning process
and force nitrogen into the can, this displaces the oxygen and the
resulting can is said on the label to be "Nitrogen Packed". Actual tests
of this process usually show the oxygen content of the can to be around
16%. This is not a sufficient reduction to be worthwhile. Avoid these
The other method of removing the oxygen, is to pull a strong vacuum
on the can, then put nitrogen into it, and then without allowing contact
with the air, sealing the can. In these cans, the oxygen is usually less
than 1% and usually guaranteed either in writing or on the can itself to
contain less than 2% oxygen. While this is a more expensive process, the
resulting can of food is only a few cents more expensive and well worth the
If companies do not tell you the moisture and oxygen content of their
cans, they are not proud of them--don't buy these. They may be all right
for short term storage, but don't trust them for fifteen years.

Textured Vegetable Protein is a highly processed food made from soy
beans to look and taste like other foods. It most often is found in the
form of bacon and is sold under various trade names. But, it also comes in
the form of chicken, pork chops, ham and beef. Some of it isn't even all
that offensive in taste.
Many commercial food storage programs use TVP as the major source of
protein for their diet. It has numerous advantages. It is much, much
cheaper than meat, it is easy to package for long term storage and it does
have a nice appearing nutritional balance.
Enclave does not recommend the storage of any TVP in your survival food
program. The main reason for this is the temptation to assume you are
eating meat and therefore receiving all the nutrition you require. In fact,
the nutritional value of TVP does not appear to have as much protein as the
label might say. In other words, your body does not seem to be able to get
the advantages of the protein which is actually contained in the food. The
Department of Agriculture allows school lunches to use TVP as a meat
extender. That is, the meat dish prepared at school can have up to 30% TVP,
but no more. Secondly, TVP is a highly processed food and is a long way
from the soy bean which produced it. As such, it contains more items from
the GRAS list than any other food normally used for long term storage. The
GRAS list is constantly changing, and little has been done to consider what
happens to these substances after they have been stored for fifteen or so
years. On the whole, perhaps TVP can fill a small place in your program,
but why take a chance?
If TVP is bad, why? It is made from soy beans, and the U.S. Office of
Health Education has said, "The soy bean is, in so many respects, the most
valuable of all plant foods." The difference is that a fresh soy bean is
not at all the same item as a soy bean which has been heated to a high
temperature and squeezed out of a hydraulic press. Include soy beans in
your storage program, just do your own processing instead of having to be
tricked by having it made into a pork chop impostor.

It is often said Americans eat too much meat, that we should emulate
other diets with a much less meat content, and perhaps we should all turn
vegetarian. Perhaps we should. But most Americans are accustomed to a high
meat diet. It appears from early anthropological studies that man began
eating meat because it freed him from having to eat a lot of plant food.
The herbivorous animals eat grass and turn it into meat. Man eats the meat
and receives a concentrated amount of protein.
The recommended Enclave years supply' contains a meat portion for each
day. However, this is not the normally heavy meat diet which is eaten by
Americans. Perhaps it can be viewed as a forced attempt to eat less
meat--but not turn vegetarian.
In making your own evaluation of meat products in commercial food
storage programs, there are several points you might note. A can of meat
is expensive, perhaps five times as much as a can of Meat Entree, such as
Beef Stroganoff and Noodles. In fact, the can of Beef Stroganoff and
Noodles is not much more expensive than a can of noodles. We will leave
your imagination to the amount of beef actually included in the Meat
Entree. The recommended Enclave 'years supply' contains no Meat Entrees.
It does however, include beef, noodles, onions and sour cream. If you want
Beef Stroganoff and Noodles, you can make it yourself. A final note on
entree type food preparations. The label on such cans may contain a phrase
like "Deliciously Flavored and Ready to Serve". This means deliciously
flavored to their standards, which means a lot of salt. While salt is a
necessity for heath, the amounts involve in such foods are not necessarily
the amounts you need or want. The Enclave recommended food supply contains
salt which you may add as you wish.

Cooking fats and oils occupy a special place in the food storage
program. They are highly desirable adjuncts to cooking because of their
very high calory content per pound. They ar used in spreads, shortenings,
on salads and as a frying medium.
The problem with oils, and the reason they are not included in the
Enclave recommended supply is they do not store well. It is desirable to
include them, and the best way to handle the problem is to purchase them
in liquid form in the largest containers you c an find (usually a gallon)
at your local supermarket.
Even while still sealed, oils can turn rancid. Make this the first and
most important part of you rotating storage program.

Baking yeast likewise has a rather limited life in storage and is not
included in the recommended years supply'. Like oils, yeast should he
purchased in some quantity and rotated. Remember that in using these stored
foods it will he necessary for you to do a lot more baking.

A food storage program can go on for a relatively short time, for a
year, or two or possibly more before shortages in the supply occur. Sooner
or later, you will have to return to the consumption of fresh foods. If the
situation that is forcing you to eat your stored survival foods is of a
nature which will allow "normalcy" to return, you merely need to have the
money, trade goods or skill to obtain your needed food from other people.
If this kind of a situation does not return, then you will have to grow
your own.
There does not seem to he anything which can possibly prevent the
growing of food. Even after a nuclear/biological war, the ground, except
in very small areas near the point of blast, will be unharmed . A permanent
shift in the weather pattern may make changes in the growing locations
around the world. The deserts of the American southwest or the Sahara many
turn lush. The dense jungles of South America may turn desert, hut nothing
seems likely to remove the entire world from producing foods. Mankind is
a strong animal who has learned his survival quite well. He will not he
destroyed easily. It is your own planning now that will make your own
personal survival easier through the transitional period of strife.

jminion 09-09-2004 03:14 PM

Lead linned bathroom? Potting and salting and now this. You knows something we don't? :wink:

Jorge 09-09-2004 03:19 PM

It's the black helicopters.....

willkat98 09-09-2004 03:24 PM


Originally Posted by Jorge
It's the black helicopters.....

And don't forget the voices.

It's gonna happen, might as well be prepared.

Gotta go to the store tonight and pick up half ton of wheat

might need a few trips

Mark 09-09-2004 03:41 PM

If **** like that goes down, you'll also need an AK-47 to guard your food stash from your neighbors. Better hope they dont have a sniper rifle. The book also could use a chapter on doggie-Q and kitty-Q.

Jorge 09-09-2004 03:51 PM

Painted the Sebring woddland pattern OD yet?

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:45 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise v2.6.0 Beta 4 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
2003 -2012 BBQ-Brethren Inc. All rights reserved. All Content and Flaming Pig Logo are registered and protected under U.S and International Copyright and Trademarks. Content Within this Website Is Property of BBQ Brethren Inc. Reproduction or alteration is strictly prohibited.