Disaster Prep For The Rest Of Us
by Dave Robinson
Jump Starting Your Food Supply
Originally published July 24, 2016
Whenever a person thinks of prepping, the first topic that usually comes to mind is food. What to store, how much to store, how to store, and which store to go to? There are all kinds of food packages you can purchase. You can get a yearís supply of dehydrated or freeze-dried fare for $4,000 or a 72 hour kit for one person at WalMart for $64.00.
Iím going to give you a list of items you can buy at your local grocery store, things that you would probably have on hand anyway. The dehydrated kits you buy generally tout a 25-year shelf life. So the normal things you purchase, should be rotated out every few months or so. One rule of thumb when it comes to storing up food is; buy food that your body is accustomed to eating! During a disaster, your system will be on overload anyway, and there is no benefit to introducing a whole new menu to your gastric system in a time of crisis.
Some people lay in backpacking freeze-dried food to be eaten when the time comes. That is all well and good, unless you have never tried those entrees and you experience a revolt of sorts when youíre already stressed out anyway. Store food to which your body is already accustomed!
Hereís the beginning of a shopping list: (The second half will come next week.)
1. 20 lbs of rice. Rice seems pretty boring, but it is filling, nutritious and adaptable to a wide variety of entrees.
2. 20 lbs of pinto beans. Beans are also a valuable part of every storage plan. Combined with rice they fulfill a protein need in your menu.
3. 20 cans of vegetables. Green beans, peas, corn and canned tomatoes are a good start. Buy what you already eat and enjoy.
4. 20 cans of fruit. Peaches, pears, pineapple, fruit cocktail, all to your taste.
5. 20 cans of meat. Chicken, tuna, shrimp, salmon, vienna sausages, beef stew and donít forget Spam. Those square cans fit really well on the shelf and if itís fried, you can make the kids believe it is ďcamping bacon.Ē It worked for my kids anyway. I even recently found some canned roast beef.
6. 4 lbs of oats. A warm bowl of oatmeal can be a welcome meal any time of day. Topped with some canned fruit, it makes a refreshing treat.
7. 2 (or more) large jars of peanut butter. A good source of protein and surprisingly filling. Tastes good too!
8. Pick up a supply of powdered drink mix. Tang, Crystal Light or similar product. Make sure itís loaded with vitamin C.
9. 5 lbs of powdered milk. Itís great protein and is loaded with other nutrients. Itís filling and can be used on that oatmeal as well.
10. 5 lbs of salt. Salt is an essential for survival as well as a food enhancer. Our bodies need salt to survive.
You donít need to fill this shopping list all at once. Watch for sales. Pay attention to the ďbuy one, get oneĒ promotions. Use coupons. One reader told me she saved several thousand dollars in just one year by using coupons. At the same time she built a substantial pantry for use in a disaster.
As always, send your comments and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: Dave Robinson is Bandon's Postmaster and has worked for the postal service for 30 years. He has a background in law enforcement, served in the Air Force in Vietnam, worked nine years for the Coos County Sheriff's Department, and serves on the Myrtle Point School Board, where he lives.
additional columns by Dave Robinson