Version 8.0

June 1st, 2012

15th Aniversary Edition

Book 2: Temporal Preparedness

General Member Edition

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Special Note to LDS Wards and Stakes.

You are reading

Book 2, Temporal Preparedness, General Member Edition”.

This is the public edition of the LDS Preparedness Manual.

Book 1, Temporal Preparedness, Leadership Edition” is available to LDS Members currently serving in leadership callings at the Ward, Stake, Re- gion or General levels. The Leadership Edition was created specifically for use by Wards and Stakes in their Emergency Preparedness Programs. That edition contains substancial amounts of Church Copyrighted materials

that have not been included in this edition.

For further details on how to obtain the Leadership Edition, Please contact me directly.

Questions, Comments or requests for additional copies of this manual should be directed to its compiler

Brother Christopher M. Parrett, “Chris@LDSAVOW.com”.

This manual may be freely reproduced and distributed so long as

all of the copyrights of the original authors are respected, and such reproduction is

NEVER DONE FOR COMMERCIAL GAIN!.

You may be asked to contribute between $15-$20 per copy to cover the actual costs of

Printing & Binding. Anyone charging you over $20.00 is in violation of this agreement!!

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Please Note:

This book is NOT an original work

Rather, it is a compilation of many different author’s works that have been gathered from the public domain of the Internet over the course of many years. These articles have been bound together and are presented here to simplify your access to them.

Any and all questions or comments abut this manual should be directed to its compiler

Brother Christopher M. Parrett

Rigby East Stake, Idaho

chris@ldsavow.com

P. O. Box 100, Rigby Idaho, 83442 USA

If you would like further information about any topic covered in this manual, please visit my LDS Preparedness website.

Another Voice of Warning

WWW.LDSAVOW.COM

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Note to my readers.

This book is WORTHLESS if you put it in your bookshelf with the intention of only reading it after an emergency strikes. It is NOT a Survival manual intended to be used after the fact.

This is a PREPAREDNESS manual that can only help you if you read it in advance and follow it’s suggestions to prepare and get ready for the emergency BEFORE IT HAPPENS!

At some point while reading this manual you ARE going to have questions, and I am happy to offer my assistence to you, your family, your church or your preparedness group REGARDLESS of your religious affiliation! While I am LDS, preparedness doesn’t care what your religious affilia- tion is! If I or any of the AVOW members can help, we all stand ready to do so!

Please come and take a look at LDSAVOW (Another Voice of Warning)

Members of ALL Judeo-Christian denominations are warmly welcomed!

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103,000+ unique discussions with over

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12,000+ preparedness members.

Suffice it to say, we have a staggering WEALTH OF INFORMATION ready to share with you on any topic related to preparedness!!

NOTE: If you are reading the Internet PDF version

we offer a BOUND PRINTED edition of this manual that is sold at our

COST of Printing only.

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4 Note to my Readers

5 Table of Contents

9 Preface

10 Book of Gomer Parable

Table of Contents

12 A Sense of Fear and Urgency about Preparing, by Christopher Parrett

Section 1: Emergency Preparedness. Why?

16 Getting set for a possible modern day repeat of Haun’s Mill, By Roger K. Young

Expert Counsel

23 Normalcy Bias, It’s All in your Head, by Survivalmom

25 Understanding the Normalcy Bias Could Save Your Life, by Confab

26 The Five Principles of Preparedness, Phil Burns

31 Mental & Spiritual Preparations for Survival, by jc

34 How Long until You Starve?, by Mr. Yankee

39 General Preparedness Survey, by Christopher Parrett

42 Five Levels of Preparedness, by Suburbanprep

Section 2: Getting Started

44 LDS Church FAMILY HOME STORAGE KITS, by Christopher Parrett

45 Food Storage, by Christopher Parrett

46 BARE-MINIMUM Food Storage Requirements, by Christopher Parrett

48 Our Food Supply is Fragile, by Christopher Parrett

49 Do you Really have a Year’s Supply??, By Christopher Parrett

Food Storage Tools & References

50 Basic Food List, by Lynette B. Crockett

53 Long Term Master Food List, by Christopher Parrett

57 One Year Supply Guide, by Dealsonmeals

60 Monthly Food Storage Purchasing Calendar, by Andrea Chapman

64 30 Day Emergency Food Supply, by by Robert Wayne Atkins

70 Real-World One-Year Emergency Food Supply , by by Robert Wayne Atkins

79 The Seven Major Mistakes in Food Storage, By Vickie Tate

81 Common Storage Foods, By Alan T. Hagan

Grains & Legumes

82 Grains and Flours, By Alan T. Hagan

90 Legume Varieties, By Alan T. Hagan

92 Availability of Grains & Legumes, By Alan T. Hagan

94 Moisture Content in Grains & Legumes, By Alan T. Hagan

97 Grains Cooking Chart

98 Basic Cooking Instructions for Grains & Legumes, by Zel Allen

Sugar, Milkm Fats & Oils

100 Sugar, Honey and Sweeteners, By Alan T. Hagan

104 Dairy Products, By Alan T. Hagan

106 Canned Fluid Milks and Cremes, Butter, Cheese, Eggs, By Alan T. Hagan

109 Infant Formula, By Alan T. Hagan

110 Fats and Oils, By Alan T. Hagan

Cooking Essentials

112 Cooking Adjuncts, By Alan T. Hagan

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Processing & Preservation

115 Storage Life of Dehydrated Food, By Al Durtschi

119 Shelf Life Studies, by by Robert Wayne Atkins, P.E.

120 Pros & Cons of Freeze-Dried, Dehydrated, MRE, etc, by Skipper Clark

121 MREs, Meal Ready to Eat, By Alan T. Hagan

Sprouting

127 Growing and Using Sprouts, by Al Durtschi

129 Survival Seeds, by suburbanprep

130 Seed List

Storage

131 Storage Containers, By Alan T. Hagan

140 LDS Church Plastic Buckets for Longer-Term Food

141 LDS Church Pouch Sealer Instructions

144 Oxygen Absorbers, By Alan T. Hagan

146 Moisture Control in Packing and Food Storage, By Alan T. Hagan

151 Spoilage, By Alan T. Hagan

156 Recommended Food Storage Times, By Alan T. Hagan

157 Space Cramp, Where do I Put it all?? by Kim Hicken

Section 3: Every Needful Thing

161 Get a Kit, Make a Plan, by Christopher Parrett

162 Building the right Bug Out Kit for you, by Westfalia

165 OK, But what do I prepare for?, by Capt. Dave

166 Survival Priorities” The Rule of Three, by Thesurvivalmom

72 Hour Emergency Kit (Get Out Of Dodge / Bug Out Bag)

169 A High Mobility 72 Hour Kit, by Ward Dorrity

195 Tools for your Vehicle, by Ward Dorrity

197 Get Out Of Dodge / Bug Out Bag checklist, by Chris Parrett

204 The Supply Table: The Master Preparedness List, by Chris Parrett

Evacuation

218 The 3rd Wave, Evacuation From A Disaster Location, by ST

219 Bug Out Trigger Criteria, by Mr. Jones

221 Understanding Everyone In the City Will Be a Refugee Post SHTF, by Suburban

Communication

223 Communications Family Ready, by Amy Loveless

224 Radio Spectrum, by Brian S

225 LDS Emergency Communications, by Dennis Bartholomew

227 General Radio Primer, by Bidah

231 Basics of Radio Communication, by Brian S

234 Sample Stake Communications Plan, by Brian S.

236 Survival Communications Primer, by Vector Joe

250 Sample Family Emergency Communications Plan, by Brian S.

Financial

253 Money, Edited by Christopher Parrett

256 Setting up and Emergency Cash Stash, by RusherJim

257 Debt and Preparedness, by iprepared

259 Get out of debt while you can, by preppingtosurvive

Medical

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260 Medical Kits for Self-Reliant Families, by Jackie Clay

263 TEOTWAWKI Medical Kits, by Survival and Austere Medicine

272 Seven Antibiotics to Stockpile and Why, by Cynthia J. Koelker, MD

274 Using Expired Medications, by Cynthia J. Koelker, MD

Defense

278 Defense, Edited by Christopher Parrett

279 Selecting a Preparedness Battery of Firearms, by Sergeant

Heating, Cooking, Lighting

285 Survival Fire Safety, by Mr. F

288 Emergency Heating & Cooking, by Greg Pope

291 Emergency Lighting, by Robert Roskind & Brandon Mansfield

293 Emergency Electrical Lighting, by Robert Roskind & Brandon Mansfield

295 A Short Course on Batteries, by Brandon Mansfield

297 Off Grid Power, by Brian S

299 Electric Generators, By Steve Dunlop

Clothing

304 Clothing, Edited by Chris Parrett

305 Warm, Protected and Modest: What to Wear in Difficult Times, by Marilyn

308 Winter Clothes For Preparedness Survival, preparedness1

309 Clothing Checklist By Jessica

310 Washing clothing after TEOTWAWKI, by Kylene

Shelter

311 Emergency Shelter, by Larry Bethers

Sanitation

312 Emergency Sanitation, by Greg Pope.

313 Emergency Toilets & Garbage Disposal, by Alan T. Hagan

315 Emergency Sanitation – The Scoop on Poop, by Kylene

318 Controlling Odors, by Kylene

319 TEOTWAWKI smells bad, get used to it !!, by Suburban Prep

Testing your Preparedness

320 3 Minutes without Breathing, by Mayo Foundation

323 3 Hours without Shelter, by Jon Doran

325 3 Days without Water, Bill Straka

333 Water, by Paxton Turner

345 3 Weeks without Food By Ron Shirtz

347 Surviving in the City, Edited by Christopher Parrett

Babies and Small Children

355 Baby Gear for TEOTWAKI, by Preppingtosurvive.com

359 Getting Children Involved in Preparing, by Preppingtosurvive.com

360 What Do You Tell the Children?, by Preppingtosurvive.com

362 Avoiding Fear, by Preppingtosurvive.com

PANDEMICS

364 Facts about Avian Influenza, US Government

368 Preparing for a Pandemic Outbreak (SIRQ) Plan, by Madison Hospital

369 Quarantine, Quarentine, Quarantine

370 Medical Quarantine Protecting Your Family from Infection, by Dr. Cynthia Koelker

372 Basic Pandemic Supply List

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373 Isolation Room Setup

Terrorist Attack

375 National Security Emergencies, by National Terror Alert

382 What to do if Nuclear Disaster is Imminent, by Ki4U

Section 4: PREPAREDNESS OUTSIDE YOUR COMFORT ZONE

395 TEOTWAWKI, by “Survivinghealthy”

397 The Precepts of My Preparedness Philosophy, by James Rawles

400 On Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs, by LTC Dave Frossman

404 100 Emergency Items: That Will Disappear First, by Tess Pennington

407 Some Ground Truth-The “Us” & the “Them” in a Societal Collapse, by RJ

409 Fears of a Prepper, by ST

412 Unprepared: Welcome to the Promissed Land, by Rod E.

417 I Am Your Worst Nightmare, by Dan at “Survival-spot.com”

421 The Thin Blue Line, by Deputy W.

423 The Overnighters: Coming to a Neighborhood Near You, by Frank C.

425 Why Prepare, when I can take it from the Mormons?, by Rambuff

427 Thoughts on Disaster Survival, post Katrina , By Anonymous

436 A Look Back At Katrina… An Expereinced Prepper Tells All, by Raptor

449 Lessons from Argentina’s economic collapse, By ferfal

469 A First-Hand Account of Long-Term “SHTF” Survival in Bosnia, by Selco

478 Society’s Five Stages of Economic Collapse, by “targetofopportunity.com”

481 EMP, Electromagnetic Pulse, by Tom S

492 MZBs:Are you prepared?, by “doomers.us”

EPILOGUE

495 My Personal Testimony

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Preface

The Lord Warns and Forewarns

‘’In mercy the Lord warns and forewarns. He sees the coming storm, knows the forces operating to produce it, and calls aloud through His prophets, advises, counsels, exhorts, even commands— that we prepare for what is about to befall and take shelter while yet there is time. But we go our several ways, feasting and making merry, consoling conscience with the easy fancy of ‘time enough’ and in idle hope that the tempest will pass us by, or that, when it begins to gather thick and black about us we can turn back and find shelter.’’

- James E Talmage, The Parables of James E. Talmage, p. 50

The Lord Holds Us Accountable

“Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head. He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul. But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take [any] person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand.” Ezekiel 33:4

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BOOK OF GOMER PARABLE

These are the generations of Gomer, son of Homer, son of Omer. And in the days of Gomer, Noah, the Prophet, went unto the people saying, “Prepare ye for the flood which is to come, yea, build your- selves a boat, that ye may not perish.”

Now, Gomer was a member of the Church, and taught Sunday School and played, yea, even on the ward softball team. And Gomer’s wife said unto him, “Come, let us build unto ourselves a boat as the Prophet commandeth, that we may not perish in the flood.” But behold, Gomer saith unto his wife, “Worry not, dear wife, for if the flood comes the government will provide boats for us.”

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And Gomer did not build a boat. And Gomer’s wife went unto Noah and she returned saying,

“Behold, Honey, the Prophet saith unto us, “Build a boat, that we may preserve ourselves, for the

government pays men not to grow trees, wherefore the government hath not the lumber to build for

you a boat.” And Gomer answered saying, “Fear not, oh wife, for am I not the star pitcher on the

ward softball team? Wherefore, the Church will provide for us a boat, that we will perish not.”

And Gomer’s wife went again unto Noah, and she returned unto Gomer, saying, “Behold, mine husband, the Prophet saith that the Church hath not enough lumber to build a boat for everyone, wherefore, mine husband, build for us a boat that we might not perish in the flood.” And Gomer an- swered her saying, “Behold, if we build a boat, when the flood cometh, will not our neighbors overpower us and take from us our boat; wherefore, what doth it profit a man to build a boat?”

And Gomer’s wife went again unto Noah and she returned, saying, “Behold, the Prophet saith, build unto yourselves a boat, and have faith, for if ye do the Lord’s bidding, He will preserve your boat for you.” But Gomer answered his wife, saying, “Behold, with this inflation, the price of wood has gone sky high, and if we wait awhile, perhaps the price will go down again. And then I will build for us a boat.”

And Gomer’s wife went again unto Noah, and she returned saying, “Thus saith the Prophet, build for yourselves a boat RIGHT NOW, for the price of wood will not go down, but will continue to go up. Wherefore, oh husband, build for ourselves a boat, that we may perish not.” But Gomer answered his wife, saying, “Behold, for 120 years Noah hath told us to build a boat, to preserve us from the flood, but hath the flood come? Yea, I say, nay. Wherefore, perhaps the flood will not come for another hundred and twenty years.

And Gomer’s wife went again unto Noah and returned saying, “The Prophet saith, he knows it has been 120 years, but nevertheless, the flood will come, wherefore, build unto yourselves a boat.”

And Gomer answered her saying, “Wherewith shall we get the money to build ourselves a boat, for are we not now making monthly payments on our snazzy new four horsepower chariot? Wherefore, when our payments end, perhaps we shall build ourselves a boat.”

And Gomer’s wife went again unto Noah and returned saying, “Behold, the Prophet saith that we should cut down on our recreation, and our vacations, and even give each other lumber for Christmas, that we might thereby get enough lumber to build a boat.” But Gomer saith unto her, “What a drag! Are we to cease enjoying life, just because we must build a boat?”

Wherefore, Gomer built not a boat. But behold, one afternoon Gomer heard thunder in the sky, and he feared exceedingly and he ran, yea, even to the lumber yard to buy lumber. But behold, the lumber store was crowded with great multitudes, all seeking to buy lumber, and there was not enough lumber to be found for the multitudes.

And on the same day were all the fountains of the deep opened, and the windows of heaven were broken up, and the floods came -- and behold, Gomer had no boat. And as the water rose above Gomer’s waist, his wife saith unto him, “Behold, Honey, I told thee so!”

---AuthorUnknown

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A SENSE OF FEAR AND URGENCY ABOUT PREPARING.

It is my personal belief that this fear, or sense of sudden urgency, is a very natural outgrowth of the awakening to our awful situation. As members come to more fully understand the true nature of the world we live in, and how fragile it actually is, the urge to prepare grows strong and hot. As they first begin to see their nakedness, they are overcome with their vulnerability and may panic in their attempts to get ready as quickly as possible.

Consider one of LDS Author Roger K. Young’s stories: The Farm Hand Who Could Sleep Through Anything There once was a farmer looking for a young man to help out at the farm. There were several young men who interviewed for the job and as far as the farmer could tell, they were about equally well qualified. He then asked them each one final question, “Tell me,” he would say, “why should I hire you above the others?”

Of all of the applicants and their replies, there was one that was really different. One young man said, “Because I can sleep through anything.” At first the farmer thought it was just strange. The more he thought, the more he was intrigued and mystified by the response. So he figured, well I will give this young man a chance, and hired him.

Weeks went by and the farmer was pretty happy with the young man’s work. He still wondered sometimes what the young man had meant by his strange reply, but he never got around to asking about it. Then one night the farmer was awakened in the middle of the night with a phone call from a neighbor. “There’s a big storm coming in with lots of wind, maybe a tornado. Better get ready for it.” was the quick message.

Indeed as the farmer went to the door and looked out, he found that the wind was strong and rising, and rain had started. He quickly ran and tried to awaken the young man to help him get everything ready for the blow. Try as he might, the young man couldn’t be stirred. Muttering to himself about what a stupid thing he had done in hiring a lazy boy who wouldn’t wake up when he really needed him, the farmer went out to the farm.

He went out to tie down the hay, but discovered that the hay was already tied down securely. Next he went to the barn and the corrals. Everywhere he looked, everything had already been prepared. After a time of just wandering around the farm, learning that there was nothing that needed to be done at the last minute, because it had all been done (prepared) before, the farmer returned to his house, but instead of muttering, he actually found himself singing the praises of this young man. He had realized, to his great joy, that the reason the young man could sleep through anything was because before he went to bed each and every night he had already prepared for the very worst. And so the farmer followed the example of the young man, since everything was already prepared, he undressed and was soon fast asleep, with a huge smile of peace on his face.

This young man had nothing to fear and was not stricken with panic at the onset of the storm because he was fully prepared. He had put forth the necessary time and effort to secure everything well in advance so he could rest the night through with little concern for the howling winds outside.

For those who are feeling overwhelmed with the task of becoming prepared, or for those who are concerned that they simply cannot accomplish the tasks laid out before them to become prepared for the events to come, please remember the words of the great prophet Nephi when he taught us that “the Lord giveth no command- ments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.” (1Ne 3:7). No matter what our level of preparedness, fear and panic are not necessary if we are striving to be obedient, for we have this promise from the Lord.

We are all familiar with that statement “If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear” (D&C 38:30). But we must also bear in mind that this most powerful statement in the preparedness community has an equally powerful but completely opposite meaning – “If ye are not prepared, ye shall fear.”

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To take this a step further, it saddens me that we have so many members who struggle to enjoy their lives after having “awakened” to our awful situation. When the events of the last days seem closer than we imagined, it’s difficult not to become pre-occupied with the future. While it’s easy to “not fear” for ourselves if we are pre- pared, we can still feel saddened for our loved ones who are not prepared. Such emotional preoccupation can quickly become overwhelming if we’re not careful. I encourage each and every one of us to prepare like the world will end tomorrow, but plan and live our lives as though the time is yet far away. If we can successfully find balance between these two activities, it is my opinion that we will each find comfort and peace in the days to come, regardless of what happens around us.

President Woodruff was known for doing today what needed to be done, without undue concern for what might occur in the future. On one occasion he was asked when the world was coming to an end. He replied, “Well, I don’t know, but I am still planting cherry trees.”

Now, please consider the following parable about preparedness from LDS Author Roger K. Young.

Once there was a group of people traveling on a long and often difficult road in the wilderness, making their way towards a very special place. They had a map and some instructions on how to use the map to get to their destination, but now the road led upward into the mountains, becoming steeper, rockier and generally more dif- ficult to travel. None of them had ever been on this road before, and there was some confusion about where they were according to the map. Some had even become discouraged because the storms were becoming stronger and more frequent. As they rounded a bend they came to a little spring where a family of fellow travelers were resting and preparing to travel on. Sitting on a nearby rock was one of the family members studying the map. Pausing to refresh themselves, they joined in conversation with the traveler and his family.

After finding out that the man had been sitting for several hours, map in hand, studying the surrounding wilder- ness, they asked him what his opinion was concerning their exact location according to the map. “Well,” said he, “I’ve never been on this road before either, but I will share with you some of the things that I think I have figured out. I am by no means an expert or a guide, and so I would encourage you to take some time to ponder these things for yourselves.” He then took the map and began indicating some of the landmarks on the map, pointing out various mountain peaks, passes, cliffs, rock slides, swamps, forests and other places, while at the same time gesturing at the surrounding countryside. “See this mountain peak on the map,” he would say, “I believe that it refers to that very tall mountain over there.”

After pointing out a dozen or so landmarks he went on to say, pointing to a spot on the map, “After looking at all of these landmarks, I believe that this spring where we are is right here. If that is correct, then actually we are pretty close to our destination. However, the road from now on becomes very steep, rocky, narrow, and treacherous, with almost no opportunity to obtain food or water until we finish the journey. As you know, the Master has sent some guides out, and for the last little while they have been indicating that we need to start packing some extra water and food in case we get caught in one of the storms. The legend on the map says that as we go on from here, the storms will increase and become very severe making this final part of the journey extremely difficult and dangerous. I would advise that if you haven’t already picked up an extra sup- ply of food and water, and made the final preparations for the last part of the journey, that you do so quickly.”

“Oh, one last thing,” said the traveler as his family began to load up and journey on, “the map says that there will probably be road washouts, bridges damaged or down, flash floods, unmarked quick sands, as well as other dangers up ahead. The Master’s guides will be set along the way with directions and instructions on how to avoid or make it through these dangers, and so I would advise you to listen to them and follow their advice very care- fully and quickly.”

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The travelers, weary from the steady climb over rocky ground made slippery from the now almost constant rain, came round a large rock outcropping and noticed a small shelter on the other side. As they headed towards it, they noticed a small group of people, among them the friend they had met earlier, further down the trail. As they drew closer, they realized that the group and their friend were just getting ready to leave, and were in the process of tying themselves together with rope.

Their friend saluted them with a warm greeting and expressed joy that they had arrived to join him and his family, if even for a brief moment. “Rest for a minute while you can, and get ready for what is ahead,” he advised them. “The next part of the journey is extremely difficult and treacherous, and the Master has sent one of his Guides to come and show us the way. They alone know the way and are in constant contact with the Master, receiving the information needed to pass through the perils ahead. We have decided that the only way to make it the rest of the way is to rope ourselves to the Guide in order to not get lost in the darkness of the storms and chaos ahead.”

“Take heart,” their friend continued, “the guide has told us that though the path ahead, over the mountain, will be extremely dangerous and will test the endurance and faith of the best of us, in a relatively short time we will pass through the trials ahead and be in the very lush and beautiful Millennial valley on the other side.”

“Unfortunately, the map of this part of the journey is not very clear, hence the need to stay extremely close to the guides. I’ll share with you what I think I have learned about the trail ahead, for whatever benefit it might do you, but my understanding is very fragmented and unsure. Again, the only real safety is to follow the Master’s Guides, obeying immediately every word of direction and counsel they give as if it were from the Master himself. To do anything less will surely invite disaster. I don’t know if I will see you again along the trail ahead, but if not, hopefully we will have a great reunion in the valley on the other side.” With that, their friend handed over to them a small packet of papers. Then he, his family, and the others all roped together in their group with one of the Guides, slowly trudged off into the rain and darkness...

And so we now say to all men everywhere, to men of all sects, parties, and denominations, but more particu- larly to those who believe: Hear ye the words of the watchmen, and be ye ready for that which is soon to be. ‘For there shall be a day’—and as the Lord lives, that day is now—‘that the watchmen upon the mount Ephraim shall cry, Arise ye, and let us go up to Zion unto the Lord our God.’ (Jer. 31:6.) Go ye, go ye up to Zion; find refuge in one of her stakes, and be ye one with those who are pure in heart.” – Bruce R. McConkie (The Millenial Messiah).

My brothers and sisters, please remember that I am but a fellow traveler on this journey. I hope, quite simply, that this book can act as a tool and an aid in your preparations. I am not privy to information from the Lord that you do not have. I am not a prophet, a seer, or a revelator. I do not have any stewardship or authority over you. I simply interpret what I have been given for myself and occasionally, when prompted, share my conclusions and ideas. We have all been given the same map, the same directions, and the same destination.

As the brethren have taught us many times in the past, all the money and all the preparations in the world will not save you in the events to come unless you are spiritually prepared. Temporal preparedness should be your second priority after your spiritual preparations.

I humbly ask that you do not treat anything in this book, especially me, as bigger than life, nor should you regard anything I say or do with any special “weight.” We are all equals before the Lord. I have no special calling or au- thority over you. The Lord is our Master. His prophets are our guides. The Holy Ghost is our watchman. We are in this together.

May God bless you all in your efforts! Brother Christopher Michael Parrett

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GETTING SET FOR A MODERN DAY

REPEAT OF HAUN’S MILL

We all know the tragic story of Haun’s mill.
Joseph Smith had counseled all of the Church members living around Far West to drop everything and come into Far West for safety. It wasn’t a commandment...it was simply a request and counsel. Almost all the members of the Church immediately followed the counsel of the prophet. However, brother Jacob Haun, upon hearing this counsel, came and argued with the Prophet about the counsel at least 3 times during one day. Brother Haun’s point was that he did not see the reason for it and he felt that he and his people could defend themselves if necessary. According to John Lee who was present for the conversations, on 26 October 1838 The Prophet said,
“Move in, by all means, if you wish to save your lives.” Haun replied that if the settlers left their homes all of their property would be lost and the Gentiles would burn their houses and other buildings. Joseph replied, “You had better lose your property than your lives, but there is no danger of losing either if you will do as you are commanded.”
Again, brother Haun thought he and his neighbors could protect and defend themselves, and Smith finally gave them permission to remain, and is recorded as saying;
“they would consider him a tyrant if he forced them to leave and abandon their property and come to Far West.”

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Years later, on 8 June 1867 John Lee reaffirmed in his diary that;
“Jos. permitted Haun to gather the Brethren and defend their Mill but stated at the same time that they would be massacred & sure enough it was done.”1
Four years later after the incident Joseph himself recounted: “Up to this day God had given me wisdom
to save the people who took Council. None
had ever been killed who abode by my Council. At Haun’s Mill the brethren went contrary to my Council; if they had not, their lives would have been spared.” 2
The lesson here for us to learn from is that brother Haun, the righteous local leader of a group of good saints...felt he knew better than to obey all of the counsel of the living prophet. After all, Joseph hadn’t made it an enforced commandment... he phrased it as counsel and advice. In fact, it is important to note that Joseph REFUSED to make it a COMMANDMENT and force the people to gather, even though he knew it would save their lives. Many of the good and righteous people who trusted in their own wisdom and their local leader and refused to give full heed to the words of the prophet, sadly, paid the terrible price four days later. That they were good people who were righteous and had great faith is not disputed as some of them performed miracles later even in the very day of their distress. But it was to help alleviate some of the suffering their disobedient actions had brought

down upon them. The problem was they thought it was a little more important to try and save their material positions in the world, than to obey the suggestions of a living prophet. This brings up another point of discussion.

LABORING UNDER A FALSE DOCTRINE

Does personal spiritual righteousness and gospel zeal

guarantee the temporal protection of the Lord and excuse an individual from obeying counsel of the Prophets and Apostles?

On the face of it the answer would seem obvious...absolutely not. We must obey all of the counsel of the Lord’s anointed... all of the time. We can’t pick and choose without facing the resulting consequences. But throughout history and even today many of the saints and their local leaders believe, work under and teach this false doctrine in an important aspect of their lives.
Let me rephrase this question in another way. Can a member or a leader be trying so hard in so many areas and be doing a tremendous amount of good while yet at the same time ignore counsel given again and again by prophets...and then suffer terrible consequences because of his lack of obedience in something very small he personally did not see the benefit of?
The answer is of course...yes. Let me use one more famous historical example of this very issue. The Martin and Willey handcart experience is again, like Haun’s mill, a story of a group of good, righteous individuals and their local leaders ignoring counsel from Prophets and Apostles and suffering the consequences. They specifically, and falsely, applied the idea that their personal righteousness would protect them in their disregard for following the counsel of the Apostles. In fact they actually used as an excuse their gospel enthusiasm, zeal, faith and obedience as some of the primary reasons in their arguments to disobey the advice of the brethren.3 After all, it wasn’t a commandment that was enforced...it was just counsel. Again, history proved them to be tragically wrong.
“The decision to send out the Willie and Martin companies so late in the season was extremely reckless and based upon false doctrine. That decision cost the lives of nearly one-fourth of the entire group; about 220 people died before the rescue party sent by President Young could reach them.” 4
Of course we have the story of those who survived the Willie and Martin experience who drew closer to the Lord. But, according to Brigham Young, it wasn’t what the Lord wanted:
“In mid-November President Brigham Young angrily reproved those who had authorized the late start or who had not ordered the several parties back to Florence when they still had the opportunity, charging “ignorance,” “mismanagement,” and “misconduct.” Though terrible, the suffering could have been far worse. Had the rescue effort not been launched immediately—well before the storm struck—the handcart companies would probably have been totally destroyed.”5

SETTING UP A MODERN DAY REPEAT

Are too many of us as members and local leaders setting
ourselves up for another Haun’s Mill and Willie and Martin handcart disaster...only on a tremendously much larger scale?
I can’t tell you how many times I have talked with people who are wonderful, faithful members of the Church, some even who are ward and stake leaders, who don’t have enough food storage to last more than a week or so. Often this is because they have been well blessed in material possessions and income. In our discussions about how the counsel for food storage has been repeated by every prophet for over
60 years they commonly respond that with all of the other issues that they are dealing with, it just isn’t very high on the priority list. Temple work, family history, missionary work are all much more important than food storage. However, some explain that if the Prophet made it a commandment, like they did with the Word of Wisdom by including it on the temple recommend interview, instead of just counsel, then they would move it up on the priority list.
These people, and I am convinced they represent a very large portion of the membership of the Church, believe the very same false doctrines as did the members of the two ill fated groups mentioned above. First, they falsely believe that their personal righteousness will save them. After all, they are busy going to the temple, fulfilling Church callings, sending missionaries out, etc. in other words...doing the works of the righteous. Surely, the Lord will be merciful to them and take care of them despite their lack of attention to this small item. They discount what president Benson taught on this point:

Should the Lord decide at this time to cleanse the Church—and the need for that cleansing seems to be increasing—a famine in this land of one year’s duration could wipe out a large percentage of slothful members, including some ward

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and stake officers. Yet we cannot say we

have not been warned.”6

Additionally, they commonly believe and have heard it
actually taught over the pulpit by others that those terrible things that have been prophesied won’t happen to the righteous and so they need not prepare for them. Many prophets, including President Lee and President Kimball addressed this terribly false notion, but President Benson said it best in his “Rue The Day” statement:
“Too often we bask in our comfortable complacency and rationalize that the ravages of war, economic disaster, famine, and earthquake cannot happen here. Those who believe this are either not acquainted with the revelations of the Lord, or they do not believe them. Those who smugly think these calamities will not happen, that they somehow will be set aside because of the righteousness of the Saints, are deceived and will rue the day they harbored such a delusion. The Lord has warned and forewarned us against a day of great tribulation and given us counsel, through His servants, on how we can be prepared for these difficult times. Have we heeded His counsel?7
It is hard for me to understand why or how so many good and wonderful people can discount what the prophets have said, again, and again, and again, and again concerning what will suddenly happen to the world in the future. President Benson said:

The revelation to produce and store food may be as essential to our temporal welfare today as boarding the ark was to the people in the days of Noah.”8

It is important to note that the people who didn’t get on the ark, suffered and died by the very calamity that for 300 years had been prophesied would come upon them. People, including members of the Church, have always had a habit of believing that things won’t change drastically, or that terrible things could happen to them. It is a part of human nature.
However, the scriptures are very clear that these terrible cataclysmic events, some perhaps 20-30 years prior to the actual return of the Savior in power and great glory, will come suddenly upon the heart of the Church, and then be poured out upon the rest of the world.

“Behold, vengeance cometh speedily upon

the inhabitants of the earth, a day of wrath,

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a day of burning, a day of desolation, of weeping, of mourning, and of lamentation; and as a whirlwind it shall come upon all the face of the earth, saith the Lord.

“And upon my house shall it begin, and from my house shall it go forth, saith the Lord;

“First among those among you, saith the Lord, who have professed to know my name and have not known me, and have blasphemed against me in the midst of my house, saith the Lord.”9

It is noteworthy that President Hinckley quoted from this scripture in his famous Sunday morning talk given in General conference following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack and subsequent beginning of the war in Iraq.
Additionally, this scripture was supposed to have been discussed in great detail recently throughout the Church as it was contained in the Priesthood/Relief Society manuals when we studied Joseph F. Smith. A few quotes from that lesson:

The many eruptions, earthquakes and tidal waves which have occurred...are signs which the Savior declared would foreshadow his second coming, although he said his advent should be as thief in the night...The wise and prudent will heed the warning and prepare themselves that they be not taken unawares.”

I...t e s tif y, tha t [the La t t e r -D a y Saints]...will be the first to fall beneath the judgments of the Almighty, for his judgments will begin at his own house.10

Wilford Woodruff commented that he believed that the dreadful calamities described in the second half of the third Chapter of Isaiah is a direct description of some of the aftermath of this and other unpleasant prophetic fulfillments specifically upon the Church members because of their participation in the fashions of Babylon which showed where their hearts really were:
“There are some prophecies pertaining to these latter days that are unpleasant to contemplate. President Young has been calling upon the daughters of Zion day after day, now, for years, to lay aside these Babylonish fashions. I have been reading the third chapter of Isaiah, and I have been hoping, all the days of my ministry, that the

sayings contained in that chapter would never apply to the daughters of Zion in our day; but I believe they will, and inasmuch as they will not listen to President Young and to the prophets, apostles and elders of Israel with regard to throwing off these nonsensical things, I hope they will hasten the lengthening out of their skirts and drag them in the streets; that they will increase their round tires like the moon, increase their hoops, and their headbands, increase their Grecian bends at once and carry it out until they get through with it, so that we can turn to the Lord as a people. Some of the daughters of Zion do not seem willing to forsake the fashions of Babylon. I to such would say hasten it, and let the woe that is threatened on this account come, that we may get through with it, then we can go on and build up the Zion of God on the earth.”11
Imagine what he would say if he saw the fashions of today that include the nose rings, the leg ornaments, the tinkling ornaments about the feet that were not present during his day, but are now very prevalent in ours, even among many of our members?

BUT WHAT ABOUT A YEARS SUPPLY OF BASIC FOOD STORAGE?

I believe that every prophet over the last 60 years has talked about having the Church members get a bare minimum of at least a one year’s supply of basic food items. Though it is not addressed directly in every conference, it is published in a tremendous amount of Church literature, pamphlets, Church handbook of instructions, monthly messages for home teachers and visiting teachers, instruction manuals, etc.
Again, after 9/11, in the following October General
Conference, President Hinckley talked about food storage.

We cannot provide against every contingency. But we can provide against many contingencies. Let the present situation remind us that this we should do. As we have been continuously counseled for more than 60 years, let us have some food set aside that would sustain us for a time in case of need. But let us not panic nor go to extremes. Let us be prudent in every respect.”12

Three months later, the First Presidency then took the unprecedented step of issuing a special letter (January

20, 2002) clarifying his remarks so that there would be no misunderstanding, asking that food storage preparation, specifically concerning having minimally a one year supply for every member in the world where ever possible, be taught in every branch, ward, district and stake in the Church. In it, for the first time, it outlined the minimum of basic food items to be included in such storage. Unfortunately, it is estimated that 25% of the membership in North America, still have never even heard of the letter because it was not taught to them by their local leaders. Quoting from the letter (underlining is mine):

Priesthood and Relief Society leaders should teach the importance of home storage and securing a financial reserve. These principles may be taught in ward councils or on a fifth Sunday in priesthood and Relief Society meetings.

Church members can begin their home storage by storing the basic foods that would be required to keep them alive if they did not have anything else to eat. Depending on where members live, those basics might include water, wheat or other grains, legumes, salt, honey or sugar, powdered milk, and cooking oil. … When members have stored enough of these essentials to meet the needs of their family for one year, they may decide to add other items that they are accustomed to using day to day.

Some members do not have the money or space for such storage, and some are prohibited by law from storing a year’s supply of food. These members should store as much as their circumstances allow. Families who do not have the resources to acquire a year’s supply can begin their storage by obtaining supplies to last for a few months. Members should be prudent and not panic or go to extremes in this effort. Through careful planning, most Church members can, over time, establish both a financial reserve and a year’s supply of essentials.13

Following this, the Church made a major change at the Bishops storehouses, creating monthly survival food storage boxes for one person at tremendously low prices. A person could purchase 12 of these boxes and have a years supply of food storage...allowing the step by step completion of President Hinckley’s counsel by almost any member.

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The preparedness message was also echoed by other Church leaders as well. In a Jan 31, 2002 letter by President Packer, acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve, to General Authorities, Area Authority Seventies, Stake, Mission and District Presidents part of the emphasis for 2002 stake conference training was “please instruct members of the importance of reducing debt, living within their means, and storing food and other essentials that enable them to remain self-reliant in times of need.”
A year later to reemphasize the importance of obtaining a years supply of food storage, it was the main topic for the visiting teaching message for January 2003, “If ye are prepared ye shall not fear.”
And so we get to the heart of the matter:

ARE TOO MANY MEMBERS, INCLUDING LOCAL AND STAKE LEADERS, IGNORING THE COUNSEL TO TEACH AND ENCOURAGE THAT EVERY MEMBER SHOULD HAVE AT LEAST A 1 YEAR SUPPLY OF BASICS?

Is there a chance that because of their lack of attention in this one small area...that they and their trusting members might one day in the future suffer terrible consequences such as watching their families and friends slowly starve to death? President Kimball said:

How often do Church members arise early in the morning to do the will of the Lord?... How often do we say, “Yes, I will obey the commandment to store food and to help others, but just now I have neither the time nor the money to spare; I will obey later”? Oh, foolish people! While we procrastinate, the harvest will be over and we will not be saved. Now is the time to follow Abraham’s example; now is the time to repent; now is the time for prompt obedience to God’s will.”14

It is important to note that many of the prophets, including President Kimball in the preceding quote, call it THE COMMANDMENT to store food.
As one reads the scriptures, the talks, the manuals and all that has been said upon the subject, it isn’t a matter of IF the famine comes, it is a matter of only WHEN the famine comes. President Benson stated:

Not only should we have strong spiritual homes, but we should have strong temporal homes. We should avoid bondage by getting out of debt as soon

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as we can, pay as we go, and live within our incomes. There is wisdom in having on hand a year’s supply of food, clothing, fuel (if possible), and in being prepared to defend our families and our possessions and to take care of ourselves. I believe a man should prepare for the worst while working for the best. Some people prepare and don’t work, while others work but don’t prepare. Both are needed if we would be of maximum service to our God, our family, and our country.”

“We must do more to get our people prepared for the difficult days we face in the future. Our major concern should be their spiritual preparation so they will respond with faith and not fear. “If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear” (D&C

38:21). Our next concern should be for their temporal preparation. When the economies of nations fail, when famine and other disasters prevent people from buying food in stores, the Saints must be prepared to handle these emergencies. This is a matter of concern for area, region, and stake councils.”15

What do we do after we have a basic year’s supply of food for ourselves and our family? Simply, we have been counseled to think about going beyond just the basics of food and extend the principle to clothing, fuel, seeds, tools, shelters (tents) and other items necessary to sustain ourselves and our families for a year.

A man should not only be prepared to protect himself physically, but he should also have on hand sufficient supplies to sustain himself and his family in an emergency. For many years the leaders of the Mormon Church have recommended, with instructions, that every family have on hand at least a year’s supply of basic food, clothing, fuel (where possible), and provisions for shelter. This has been most helpful to families suffering temporary reverses. It can and will be useful in many circumstances in the days ahead. We also need to get out of financial bondage, to be debt-free.”16

Some believe falsely that when things get bad...the Church has stored enough for all of the members. The Church leadership has been very clear on this issue:

Our bishop’s storehouses are not intended to stock enough commodities to care for all the members of the Church. Storehouses are only established to care for the poor and the needy. For this reason, members of the Church have been instructed to personally store a year’s supply of food, clothing, and, where possible, fuel. By following this counsel, most members will be prepared and able to care for themselves and their family members, and be able to share with others as may be needed.” 17

Finally, in summary:
“You do not need to go into debt to obtain a year’s supply. Plan to build up your food supply just as you would a savings account. Save a little for storage each paycheck. Can or bottle fruit and vegetables from your gardens and orchards. Learn how to preserve food through drying and possibly freezing. Make your storage a part of your budget. Store seeds and have sufficient tools on hand to do the job. If you are saving and planning for a second car or a television set or some item which merely adds to your comfort or pleasure, you may need to change your priorities. We urge you to do this prayerfully and do it now. I speak with a feeling of great urgency.”18

When we really get into hard times,” said President J. Reuben Clark, Jr., “where food is scarce or there is none at all, and so with clothing and shelter, money may be no good for there may be nothing to buy, and you cannot eat money, you cannot get enough of it together to burn to keep warm, and you cannot wear it.”19

For more than a hundred years, Church leaders have taught the members to store grain and other essentials that would sustain life in times of drought or famine. The current guidelines for home storage are intended to apply internationally. They include having a supply of food, clothing, and, where possible, the fuel necessary to sustain life for one year. Church guidance states, “We have never laid down an exact formula for what anybody should store. Perhaps if we think not in terms of a year’s

supply of what we ordinarily would use, and think more in terms of what it would take to keep us alive in case we didn’t have anything else to eat, that last would be very easy to put in storage for a year”.”20
President Joseph Fielding Smith said:
“The distress and perplexity, bloodshed and terror, selfish ambition of despotic rulers, such as the world has never before seen, all indicate that the great and dreadful day of the Lord is very near, even at our doors. We have been warned by the prophets from the beginning of time. They have declared, by revelation from the Lord, that in this present day, confusion, bloodshed, misery, plague, famine, earthquake, and other calamities, would cover the face of the earth. The Lord told his disciples of these dreadful scenes and said men’s hearts would fail them because of these things coming upon the earth. . . .”21

“President Wilford Woodruff and the Prophet Joseph Smith declare that it was their duty and should be the duty of every righteous man to raise the warning voice and proclaim the fact that these calamities are at our doors, and I have been condemned because I have done that. I heard one good man say, “There are too many good things to think about without talking about these troubles, these plagues, or worrying about the coming of the Lord.” Here is what the Lord says in Section 45 of the Doctrine and Covenants, verses 39 to 43.

“And it shall come to pass that he that feareth me shall be looking forth for the great day of the Lord to come, even for the signs of the coming of the Son of Man.

“And they shall see signs and wonders, for they shall be shown forth in the heavens above, and in the earth beneath.

“And they shall behold blood, and fire, and vapors of smoke.”

“Now, when the Lord says that, don’t you think I am justified in raising my voice and do you think I am doing wrong when I am... watching the signs of the times and these calamities and troubles that are coming? Am I doing wrong? And yet one good brother said that. Too many things to do.

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We haven’t time to worry about the coming of Christ. I hope he is here. Now, here is something from President Brigham Young.
“Do you think there is calamity abroad now among the people?…All we have yet heard and all we have experienced is scarcely a preface to the sermon that is going to be preached. When the testimony of the Elders ceases to be given, and the Lord says to them, ‘come home; I will now preach My own sermons to the nations of the earth,’ all you now know can scarcely be called a preface to the sermon that will be preached with fire and sword, tempests, earthquakes, hail, rain, thunders, and lightnings and fearful destruction. What matters the destruction of a few railway cars? You will hear of magnificent cities, now idolized by the people, sinking in the earth, entombing the inhabitants. The sea will heave itself beyond its bounds, engulfing mighty cities. Famine will spread over the nations, and nation will rise up against nation, kingdom against kingdom, and states against states, in our own country and in foreign lands; and they will destroy each other, caring not for the blood and lives of their neighbors, of their families, or for their own lives. They will be like the Jaredites who preceded the Nephites upon this continent, and will destroy each other to the last man, through the anger that the devil will place in their hearts, because they have rejected the words of life and are given over to Satan to do whatever he listeth to do with them. You may think that the little you hear of now is grievous; yet the faithful of God’s people will see days that will cause them to close their eyes because of the sorrow that will come upon the wicked nations. The hearts of the faithful will be filled with pain and anguish for them.”
“Why is the Lord angry? Why are all these things coming upon the world? President Young said in this article that I read and the Lord says in the revelations I have read to you, it is because they have turned away from the Gospel of Jesus Christ, because they have rebelled against God,

why. They have rejected the message. The nations are full of iniquity.

“Now, there is our danger. We must not forsake God. If we are not on His side, you may be sure He is not going to be on our side. He will leave us to ourselves. Now, these calamities are here. They are upon us. The whole world is in commotion. I have had to leave unsaid about two-thirds of what I have prepared to say, but next week, which will be the concluding talk, I am going to turn to these Scriptures and show you what the old prophets have said in regard to our day. I have told you now what the Lord said and what the prophets of our own day have said. I have shown you the fulfillment of the prediction by President Wilford Woodruff, that the angels are sent forth to reap the earth. They are on that mission. This I have presented to you tonight, and we will get the other things next time.”22

If ye are prepared ye shall not fear.”23

Copyright, Roger K. Young

(Footnotes)

1 Regional Studies, Missouri, Benson—Haun’s Mill, p.107

2Ehat & Cook, Words, Manuscript History of the Church: 29

August 1842 (Monday Morning), p.127–129

3 See B. H. Roberts, Comprehensive History of the Church, Vol.4, Ch.98, p.91

4Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol.2, HANDCART COMPANIES

5Ibid

6Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.265

7Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.706

8 (CR October 1980, Ensign 10 [November 1980]: 33.) Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.266

9 D&C 112:24-26

10 President Joseph F. Smith quotes from Lesson 44 Preparing

For The Second Coming of Christ, page 393

11The Discourses of Wilford Woodruff, p.226 - p.227

12 Oct 6, 2002 Sunday morning Session, President Hinckley

13Jan 20, 2002 First Presidency Letter

14The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p.174

15 Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.264

16 President Benson, God, Family, Country, p. 331.)

17Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.263-264, 267

18 President Benson, CR October 1980, Ensign 10 [November

1980]: 33.)

19Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.268

20Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol.2, EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS

21Joseph Fielding Smith Jr., Doctrines of Salvation, Vol.3, p.19

22 Joseph Fielding Smith, The Signs of the Times, p.124-137

23D&C 38:30

and because they have refused to hear the testimony of those who have been sent to preach the Gospel to them. That is

22

Copyright 2005, Roger K. Young

Normalcy Bias – It’s All in Your Head


people. Life had been so good for so long that, surely, things would get better. Jews who could have easily afforded to move out of the country stayed, and perished.

Human bodies don’t normally fly through the air, but last year that’s exactly what I witnessed while waiting for a red light to turn green.
I was sitting in my Tahoe at an intersection not far from home when I heard the loud rumble of a truck engine. I couldn’t quite believe my eyes when a green pick-up veered around me, raced into the intersection and plowed into a white sedan. While my mind was registering this vio- lent accident, I saw a scarecrow fly through the air. I took a few deep breaths, tried to remember the details of how the accident happened and waited to give my eyewitness account to the police who appeared on the scene within minutes.
My mind re-played the scene, always with that scarecrow flying out of the truck and into the adjacent field. It wasn’t until a half hour later, when I saw EMTs trying to revive a young man did I realize that what I had actually seen was his body at the moment it was ejected from the front seat. Even now, when I remember the accident, I don’t see a hu- man. Instead, the image of a scarecrow is imprinted in my brain because humans don’t fly through the air!

Normalcy Bias defined

This is an example of Normalcy Bias, a survival mechanism our brains are equipped with that can place us in grave danger when we’re faced with something traumatic. Sim- ply put, it causes our brains to insist that all is okay. Every- thing will return to normal. For most of us who have never faced true peril, Normalcy Bias tells us that nothing bad will ever happen. “This is America!,” some people insist when I tell them about the possibility of a deeper Depression or hyperinflation. Incredibly, the most obvious warning signs are ignored.
This explains why so many Jews continued living in Germa- ny, even after they were forced to wear identifying yellow stars and discriminatory laws were passed against Jewish
Oncoming hurricanes and similar disasters elicit similar re- actions. We simply expect life to go on as it always has, and our brains are wired to accept that and nothing else. A driv- er attempts to cross a flooded river. Thousands of New Or- leans residents faced with Hurricane Katrina refuse to leave the city, and city officials don’t even make an attempt to evacuate them. One survivor from 9/11 tells of going blind as she saw dozens of human bodies hitting the ground out- side the Twin Towers. Our brains can accommodate billions of bits of information each day, but apparently, there are some things too terrible to comprehend.
image by richardmasoner
Those of us who believe in preparedness, whether begin- ners or veterans, know the frustration of trying to convince loved ones that the future is not at all secure, but the Nor- malcy Bias isn’t something we can debate. It’s not based on logic or rational thought. It’s the brain, doing its best to help its human owner deal with terrifying events and pos- sibilities, as well as with escalating situations whose logical, final outcomes can’t be accepted.

Here’s another example from just last month…

If you had told me two months ago that American citizens would meekly line up to walk through powerful x-ray ma- chines that would strip them bare before low-level TSA em- ployees, I would have said, “Never!” If you had told me that, as an option, they would stand with arms raised while their crotches were groped and would allow their pre-schoolers to be similarly molested, I would have laughed. Yet, that is exactly what is happening, and we hear of similar searches planned for train stations, hotels, and more.
The water is heating up and most of the frogs are oblivious.

“Life will get back to normal.” “There’s nothing wrong with this!”

Each week brings another repressive ruling, and still, most American citizens insist there is no reason for concern. New legislators will make everything right again. This is just temporary.
Whatever comes next will, again, be excused and accepted. Darn that Normalcy Bias!

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Eleven Tips for Banishing Normalcy Bias


Here’s the bottom line. As SurvivalMoms, we don’t have the luxury of looking at a catastrophe before us and say- ing over and over again, “I can’t believe this is happening. I can’t believe this.” If our kids can’t rely on us when all hell is breaking loose, then who can they depend on? Law en- forcement and first responders are quickly overwhelmed, and your family is hardly at the top of their list. Normalcy Bias can place those we love most in grave danger.
I think a conversation about overcoming Normalcy Bias will be important and valuable in the Comment section follow- ing this article, but here are eleven ways we can begin to condition our minds to accept the unacceptable.
1. Be willing to go through the painful process of acknowl- edging the uncertainty of our future. I compare it with the Kubler-Ross grief process: denial (Normalcy Bias rearing its ugly head!), anger (at politicians, circumstances, family members), bargaining (“If I can just buy enough precious metals, we’ll be okay.”), depression (our children aren’t fac- ing the same, sunny future that we did, America is changing before our eyes), and finally, acceptance (I can’t do every- thing, but I can be proactive and do what I can.)
2. Face facts, don’t hide from them. Confront financial dif- ficulties, acknowledge your limits. Only when you face real- ity can you prepare for it.
3. Trust your instincts. Headlines change on a dime. Take in a much bigger picture than a single, optimistic headline or the words of a politician seeking re-election. Trust your own five senses and what your gut is telling you.
4. Start where you are with what you have.
5. Fight feeling overwhelmed with lists and organization. Focus on what you will do today, this week, this month. Lit- tle by little it will all come together.

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6. Reach out to others. Start your own SurvivalMom meet-up group. Spend time on preparedness and survival forums, as long as they don’t feed your fears. If there was ever a time for people to come together, this is it.
7. It’s better to over-prepare than to be under-prepared. Normalcy Bias assures us that everything will be okay. A few extra bottles of water is all you really need. Those ten cans of tuna will be plenty! Go ahead and stock up more than you think you’ll need to. Make plans for scenarios that may be a bit far out but still within the realm of possibility.
8. Make plans. Have an evacuation plan, and prepare for it. Have a hunker-down plan, and prepare for it. Decide ahead of time how you will face the most likely crises and communicate those plans with those who need-to-know. Write down your plans! Panic and stress have a way of eras- ing the logical parts of our brains!
9. Be ready to act quickly and decisively. It’s better to take action too soon than too late.
10. Take time off. Forget you ever heard of the word, ‘pre- paredness’. Go shopping and blow a few bucks on some- thing completely unnecessary. Go out to lunch. Play with the kids. Spend an hour on the phone gossiping with your best friend. Give yourself a mental break! Your family needs you to be strong. You need to take care of yourself, body, soul, and spirit.
11. Get physically fit. There is a huge connection between physical and mental fitness. Start with some sort of exer- cise and start today.

Normalcy Bias, although deeply ingrained in the hu- man brain, doesn’t have to control our futures or place us in harm’s way. The first step in being pre- pared is becoming educated. Knowing about this bias, what it can do, and how it can be controlled will help you become a SurvivalMom in every sense of the word!

© 2010, thesurvivalmom. All rights reserved. http://preparednessdaily.com/2010/12...-in-your-head/ image by marxchivist

Understanding the Normalcy Bias Could Save Your Life.

I am going to tell you a true story of personal tragedy. It was one of the most valuable learning experiences of my life. I have one regret…I wish I would have un- derstood a strange phenomenon called the normalcy bias.

The formal definition is the phenomenon of disbelieving one’s situation when faced with grave and imminent dan- ger and/or catastrophe. One tends to over focus on the actual phenomenon instead of taking evasive action and enters a state of paralysis.
On October 27th, 1993, my home, along with 350 others in Laguna Beach, California burned to the ground. It was our first house. My husband and I hadn’t even unpacked all our wedding gifts.
Early that afternoon, I went home to evacuate. My hus- band was out of town. As I made the long drive to the top of the hill where my house overlooked the ocean, the scene was surreal. Most of my neighbors were on their roof tops, watching the fire burn along the north side of the 133.
The fire was raging less than one thousand feet across the gorge, yet no one was packing their cars or preparing to evacuate. They were standing, like deer in the headlights, facing their inevitable doom. I hit the accelerator, pushing my old car to the limits of its capabilities, desperate to get to my home so I could get my important things. I promised myself to be out in 30 minutes or less.
But, something strange happened. I went from being fo- cused on an efficient evacuation, to a complete state of disbelief. For the next three hours, I paced frantically back and forth, glued to the TV. I was biting my nails while won- dering if it was really worth the trouble to pack up my car since the chances of something like this actually happening to me were so slim. Hello!
That, my friends, is the normalcy bias in action. I was paralyzed with indecision even though the facts of my situ- ation were undisputable. I learned many life lessons with that experience. I no longer hesitate to evacuate imme- diately when we are threatened with a natural disaster, which is about once every other year in California.
In some ways, I feel like Americans are under the influence of the normalcy bias as it relates to the state of our econo- my, our currency and the security of our nation. Convinc- ing facts are piling up like fire across the gorge. All it will take is one little shift in the wind to send us into a tailspin

that is incomprehensible. Yet, most people I speak with don’t seem the least bit concerned. Could this be the nor- malcy bias at work?

My story didn’t end well. I was jolted back to reality when I literally felt the heat from the fire. During the last

10 minutes in our home, I was too flustered to function. In the end, I left with only the dogs and my life, trying to escape the 100 foot high wall of flame that was swallowing homes.

I have always questioned my behavior that day. Why did I ignore my initial instinct to get out? Why did I go into such a powerful state of denial? Now, I know—it was a textbook case of the normalcy bias.

I could be completely wrong about the state of our na- tion. I am no expert. But I see signs everywhere and I can’t shake the feeling that we are in for a big shakedown. I have vowed that 2011 is my year to get prepared for an emer- gency, whatever it may be. Maybe next time, I won’t be caught with my proverbial pants down.

The normalcy bias is alive and well during ev- ery crisis and natural disaster. Just look at the events of hurricane Katrina and the recent BP oil crisis or any atrocity. Now, I realize that the normalcy bias played a huge role in individual behavior, corporate behavior and

the behavior of our government.
Things would have been much different for me Oct. 27,
1993 if I had known about the normalcy bias. If you haven’t been through a major disaster or crisis, it’s difficult to com- prehend. Understanding this phenomenon could save your life. Use it as a resource to get prepared and to over- come the denial that happens when faced with crisis, so you can act with a clear head and possibly save your life.

Copyright 2011 by Confab http://www.confabulicious.com/understanding-the-nor- malcy-bias-could-save-your-life/

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The Five Principles of Preparedness

by Phil Burns

americanpreppersnetwork.com



There are basic principles that keep us and our families grounded that are key to our happiness as a family unit while we Walk the Path of the Prepper. There is safety and peace that comes from having car insurance, home insur- ance, medical insurance,etc. What many families frequent- ly ignore is “Standard of Living Insurance”. At its heart, this is what Preparedness, Self-Reliance, Prepping – however you want to call it – is. By Getting Started in Prepping, or continuing in Prepping as the case may be, and following these five Principles of Preparedness we can provide our families with the assurance that we will be able to maintain a certain standard of living. This standard of living is dic- tated by the level of preparedness we are able to achieve and maintain.
For example, if a family falls into crisis and they have no preparations then once the average two weeks of sup- plies they have on hand has been used up, they will drop to a poverty standard of living. If that same family had a month’s worth of supplies stored up, they would have a buffer of a little more than a month before they suffered consequences of their situation. Likewise, if they had a year’s supply of essentials stored, they would effectively be giving themselves a year to be able to recover and plan in the event of a paradigm changing event.
Standard of Living Insurance, or Prepping, provides us with a hedge against calamity. There is much talk recently of “Doomsday” events – which are inappropriately and im- properly titled. After all, Doomsday literally means the last day before the end of the earth. What point is there in preparing for that? Massive, widespread crisis, such as; an EMP, Nuclear War, Coronal Mass Ejection, Economic Col- lapse, and so on is a frequent topic as well. While these things are important to consider in preparing, it is a mistake to hyper-focus on them. There are many other immediate,

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closer and more likely scenarios that make sense to focus on such as the loss or major injury of a breadwinner, loss of a primary job, extended sickness, accidents and other per- sonal calamities. These happen every single day and each of us likely knows someone to whom this has happened. These are the things that are most essential to develop a “Standard of Living Insurance” against.
The most common effect of living an abundant life, as many of us do, is complacency. As we progress and develop dis- posable income the complacent tendency is to adjust our standard of living upwards by purchasing a bigger house, a new vehicle, a boat or other recreational toys instead of investing that money to insure the standard of living that we previously grew accustomed to. It is most prudent to instead, in times of largess, not expand your standard of living right away but to choose to ensure that if the current boon withdraws the family is not affected by it. Compla- cency however, leads us down the path of seeing increased income to the home as play, expendable, or rewarding money – all of which it can be with the proper perspective. That perspective is to view this blessing as an opportunity to ‘play’ at increasing our stores as much as possible, to purchase as many ‘expendable’ goods as possible – that can go into storage, or to ‘reward’ ourselves by adding a more expensive item to our storage that will significantly increase the amount of coverage our Standard of Living Insurance provides us. It also gives us the opportunity to scrutinize our funds and storage to determine if the family can splurge a little and enjoy some recreational time with- out it impacting the bottom line of our Standard of Living
– but adamantly without changing our cost of living.
Following the Principles of Preparedness allows heads of households to reduce stress, find peace and be comfort- able in an ever-changing and tumultuous world.

Principle Two

Seek to be Independent


Debt can be crippling and crushing to a family, making them unable to move forward due to the demands of mak- ing payments on things they potentially don’t even own anymore. Seek to become Independent from debt! Learn to abhor the idea of being forced to labor and earn money that is not yours as a consequence of choosing to “live a lit- tle better” by going into debt. Living independently means being free to choose what is pertinent for you and your family to do with your money.
As you avoid going into debt and gain greater control of your money, establish savings that will grow and serve you as you become the master of your money. Learn to budget and responsibly manage your money as it is a very power- ful tool to either enslave or empower you. You can begin to build wealth while you’re getting out of debt by putting together a wise plan like the ones Dave Ramsey teaches in his Financial Peace University.
Independence doesn’t just mean money though. Seek to be Independent of the influences of the world such as; caffeine, alcohol, drugs, tobacco, un-healthy yet addictive food, medications (where possible) and so on. All of these things not only make you a personal slave to addictions, it also indentures your wallet to spending wasteful amounts of money to satiate your personal weaknesses. Strive to become Independent of all these things and you will not only find a healthier you, you will also increase your in- come as you free a daily outgo to servicing your demons.
Live Independent of the entrapping influences of society as much as possible. Free your mind of thinking you need a better looking car, a prettier house or better clothes. Do what works for YOU, not what you think others will think highly of. Live independent of the fear of judgment of oth- ers and become secure in your own person. There seems to be a farcical belief in our society that we should appear as wealthy as possible. The idiocy of this belief is that it fails to take into account just how damaging it is to our self-

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esteem, our lives and our livelihood. Break free of these childish societal ‘norms’ and live a life independent of the influence of advertisers, marketers and peer pressure!
Prepper families who learn to live independently will find themselves prospering greatly – in ways that may not be apparent to the enslaved masses of society.

Principle Three

Become Industrious


Learn, Explore, Do. Manage your circumstance to your advantage, be enterprising and fully explore opportuni- ties that come your way. Seek always to discover ways to create benefit to you and your family. When opportuni- ty presents itself, work hard at redefining and reshaping yourself, your position and your knowledge to be worthy of the success that opportunity can provide. Be resource- ful, always looking for a new way to create what you need in order to succeed.
Common ways to be industrious include furthering your education – your whole life – and constantly working to develop new skills. By exploring opportunities, we are able to assess their potential, weigh risk and make a decision as to whether our conclusions merit committing to an op- portunity or walking away from it. By improving ourselves constantly, we open up even more opportunity that can potentially bring success.
Idly standing by and waiting for success to land in your lap is a poor strategy. Being industrious means getting up and attempting something – even if it has the potential to fail. The Farmer who fails to put in a crop because he doesn’t think there was enough snowfall during the winter loses out when spring rains finally bring plenty of water. When you commit to something, work hard at it; throw in every- thing you’ve got. Getting up and going is truly the only way to end up somewhere else.
Preppers who industriously seek out opportunity will soon find the one that will create a change in the direction their lives have been heading.

Principle Four

Strive Towards Self-Reliance


The Principle of Self-Reliance is predicated by and builds upon the first three principles. They are unavoidably inter- twined and interdependent. Self-Reliance is, in its simplest form, being able to create or provide all needed things as the result of labor using a developed skill or talent and be- ing able to provide resources as a result of a judicious prac- tice of storing needful things. Therefore, becoming Self- Reliant is the actual process of developing skills and talents while putting away resources.
When combined with Thrift and Frugality, Self-Reliance is providing needed things for yourself that you would other- wise have had to pay money for such as; growing a garden, sewing or repairing clothes, building furniture, building a home, fixing your vehicle and so on. It is being willing to enjoy the fruits of your labor versus the blandness of buying something commercially produced. It is accept- ing things for their functionality, not for the logo that was stamped on them in a plant somewhere. It is being willing to use something that may be less than perfect in its manu- facture but is pure in intent and purpose, knowing that the next one you create you will be able to work out flaws and produce something better.
Self-Reliance, when combined with Independence, drives us to be truly reliant on ourselves in all areas. It teaches us to discover a vocation where we are able to create an expandable income using our talents and labor instead of falling into a career where our income is constricted by salaries and our progress in hindered by being boxed into a job description. A truly independent person creates in- come opportunities for themselves and others while stay- ing free and clear of debt and interest. A Self-Reliant per- son builds their own storage and is not dependent on a grocery store to be stocked and operational for them to feed themselves and their family.
Your Industriousness should be more than simply finan- cially motivated. Self-Reliance is the act of being free of needing others, including companies, the government, or
your community to provide for or support you. It is learn- ing how to; make soap, grow your own food, provide your own energy, defend yourself, create the things you need and so on. It requires research, learning, experimenting, failing, experimenting more and finally succeeding – in gaining a new skill, accomplishing something new or de- veloping a new vocation. An industrious and Self-Reliant person is truly a creator and experiences the joy of creation on a daily basis.
A Prepper who begins to become Self-Reliant experiences a mental shift and begins to see things such as a grocery store as a warehouse that is utilized to stock up their own storage.

Principle Five

Aspire to have a year’s supply

of every needful thing


The natural outgrowth of becoming truly Self-Reliant is to feel compelled to store things up that are essential for our family’s ensured safety, comfort and existence. Every need- ful thing teaches us to consider the possibility of storing up a supply of every item that we purchase which we truly need. What is a need? Simply put, it is something that it would be difficult or impacting to have to live without. This includes; food, clothing, water, heat, power, home medical supplies, fire starters, light and so on.
It is obviously not prudent to just purchase a year’s supply of every needful thing. Instead, it is a goal that is pursued relentlessly by the Self Reliant Person and is adjusted for each item of consideration. For example, it is quite inex- pensive and easy to acquire a year’s supply of ketchup – at most a family will probably use 2 bottles a month. There- fore, purchasing 24 bottles would give you a year’s supply. However, a year supply of something like water, which is consumed every day, requires a very different approach. It is not feasible to store a year supply of water unless you have your own water tower. There are other options avail- able though which include such things as; drilling a well,

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installing a rain catchment system, being situated near a body of water. Several of these options would require fil- tering the water that you acquire. For the money spent on a filtering system, such as a Berkey filter, it becomes pru- dent to purchase filtering capability for the system that will last several years. Each item is adjusted in quantity and time by its own consideration.
One year is not a magic number. It is, however, a measure which provides us with a lengthy buffer to recover from whatever has happened. It also allows us to be charitable towards others who have fallen on hard times without it creating a severe impact on us. Imagine an unprepared neighbor or friend having their bread winner incapacitated for a period of time and not being able to provide for them- selves. You are not impacted by their crisis and because you have a year’s supply stored up, you have the oppor- tunity to assist them by opening your storage to them and allowing them to take what they need without it causing you an economic impact and with very little added risk to yourself.
Begin by striving to build up a 3 month supply, then double it and double it again. Once you’ve accomplished the first three months, you will have an idea of the amount of time and money it will take to acquire a year’s supply.
The Prepper who is striving to build a year’s supply of every needful thing will experience a dramatic reduction in stress and inverse increase in peace as they begin meeting goals on the path to achieving this principle.

The impact of living The Principles of Pre- paredness


When teaching these Principles, the question is inevitably asked “What if nothing ever happens that I need my sup- plies for?” To which I respond, “That would be wonderful!” Most people don’t get it right away, but let’s consider it.

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Consider if you adjusted your life and lived for years under these principles. What impact would there be if nothing happened that required you to survive off your stores? Might it be possible that in following these principles you will have created a new life for yourself that is infinitely better than it would be otherwise? Would you possibly have spent that time living in peace, without stress and with a much higher level of confidence, satisfaction and self -esteem? I can testify to you that this is indeed what will happen! In fact, the mere application of these princi- ples in your life will allow you to weather small crises with- out them even registering a bump in the continuity of your life. When you are living a Self-Reliance lifestyle with a full year’s supply, not having an income for a month is inconse- quential. If you fully commit to living these principles, do you see how this would be the outcome? Would that serve you to be able to live that way?
Consider also that as you develop a year supply of every needful thing, you are to live off of that supply. You don’t just package things up and leave them in a corner to gather dust. You consume your supply each month and at the end of four weeks, go to the “warehouse” (aka grocery store, etc.) and replenish your supply with six weeks worth of what was consumed. This allows you to continuously grow your storage with little to no visible impact to you. And, if times are tough financially, you can extend to 8 or 12 weeks without it stressing your family.
As you become these Principles, you will experience break- ing free of the slavery of debt, a ‘career’, of “keeping up with the Jones’s” and most importantly, the stress of try- ing to live month to month. What you will find instead is that you are able to fully experience life and truly enjoy the blessings of your family.

All the while knowing that the secret to a happy life is

wrapped up in a little concept called being a “Prepper”!

- Inspired by a talk by James E. Faust
Copyright 2012, Phil Burns, American Prepper Network

Mental & Spiritual Preparations for Survival

Originally posted at www.SurvivalBlog.com

Copyright 2012



For many people preparing to survive has become an ob- session; a pursuit placed above all else in their lives. Others feel as if survival prep should be more of a priority if they could only afford to do more. Still others feel as if they may have already gone overboard in their preparations. Prepar- ing for survival after TEOTWAWKI can make you feel over- whelmed, under-supplied, overspent, under-funded, over- your-head, or under-the-gun (no pun intended).
There are those who have the ability to purchase a retreat, stock it with supplies and equipment for a year or more, and have enough to share with those in need at will. They expect to support parents, siblings and spouses, nieces and nephews, grandkids, and several families of friends, and have already stocked their retreat with all the food, water, and supplies for all of them to start completely over. Most of us, however, fall far short of that ability, and hope that we can simply prepare for ourselves and our immediate family.
Please understand, I am not criticizing those who are able to prepare in this way. That’s what this country is all about
– the chance to make and keep your fortunes. As Christians we don’t believe in luck, but we do believe in hard work and good fortune. We can only hope that most, many, or all of these fortunate people have the Christian outlook of sharing with those in need.
Whether you are a preparedness guru (PG) or a “newbie” (NP – for New Preparer), getting prepared to survive after any disaster, or even a total collapse, seems like a daunt- ing task. PGs know just how expensive and time consuming preparing can be, and many NP’s have become discouraged as they begin to realize what they are facing. It is for that reason that mental preparedness (MP) is so important.
Mental Preparedness involves many aspects and the first and foremost of these is an individual’s Spiritual prepara- tion. Are you a Christian? Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior? Are you ready to die if that’s what God’s will for you is? Christianity – that is, evangelical Chris- tianity (Christians who believe that Jesus died for their sins, was buried, and rose again as a living Savior sitting at the right hand of God) offers living hope for our future. We worship a living Savior, one Who has gone before us to pre- pare a place for us in heaven.
If you have not already done so, accept Jesus into your life as Lord and Savior. It’s so easy to do. Any good Christian can help you or go to www.sbc.net and click on the small green
link at the top of the page “I want to know Jesus.” Until you make Christ real in your life the rest of the preparations are just going through the motions.
Once you are Spiritually prepared, the next step is prayer. Ask God to guide you in your preparation, to give you in- sight into the survival mindset, to lead you to the resources you need to get your mind ready for the preparation task, and to guide and help you in the decisions that must be made to prepare yourself and your family for survival. Ask Him how you can become a better Christian and person through this process – He will show you if you are open to receiving the answers. Finally, ask the Lord help you com- municate the urgency and necessity to others to prepare to survive.
Is there Biblical mandate for survival? For preparation? Yes, God has given us instructions in His Word for survival and preparation. Following is a list of Scriptures for you to look up for yourself rather than quoting them here for brevity, but please take the time to look up each one and under- stand what God is trying to tell us, tell you, about being prepared and surviving.

Proverbs 6:6–11 – tells us that we are responsible to do

the work of preparation while we are able.

2 Thessalonians 3:10 – basically says that if you don’t work, you don’t eat. Of course that does not include the sick or the aged; those should be taken care of by family or Chris- tian charity. It plainly teaches that indolence or laziness should not be rewarded. In other words, if we could have

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prepared for the crisis but we didn’t, we can’t expect any- one else to take care of us. It is a principle that applies in every-day-life or in crisis situations.

1 John 3:17 – 18 – exhorts us to help others in need. Yet, you can not help someone who is in need if you haven’t prepared for or can’t help yourself. If we are to obey this verse then some sort of preparation is not only called for, but required.

Some great thoughts from another (unknown) Christian author:
“ With regard to fleeing from life-threatening situations - what one brother sarcastically refers to as ‘hidey hole’ the- ology - Both Peter and Paul escaped from life-threatening situations. Peter fled from Jerusalem after his miraculous deliverance from prison by the angel. Paul was let down over the walls of Damascus when a plot against his life was uncovered. Both of these were escapes from the physical persecution that arose against them because of their testi- mony and preaching of the Gospel. Are we supposed to be- lieve that God is only interested in preserving His people if they are in danger as a result of their following Jesus? That if the shortsightedness or greed of the world, places Chris- tians in danger, that somehow that is not sufficient reason to escape in order to continue to serve, worship and love God and those around us? I can’t speak for others, but I know my purpose in preparing for eventualities. It is not merely to save my hide; it’s not worth that much anyway; but to do what Christians have done throughout the centu- ries, namely to maintain a living witness to the redemptive love of God in Christ, and to continue nurturing the Church which God has called me.
Some Christians believe that it is wrong to leave your ur- ban or suburban home to find a rural setting where survival would be more likely. Again, this is called, ‘hidey hole’ the- ology. Yet, after the stoning of Stephen much of the Church in Jerusalem dispersed precisely to preserve their lives, to continue to care for each other and spread the Gospel in the new surroundings. God called Stephen to martyrdom, but not the whole Church. The Church in Rome met in the catacombs. Some lived in the catacombs. Was that ‘hidey- hole’ theology? When Jesus began his ministry He read from Isaiah in the synagogue, ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me....This day the Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.’ They wanted to kill Him, but He ‘passed through them.’ He es- caped. Was that ‘hidey-hole’ theology?

In 1 Kings 17:8 - 16, Elijah instructed the widow of Za- rephath to give him her last cup of flour and last bit of oil. He told her don’t be afraid, God will provide. God caused there to be a daily miracle provision of flour and oil for her

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survival. But another widow and her son in 2 Kings 4: 1 - 7, were instructed by Elisha to gather many containers, for God was about to provide for her needs. There was an im- mediate miracle of multiplication of the oil, part of which she was told to pay off her debts with, but the remainder she was to store. Thus, there was preparation, provision, and then storage in order for this woman and her son to survive. Sure, the provision was miraculous; but her use of God’s provision was quite normal and mundane. Nor did Elisha criticize her for storing her oil for her family’s future needs. [This author adds: it could be that your provisions may be provided in an equally miraculous fashion.]
Am I stupid, sinful and unbiblical because I want to see that my family survives? Am I supposed to believe that God doesn’t want me to do anything about the survival of those whom I love, whom He has given to me? Have I no respon- sibility? Do I just stand with my eyes scrunched closed and say, ‘OK God, you take care of me and mine?’ Survival is not the ultimate value or goal for me or my family. It never was or will be. ‘Glorifying God and enjoying Him forever’ is. If God wants me and mine dead, so be it, and may He be praised forever. But I don’t see that glorifying God and stay- ing alive are mutually exclusive, especially when He seems to be graciously giving us advanced warning precisely so that we may continue to survive, so that we may serve Him and others.

And you, O mortal, do not be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns surround you and you live among scor- pions; do not be afraid of their words, and do not be dis- mayed at their looks. Ezekiel 2:6

The clever see danger and hide; but the simple go on, and suffer for it. - Proverbs 22:3.

A closing thought (on Spiritual Preparedness): “When Noah built the ark, it wasn’t raining.”
Get your life right with God and prepare for tomorrow. Many other aspects of survival require mental prepara-
tion as well. Too many people believe that because they
witnessed some depravity that man had wrought on an in- dividual, or on others, that they are now prepared to go through the hard times a severe crisis or even TEOTWAWKI can bring. Witnessing a tragic car accident, a shooting or murder, a knife fight in a bar, a shootout with the police, or even trying to help a rape victim can not begin to prepare you for the mental anguish of long-term crises. For the few who have had to kill in self-defense or seen the starvation and disease in some Third World country first hand as a missionary, these only begin to understand. If you served in combat – Iraq, Afghanistan, Korea, Vietnam, or WWII – and

you had to kill or be killed, you had to care for a wounded and dying fellow soldier, or you had to survive as a prisoner of war, you understand some of what will be faced in an end of the world situation. Many of you may have loved ones or know someone who suffered with or still suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and can understand the mental stressors the individual endures. Unless you have been through it too you can’t really comprehend all that this individual, these individuals, is/are going through.
So how do we prepare ourselves for what is to come? Ev- erything starts with planning! And, it all hinges on organi- zation. If you’re a NP, start a list of preparations that need to be made. Do research on the Internet to find lists of the things you will need to do and what you will need to have on hand. Don’t be overwhelmed by the lists of supplies – all of these things can be obtained one item at a time. Re- member, if you start today you’re still ahead of the majority of people. Continue to remind yourself that whatever you do today to prepare, won’t be a need tomorrow.
Prepare your mind through the research you do. Read ev- erything you can get your hands on about preparedness and survival, but read with a “grain of salt” so that you can discern good advice from bad. Read books and articles that are recommended by friends or reliable sources. Even oth- er people who are preparedness minded can get and give bad advice – proceed with caution, but proceed.
One reliable and trusted Internet resource is www.Surviv- alBlog.com, written and maintained by Jim Rawles. He is also the author of one of the best survival preparedness books on the market called Patriots – Surviving the Coming Collapse. While the book is a novel, there are many, many good references and teachings throughout. He has numer- ous other resources of his own and others on the web site.
To continue mental preparations for survival the NP must understand that they are basically on their own. Of course, they may have a supportive spouse, other family mem- bers, or a friend or two who understands survival prep, but beyond that you won’t find individuals who are willing to open up their homes or retreats and say, “come see how I’ve done it.” Because of the secretive nature of our prep- arations for ourselves and our families, and because we want to protect those preps from those that would steal them or want to show up at our front gate when TSHTF, we just don’t let others know what we’ve got. Thus, we are on our own. It is a very difficult position to be in when a best friend refuses to recognize the importance and urgency or preparation. PGs understand this and have developed tech- niques and questions to discern how a person feels about preparedness and survival without really asking. Only time, practice, and mental preparedness can help in this area.
Preparing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that out- line what every family member will do in a crisis will ease your mental state as your preps continue. SOPs are nothing more than written directions to cover every contingency for every person. Make sure you have instructions written for all members who will be with you in a disaster situation. Different situations call for different SOPs – try to cover all the bases for at least 72 hours. This is not something you will accomplish overnight or even in the first few weeks. As you study and prepare you will continue to rewrite and edit your SOPs. Some may take years to finish while others may never be done.
Once your lists are in order you should begin putting to- gether a BoB (Bug-out-Bag). This is a bag – a backpack, a duffel bag, a pillow case (although I think you will discover that a pillow case just isn’t big enough) with everything in it you’ll need to survive for three days to one week (or more). Every family member should have his/her own BoB, even children (as long as they are big enough to carry it). Weight for each BoB is obviously determined by each individual’s size and ability. When you know everyone has the things they need to survive for several days, your mind is much more at ease.
The BoBs are like everything else involved with prep and survival – they will evolve through shrinking and growing for months before you are satisfied with all the preps for them. Only you can determine what is best for you to carry in the end, but there are literally 100’s of list suggestions for BoBs on the Internet. Again, be prepared to sift through and decide what is best for you.

By prioritizing your purchases you can buy a little at a time
– in fact, you can buy one item at a time if that is all your budget (or your wife [I’ll address this issue further down] will allow). For instance, water must be a top priority for everyone in preparing for disaster. You can go for days with- out food but only hours (in comparison) without water. If you have a free-flowing spring in your yard then you are ob- viously covered, but for most of us water is something we must prepare for. Do we try to store enough bottled water for our family? Do we depend on our neighbors? (I think we know the answer to that one – remember, we depend on

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no one but ourselves) Storing bottled water is impractical for long-term preparedness. Water is needed at the rate of at least one gallon per person per day. In hot or humid con- ditions or if you are working outside strenuously, you will need more – maybe even twice that amount. So, a water filter, with extra filters, is an obvious priority. You may have to save for a couple of weeks or more to buy one, but since it is an important item it will clearly be worth it.
Food is a relatively easy category to begin to fill out your supply of. If you will make a list of items that you and your family regularly eat (in dry or canned items) and then be- gin to buy one or two extra items each time you go to the grocery store, you will find that your food supply will grow quickly. Don’t forget things like toilet paper, tissues, baby items, feminine products, and the like; if you will buy these two at a time when you need them – one goes on the shelf to be used and the other goes in the prep closet or tub. These type products will also add to your stash quickly. P. S. You can never have enough toilet paper if TSHTF (no pun intended).
Continue to move down your Priority List is similar fash- ion and you will suddenly find yourself short of space to store things and your mental attitude eased by the fact that you are becoming prepared much quicker than you ever thought possible. Remember, organization is the key. Once you begin to buy items for prep or survival you must be organized. Lists are required, and keeping up with them is paramount for making sure you get what is necessary. It is very easy to buy things twice (or even more) if you are try- ing to keep up with your purchases by memory, or to think you bought something and miss the chance to buy it. Use lists!
Lists and organization are important to your MP in other ways as well. If you have your mind cluttered with mental lists, past or future purchases, and trying to keep up with all of your preps, family, work, etc., your going to be stressed beyond belief. Good MP calls for good organization.
I mentioned above that I would address the problem of a spouse who is a non-believer in preparedness or survival. When you want to talk about prep or survival all they do is change the subject or patronize you quickly and then dis- miss it as unnecessary. They don’t want to waste money on it.
Many spouses believe there’s plenty of time to get what’s needed if an emergency comes up later. Some will say that God will provide for us, so we don’t have to do that. And, the excuses and objections goes on . . .
My own wife is one of those, or was one of those types. I
went ahead with some small purchases a few years ago and

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she would question them, but I never hid my purchases from her, lied to her about them, or dismissed her inquisi- tions. I simply explained that I had bought the item so we would be prepared in case of an emergency and what it was for. I would try to talk to her about it each time SHE brought something up, but she always changed the subject or said we’d talk about it another time. I never forced the issue.
Whenever she would hear a news story about some crisis situation (hurricane, tornado, lost hiker, violent robbery or home invasion) I would take the opportunity to point out the lack of preparation on the part of the individuals in- volved or what they needed instead of what they had, and I would say, “You know, I think I’ll get one of those (what- ever was mentioned that someone else needed) for us next time I get a chance so we won’t be caught unprepared.” She would usually agree we needed it, and the next day (or even that very day) I would buy whatever it was and add it to my supplies. She never questioned those purchases and eventually became (a little) more interested in our preps. I’m now trying to get her interested in a piece of retreat property by explaining the exact things I’m looking for (wooded acreage with room for house, barn & garden, a spring or free-flowing creek, isolated, defensible, etc.) and why. It has caused a few arguments (of course, the making up is fun), and she still won’t read “Patriots” or any of the other books I’ve bought on the subject, but our (my) prep supplies are steadily growing and she’s beginning to under- stand slowly. I’m still open to new suggestions in this area if anyone has any, but I know this has worked for me so far.
Mental preparedness for survival is very important if you are to ever feel like you’re well on the way to being pre- pared. I’m one of those who believes that you can never be
100 percent prepared, but you can be well prepared. You can get to a point of calling yourself prepared and feeling good about your preps as long as you continue to monitor expiration dates, rotate fuel supplies, grow and can your own crops, and have all the things needed for starting over after TEOTWAWKI. A survival mindset is the first step. Mak- ing lists, prioritizing those lists for purchase or acquisition, and organizing the lists and acquisitions will help to keep you mentally prepared for survival.

Originally posted at www.SurvivalBlog.com Copyright 2012


How Long until You Starve?

by Mr. Yankee

Originally posted at www.SurvivalBlog.com

Copyright 2012

How long would you survive if you could never buy gro- ceries again? Now consider how much worse that scenario would be if everyone you know was faced with the same question. It may have more relevance than you think. The food distribution system in industrialized nations has a complexity which baffles the mind. Thousands of suppliers coordinate with thousands of distributors to send food to millions of retailers for billions of consumers. But is there enough redundancy in the system to ensure the contin- ued viability of commercially delivered food to your table? What if that incredibly complex system bottlenecked or crashed? Would you literally starve to death?
It has been estimated that the average grocery store has less than a one week supply of food. We have all seen shelves stripped bare following hurricanes or other natu- ral disasters. There is rarely starvation in those settings be- cause aide pours in from unaffected surrounding areas. But what if the shortages were on a regional or national level?
What could possibly cause such a disruption?
There are three steps involved in getting commercially pro- duced food to your home. The food must be produced. It must be moved from the farm to the retailer (often involv- ing several middlemen including turning raw wheat into boxed cereal etc.). And ownership must be transferred to you.
At the very source of food farmers could stop produc- ing food if it becomes unsafe or unprofitable to do so. A pandemic might shut down the production of food on a regional scale. Any large natural disaster would have the same effect. A super volcano or large meteor strike would simply destroy every thing in the effected area including crops, farmers, and distributors or any food that might be produced or shipped through the effected area. Even a single nuclear detonation would effectively eliminate food production in the many miles polluted by windblown fall- out. Nobody farms when they are putting their lives back together after disaster or fighting for survival against a pan- demic.
More likely than those violent extremes are natural fluctu- ations of weather. Most of us agree that weather extremes seem more common today than in decades past. Climate change (from whatever source) is evident. Drought, too much rain, excessive heat, or unseasonably cold weather may all prevent crops from germinating, kill seeds in the ground, stunt growth, delay harvest, or out right kill plants and animals. Our very lives depend on predictably mild weather.
But dangers to food production exist in even more mun- dane forms. The lowly honey bee is the most prolific and productive pollinator of crops. It is actually threatened with extinction by a new wave of parasites and bee diseases. In the same way that “avian flu” endangers the global bird population (and to a lesser extent humans) bee diseases have the potential to destroy that essential link in the pro- duction of food for human consumption. Diseases in the crops and animals themselves could be just as devastating. The famous Irish potato famine of the 1840s was the re- sult of a naturally occurring plant disease that destroyed the potato crops. It alone killed thousands of people even

35


when no other crop was affected. A similar blight in rice or wheat could have a massive impact on the food supply globally.
All these factors apply not only to domestically produced food, but to imported food as well. In addition, the im- portation may be negatively influenced by war, economic, and other political factors. The effect of scarce resources and impaired distribution systems for food gave rise to the need for ration cards and “victory gardens” to combat hun- ger in the 1940s.
Modern commercial farming is dependent on commercially produced hybrid seeds (which are not capable of reproduc- ing true to form), commercially produced fertilizers, and especially abundant supplies of fuel. If the supplies of gas- oline and diesel fuels are interrupted, commercial farming will stop. Think about that for a moment. Even changes in the market price of fuel affect the profitability of farming. If a farmer earns $1,000 per ton of food produced, but it will cost $1,000 more in fuel costs next season, why would he plant the next crop? All factors affecting oil production and distribution (let alone the growing scarcity of cheaply refined oil) affect the viability of commercial farming. Any time a farmer chooses to not produce food, the supply available for market decreases.

What about distribution?


From Wikipedia: Food distribution, "a method of distribut- ing (or transporting) food from one place to another, is a very important factor in public nutrition. Where it breaks down, famine, malnutrition or illness can occur. There are three main components of food distribution:
Transport infrastructure, such as roads, vehicles, rail trans-
port, airports, and ports.
Food handling technology and regulation, such as refrig-
eration, and storage, warehousing.
Adequate source and supply logistics, based on demand and need."

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All of the factors affecting food production may also ad- versely affect food distribution. Anything that interrupts the movement of food by road or rail or sea could stop food from reaching your market. A trucking strike, a port closure, a breakdown in communication technology would have im- pacts. A spike in fuel prices may slow distribution as well, but the major danger I see is a terrorists’ electro magnetic pulse. There are theories which say that a single nuclear detonation at the correct altitude could blanket the conti- nental United States with an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) sufficient to bring down the power grid and destroy the electronic ignitions in most automobiles, trucks, and other machinery. Stop the machines and you stop food distribu- tion. Such an EMP would not only cripple hundred of thou- sands of machines, but would wipe out the communication networks. Framers, distributors, and retailers would not be able to communicate.
Business would literally stop when no telephones, faxes, or emails could take place. If the grid was down for two weeks, people would literally begin to starve and that doesn’t even address the water shortage that would occur when the pumps stop, let alone sanitation and security issues.
The same is true of food processing and refining. Turn- ing wheat into breakfast cereal and flour, pigs into bacon, chicken into nuggets etc all require machinery run on fuel and electricity. Each processor needs to coordinate an in- coming supply of food from the farms and coordinate ship- ment to distribution centers and retailers.

Can you buy it?

Even if the food is on the grocery shelves, you need to be
able to reach it before you can make use of it. Simple trans- portation from your home to the retailer and home again might be a challenge in a world where transportation has been disrupted by natural disaster, attack, or technological failure.
Some very intelligent people warn of an economic collapse on the scale of the Great Depression or worse. Hyper in- flation is a reality in third world nations. It has happened in civilized and developed Europe several times in the last century as well. What if your paycheck loses 90% of its buy- ing power in a month’s time? What if the markets lose faith in the imaginary value of currency? Such things have hap- pened repeatedly in the past. If the store shelves are full but a can of soup costs $100, how long can you eat? How long until rioting empties the stores and stops distribution?
Most of the scenarios described above are less than like- ly. In fact, most will never happen. But they are possible. When you consider the combined likelihood of each small possibility you may feel that it is prudent to prepare.

Why be concerned?

Early in the twentieth century the United States weathered
the Great Depression and the effects of two World Wars. Why be concerned now? 50 years ago it was common for rural households to keep a garden and home can the pro- duce to be used until the next harvest. Many rural families kept a cow for milk, raised poultry for meat and eggs, or at least raised feeder pigs to butcher each fall. My family did all those things through the 1980s but just try to find ten homes keeping a family milk cow today!
Even five years ago, I was not terribly concerned with the challenge of finding livestock to raise my own steak, eggs, milk, butter, pork, chicken, etc. But a US government program to microchip and register every single domestic animal (including poultry) has since been undertaken. The National Animal Identification System (NAIS) proposes to ID and track every single food animal in America. This pro- gram will make it illegal to keep unregistered livestock. This may not only prompt some people to avoid keeping stock (who needs more paperwork?) but also creates the real po- tential for government abuse. NAIS is already in the pilot test phase. It is currently being carried out “on a voluntary basis” in several states. I’m not surprised if you’ve never heard of it. It is amazing how little press it is getting. Liber- tarians should be screaming warnings from the roof tops, but the media is ignoring it. If you haven’t heard about NAIS you can find info on in the Survivalblog archives and infor- mation on how to protest against it here: www.nonais.org
As late as the 1970s open pollinated (heirloom) seeds were common in backyard gardens. As you know, hybrid seeds are far more popular than open pollinated seeds today. Of the people you know who keep gardens, how many of them plant even half their crops from seeds they save themselves? The majority of the commercial seed stock worldwide is owned and distributed by just a handful of corporations? Those corporations are rapidly buying up the smaller seed companies on a global scale. A neighbor of mine owns a seed company that has bought twenty five competitors in the past decade! It would take very few cor- porate buyouts or mergers to put control of the majority of the world food supply under one board of directors. If the majority of seeds in circulation for producing grain crops are hybrids (and I think they are). We have no choice but to pay whatever they ask for next year’s seeds. If you let that sink in for a moment and you will realize a terrifying potential for the abuse of power.

What can you do?

As in preparing for any danger, emergency or shortage, you
should provide for your basic needs in advance.

#1 Store a food and water reserve to see you through the initial crisis. If you are reading Survivalblog, chances are good that you already consider storage food as a basic preparation. Consider storing as much as you can up to the limit of food that you will consume before proper rotation prevents spoilage. The easiest way to acquire a reserve is to buy more of what you normally use when it is on sale at discounted prices. Instead of buying pasta at 99 cents per pound each week, buy a case when it is on sale at 33 cents per pound. Do the same for soup, rice, canned fruit, etc. In a short time you will not only have a reserve of food ready for use, but your overall food bill will decrease because you are paying less for the same amount of goods over time.

You may choose to buy food prepackaged for long term storage. These dehydrated and freeze-dried products of- fer shelf lives of five years and longer. One source for long term storage foods is SurvivalBlog advertiser Ready Made Resources. I have done business in the past with Walton Feed. They offer a reasonably priced basic year’s supply of food for under $1,000. A year’s supply for your family is not an unreasonable amount. Five years of the shelf stable basics for your family would not be too much. But even this would be a short term solution. Should the tyranny we are discussing last longer than whatever food you have stored you must be prepared to feed yourself beyond then.

#2 Open pollinated “heirloom” seeds and the ability to raise your own crops (at least “gardening”) are part of the answer. Buy your seeds now, practice planting, harvesting, storing the food, and saving your own seeds to plant for the next season. It is worth noting that some varieties thrive in one climate or soil type, but fail miserably in other loca- tions. It would be prudent to test the crops you hope to

37


survive on. Ideally you could establish a large number of perennial crops such as Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, berry bushes, and fruit trees to harvest from in the future. Non-hybrid seeds are still available from many sources including The Ark Institute, Heirloomseeds.com, and The Seedsavers Exchange.

#3 Don’t overlook unconventional sources of food. With a little research you should be able to recognize wild forage plants and prepare them for your table. Dandelions can be found almost anywhere including in urban areas from earli- est spring through late fall. Their leaves can be eaten raw or boiled as vitamin laden greens. Even if you don’t care for the taste of the greens, the nectar bearing yellow flower is a slightly sweet wild treat. Every part of the wild onion (a.k.a. “ramps” or “leeks”) is edible (wild onions) but they may be hard to find in winter. One truly four season food is the cat-tail. It has edible shoots in spring, leaves and pollen in summer, and roots in autumn and winter (cat-tail). As an example of what a little knowledge can do to put food on your table, I recently saw “gobo” (a.k.a. burdock roots) for sale in large chain grocery store for $4 per pound.

#4 If keeping domestic livestock or poultry is an option that you would like to explore, I highly recommend Countryside and Small Stock Journal. My public library carries ten years of back issues and I read every one before I became one of the contributing authors. Even if you can’t find it for free, check your newsstand or go to www.countrysidemag.com. But remember that the time to buy your flocks, herds, and the equipment to care for them, is long before you need to harvest.

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#5 If keeping small stock isn’t practical you may resort to foraging for wild game or fishing. Snares are silent and ex- tremely effective, but they do not last forever. You will need to learn how to build and rebuild them and have the mate- rials available to do so. Buckshot’s Camp is a great source for snares and materials as well as instructional videos. Leg hold traps are less effective (at least for me) but they last much longer than wire or cable snares. Fish traps can be an extremely effective way to gather protein silently as well. Many can be camouflaged as stream littering debris (such as discarded PVC pipe) if necessary. If you are not blessed to live in an area of natural abundance, you may wish to install and stock your own “decorative” fish pond well in advance of any time of need.
Many grains store well for months if they are stored in pest proof containers. To rodent proof your stored grains store them within steel drums, or galvanized garbage cans with secure lids. Speaking of storing animal feed, I once read an article by someone who worked in the management of a major pet food company. That author stated that in a life or death situation they would not hesitate to feed themselves on the company product. Yep, lightweight, inexpensive dry kibble and water can sustain your life for weeks if you need it to. That’s just something to keep in mind when you store those big bags of nuggets for Rover.
I hope that the above will provoke enough thought to gen- erate a few comments including tips that I haven’t thought of, because no matter how much we have stored against times of future need, it is primarily our knowledge and the ability to apply it that will help us to survive.
And what if nothing happens? What if none of the dangers described above materialize in the near future? Are your efforts wasted? They are not! Because even absent disas- ter, you will still need to eat! In a best case scenario you will use the tips above to save money, eat a healthier, and sleep with more peace of mind.God bless you and yours, - Mr. Yankee

Originally posted at www.SurvivalBlog.com Copyright 2012

General Preparedness Survey

The intent of this survey is to give you a quick sence of where some of your preparedness

shortcomings may be. No One is expected to score 100%!!

BOOKS

I have assembled a well rounded preparedness library covering all major topics: Yes, No

I have READ the books in my preparedness Library: Yes, No.

I read those books AND actually put their preparedness suggestions to use!! Yes, No.

CLOTHING

I have a Summer & a Winter sleeping bag for each member of my family: Yes, No. Everyone in my family has a pair of readily available sturdy shoes/boots: Yes, No.

I have a pair of shoes at my bedside I could put on with no light at night: Yes, No.

COMMUNICATIONS

I have a AM/FM/Shortwave radio that is Battery or Solar Powered: Yes, No.

I have 2-Way radios (CB, FRS, GMRS) for my family members: Yes, No

I have spare batteries or Solar Chargers for my radios for: None, 3 days, 7 days, 15 Days, 30 Days + Each member of my family has a Cell Phone: Yes, No

I have 2nd way to charge each phone without Utility Power: Yes, No. I have my HAM License and a HAM Radio: Yes, No.

DEFENSE

I own a Dog: Yes, No

My Yard is fully fenced: yes, No.

I have Deadbolts on all my doors and locks on all windows: Yes, No

I have a burglar alarm and arm and use it daily/nightly: Yes, No

I have a Handgun for each member of my family (age appropriate): Yes, No

I have a Rifle for each member of my family (age appropriate): Yes, No. I have at least 1,000 rounds of ammunition for each weapon: Yes, No.

I have a Safe Room in my home: Yes, No

My family has a Home Invasion Plan and we have drilled it: Yes, No.

I have a concealed Carry Permit and carry my weapon with me at all times: Yes, No.

DRILLS

I have staged a Fire Drill in my home for my family in the last 24 months: Yes, No

I have staged an Emergency Evacuation (Bugout) Drill for my family in the last 24 months: Yes, No

I have staged an Intruder/Robbery/Break in Drill for my family in the last 24 months: Yes, No

I have staged a 48 hour Power Outage Drill for my family in the last 24 months: Yes, No

I have staged a 48 hour Water Outage Drill for my family in the last 24 months: Yes, No

DOCUMENTS

I have paper copies of all important documents: Yes, No

I have a paper list of contacts, Phone, Names, Addresses, ect: Yes, No. Each member of my family has a current valid Passport: Yes, No.

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EVACUATION

I have a specific planned destination to go to for emergency relocation: Yes, No

I have an appropriatly packed 72hr Kit for each member of my family: Yes, No

I have a Bug Out Bag for my family: Yes, No.

I have paper maps for my City, County, State and route to planned destination: Yes, No

FINANCES

I keep the following “Cash On Hand” in my home: <$250, $500, $1000, $2,500, $5,000+

I have Silver or Gold coins for emergency use: Yes, No.

I have an Emergency Fund for all monthly expenses for: None, 1 Month, 3 Months, 6 Months, 1 Year+ I have paid off all of my credit card debt: Yes, No.

I have paid off ALL my debts: Yes, No

FOOD

For every member of my family, I have at least

Canned: None, <15 Days, 30 Days, 90 Days, 1 Year+ Dehydrated/Freeze Dried: None, <15 days, 30 Days, 90 Days, 1 Year+ MRE/Retort: None, 3 days, 7 days, 15 Days, 30 Days +

I regularly rotate my food and never allow any to expire: Yes, No.

I have a way to cook my food (camp stove/grill/ect) without any utility power or Natural Gas: Yes, No.

FUEL

I have stored stabilized gasoline: None, 5 gallons, 10 Gallons, 25 Gallons, 50 Gallons +

I have backup fuel, such as Butane, White Gas, wood, Propane or Charcoal for emergency cooking: Yes, No. I have backup fuel, such as wood or propane for emergency home heating: Yes, No.

LIGHTING

I have a flashlight in every bedroom: Yes, No.

I have backup lighting (LED Lamps, Kerosene Lamps, Solar Lights, ect): Yes, No

I have Long Burning candles for: None, 3 days, 7 days, 15 Days, 30 Days +

I have spare batteries to power my flashlights for: None, 3 days, 7 days, 15 Days, 30 Days +

MEDICAL

I know and am trained in First Aid: Yes, No.

I have a well stocked first aid kit in my home: Yes, No.

I have my prescriptions on hand for: <2 weeks, 1 Month, 2 Months, 3 Months, 6 Months+ I have well rounded supply of Over The Counter Medications: Yes, No.

I regularly exercise and maintain my physical health: Yes, No.

My family has a Medical Emergency Response Plan and knows what to do: Yes, No.

NUCLEAR / BIOLOGIAL / CHEMICAL

I have a Geiger Counter or radiological survey meter: Yes, No.

I have assembled a decontamination kit for NBC exposure: Yes, No

I have an appropriate Gas Mask for each member of my family: Yes, No

I have an NBC Suit for each member of my family: Yes, No.

PANDEMIC

My family is ready to impose a “Self Issolation Reverse Quarentine” for: None, 15, 30, 60, 90 Days

I have a substancial supply of disspoable: Gloves, Masks, Booties, Suits, Goggles, ect: Yes, No

My family is fully prepared to create, supply and staff an issolation/sick room in our home: Yes, No.

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POWER

I have a portable electric Generator: Yes, No.

I have started and run my generator in the last: Week, Month, Quarter, Year, Don’t remember

I have a solar/Wind/Hydro electric system in my home: Yes, No.

SANITATION

I have a chemical or Organic toilet: Yes, No.

I have a “Lugable Loo” or other disposable emergency Toilet: Yes, No

I have an Outhouse on my property: Yes, No.

I have stored Lime to use with an emergency outdoor pit toilet: Yes, No

I have stored lots of extra toilet paper: Yes, No.

SHELTER

I have a fire extinguisher in my home and know how to use it: Yes, No

I have a Carbon Monoxide Detector for use in an emergency: Yes, No.

I know my neighbors and could count on them in an emergency: Yes, No.

SPIRITUAL

I have personal prayer every day: Yes, No.

I have personal scripture study every day: Yes, No. I participate in Family prayer every day: Yes, No.

I participate in Family scripture study every day: Yes, No.

I participate in Family Home Evening every week: Yes, No. I attend my church every week: Yes, No.

I donate generously in my Tithes and Offerings to my church: Yes, No.

TRAINING:

I am CERT (Community Emergency Responce Training) certified: Yes, No

TRANSPORTATION

My vehicle fuel tank is currently: Near Empty, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, Full.

I have a 4 wheel drive vehicle: Yes, No.

I have a fire extinguisher in my car and know how to use it: Yes, No. I keep a Bug Out Bag in my vehicle at all times: Yes, No.

I have a GPS unit in my vehicle or readily available: Yes, No. I have a well stocked first aid kit in my vehicle: Yes, No.

WATER

I have enough stored water for each member of my family for: None, 3 days, 7 days, 15 Days, 30 Days +

I have water treatment chemicals (bleach, iodine, aerobic oxygen, etc.) stored: Yes, No. I have a water purification system (filter): Yes, No.

I AM PREPARED WELL ENOUGH TO BE ABLE TO SHARE WITH OTHERS AROUND ME: Yes, No.

BECAUSE I AM WELL PREPARED, I WILL BE AN ASSET AND NOT A LIABILITY TO MY COMMUNITY: Yes, No.

BECAUSE I AM WELL PREPARED, I AM HELPING OTHERS BECOME PREPARED: Yes, No.

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5 Levels of Preparation

There are five levels of preparedness.

Level 0: Every emergency is a disaster

Less than two weeks of food in the house
No water purification system
No bug-out bag
No defensive weapons
No way to produce their own food
No physical gold or silver
No tangible assets to barter

Level 1: Can Survive Two Weeks of Minor Emergency

(such as ice storm)
Have sufficient food and water for two weeks of emergency
Able to heat their home for two weeks without relying on the power grid by use of kerosene heater or fireplace
Able to cook their meals for two weeks without relying on the power grid
Has a first aid kit
Likely has no defensive weapons
Must leave their home after two weeks due to lack of preparation

Level 2: Can Survive One Month of an Emergency

(such as major hurricane)
Likely has a portable power generator and sufficient fuel for one month of operation
Has handguns or shotgun to defend their home Has a month’s work of canned goods to eat from Has sufficient prescription medicines for 30 days
Has enough batteries for power a portable radio for 30

days

Level 3: Can Survive Three Months of an Emergency

(such as martial law or impacting earthquake)
Has a deep-short term pantry
Likely has a water purification system
Likely has defensive weapon for each family member
Likely has some type of neighborhood safety watch or
24 hour security watch rotation at the home
Has stocked wood to burn in fireplace and/or iron stove
Has communication gear to keep track of local and world events
Has means to recharge batteries without relying on power grid
Has three months of prescription medicines

Level 4: Can Survive One Year of an Emergency

(such as currency devaluation, economic depression)
Has a deep short- and long-term food pantry
Likely has their own garden to produce food
Likely has small-sized farm animals to produce protein
(chickens, goats, rabbits)
Has a deep supply of ammo (2000+ rounds per weapon) Is a spare weapon in event of damage
Has mean to produce herbal medicines to replace prescriptions
Has a long-term store of antibiotics
Likely has dog for security watch
Has full 24 hour rotation of security watch on the home
(requires 6 adults)
Show have secondary off-site storage of food, weapons, and ammo
Is ready to bug-out with full hiking and camping gear, if security situation degrades
Is able to educate their children at home

Level 5: Can Survive Indefinitely from their Home during an multi-year SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situation

Has a fully functioning large garden or small farm for food production
Is able to can and store the results of food harvest for the coming year
Is able to harvest seeds for next year’s planting
Is able to raise multiple generations of farm animals
(cattle, sheep, horses)
Has horses for local and distance travel
Has enough ammo to last a generation (10,000+ rounds per weapon)
Has spares of each weapon and lots of extra magazines Able to generate their own fuel (bio-diesel, alcohol) Likely has fully functional solar power bank with deep
storage batteries
Has natural on-site water sources for farm and home
Has home-based business to generate income
Is able to build new building and make any necessary repairs to existing buildings
Is able to provide excess food for charity
Has a secondary residency (such as mountain cabin) for full bug-out
Is prepared for minor surgery and child birth at home
Has stores of gold and silver for barter
Is able to produce their own clothing (from raw wool or raw cotton with spinning wheel and small loom)
http://survival5x5.com/?page_id=14

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“...and he will have his eyes fixed on the signs of the times, and that day will not overtake him unawares.” - JD 7:189.

We do seem to be undergoing a quickening of the times and that may be an important indication for each of us to evaluate our personal and family storage needs again.

As members of the Church we have been counseled for many many years to prepare and keep on hand at least a one-year supply of food. In the early days of our church the Saints were admon- ished to have a 7 year food supply. Then, for many years there was a time when a two-year supply was recommended, (and it undoubtedly would be a good idea for each of us to still keep a two-year supply if at all possible as this will allow us to share with others). But in the meantime it is imperative that we heed the current counsel to obtain and maintain at least a one-year minimum emergency food supply.

According to figures gathered by one of the food storage manufacturing firms, less than 6% of the

members of the Church have an adequate emergency program. Where do you fit into this figure?

Let’s enjoy life as much as we can - but let’s also be prepared. As we have recently seen, an unex- pected disaster or loss of income can strike every s-o-o quickly.

“When the emergency is upon us, the time of preparation has passed.”

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BARE-MINIMUM LDS Food storage requirements

for

1 adult male for 1 year Appx. 2,300 calories per day. (only 695lbs total)

This will keep you fed, but leave you hungry. TOTAL FOOD PER DAY = 24.65 Ounces

Grains (400lbs)

Unless your family already eats 100% whole wheat homemade bread, white flour should be used in the transi-

tion process to whole wheat. Adding rye flour (10%) helps make wheat bread a more

complete protein. Dent corn is used to make tortillas.

Beans & Legumes (90lbs) {Absolute Bare minimum reduced by LDS church to only 60lbs in 2002}

Black beans cook quickly, make a good salad complement with a vinaigrette dressing over them. Soybeans can

be used to make soy milk and tofu, a protein food you should be prepared to make. Familiarize yourself with

sprouting techniques. Learn how to make wheat grass juice - the best vitamin supplement you can use.

Milk-Dair products (75lbs) {Absolute Bare minimum reduced by LDS church to only 16lbs in 2002}

Milk powder can be used to make cottage cheese, cream cheese and hard cheeses. Ideally your milk should be

fortified with Vitamins A & D. When reconstituting aerate to improve flavor (special mixing pitchers can ac-

complish this). Whole eggs are the best all-purpose egg product. Powdered sour cream has a limited shelf life

unless frozen.

Meats / Meat substitute (20lbs) {Absolute Bare minimum reduced by LDS church to only ZERO in 2002}

Use meat in soups, stews and beans for flavor. Freeze dried is the best option for real meat. Textured Vegetable

protein is the main alternative to freeze dried meats.

Fats / Oils (20lbs)

This group can boost the calories one is getting from food storage products, and supply essential fatty acids.

Sugars (60lbs)

Store your honey in 5 gallon pails. Candy and other sweets can help with appetite fatigue.

Fruits / Vegetables (90lbs) {Absolute Bare minimum reduced by LDS church to only ZERO in 2002}

Some fruits and vegetables are best dehydrated, others freeze dried (strawberries & blueberries). Fruits are a

nice addition to hot cereal, muffins, pancakes and breads.

Auxiliary foods (weight varies)

Vanilla extract improves the flavor of powdered milk. The production of tofu requires a precipitator such as

nigari, epsom salt, calcium chloride or calcium sulfide (good calcium source). Learn how to make and use wheat

gluten (liquid smoke adds good flavor). Chocolate syrup and powdered drink mixes help with appetite fatigue.

Vitamins and protein powders will boost the nutrition levels of foods that may have suffered losses during pro-

cessing.

Note:

For an average adult Female - multiply the weight by 0.75

For children ages 1-3 multiply by 0.3, 4-6 multiply by 0.5, 7-9 multiply by 0.75

For adults engaged in manual labor multiply by 1.25-1.50

46

If you follow the “Bare Minimum” recomen- dations from the LDS church this is all the food that you will have to live on for a full year.

Ask yourself this simple question.

Are you ready to live on a loaf of bread and 1/3 cup of beans a day?

NOW is the time to stock up and fill

out your food storage!!

47

Our food supply is fragile

Grocery stores don’t stock weeks of food anymore. Most keep only 72 hours of food on the shelves. They re-stock based
on just-in-time delivery of food supplies. If the trucks stop rolling in your part of the country during a crisis, the store shelves will be emptied almost immediately. In fact, expect a shortage of mainstay items like milk and bread to occur similar to what happens before an approaching hurricane hits. Those who are aware of the problem but who haven’t already made preparations will engage in a last-minute rush to buy a few extra supplies.

Transportation is the key to food

Without transportation, farmers can’t get their crops to the wholesalers or food processing facilities. Food is heavy, gen-
erally speaking, and it requires trucks and trains to move it around — a literal ARMY of trucks and trains, weaving their
way from city to city, optimized and prioritized by computers. If the computers freeze, the whole transportation infra-
structure will shut down.
Transportation also depends heavily on fuel, which means the oil-producing countries in the Middle East have to be able to produce the oil that gets refined into diesel fuel here in America. So, in other words, your food supply depends on Saudi Arabia being alive and well. Do you trust the people in charge in Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, and Kuwait with your life? If you don’t make preparations now, you’re trusting them by default.

Cities depend entirely on rural land

Did you know cities would be ghost towns without the supporting imports of food from the country? We should all thank
the farmers a little more, because they literally keep us all alive. Cities are like concrete islands. You might think a city
is self-sustaining until you really think about it, but underneath it all, that city is a ghost town without the people in the country supporting it.
You may already know that city people and country people have very different views on politics and life in general. Country people tend to be more religious and more conservative. City people tend to be more liberal. So there’s more than a little animosity between country people and city people. When a crisis hits, and the country people find they are without electricity and fuel, they will still survive, for the most part, because they’re used to surviving. But do you think they will really put “saving city people” high on their list of priorities? I don’t think so. Any food that’s harvested from
the fields will be kept and stored by the farmers themselves. They will NOT be shipping this stuff to the cities unless they have excess goods and can find a transportation method that still works (and has fuel). Unfortunately, if some emergency powers acts are signed into place by the President, the Federal Emergency Management Association will have the legal power to actually confiscate and redistribute food. This makes it all the more likely that farmers will harvest it and HIDE
IT in order to keep it. And that means even less food making it to the cities. Bottom line? Cities where food can’t be deliv-
ered will eventually be gutted, looted, evacuated and likely burned to the ground.

You need to start stocking food

You can do a lot if you start early. Unfortunately, “early” might have been yesterday. Now we’re way past early, and you
need a reasonable plan to get food supplies that will store well and don’t cost too much.
You’ve probably already realized that buying up extra cans of soup at the grocery store is a really stupid way to spend your preparedness money. You need a better plan. Every $10 you spend at the store might feed a person for a few days. You need more leverage, where you can spend $10 and feed a person for a few weeks.

Buy extra, use FIFO

Go ahead and buy more food than normal when you’re out shopping, and set it aside. Use the “first in, first out” rule to
eat your older supplies first. Keep rotating your supplies so you never abandon food “way in the back.”

Buy ingredients, not prepared foods

Ingredients such as salt, honey, oatmeal and wheat will last a lot longer than prepared foods like TV dinners, cereals, and
food mixes. Naturally, as you purchase food ingredients, you’ll want to practice actually using them! And remember the basics. For example, if you purchase a bag of wheat, how exactly do you plan to make flour out of it? I’ve personally seen plans in a survival book that described throwing some wheat in a coffee can and pounding it into flour with a blunt stick. You can make a few cups of flour after ten of fifteen minutes of noisemaking.

48

Do you REALLY have a year’s supply?

Just how big is a Year’s Supply of food? As explained on the previous page, our Church is now suggesting the following absolute bare minimums for each adult:

400 lbs.

Grains

(17.5oz / day)

60 lbs.

Beans

(2.6oz / day)

10 quarts

Cooking oil

(0.87oz / day)

60 lbs.

Honey

(2.63oz / day)

8 lbs.

Salt

(0.35oz / day)

16 lbs

Powdered milk

(0.70oz / day)

14 gallons

of drinking water (for 2 weeks)

So, just how much is this?

Two 5 gallon buckets will hold about 75lbs of wheat, rice or other grains.

This means you need 11 buckets of grain for each person in your family.

If you store all your grains in #10 cans...

Wheat, Rice, Corn, etc..

You would need 64 cans or 10.5 cases per person.

Pasta

You would need 32 cans or 5.25 cases per person.

Rolled oats

These are lighter but bulkier, so they require more storage containers and space.

You would need 124 cans or 21 cases person.

Beans

A 25 lb bag of beans will about fit in a single 5 gallon bucket, with a little space over, so 2 buckets would hold a

one person supply, or 12 -13 # 10 cans or about 2 cases.

Daily Food

Dividing 400lbs by 365days, equals out to 1.09589lbs, or just over 1 lb of grain, per person, per day. That is ap-

proximately 2 cups of unground grain to cover your breakfast lunch and dinner.

Dividing 60lbs by 365, this works out to 0.16 lbs of beans per day, or 2.6 oz—approximately 3/4 cup. The other foods listed would also need to be used in limited amounts.

This is not much food, folks. Get the basics, then immediately begin to add more kinds of grain, soup mix, canned and/or dehydrated vegetables and fruit, etc to add variety and provide more than the minimal survival diet.

As an example, the minimum recommended amount of grain, when ground and prepared will yield about 6 small biscuits or a plateful of pancakes. Its enough to keep you alive, but a far cry from being satisfied and not hungry.

49

Basic Food Storage List

GRAINS = 400 lbs per adult

Barley

Cereal

Corn (meal or Dent)

Cous Cous

Flour (4lb/can)

Millet

Multi grain soup mix(5lb/can)

Oats, rolled quick(3lb/can)

Oats, rolled regular(3lb/can)

Popcorn

Rye

Sprouting Seeds

Wheat(6lb/can)

White Rice(6lb/can)

Pastas

Macaroni(3lb/can)

Noodles

Spaghetti(4lb/can)

MILK / DAIRY = 75 lbs per adult

Brick cheese

Canned Milk

Canned sour cream

Cheese spreads

Condensed milk

Dried cheese

Dried eggs

Infant formula

Non-dairy creamer

Non-fat dry milk(4lb/can)

Powdered cheese

Powdered sour cream

JUICES/BEVERAGES = 25 lbs

Apple juice

Apricot nectar

Baby strained juices

Cocoa drink mix(4lb/can)

Cranberry juice

Dried juice mix(6lb/can)

Grapefruit juice

Grape juice

Kool-aid

Lemonaid

50

Orange juice

Pineapple juice

Plum juice

Prune juice

Punch crystals

Soft drink mixes

Soft drinks

Tomato juice

V-8 juice

FATS / OILS = 20 lbs per adult

Butter

Cooking oil

Lard

Margarine

Mayonnaise

Olive Oil (extra virgin)

Peanut butter

Powdered butter

Powdered margarine

Powdered shortening

Salad dressing

Shortening

CANNED or DRIED MEATS (20 lbs per adult)

Bacon

Beef

Beef jerky

Chicken

Clams

Corned beef

Crabmeat

Deviled meats

Fish

Ham

Hamburger

Lamb

Lunch meats

Mutton

Pepperoni

Pork

Tuna

Salmon

Sandwich spreads

Sardines

Sausage

Shrimp

Spam

Treet

Turkey

BOLD ITALIC items are available from the LDS cannery

FRUITS and VEGETABLES

90 lbs Dried, 370qts canned, 370Lbs fresh

Fruits

TVP- Textured vegi Protein

Veal

Venison jerky

Vienna sausage

AUXILIARY FOODS

Baking powder

Baking soda

Cake mixes

Calcium supplement

Casserole mixes

Chow mein noodles

Apples (2lb/can)

Applesauce

Apricots

Peaches

Berries

Cherries

Coconut

Currants

Figs

Fruit cocktail

Grapefruit

Grapes

Cookies

Mandarin oranges

Cookie mixes

Nectarines

Cornstarch

Crackers

Olives

Pears

Cream of tartar

Hot roll mixes

Hydrated lime (for tortillas)

Instant breakfast

Instant yeast

Iron supplement

Marshmallows

MREs

Muffin mixes

Non perishable pet foods

Pancake mixes

Pastry mixes

Pectin

Pie crust mixes

Pie fillings

Pizza mixes

Plain gelatin

Rennin tablets

Salt

Sourdough starter

Survival bars

Tofu Solidifier

Vitamins and minerals

Whipped topping mixes

Peaches

Pineapples

Plums

Prunes

Raisins

Tomatoes

BEANS & LEGUMES (90 lbs per adult)

Beans, pink(5lb/can)

Beans, pinto(5lb/can)

Beans, white(5lb/can)

Lentils

Nuts

Peas

Sprouting beans and seeds

Soybeans

Vegetables

Artichoke hearts

Asparagus

Beans

Beets

Broccoli

Brussels sprouts

Carrots (3lb/can)

Cauliflower

51

BOLD ITALIC items are available from the LDS cannery

Celery

Ginger

Corn-sweet

Gravy mixes

Green beans

Herbs

Hominy

Ketchup

Mushrooms

Lemon extract

Okra

Lemon / lime juice

Onions (2lb/can)

Liquid smoke

Parsnips

Majoram

Peas

Maple extract

Peppers

Nutmeg

Pickles

Onion flakes

Potatoes, flakes (1.5lb/can)

Onion salt

Potatoes, pearls (3lb/can)

Orange peel

Pumpkins

Rhubarb

Oregano

Rutabagas

Paprika

Salsify

Pepper

Sauerkraut

Poultry Seasoning

Soups

protein supplement

Spinach

Sage

Squash

Salad dressings

Sweet potatoes (yams)

Salt (5 lbs per adult)

Tomatos

Sauce mixes

Tomato powder

Seasoned salt

Turnips

Spaghetti sauce

Water chestnuts

Soy sauce

Steak sauce

SPICES / CONDIMENTS

Tarragon

Almond extract

Thyme

Allspice

Turmeric

Baking chocolate

Vanilla extract

Basil

Vinegar

BBQ sauce

Bouillon cubes / granules

Beef, chicken, onion, vegetable flavors

Cayenne pepper

Celery salt

Chili powder

Chives

Chocolate chips

Chocolate syrup

Cinnamon

Cloves

Cocoa

Coriander

Cumin

Curry

Dill weed

Garlic salt

52

Worcestershire sauce

SUGARS = 60 lbs per adult

Corn syrup

Hard candy

Honey

Jello

Jelly or jam

Maple syrup

Molasses

Pudding, chocolate (5lb/can)

Pudding, vanilla (5lb/can)

Sugar (6lb/can)

Long Term Storage - MASTER FOOD LIST

6 GRAIN PANCAKE MIX

6 WAY ROLLED GRAIN, 6 TYPES OF GRAIN

9 GRAIN CRACKED CEREAL

ALFALFA FOR SPROUTING

ALFALFA, POWDER

ALFALFA, CUT

Almonds, Raw

ALLSPICE (JAMAICAN) POWDER

ALLSPICE (JAMAICAN) WHOLE

Amaranth, Organic

ANISE (STAR), WHOLE

ANISE SEED, WHOLE

APPLE FLAKES, PEACH FLAVOR, DEHYDRATED

APPLE FLAKES, STRAWBERRY FLAVOR

APPLE SLICES,

APPLESAUCE, DEHYDRATED

ARROWROOT POWDER

BAKING POWDER,

BAKING SODA,

BANANA SLICES, DEHYDRATED,

BARBECUE SPICE BLEND - GROUND

BARLEY FLAKES

BARLEY FOR SPROUTING

BARLEY, HULLED,

Barley, Hulless Waxy

BARLEY, PEARL

BASIL (EGYPTIAN) - CUT

BASIL (SWEET CALIFORNIA), CUT

BAY LEAVES, CUT

BAY LEAVES, WHOLE

BEANS, BLACK, BULK, FREEZE DRIED

BEANS, 10-BEAN MIX,

Anasazi Beans

BEANS, AUZZUKIE

BEANS, BABY LIMAS,

BEANS, BLACK EYED,

BEANS, BLACK TURTLE,

BEANS, GARBANZO,

BEANS, GREAT NORTHERN WHITE,

BEANS, GREEN, DEHYDRATED,

BEANS, KIDNEY,

BEANS, LARGE LIMA,

BEANS, MUNG,

BEANS, NAVY, BULK, DEHYDRATED,

BEANS, PINK,

BEANS, PINTO,

Refried Beans

Refried Beans w/corn oil

BEANS, SMALL RED

BEANS, SMALL WHITE, NAVY

BEANS, SOY,

BEANS, SPROUTING, AUZZUKIE,

BEANS, SPROUTING, GARBANZO,

BEANS, SPROUTING, MUNG,

BEANS, SPROUTING, SOY,

BEE POLLEN

Bouillon, Beef

Bouillon, Chicken

BROCCOLI, DEHYDRATED

BUCK WHEAT, HULLED,

BURDOCK ROOT CUT

BUTTER POWDER,

BUTTERMILK POWDER

CABBAGE

CABBAGE SEED,

CAJUN SPICE BLEND, GROUND

CAKE MIX, GINGERBREAD (ADD WATER)

CAKE MIX, BROWNIE (ADD WATER)

CAKE MIX, CARROT (ADD WATER)

CAKE MIX, DEVIL’S FOOD

CAKE MIX, LEMON

CAKE MIX, POUND CAKE (ADD WATER)

CAKE MIX, SPICE

CAKE MIX, SWISS CHOC (ADD WATER)

CAKE MIX, WHITE

CAKE MIX, YELLOW

CAKE, FUNNEL (ADD WATER)

CARAWAY SEED

CARDAMOM (DECORTICATED) WHOLE

CARDAMOM (WHOLE GREEN PODS)

CARDAMOM (GROUND)

CAROB (ROASTED), POWDERED

CARROT DICES, DEHYDRATED,

CAYENNE (40 HEAT UNIT) DOMESTIC

CAYENNE (60 HEAT UNIT) IMPORTED

CAYENNE (90 HEAT UNIT)

CELERY

CELERY SEED - GROUND

CELERY SEED - WHOLE

CHAMOMILE TEA BAGS

CHEESE SAUCE, DEHYDRATED, BULK

CHEESE, CHEDDAR, DEHYDRATED, BAG

CHIA SEEDS (FOR SPROUTING)

CHICKWEED

CHILI BLEND, GROUND

CHILI PEPPERS, GROUND

CHILI, CRUSHED

CHINESE FIVE SPICE,

CHIVES, CUT

CHOCOLATE CHIPS, MILK CHOCOLATE

CHOCOLATE CHIPS, SEMI SWEET

CILANTRO CUT

CINNAMON CHIPS, SMALL CUT

CINNAMON POWDER

CINNAMON STICKS, 1 INCH,

CLOVES (SMALL VERY FRAGRANT)

CLOVES POWDER

Cocoa Mix

Cocoa Mix Chocolate Mint Truffle

Cocoa Mix Mint

Cocoa Mix, Orange Creme

COCOA FOR COOKING,

COCONUT (UNSWEETENED) - MEDIUM

53

CORIANDER SEED, GROUND

CORIANDER SEED, WHOLE

CORN MEAL, BAG

CORN, SWEET, DEHYDRATED

CORN, WHOLE YELLOW, PAPER BAG

Corn, Yellow Grit-hominy polenta

CORNSTARCH

Corn Syrup Solids

CREAM OF TARTAR

CUMIN SEED, GROUND

CUMIN SEED, WHOLE

CURRY POWDER, HOT BLEND

CURRY POWDER, REGULAR BLEND

DILL SEED, WHOLE

DILL WEED, (DOMESTIC) CUT

DOUGH ENHANCER, NATURAL

DRESSING, 1000 ISLAND

DRESSING, BLEU CHEESE,

DRESSING, OUR HOUSE DRESSING

DRINK BASE, APPLE CIDER, INSTANT,

DRINK MIX, APPLE, DEHYDRATED,

DRINK MIX, CHERRY,

DRINK MIX, Fruit Punch

DRINK MIX, GRAPE,

DRINK MIX, HOT CIDER,

DRINK MIX, LEMONADE,

DRINK MIX, ORANGE,

DRINK MIX, Peach

DRINK MIX, PINK LEMONADE,

DRINK MIX, STRAWBERRY,

DRINK MIX. Tofu

DRINK, APPLE, W/FRUIT JUICE

DRINK, PEACH, DEHYDRATED, BG

EGG MIX, DEHYDRATED,

EGG WHITES, DEHYDRATED,

EGGS, Whole

FAJITA SEASONING,

FENNEL SEED, POWDER

FENNEL SEED, WHOLE

FENUGREEK SEED, WHOLE

FLAVOR CRYSTALS, MAPLE, NATURAL & ART

FLAVOR CRYSTALS, VANILLA, NATURAL & AR

FLAVOR CRYSTALS, WALNUT, NATURAL & AR

FLAX SEED,

FLOUR, ALL PURPOSE,

FLOUR, BAKERS BLEND high protein

FLOUR, Whole Wheat

FLOUR, Whole Wheat Red

FLOUR, UNBLEACHED,

FLOUR, UNBLEACHED, Hard White

FLOUR, UNBLEACHED-Red

FLOUR, UNBLEACHED-White

FRANKINCENSE

FROSTING MIX, CHOCOLATE

FROSTING MIX, FUDGE

FRUCTOSE,

FRUIT BLEND (TASTY TEA) NO CAFFEINE

FRUIT BLEND TEA BAG

FRUIT GALAXY, DEHYDRATED BAG

FRUIT WHIRLS

54

GARLIC (DOMESTIC),

GARLIC GRANULES (CALIFORNIA)

GARLIC POWDER (DOMESTIC)

GARLIC MINCED

G EL CAPS -00-

GELATIN, CHERRY,

GELATIN, LEMON,

GELATIN, LIME,

GELATIN, ORANGE,

GELATIN, PEACH,

GELATIN, RASPBERRY,

GELATIN, STRAWBERRY,

GERMADE,

GINGER ROOT PIECES, 1/4 IN PIECES

GINGER ROOT POWDER

GINSENG POWDER

GOTU KOLA POWDER

GRANOLA, 25 LB BAG

GRAVY MIX, BROWN,

GRAVY MIX, CHICKEN,

GRAVY MIX, TURKEY,

GRAVY, COUNTRY STYLE,

GREEK SEASONING, GROUND

HERB MIX (SALT SUBSTITUTE)

HONEY, Clover

HONEY, Creamy Whipped

HONEY, COX’S (CREAMED)

ITALIAN SEASONING, CUT

ITALIAN SEASONING, GROUND

KELP POWDER

Kamut

LECITHIN GRANULES

LEMON GRANULES

LEMON JUICE POWDER (INSTANT)

LEMON PEEL CUT

LEMON PEPPER BLEND, GROUND

LENTILS, 100 LB BAG

LICORICE MINT BLEND (TEA) NO CAFFEINE

LICORICE ROOT POWDER

LICORICE SPICE BLEND (TEA) CAFFEINE FREE

LICORICE STICKS

MACE, GROUND

Macaroni & Cheese

MAPLE LEAF

MARGARINE POWDER,

MARJORAM, CUT

MEAT TENDERIZER, SEASONED,

MEAT TENDERIZER, UNSEASONED,

MICROWAVE POPCORN CINCH BUTTER

MILK, INSTANT, NON FAT DRY,

MILK, REGULAR, NON FAT DRY,

MILLET,

MILLET, HULLED,

MIX, BELGIAN WAFFLE

MIX, BLUEBERRY MUFFIN

MIX, BROWNIE

MIX, BUTTERMILK BISCUIT

MIX, Cheasecake

MIX, CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE

MIX, COOKIE, CHOCOLATE CHIP

MIX, Fudge Brownie

MIX, Honeywheat Bread & Roll

MIX,Scones

MIX, WHITE FROSTING,

MOLASSES, HOME MADE,

MRE, COMPLETE MEAL,

MRE, Applesauce

MRE, Beef Frankfurters

MRE, Beef Ravioli

MRE, Beef Steak (chunked & formed)

MRE, Beef Teriyaki

MRE, Cheese Spread

MRE, Cheese Tortellini

MRE, Cherry Beverage Powder

MRE, Solid Chicken Breast Patties

MRE, Chicken Noodle

MRE, Chicken Salsa

MRE, Chili Macaroni

MRE, Chocolate covered cookies

MRE, Cocoa

MRE, Crackers

MRE, Ham Slices

MRE, Lemon Pound Cake

MRE, Meat Loaf W/Brown Onion Gravy

MRE, Mexican Rice

MRE, Oatmeal Cookie Bar

MRE, Pasta Vegetable

MRE, Pasta & Vegetable Alfredo Sauce

MRE, Peanut Butter

MRE, Pork w/Rice

MRE, Pork Chow Mein

MRE, Escalloped Potato W/Ham

MRE, Potato Sticks

MRE, Spaghetti

MRE, Grilled Turkey Breast & Potatoes

MRE, Turkey Breast & Potatoes

MRE, Western Beans

MRE, White Rice

MUFFIN, BLUEBERRY

MUFFIN, CORN,

MUNG BEANS (FOR SPROUTING)

MUSHROOM SLICES, DEHYDRATED,

MUSTARD SEED (BROWN) WHOLE

MUSTARD SEED (YELLOW) POWDER

MUSTARD SEED (YELLOW) WHOLE

MYRRH GUM PCS

Noodles, Egg

NUTMEG, GROUND

NUTMEG, WHOLE

OAT BRAN,

OAT GROATS,

OATS

OIL, 100% CANOLA FRYING OIL,

ONION, CHOPPED

ONION, GRANULES

ONION, POWDER, DOMESTIC

ORANGE PEEL GRANULES

ORANGE SPICE

OREGANO (GREEK), CUT

OREGANO (MEXICAN), CUT

OREGANO (MEXICAN), GROUND

OREGANO (MEXICAN), WHOLE,

PAN D’ARCO (CUT)

PANCAKE MIX, 6 Grain

PANCAKE MIX, Blueberry

PANCAKE MIX, BUTTERMILK,

PANCAKE OLD FASHIONED,

PAPRIKA GROUND

PARSLEY FLAKES (CALIFORNIA)

PARSLEY HERB POWDER

PASTA, EGG NOODLES,

PASTA, LASAGNA, WIDE CUT,

PASTA, MACARONI, JUMBO SHELL,

PASTA, MACARONI, LARGE SHELL,

PASTA, MACARONI, ELBOW,

PASTA, MACARONI, SALAD,

PASTA, MACARONI, SMALL ELBOW

PASTA, MACARONI, SMALL SHELL,

PASTA, MACARONI, Whole Wheat

Pasta-Pizza Sauce Mix

PASTA, SPAGHETTI,

Peach Slices

peach Flavor Apple Slices

PEANUT BUTTER POWDER, DEHYDRATED

PEAS, Alaskan

PEAS, BLACK EYED,

PEAS, SPLIT GREEN,

PEAS, SPLIT YELLOW,

PEAS, SWEET GARDEN, DEHYDRATED

PEAS, WHOLE GREEN,

PEPPER (BLACK) 1/4 CRACKED

PEPPER (BLACK) TABLE GRIND

PEPPER (WHITE), FINE GROUND

PEPPERCORNS (BLACK), WHOLE

PEPPERMINT, DOMESTIC

PEPPERMINT TEA BAGS

PEPPERS (GREEN BELL)

PICKLING SPICE BLEND, WHOLE

POPCORN, RABBIT EARS,

POPPY SEED

POPPY SEED, (BLUE), WHOLE

POTATO DICES, DEHYDRATED

POTATO FLAKES, DEHYDRATED,

POTATO GRANULES,

POTATO SLICES, DEHYDRATED,

POTATO, HASHBROWNS, DEHYDRATED,

POULTRY SEASONING, GROUND

PSYLLIUM HUSKS

PUDDING, BANANA, ADD MILK/INST

PUDDING, BUTTERSCOTCH, MILK/INS *

PUDDING, Custard

PUDDING, CHOCOLATE, MILK/COOK *

PUDDING, CHOCOLATE, MILK/INST *

PUDDING, COCONUT, MILK/INST *

PUDDING, LEMON, MILK/INST *

PUDDING, Tapioca

PUDDING, VANILLA, ADD MILK/INST *

PUDDING, VANILLA, MILK/COOK

PUMPKIN PIE SPICE,

PUMPKIN SEEDS, SHELLED

55

Quinoa,

RADISH SEED,

RADISH SEED, (FOR SPROUTING)

RAISINS, Select

RAISINS, Golden

RASPBERRY LEAF

RED CLOVER SEEDS (FOR SPROUTING)

RICE, Basmati Brown-Organic

RICE, BROWN, LONG GRAIN

RICE, Par Boiled

RICE, WHITE, LONG GRAIN

ROSE HIP POWDER

ROSEMARY, CUT

ROSEMARY, GROUND

ROSEMARY, WHOLE

RYE FLAKES, PAPER BAG

RYE, PAPER BAG

SAGE, FINE POWDER

SAGE, RUBBED

SAGE, WHOLE

SALAD SUPREME SEASONING

SALT

SAUCE, AU JUS INSTANT

SAUSAGE SEASONING,

SESAME SEED (NATURAL) WHOLE

SHEPHERDS PURSE

SHORTENING POWDER, DEHYDRATED

SLIPPERY ELM POWDER

SOUP BASE, BEEF FLAVOR

SOUP BASE, CHICKEN FLAVOR,

SOUP BASE, CREAM, NON DAIRY

SOUP MIX, ABC,

SOUP MIX, BEEF BARLEY

SOUP MIX, OLD FASHIONED,

SOUP, AU-JUS SAUCE

SOUP, BEEF, BARLEY, VEGETABLE

SOUP, BEEF Noodle

SOUP, BEEF Flovored Stew

SOUP, CHICKEN NOODLE, (GREAT FLAVOR)

SOUP, CORN CHOWDER BASE, MAKES

SOUP, CREAM OF CHICKEN, MAKES

SOUP, CREAM OF MUSHROOM, MAKES

SOUP, CREAM PEA CHOWDER, MAKES

SOUP, CREAMY CHEDDAR CHWD,

SOUP, Creamy Potato

SOUP, FRENCH ONION SOUP,

SOUP, ITALIAN TOMATO/VEG,

SOUP, MINESTRONE,

SOUP, Mountain Stew Blend

SOUP, NE CHOWDER BASE,

SOUP, OLD FASHIONED SOUP MIX

SOUP, ORIGINAL CREAM SOUP BASE

SOUP, VEGETABLE BEEF #

Sour Cream Powder

SOUTHERN BUTTERMILK BISCUIT MIX

SOUTHERN CORNBREAD II (YELLOW)

SOY SAUCE,

SPEARMINT SPICE BLEND (TEA) NO CAFFEIN

SPELT, (ORGANIC)

SPINACH FLAKES

56

SUGAR, BROWN,

SUGAR, POWDERED,

SUGAR, WHITE

SUNFLOWER SEED, RAW,

Sweet Potato

SYRUP, APRICOT,

SYRUP, BLUEBERRY,

SYRUP, BOYSENBERRY,

SYRUP, NATURAL BUTTER FLAVOR,

SYRUP, STRAWBERRY,

SYRUP, LIGHT CORN,

T.V.P. BACON FLAVORED,

T.V.P. BEEF FLAVORED, DEHYDRATED

T.V.P. CHICKEN FLAVORED,

T.V.P. IMAGIC BARBECUE MIX

T.V.P. IMAGIC BBQ FLAVOR,

T.V.P. IMAGIC SLOPPY JOE MIX

T.V.P. IMITATION HAM FLAVOR CHIPLETS

T.V.P. PEPPERONI, IMITATION FLAVOR

T.V.P. SAUSAGE FLAVOR

T.V.P. TACO BEEF FLAVOR

T.V.P. ULTRA-SOY, MINCED, NATURAL FLAVOR

TACO SEASONING, GROUND

TAPIOCA PEARLS (MEDIUM) WHOLE

TARRAGON (CALIFORNIA), CUT

TEA STRAINER(S)

THYME, GROUND

THYME LEAVES

TOMATO POWDER, DEHYDRATED,

TUMERIC POWDER

VALERIAN ROOT CUT

VALERIAN ROOT POWDER

VANILLA EXTRACT

VEGETABLE FLAKES, MIXED

VEGETABLE SOUP BLEND

VEGETABLE STEW BLEND

WHEAT BRAN, PAPER BAG

WHEAT FLAKES, WHITE,

WHEAT GERM

WHEAT, CRACKED,

WHEAT, GOLDEN 86,

WHEAT, HARD RED STORAGE,

WHEAT, HARD WHITE,

WHEAT, SOFT WHEAT,

WHEAT, VITAL GLUTEN,

WHEAT, WHITE, GOLDEN 86,

WHEY,

WHITE CREAM SAUCE

WHITE PEPPER, WHOLE

YEAST, INSTANT

Honey

3 lbs.

Indefinite

Cool, tightly sealed, dark

Jam/Jellies

3 lbs./3 jars

2 years

Cool, tightly sealed, dark

Jello

1 lb./6 (3oz.) boxes

18 months

Cool & very dry

Maple Syrup

3 lbs./2 bottles

2 years

Cool, dry place

Molasses

1 lb.

2 years

Cool, dry place

Powdered Sugar

6 lbs./ 3 (32oz.)bags

2 years+

Tightly sealed & dry

Pudding

1 lb./6 (3oz.) boxes

18 months

Cool, dry place

White Granulated Sugar

35 lbs.

Indefinite

Tightly sealed & dry



WATER: 28 gallons (2 week supply)

Drinking 14 gallons + 1 year No contact w/ cement. Washing/Cleaning 14 gallons + 1 year No contact w/ cement.



FRUITS: 185 lbs. (Totals for the ENTIRE family)

Applesauce 36 lbs./ 36 cans 2 years Cool, dry place

Dry Fruit (raisins, coconut, apples) 17 lbs./ 17 1lb. Bags 2 years Cool, dry place

58

Fruit Cocktail

12 lbs./ 12 cans

2 years

Cool, dry place

Mandarin Oranges

36 lbs./52cans(11oz)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Peaches

24 lbs./ 24 cans

2 years

Cool, dry place

Pears

24 lbs./ 24 cans

2 years

Cool, dry place

Pineapple

36 lbs./45cans(20oz)

2 years

Cool, dry place


VEGETABLES: 185 lbs. (Totals for the ENTIRE family)

*If vegetables are dried and packaged properly they will last anywhere from 18-24 months, or longer.

Beets

1 lb./ 1 can

2 years

Cool, dry place

Carrots

5 lbs./ 5 cans/or dried

2 years

Cool, dry place

Corn

24 lbs./ 24 cans

2 years

Cool, dry place

Green Beans

24 lbs./ 24 cans

2 years

Cool, dry place

Green Chilies

3 lbs./ 12 cans(4oz)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Instant Potatoes

30 lbs.

30 years+*

*See Above Statement

Mixed Vegetables

5 lbs/5 cans (15oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Mushrooms

1 lb./ 4 cans (8oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Onions

5 lbs.

18-24 months

Cool, dry place

Peas

6 lbs./ 6 cans (15oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Pickles

6 lbs. / 4 jars (24oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Pumpkin

10 lbs./ 5 cans(29oz)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Salsa

6 lbs./ 6 jars (16oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Spaghetti Sauce

30 lbs./19 jars(26oz.)

2-3 years if in glass jar

Cool, dry place

Tomato Paste

2.5 lbs./7 cans (6oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Tomato Sauce

2.5 lbs./7 cans (6oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Tomato Soup

6 lbs./ 6 cans (15oz.)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Tomatoes

27 lbs/27 cans(15oz)

2 years

Cool, dry place

Yams

1 lb./ 1 can (15oz)

2 years

Cool, dry place

COOKING ESSENTIALS: 6 lbs.

Baking Powder

2 lbs./ 3 cans(10oz.)

3 years

Sealed & BONE dry

Baking Soda

1 lb./ 1 box (16oz.)

3 years

Sealed & BONE dry

Cocoa

1 lb./ 2 cans (8oz.)

3 years

Sealed & cool

Vanilla

As desired

3 years

Cool, dry place

Vinegar

2 quarts/.5 gallon

2 years+

Sealed

Yeast

2 lbs./ 2 pkgs. (16oz)

1 year in the freezer

Freezer or cool place



http://www.dealstomeals.com/uploads/show/One_Year_Supply_Guide.pdf

59

Monthly Food Storage Purchasing Calendar

Compiled by Andrea Chapman

If you are just starting out, this calendar can be used any year.

Just start with the current month’s items.

We have tried to keep the costs down to between $35 and $45 per week. This might seem rather costly, but if you want to build a good food storage in only one year, it will cost you more each week than if you spread out acquiring it over several years. Be certain to buy only items your family will use, and rotate and use the items in your storage throughout the year. Milk is an expensive item and prices keep soaring, so you might need to invest in a bit higher food storage bill to buy it right now.

* The items in the first few months are basic essentials and are the most important to purchase and store.

It is vital to get WATER - STORAGE . If you don’t have water, you will not be able to use many of the foods you have that are dehydrated or require water to cook. Many times in natural disasters, the electricity goes down and you will not be able to access your water. Sometimes the water is contaminated from flooding and cross-contam- ination from sewage. You will need water, at very least, you will need 3 days worth.

January

Week #1 1 case canned fruit

2 #10 cans instant potatoes

Week #2 3 #10 cans dry milk Week #3 3 #10 cans dry milk Week #4 9 pounds yeast

Week #5 Anything you have missed from above

February

Week #1

Water Storage Containers-buy either 55 gallon drums, 5 gallon water containers (available at all emergency preparedness stores and some super markets) and spigot, or start to save water in pop bottles and plastic juice containers. Also purchase 100 lbs. hard white wheat and three plastic storage buckets with tight fitting lids.

Check out the local mills in your area for best prices.

Week #2 25 lbs of sugar or 20 lbs of honey

5 lbs salt per person bucket opener

Week #3 4 #10 cans shortening or 4 - 48 oz bottles oil

2 #10 cans of dry instant milk

Week #4 2 case canned beans (like refried pinto, black, kidney, white, pink etc.) or

25 lbs dry beans (preferable) and bucket to store them in.

50 lbs dried corn or popcorn

(about $10.00 from a mill or food storage company) and a bucket to store it in. (Can be ground into cornmeal as well as for popcorn.)

(All grains and beans can be put into #10 cans at the LDS cannery.) (If not, the buckets work well.)

60

March

(please note that many of these items are repeats because we want to be SURE you have enough of the essentials!)

Week #1 Enough water containers for 14 gallons per person in the family.

(This was mentioned last month-but we want to be sure you have this) (Water is your most important item!)

If you didn’t get enough containers last month, you can get them this month.

White Rice, at least 15 pounds per person in the family and if possible buckets to store it. (Brown Rice goes rancid faster.)

Week #2 2 jars mayonnaise

1 gallon oil

2 tubs shortening

Week #3 25 pounds sugar

1- 25 pound bag of legumes (pinto, lentils, white, pink etc.)

Week #4 Salt 5 more lbs

2 bottles of bleach

1 #10 can or 1 box of dry milk.

Week #5 Check your list for the last 8 weeks and purchase any items you fell short on.

These items are essential ones and you will need to be sure you have enough.

April

Week #1 100 pounds wheat

10 lbs. brown sugar

Week #2 2 #10 size cans dried fruit or 1 case canned fruit

1 pound yeast

Week #3 1 case tuna or salmon

2 #10 cans milk

3 lbs sprouting seeds

1 80 oz can Rumsford baking powder

Week #4 2 large jars peanut butter or

1 #10 can peanut butter powder (last longer)

2 cans dried whole egg (keep in a cool dry place)

May

Week #1 2 to 3 bottles of multi-vitamins

2 #10 cans of rolled oats

(if #10 cans are not available in your area, buy the largest packages available) (in your local store, and also purchase a small bucket to store it in.)

Week #2 100 lbs. of wheat

3 buckets

Week #3 #10 can margarine powder - or shortening if marg. powder is unavailable

2 #10 cans rolled oats

(or equivalent, and a storage bucket)

Week #4 4 #10 cans instant potatoes

1 bottle black pepper

61

June

Week #1 2 cans dry milk, 2 boxes of Rennet

(used for making cottage cheese and other dairy products from dry milk.)

1 bottle lemon juice,

1 bottle vinegar. (also used in making dairy products from dry milk

Week #2 100 lbs wheat

25 lbs. white flour

Week #3 Baking soda (try to buy in bulk in places like Sam’s Club or Cosco) Buy about 10 lbs.

25 lbs. or legumes (choose those you are willing to eat.

Remember you can sprout legumes and almost quadruple the nutritional value of them. Buy one large box Knox or other gelatin to be used in place of eggs in baking.

Week #4 Tomato products (try to buy them by the case in normal size cans. Spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, and whole and chopped tomatoes. Buy a combination of flavored and not flavored to matoes. Buy paste if you can get a good deal on it. It is less expensive to add water to paste to make sauce than it is just to buy sauce sometimes. Buy three cases if possible.)

Week #5 Be on the look out for garden seeds that are NON- Hybrid.

That way you can use the seeds from the plants you grow to grow a garden the next season. A good price for them is about $18-20 per can with about 10 varieties per can.

July

Week #1 200# wheat

(buckets to store it in if needed)

[keep filling pop bottles, Gallon syrup containers, etc. with water - basically no cost to this)

Week #2 20 lbs. Peanut butter

[keep filling those water containers]

Week #3 4 #10 cans shortening

2 # 10 cans dry milk

[keep filling water containers - make this a habit - when you empty something worthy of water storage, wash it and fill it right away]

Week #4 6 #10 cans dry milk

[more water!]

Week #1 25# rice

25# sugar

1 # 10 can instant potatoes

5 lbs. salt

August

Week #2 1 case tuna or salmon or other meat

2 # 10 cans dry milk

Week #3 2 #10 cans dry milk

2 cans shortening

1 #10 can instant potatoes

Week #4 In late August and early September, many stores have sales on canned fruits and vegetables.

Ask your local store when these sales will be, and switch the weeks of this calendar as needed.

2 cases fruit

5 lbs. salt

62

Week #5 2 cases canned fruit

1 case misc. vegetables (green beans, peas, carrots, etc.)

Week # 1 2 cases canned fruit

1 case misc. vegetables

Week # 2 2 cases canned fruit

2 cans shortening

Week #3 2 cases fruit

1 case vegetables

September

Week #4 2 cans shortening

25# rice

buckets to store rice if it did not come in #10 cans

Week #1 100 lbs. wheat and 3 buckets

Week #2 1 case tuna or other meat

October

Week #3 25 lbs. Sugar

2 large cans fruit juice powder

Week #4 3 #10 cans dry milk

Week #5 9 #10 cans potato flakes

Week #1 4 large jars peanut butter

Week #2 1 case canned fruit

15 pounds rice

Week #3 7 #10 cans shortening

November

Week #4 50 pounds rice and buckets to store

December

Week #1 100 lbs. wheat and 3 buckets

Week #2 1 large can fruit juice powder

3 large jars peanut butter

Week #3 3 #10 cans dry milk

Week #4 50 pounds of rice, oats, or barley

buckets to store

Copyright 2001 One Heart, Inc. - All Rights Reserved

63

A 30-Day Emergency Food Supply

(3,000 Calories per Day for one Adult)

Introduction

30 Day Emergency Food Supply It would be nice to have
two different types of emergency food supplies as follows:

A 30-day or one-month emergency food supply. A one-year emergency food supply.

Some emergencies are short-term and they do not last very long. A 30-day food supply would be very useful in this type of situation. In most short-term emergencies electrical power is not available, and water may or may not be avail- able. Under these conditions cooking a meal from scratch would be extremely challenging. In this type of situation it would be nice if you had a decent variety of canned foods that you could simply heat and eat.
On the other hand, a long-term hard times event is differ- ent. Although eating from a can is a reasonable option for a short period of time, after awhile it becomes very bor- ing. That is when your body will crave “real food” that you prepare from scratch. Therefore, a one-year emergency food supply will need to contain a broad variety of food items that include some canned foods and some foods that you can prepare from scratch, such as a loaf of fresh baked bread.

One reasonable option for storing your emergency food

supplies would be as follows:

Store your 30-day food supply at your current residence. If something unexpected happens then you would have im- mediate access to your food and you could make the de- cision to either stay exactly where you are, or you could quickly load your 30-day food supply into your car and go somewhere safer.
Store your one-year food supply with your parents or children or close relatives who live in a country area. You could arrange this with them ahead of time and perhaps they could set aside a spare bedroom just for your family in the event of an emergency. Then you could stack your one-year emergency food supply in the closet of that bed- room, or put some of it under the bed or beds in that bed- room. This would provide you with food to eat when you arrived at your more desirable back-up location. (Or you could store some of your food at a temperature controlled warehouse in a distant small rural town.)

Important Criteria for Selecting Food Items for an Emer- gency 30-Day Food Supply

64

If an emergency were to occur unexpectedly and you had to provide for your family until the emergency was over, then you should have enough fresh drinking water and enough food stored ahead of time to get you through the emergency.
If the electrical power is off, then cooking a meal from scratch would be far more challenging than simply opening a can of food, heating it, and then serving it to your family.
In this type of situation your canned foods should meet all of the following criteria:

The food item should be one that your family mem- bers have enjoyed eating in the past. During a short-term emergency it would be really nice if your family knew that their daily meals would be something they have enjoyed eating in the past. It is okay if different members of your family have different taste preferences. You should con- sider purchasing and storing the food items that each per- son in your family really likes because in most situations one can of food is just barely enough for one person.

The food item should have a reasonably long shelf life, preferably at least five-years or more.

The food item should not require refrigeration or freez- ing. You should be able to safely store the food item at normal room temperatures.

The food item should be relatively affordable. The food item should be ready to heat and eat.

The food item should be a complete meal in a can that includes meat, vegetables, and a few vitamins.

The food item should contain a lot of calories, fat, car- bohydrates, and protein. Your body will need and crave all of these basic ingredients and therefore your food items should contain all of them. In other words, don’t just look at the calorie content of the food item. Also consider the fat, carbohydrates, and protein of the food in order to pro- vide a truly balanced meal that will satisfy your family’s hunger. After you have eaten a meal you should not feel hungry again for several hours. This is extremely important
because some foods only relieve your hunger for a very short period of time and you become extremely hungry again rather quickly. Therefore, the foods you select should
be ones that can keep you from feeling hunger for at least 5 or 6 hours. If the food contains reasonable levels of calories, fat, carbohydrates, and protein then hunger should not be a problem for several hours.
For each food item read the nutritional data on the label. Multiply the number of servings in the container by the number of calories, fat, carbohydrates, and protein per serving. This will yield the total nutritional value of the entire food con- tainer. This is important because different canned foods show a different number of “servings per can” and therefore you must convert this into the total food value of the can instead of just comparing the food value per serving. For example, consider the following:

Food Item

Servings Per Can

Calories per Serving

Total Calories per Can

18.8 ounces Chunky Soup

2

170

340

12.5 ounces Canned Chicken

6

60

360

15 ounces Canned Pasta

2

250

500

16 ounces Canned Ham

8

80

640

15 ounces Chili with Beans

2

350

700

12 ounces Canned Spam

6

180

1,080

The last column in the above table is the important column because it shows the total number of Calories in the entire Can. You would need to do the same calculation for the total Fat per Can, the total Carbohydrates per Can, and the Total Protein per Can.
Your food supply should contain a wide assortment of foods. If possible, you should not have to eat the same exact food item until at least seven days have passed. This means you should have enough variety so you could serve different meals to your family every day for one week.

A Recommended 30-Day Emergency Food Supply for One Adult

In my opinion the following food items are ones you should consider for your 30-day emergency food supply.
I strongly recommend that you purchase one can of each of the following foods and serve it to your family during normal times to determine if they enjoy it. If they like it then you could purchase additional cans of that food item for your 30-day emergency food supply.
The following suggestions would be a reasonable starting position for the average family. However, since each family has unique taste and dietary requirements, each family will probably need to remove some items from the following list and add other items that they enjoy more.
Note: All costs, package sizes, and nutritional data in the following table were obtained on September 1, 2010.

Quantity Item Size Cost Total Total Nutrition/Container

3 Cans

Campbell’s Chunky “Beef Base” Soup

18.8 ounces

$ 1.50

$ 4.50

280Cal, 9Ft, 38Crb, 14Pro

3 Cans

Campbell’s Chunky “Chicken Base” Soup

18.8 ounces

$ 1.50

$ 4.50

360Cal, 16 Ft, 38 Crb, 16 Pro

2 Cans

Campbell’s Chunky “Other Base” Soup

18.8 ounces

$ 1.50

$ 3.00

380Cal, 5 Ft, 60 Crb, 24 Pro

8 Cans

Chef Boyardee Pasta (Spaghetti/Ravioli/Lasagna)

15 ounces

$ 1.00

$ 8.00

500Cal, 24 Ft, 54 Crb, 18 Pro

4 Cans

LaChoy Asian “Meat and Vegetables”

42 ounces

$ 2.50

$ 10.00

360 Cal, 10 Ft, 54 Crb, 15 Pro

4 Cans

Armour Beef Stew

24 ounces

$ 2.40

$ 9.60

630 Cal, 33 Ft, 60 Crb, 24 Pro

4 Cans

Hormel Roast Beef Hash

15 ounces

$ 2.00

$ 8.00

780 Cal, 48 Ft, 44 Crb, 42 Pro

4 Cans

Van Camps Chili with Beans

15 ounces

$ 1.16

$ 4.64

700 Cal, 36 Ft, 62 Crb, 34 Pro

2 Cans

Ranch Style Black Beans (or Pinto or Kidney)

15 ounces

$ 0.68

$ 1.36

385 Cal, 2 Ft, 66 Crb, 21 Pro

2 Cans

Taco Bell Refried Beans

16 ounces

$ 0.98

$ 1.96

420 Cal, 3 Ft, 70 Crb, 24 Pro

4 Pcks

Taco Bell Taco Seasoning Mix

1.25 ounces

$ 0.50

$ 2.00

120 Cal, 0 Ft, 18 Crb, 0 Pro

4 Cans

Hereford Roast Beef

12 ounces

$ 2.98

$ 11.92

350 Cal, 7 Ft, 5 Crb, 65 Pro

2 Cans

Van Camps Pork and Beans

15 ounces

$ 0.50

$ 1.00

385 Cal, 3 Ft, 88 Crb, 21 Pro

4 Cans

Armour Vienna Sausage

5 ounces

$ 0.47

$ 1.88

330 Cal, 30 Ft, 3 Crb, 15 Pro

4 Cans

Veg-All Mixed Vegetables (Corn, Peas & Carrots

) 15 ounces

$ 0.88

$ 3.52

140 Cal, 0 Ft, 28 Crb, 3 Pro

6 Pks

Idahoan Instant Potatoes (Add Water Only)

4 ounces

$ 0.92

$ 5.52

440 Cal, 12 Ft, 80 Crb, 8 Pro

65

2 Bags Enriched White Rice 16 ounces $ 0.68 $ 1.36 1,600 Cal, 0 Ft, 350 Crb, 30 Pro

2 Boxes Maggi Small Bouillon Cubes (beef and chicken) 2.82 ounces $ 1.28 $ 2.56 100 Cal, 0 Ft, 0 Crb, 0 Pro

4 Pks Country Gravy Dry Mix (or Brown Gravy) 2.64 ounces $ 0.98 $ 3.92 320 Cal, 16 Ft, 40 Crb, 8 Pro

8 Cans Chef Boyardee Mac & Cheese 15 ounces $ 1.00 $ 8.00 480 Cal, 20 Ft, 56 Crb, 18 Pro

4 Cans Double “Q” Pink Alaskan Salmon 14.75 ounces $ 2.26 $ 9.04 630 Cal, 21 Ft, 0 Crb, 100 Pro

4 Cans Bumble Bee Solid White Albacore (Tuna in Oil) 5 ounces $ 1.34 $ 5.36 160 Cal, 6 Ft, 0 Crb, 28 Pro

4 Cans Great Value Chunk Chicken Breast 12.5 ounces $ 1.98 $ 7.92 360 Cal, 6 Ft, 6 Crb, 66 Pro

4 Cans Spam Lunch Meat (or Dak Canned Ham) 12 ounces $ 2.44 $ 9.76 1,080 Cal, 96 Ft, 6 Crb, 42 Pro

1 Cntnr Quaker Quick Oats (or Breakfast Bars) 42 ounces $ 3.18 $ 3.18 4,500 Cal, 90 Ft, 810 Crb, 150 Pro

4 Cntnr Tang Orange Drink Mix 20 ounces $ 2.66 $ 10.64 2,160 Cal, 0 Ft, 520 Crb, 0 Pro

15 Pcgs Kool-Aid Drink Mix (Assorted Flavors) 0.13 ounces $ 0.20 $ 3.00 0 Cal, 0 Ft, 0 Crb, 0 Pro

10 lbs Granulated Sugar 5 pounds $ 2.54 $ 5.08 8,500 Cal, 0 Ft, 2,270 Crb, 0 Pro

1 Box

Instant Powdered Milk

64 ounces

$ 15.63 $ 15.63 6,400 Cal, 0 Ft, 960 Carbs, 640

Pro

Crb1 Cntnr Hershey’s Cocoa Powder

8 ounces

$ 2.96 $ 2.96 900 Cal, 22 Ft, 135 Crb, 45 Pro

8 Cans

Del Monte Fruit Cocktail (or Peaches or Pears)

15.25 ounces

$ 1.46 $ 11.68 350 Cal, 0 Ft, 84 Carbs, 0 Pro

3.5lb

Child’s Play Candy Assortment (150 Pieces)

3.5 pounds

$ 7.34 $ 7.34 6k Cal, 150 Ft, 1,350 Crb, 50 Pro

30 Eac

h Complete Multivitamin Tablets

Totals . . .

30 Each

$ 1.40 $ 1.40 0 Calories, 0 Fat, 0 Crb, 0 Pro

$ 190.23

89,020 Calories, 2,023 Fat, 14,707 Carbs, 3,319 Protein.

If you do not want to cook then omit the rice and potatoes and buy more of the complete meals in a can (Chunky Soups, Pasta, Chili with Beans, Beef Stew, etc.). Usually one can of food is just enough for one good meal for one person. However, some of the above canned foods contain enough food for two meals (lunch and supper), or for two people at the same time.

Discussion of Some of the Recommended Food Items

The powdered milk and the cocoa powder may be used to make either chocolate milk or hot chocolate.
On the other hand, if your family doesn’t like milk then don’t buy it. If you prefer coffee or tea then buy it instead. If you don’t like Kool-Aid or Tang and you prefer soft drinks or beer or wine then buy them instead.
White rice can be enhanced with bouillon cubes (either beef or chicken) or with gravy (either white country gravy or brown gravy).
Instant potatoes can be enhanced with brown gravy or white country gravy.
Armour Roast Beef can be converted into a “Mexican” meal by combining it with approximately one-half package of Taco Mix and then serving it with either Refried Beans or Black Beans. If you have some flour then you could make a burrito or tortilla shell.
Chef Boyardee Macaroni and Cheese may be eaten as a side dish by itself, or it can be converted into a casserole by add-
ing canned tuna, or canned chicken, or sliced Vienna Sausages, or diced Spam.
Pork and Beans can be made into “Beanie Wienies” by adding sliced pieces of Vienna Sausage.
The Vienna Sausages may be eaten as a simple meat item, or converted into “mini corn dogs” if you have some cornmeal, or into “pigs in a blanket” if you have some flour.
The Spam may be sliced and fried for breakfast, lunch, or supper.
The Salmon can be made into “Salmon Patties” if you add a little cornmeal.
Canned fruit may be eaten as a dessert item, or you could eat from the bag of candy.

66


The candy could be hard candies (peppermints, spear- mints, butterscotch disks, or cinnamon disks), or caramels, or tootsie rolls or any combination your family prefers.
Note: If you use a standard Vacuum Food Sealer to vacuum seal some of the above items (candy, vitamins, white rice, instant milk, sugar, cocoa powder, and quick oats), then you could extend the normal shelf life of these items by a multiple of approximately five.

Suggestions for Preparing Meals During a Short-Term

Hard Times Event

To prepare a meal from scratch normally takes more time,
more fuel, and as the food slowly cooks it emits a stronger aroma than when you simply open a can of food, heat it, and then immediately eat it.
Therefore, having canned foods that you simply heat and eat means you will need less cooking fuel and you will be keeping your cooking aromas to the absolute minimum. The absence of strong cooking aromas may help you to avoid attracting unnecessary attention to your family dur- ing a difficult short-term hard times event.
As a practical example,
Breakfast could be oatmeal, or breakfast bars, or fried Spam or fried ham, or you could skip breakfast and eat lunch at 10:00 AM and supper at 5:00 PM.
Lunch could be a complete meal from a can.
Supper could be more like a normal meal such as boiled rice or instant potatoes or beans or vegetables, plus a meat item from a can, such as salmon patties.
Remember, canned foods have been fully cooked and they only need to be heated and served. However, whenever possible it is advisable to heat your food to at least 185 de- grees Fahrenheit (85 degrees Celsius) to kill any potential harmful microorganisms that might be in the food.
It would also be a good idea to put a lid on the cook pot or skillet when you are heating the food. The lid will help to keep the heat and the aroma inside the cook pot. This means you will need less fuel to heat the food to an accept- able temperature, and it will prevent most of the delicious cooking aromas (odors) from escaping and attracting un- necessary attention to your location.
It should also be noted that some foods emit a power- ful aroma while they are being prepared, such as coffee and bacon. Therefore, if you truly love coffee then during a short-term emergency it might be advisable to have a
small supply of “instant coffee” instead of “regular coffee.” I know there is a difference between the flavor of instant coffee and regular coffee but you need to consider your priorities during a short-term emergency. For example,
Would a cup of instant coffee be okay if it did not attract any attention to your location?
Or would you prefer for everyone within a half-block ra- dius to be knocking on your door and asking you to please, please share some of your fresh brewed coffee?

Some Options for Heating Canned Foods

It is possible to heat some food items while they are still
in the can. This would mean no dirty cook pots to wash. However, after heating the can of food you will still need to transfer the food to a bowl or plate so you can stir the food to more evenly blend its ingredients in order to make it a more enjoyable eating experience.
If you decide to heat your food while it is still inside the can then you should first remove the exterior paper label, if the can has a paper label. Then you should remove the top of the can to allow the pressure to escape. Some people recommend simply punching one or two holes in the top of the can with a can opener in order to prevent the ashes from a campfire from getting into the food. However, trying to remove the lid from a can that has been heated to 120 degrees or higher can be a very challenging task.

Microwave Oven Coleman Stove Charcoal Grill Fireplace

Sterno Cooking Fuel Oil Lamp Candle in Glass Holder

Following are some options for heating canned foods:

Microwave Oven: If the power is still on a microwave oven will control the cooking aromas, and it uses very little power, and it is very fast. However, you must remove the food from the can and put it into a microwave safe con- tainer before heating the food inside the microwave oven.

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Coleman Camp Stove: Another obvious option would be a Coleman Camp Stove. One model uses Coleman fuel and a different model uses the small propane tanks. The major shortcoming is the initial investment in the grill itself and in the fuel, and the fact that they are designed to be used outdoors because they release poisonous gas fumes while in operation. Another disadvantage is that when you run out of fuel the Coleman grill will cease to function. Fi- nally, if you are forced to evacuate your home then which would you rather have in the trunk of your car: (1) a Cole- man Grill and some spare fuel, or (2) an extra case or two of canned foods?
Charcoal Grill: A small portable charcoal grill can be used to heat food. You should consider lining the bottom of the grill with a thin layer of sand, or dirt, or small gravel before starting a fire in the charcoal grill. You could use or- dinary charcoal briquettes, or you could collect some small sticks from a nearby wooded area and use them to start a very small fire inside your charcoal grill.
If you use sticks, then you should consider collecting sticks that have fallen off the trees and are caught in some bushes or are leaning against something else. These sticks will be extremely dry and they will burn well. If you collect sticks lying flat on the ground then you will probably dis- cover that many of them are damp, or moldy, or rotten and they will not burn well.
The primary shortcoming of both charcoal and sticks is that they must be used outside, and as they burn they will release an odor, or smoke, that will attract a lot of attention to your cooking area.

Grill Surface: All you really need is the top metal grill cooking surface off a charcoal grill. You could support this metal grill piece in a variety of different ways and place a heat source below it to heat your food. For example, if you were indoors you could support the metal grill piece on top of four cans of food, and then put a can of “Sterno Cooking Fuel” below the metal grill piece, and you could then heat your food in a skillet on top of the metal grill piece. If you were outdoors you could use four rocks for support and start a fire using some wood sticks from a nearby wooded area.

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Fireplace: If you have a wood burning fireplace then you could build a very small fire in your fireplace and heat your meals there. Remember that you only need to heat your food so it would be okay to heat the food over a small flame. In other words, you would not need to wait for the wood sticks to burn down into red hot coals to heat your food. This is one of the differences between simply heating a can of food and cooking from scratch. The major disad- vantage of heating food in your fireplace will be the column of chimney smoke that everyone can see. During the cool or cold winter months this would not be an unusual sight. But during the warm summer months a column of chim- ney smoke will be a “very unusual sight” and almost every- one will notice it and immediately realize you are probably cooking something inside your fireplace.

Solar Oven: You could purchase a pre-made solar oven, or you could build your own “solar oven.” Or you could simply line the inside of a small cardboard box with some aluminum foil and then put a piece of glass or a piece of clear plastic on top of the box. The box should be at least twice as big as your can of food. Place the small solar oven in front of a southern facing window to heat your canned foods. The major shortcoming of this method is that the sun must be shining which may not be the case during a short-term hard times event.

Window and a Dark Cloth: Do not remove the lid from the canned food, and do not punch any holes in the lid. Place the can of food under a dark cloth in front of a win- dow in direct sunlight for several hours. You could also use this method by placing the wrapped can of food below the rear window of your car. The dark cloth will achieve two objectives: (1) It will collect and capture more of the sun’s energy and do a better job of heating the food, and (2) It will prevent anyone who might pass by from seeing that you are heating a can of food underneath the dark cloth. The major shortcoming of this method is that the sun must be shining which may not be the case during a short-term hard times event.


Sterno Cooking Fuel: The twin packs of Sterno Cook- ing Fuel may be purchased in the camping section of most sporting goods stores, including most Walmarts. Remove the lid from the can, light the fuel, heat your food, put out the flame, put the top back on the can of fuel, and save the rest of the fuel for your next meal. Since you will only be heating your canned foods, a single can of Sterno Cooking Fuel will last a lot longer as compared to using it to cook a meal from scratch.

Oil Lamp: Remove the glass top from the oil lamp, light the wick, adjust the wick to achieve a very short flame, and then put the flame below a campfire grill and heat the food on top of the campfire grill.

Candle: Place a short round candle inside a candle hold- er and light it. The short round candles are better because they will last a lot longer inside a candle holder than a long thin candle that will burn down very quickly. You can heat your food above the flame of a candle similar to a “fondue” pot. The glass candle holder in the above picture has a long glass stem on its bottom. The long glass stem allows you to move the candle holder to a different location while the candle is still burning. Some candle holders have a flat bot- tom and the sides of the glass candle holder get extremely hot and it is very challenging to move the lit candle to a different location.
When you stop and think about the above options care- fully, the ones that would be the most dependable in the widest variety of short-term hard times events and which would attract the least amount of attention would be the last four options above. On the other hand, if the power was still on, then the microwave oven would be my first choice.

Note: Several of the above options are only a reasonable choice for heating a can of precooked food. Cooking a food item from scratch will require significantly more heat for a much longer period of time.

Conclusion

There may not be very much to do during a short-term
emergency and everyone in your family will be truly look- ing forward to each meal in order to relieve their boredom and to satisfy their hunger.
It is okay to talk about unpleasant topics at other times during the day but each member of your family should understand that all discussions at the dining table will be about pleasant topics. This will facilitate their enjoyment of their meal and it will aid in the digestive process.
Finally, please remember to thank God for every meal be-
fore your family starts eating.

Chef Boyardee Canned Pasta Note:

I have tried the Overstuffed Ravioli, and the Giant Meat-
balls, and the Regular Ravioli, and the Mini Ravioli and the
Mini Spaghetti with Meatballs.
In my opinion the Mini Ravioli and the Mini Spaghetti with Meatballs are better than the regular pastas or the giant pastas. The “mini pastas” contain more sauce, and all the food heats more evenly in less time, and the overall taste is superior.
Therefore I strongly recommend the “mini pastas” instead of the regular pastas or the giant pastas. However, since taste is a very individual experience, your family may com- pletely disagree with me and there is nothing wrong with that.
If you have young children then they will probably prefer the Chef Boyardee “ABC” and “Dinosaur” pastas because they are significantly more fun to eat. The nutritional value of these pastas is almost the same as the other pastas so there is nothing wrong will adding these special pastas to your emergency food supply for your young children.
Copyright © September 1, 2010 by Robert Wayne Atkins, P.E. All Rights Reserved. http://www.grandpappy.info/hfood30d.htm

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Real-World One-Year Emergency Food Supply

(3,000 Calories per Day for one Adult)

The original retail price for each food item was established at the beginning of the year 2008 on January 9, 2008. The To- tal Retail Cost for the entire one-year emergency food supply on January 9, 2008 was $1,385 in the Southeastern United States.
Year 2008 Inflation: The total cost of the one-year emergency food supply increased in price by 15.3% or $212 in twelve- months from January 9, 2008 ($1,385) to January 3, 2009 ($1,597).
Year 2009 Inflation: The total cost of the one-year emergency food supply increased in price by 6.1% or $97 in twelve- months from January 3, 2009 ($1,597) to January 4, 2010 ($1,694).
Year 2010 Deflation: The total cost of the one-year emergency food supply decreased in price by -1.4% or $-23 in twelve- months from January 4, 2010 ($1,694) to January 3, 2011 ($1,671).
Year 2011 Inflation: The total cost of the one-year emergency food supply increased in price by 9.3% or $165 in twelve- months from January 3, 2011 ($1,768) to January 2, 2012 ($1,933).
Combined Four Year Inflation: Over the entire four year period beginning on January 9, 2008 and ending on January 2,
2012 the total combined impact of inflation on the One-Year Emergency Food Supply has been 32.6%. In other words, in the United States of America we are paying approximately 33% more for our food every week than we were four years ago. This is significant because most of us in the United States, myself included, have not received any type of pay increase over that same four year period. Although my pay has not changed for four years I still consider myself extremely fortunate because I still have a job and I know that an overwhelming number of people cannot find work of any kind.

The One-Year Emergency Food Supply List

The retail Cost of the following “One-Year Emergency Food Supply” is based on prices as of March 1, 2012.

Quantity

Calories

Cost

Item (Number In Parenthesis = Total Calories per One Bag, Jar, or Can)

70 Pounds

105,000

$ 40

Long Grain White Rice in 10 or 20 pound Bags (very long shelf life)

70 Pounds

105,000

$ 28

Whole Wheat Berries or Flour (not self-rising) (7,500 Calories per 5 lbs.)

30 Pounds

48,240

$ 16

5 lb. Bag Corn Meal (8,040 Calories per 5 lb. Bag)

4 Boxes

12,800

$ 10

32 oz. Box Aunt Jemima Buttermilk Complete Pancake/Waffle Mix (3,200)

4 Boxes

18,000

$ 15

42 oz. Box Quaker Quick 1 Minute Oats (4,500)

4 Boxes 3

1,720

$ 8

5 lb. Box Quaker Quick Grits (7,930)

36 Boxes

60,480

$ 39

16 oz. Box Spaghetti Noodles (Angel hair or thin cooks faster) (1,680 Calories)

24 Cans

11,520

$ 24

15 oz. Can Chef Boyardee Brand Macaroni and Cheese (480)

24 Cans

12,000

$ 24

15 oz. Can Chef Boyardee Brand Pasta (lasagna, ravioli, spaghetti wi etc.) (500)

24 Cans

8,640

$ 36

18.8 oz. Can Campbell’s Chunky Soup (buy the soups with chicken) (360)

48 Cans

9,000

$ 66

5 oz. Can Bumble Bee Brand Tuna in Oil (water pack has fewer calories) (187)

12 Cans

9,600

$ 46

16 oz. Can Dak Brand Canned Ham (no refrigeration required) (800)

24 Cans

24,480

$ 60

12 oz. Can Spam (1,020)

24 Cans

9,000

$ 12

5 oz. Can Vienna Sausage (375)

24 Cans

9,000

$ 96

12 oz. Can Roast Beef (375)

24 Cans

18,720

$ 50

15 oz. Can Hormel Roast Beef Hash (Corned Beef Hash) (beef & potatoes) (780)

48 Cans

30,240

$ 119

24 oz. Can Armour Brand Beef Stew (with potatoes & carrots) (630)

48 Cans

33,600

$ 56

15 oz. Can Chili with Beans (700)

96 Cans

35,520

$ 65

15 oz. Can Beans (assorted different varieties) (370)

180 Cans

25,200

$ 122

15 oz. Can Mixed Vegetables (note: green beans have very few calories) (140)

12 Boxes

41,280

$ 33

32 oz. Box Instant Potatoes (add water only preferred) (3,440)

48 Cans

15,120

$ 47

15 oz. Can Fruit Cocktail (or peaches, pears, pineapple, etc.) (315)

70

24 Cans

3,000

$ 11

6 oz. Can Tomato Paste (125)

36 Cans

15,120

$ 42

26.5 oz. Can Del Monte Spaghetti Sauce (Do not buy the Hunt’s Brand) (420)

12 Cans

480

$ 12

4 oz. Can Sliced Mushrooms (not pieces) (40)

12 Cans

3,600

$ 12

10.75 oz. Can Cream of Chicken Soup (Chicken Noodle) (eat if you get sick) (300)

12 Boxes

76,800

$ 219

64 oz. Box Powdered Instant Non-fat Dry Milk (long shelf life) (6,400)

24 Cans

11,520

$ 21

12 oz. Can Evaporated Milk (480)

3 Boxes

7,680

$ 14

32 oz. Box Velvetta Brand Cheese (short shelf life) (2,560)

12 Boxes

38,400

$ 36

1 lb. Box Butter (short shelf life unless frozen) (no margarine) (3,200)

5 Jars

60,000

$ 57

50.7 oz. Jar Extra-Virgin Olive Oil (indefinite shelf life) (12,000)

2 Cans

24,860

$ 10

3 lb. Can Crisco Shortening (very short shelf life) (12,430)

12 Cans

10,800

$ 33

8 oz. Container Hershey’s Cocoa Powder (900)

8 Cans

9,600

$ 15

16 oz. Can Hershey’s Cocoa Syrup (1,200)

25 Pounds

42,500

$ 15

5 lb. Bag White Granulated Sugar (indefinite shelf life) (8,500)

12 Pounds

10,200

$ 15

1 lb. Box Light Brown or Dark Brown Sugar (indefinite shelf life) (1,700)

12 Pounds

10,800

$ 15

1 lb. Box Confectioners Sugar (indefinite shelf life) (1,800)

12 Boxes

26,400

$ 18

20 oz. Box Brownie Mix (or Cake Mix) (2,200)

6 Jars

11,520

$ 10

16 oz. Jar Light Corn Syrup (indefinite shelf life) (1,920)

6 Jars

7,200

$ 39

12.5 oz. Jar 100% Pure Maple Syrup (indefinite shelf life) (1,200)

9 Jars

10,240

$ 57

16 oz. Jar “Sue Bee Brand” Clover Honey (indefinite shelf life) (1,280)

12 Jars

36,480

$ 31

18 oz. Jar Peanut Butter (3,040)

12 Jars

15,600

$ 19

16 oz. Jar Jelly or Preserves (very long shelf life) (1,300)

48 Each

960

$ 11

Beef Bouillon Large Cubes (20 per large cube) (1 large cube = 4 small cubes)

48 Each

960

$ 11

Chicken Bouillon Large Cubes (20 per large cube) (1 large cube = 4 small cubes)

12 Boxes

20,160

$ 12

16 oz. Box Corn Starch (indefinite shelf life) (1,680)

24 Boxes

0

$ 17

16 oz. Box Baking Soda (indefinite shelf life)

12 Jars

0

$ 72

2.62 oz. Cream of Tartar (indefinite shelf life)

24 Pkgs.

0

$ 12

5/16 oz. Package Hodgson Mill Brand Yeast (store in Ziploc bag in the freezer)

6 Bottles

0

$ 22

2 oz. Bottle Vanilla Extract (indefinite shelf life)

24 Pounds

0

$ 8

4 lb. Box Pure Salt (Morton Brand Canning and Pickling Salt) (indefinite shelf life)

12 Jars

0

$ 12

2.6 oz. Ground Black Pepper (or Whole Peppercorns have an indefinite shelf life)

12 Jars

0

$ 6

5.5 oz. Seasoned Meat Tenderizer (Walmart)

12 Jars

0

$ 6

3.12 oz. Onion Powder (Walmart)

2 Jars

0

$ 1

0.9 oz. Oregano (Walmart)

2 Jars

0

$ 2

2.5 oz. Garlic Powder (or Garlic Salt) (Walmart)

2 Jars

0

$ 1

2.37 oz. Cinnamon (Walmart)

1 Jar

0

$ 5

1.75 oz. Cayenne Red Pepper

2 Bottles

0

$ 4

15 oz. Bottle Lemon Juice (short shelf life)

1 Jug

0

$ 4

1 Gallon Apple Cider Vinegar (indefinite life if stored in glass at 40°F-70°F in dark)

------ ------

------

------

Totals = 1,129,

040

$1,931

One-Year Emergency Food Supply for One Adult

Explanation of the Foods Included in the One-Year Emergency Food Supply

Special Note: On January 3, 2011 a few minor changes were made to the above list. During the year 2010 some package
sizes were discontinued by the manufacturer and replaced by other package sizes. Therefore the above data was revised to match the package sizes that are currently available for sale. A list of the changes appears at the very end of this article in the “Revision History.” This changed the total price from $1,671 to $1,768.
Frozen Foods: Do not invest in frozen foods for a long-term hard times event. Do not invest in a big freezer for a long-term hard times event. During a long-term hard times event you may not have any electricity. If you produce your own electric- ity using solar panels or a generator then you will need to use that electricity in the most efficient manner possible. A food freezer is not a good way to use that electricity. The reason is because you can currently purchase a huge variety of deli- cious foods that do not require refrigeration or freezing. The money you would have invested in a food freezer would be much better invested in a larger inventory of foods that do not need to be refrigerated or frozen.

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Comfort Foods: The above list contains 60 different food items. However, you should also purchase some Kool- Aid, Tang, Coffee, Tea, Soft Drinks, Beer, Wine, Miniature Tootsie Rolls, Caramels, Assorted Hard Candies, or what- ever else appeals to you. These are referred to as “comfort foods” and they can definitely help make the hard times more bearable.
Can Opener: Every family should invest in an old-fashioned manually operated can opener. This type of can opener is placed on the top of the can, then the handles are squeezed together to puncture a hole in the top of the can, and then the crank is rotated to open the can. If the electricity is off then you will be very glad you have one of these manually operated can openers. It is okay to have a “Dollar Store” quality manual can opener as a backup but each family should also own a high quality stainless steel can opener. Being able to open your canned foods safely and quickly will help to prevent a wide variety of accidents during hard times. (Note: Rinse the piercing/cutting edge in clean wa- ter after each use to keep the can opener clean and sani- tary and to significantly extend its useful life.)
Canned Spaghetti Sauce: Although the Del Monte Brand and the Hunt’s Brand both contain 26.5 ounces of spaghet- ti sauce, and they sell for the same price per can, the Del Monte Brand has 420 calories per can whereas the Hunt’s Brand only has 300 calories per can. The Del Monte Brand is thick spaghetti sauce. The Hunt’s Brand is watery spa- ghetti sauce. I do not know when Hunt’s decided to change the consistency of their spaghetti sauce but it now contains a lot more water than the Del Monte Brand. When I re- cently opened a can of the Hunt’s spaghetti sauce I was shocked that the sauce poured out of the can almost like water. I was expecting it to flow out slowly like thick spa- ghetti sauce should. It didn’t. That was when I checked the number of total calories per can for both the Del Monte and the Hunt’s Brands. The Hunt’s Brand now has 120 few- er calories per can than the Del Monte Brand because the Hunt’s Brand now contains more water. Adding more water is one method a company may use to keep the can size the same, and the number of total ounces the same, and keep the selling price the same, but actually deliver a cheaper product to its customers. I mention this because with the economy being depressed, then more companies may de- cide to use a similar strategy. Therefore if you are buying a lot of food for future consumption then you would be well advised to check the total calories inside the can and compare it to the number in parentheses in the above list before you invest a lot of your money.
Quantities: You should have enough food for each mem- ber of your family for at least six-months. If you are an ex- perienced farmer or rancher living on your own land, then

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you should also have enough seeds to replenish your food supplies on an annual basis. You will also need your own canning jars and lids or you will need to know how your an- cestors preserved food without electricity or canning jars. If you have no previous experience with farming then you would probably be better off with a two or three-years sup- ply of food for each family member.
Appetite Fatigue: Your emergency food supply must have a reasonable variety of different food items. If you only have a limited number of different food items to eat then appetite fatigue will result in your starvation even though you have food. Your mind and your body will simply reject the thought of eating the same food again and again and again. If you doubt the truth of this statement then con- duct a simple test. Pick your favorite four food items that you enjoy eating more than anything else and then only eat those four food items for one-month. Before one-week has passed you will be repulsed at the thought of eating those foods again. Try it and see if you can force yourself to only eat those four foods for an entire month.
Appetite fatigue does not occur when there is no food available. For example, long-term war prisoners in a P.O.W. camp will generally eat almost anything. Each day they do not have the option to eat or not eat. On many days they get nothing to eat. When they do get fed there is never enough food to satisfy their hunger and therefore they will eat almost anything at any time and be grateful for what- ever it happens to be.
Appetite fatigue occurs when you have food to eat and you have the choice to eat or not eat. This is one of the rea- sons old people in a retirement home usually lose weight and their health. The cafeteria serves the same basic bland food over and over again.
Therefore you should have some reasonable variety in your emergency food supplies.
Substitutions: If you are allergic to a food then do not buy it. If you do not enjoy the taste of one of the above recom- mended foods then do not buy it. Feel free to substitute any food item and name brands you prefer. However, you should try to keep a reasonable balance of meat, carbohy- drates, vegetables, fruits, grains, and dairy products.
For example, instead of buying 48 cans of Fruit Cocktail you may wish to buy a few cans of apples, peaches, pears, cherries, and pineapple based on your own individual taste preferences. The important issue is to have some canned fruits in your food storage plan.

The same concept applies to vegetables. The above list rec-
ommends 180 cans of mixed vegetables, 96 cans of beans,
12 boxes of instant potatoes, 48 cans of beef stew (meat, potatoes, and carrots), 24 cans of roast beef hash (meat and potatoes), and 48 cans of chili with beans. If you like the canned “Mixed Vegetables” then purchase them. But you could purchase cans of corn, peas, spinach, or any oth- er vegetable you wish. However, you should consider the nutritional value of each vegetable by reading the nutrition label. For example, green beans cost almost the same as all the other vegetables but they have very few calories. Therefore, green beans would be a poor choice from a nu- tritional value standpoint. There would be nothing wrong with having a few cans of green beans in your pantry for variety but the number of those cans should be very small compared to the other vegetables. However, most other canned beans have relatively high levels of protein and calories.
You should also adjust the recommended quantities based on your family’s actual needs. If you have several family members who drink a lot of milk, then you should purchase more dry powdered milk than suggested.
Calories: An active adult engaged in normal physical labor can burn 3,000 calories per day without gaining weight. However, an adult who has a desk job would gain weight. Therefore the concept of a “One-Year Food Supply” is based on the average physically active adult. If you were not very active during a disaster event then you could easily reduce your calorie intake to 2,000 calories per day and still main- tain your weight. Therefore, the above food reserves would last a non-active adult for 18 months with no weight loss. If you wanted to lose a little weight, then the above food could last for 24 to 30 months. (Note: For an investment of approximately $1,931 one adult could stay alive and in good health for two and one-half years. Or the above food could feed two adults for 15 months.)
Brand Names: All the above foods are generic brand or store brand except where brand names are specifically indi- cated. For example, in my opinion Armour Brand Beef Stew is pleasant to eat but the cheaper brands are disgusting. Therefore, purchase and eat one can of each of the above food items to see if the flavor of that brand is agreeable to you before you purchase a year’s supply of that item and then discover it tastes horrible.
Taste is a very personal experience. Two people in the same exact family can have entirely different opinions about the same exact food. The limited number of brand name foods I recommend are based on my individual taste preferences and I do not have any financial interest in any of those food
companies. You will need to make your own decision about which brands of food you prefer.
If you are already happy with a specific name brand then it would probably be a better investment than a generic brand you are not familiar with. However, if there is a big price difference between the brands, such as 52 cents for the generic and 94 cents for your brand, then it would be a good idea to buy one can of the generic brand and take it home and eat it to see how it compares to your preferred name brand food item.
Prices: All the above prices are the average retail price in United States Dollars in the southeast United States. None of the prices are special temporary sale prices. If you can find any of the above items offered at a really good dis- count, then you should stock up on that item during the week it is on sale.
Package Sizes: Larger packages are usually a little cheaper per ounce, but if half the package spoils after you open it and before it can all be used, then you lose. Therefore re- sist the temptation to buy the large one-gallon size cans of food. If you need more food per meal than one regular size can then you can always open two cans. However, instead of opening two cans of the same thing you might consider opening one can of two different food items to provide more variety during the meal.

Storage Area: You should carefully consider where you will keep your emergency food stored for the following reasons:

It takes a lot of space to store a one-year supply of food.

It will take a significant amount of time and effort to move all the food between locations.

The food should not be located where it may be acciden- tally discovered by anyone.

Absolutely no one, except your spouse, should know about your emergency food reserves.

The above recommended foods need to be stored in a temperature controlled environment for a variety of rea- sons.

If a disaster unfolds rapidly and unexpectedly, you will need to be able to get to your food without drawing at- tention to your family.

If possible, always purchase your food on cardboard flats for easy convenient stacking when you put it into a storage

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area. In other words, purchase canned goods in multiples of 6, 12, or 24 depending on the number that fit onto a standard cardboard flat. Take the cardboard flat with you through the check-out line when you pay for the food. If your store cuts one side off the front of the cardboard flats then take two cardboard flats and turn them end-to-end one inside the other to make one new cardboard flat that will hold your canned goods without collapsing.
When items are on sale at your local grocery store they sometimes leave them on cardboard flats at the end of an aisle. Just pick up an entire cardboard flat of food and put it into your shopping cart. If appropriate, put two, three, or more flats of food into your shopping cart and then pay for them at the cashier station. It would not hurt to have a little more food than you think you might need.
Usually it is much easier to buy large quantities of food at a place like Sam’s Club or Costco. You can pick up entire cases of food already enclosed in plastic wrap and put them on your flatbed cart and take them to the checkout area. How- ever, food items are very, very heavy so resist the tempta- tion to purchase an entire year’s food supply in one trip. Your vehicle may not be able to move 2,000 pounds of food in one trip. The only disadvantage of purchasing at a “Mem- bership Warehouse” is that the store keeps a permanent record of all your purchases in its computer, even if you pay with cash. On the other hand, if you pay with cash at a grocery store and do not use a “Store Shopping Card” then there will be no permanent record of your food purchases. The lack of an electronic trail to your emergency food sup- plies may allow you to keep your food if the government decides to collect all the food purchased by “unethical hoarders” who made their food purchases just prior to a worldwide food shortage. If you need to use a credit card to finance your food purchases, then you should consider going to your local bank and asking your bank teller to give you a “cash advance” against your credit card. Most banks will do this regardless of which bank issued the credit card.
Each time you go to the store it is usually better to pur- chase food in more than one food category instead of in- vesting all your money in only one food item. This way you could gradually build your emergency food reserves. If a disaster were to occur before you finished, you would still have some food in each major food group, instead of hav- ing lots of rice and no vegetables, as an example.
Either write or tape a simple label onto each cardboard flat of food indicating the date you purchased it.
It is very easy to forget what you have already purchased so you should keep a written list of all the food items you have added to your reserves. This list will help you to strategi-

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cally build your food stores without overlooking something or buying too much of something else.
The shelf life of most of the above items is five years or more, regardless of the expiration date printed on the package.
Store food at temperatures between 40ºF to 70°F if pos- sible. Higher storage temperatures shortens the shelf life, reduces the vitamins and calories, and changes the taste.
Mix It Up: If most of your cans are approximately the same size such as 15 ounces, then you should consider mix- ing your canned foods together on a single cardboard flat. For example, some people have canned corn, pinto beans, mixed vegetables, fruit cocktail, spaghetti with meatballs, and chili with beans, and these cans are stored 24 cans per cardboard flat. However, instead of having 24 cans of ex- actly the same thing on a single cardboard flat it would be smarter to mix the canned foods together and put some of each type of canned food on each cardboard flat. For example, a cardboard flat that contains 24 cans could hold:
4 cans of corn,
4 cans of pinto beans,
4 cans of mixed vegetables,
4 cans of fruit cocktail,
4 cans of spaghetti with meatballs, and
4 cans of chili with beans.
This would be advantageous for all the following reasons:
Plan A (Staying Home): If a hard times tragedy event were to occur and you were forced to start consuming your emergency food, then some of each type of food would be in the cardboard flat on top of a stack. You would not have to move everything to get to a food item that was on the bottom of the stack. This would also help you to use your emergency food in a more balanced nutritional manner be- cause you would know you should consume all the food on one cardboard flat before eating food items off the next cardboard flat.
Plan B (Living with a Relative): If you were going to transfer some of your canned food to the home of a close relative, or into a storage area at a distant small rural town, then you could move a few cardboard flats of food to that location and you would know you had a reasonable assort- ment of foods on each cardboard flat.

Plan C (Disappearing into the Wilderness): If you were forced to quickly evacuate your current home and you only had a few minutes to load your vehicle, then you could add as many cardboard flats of food as you could and you


would know each cardboard flat contained a reasonable variety of canned foods.
Rotation: Long-term food storage advice usually includes the recommendation that you use your emergency food on a regular basis and replace it as you use it by employing a first-in first-out inventory strategy. This is good advice but it is very difficult for most families to execute. The sheer volume of any reasonable emergency food supply makes it very difficult to rotate your food without a tremendous in- vestment in time and energy. Therefore most families sim- ply buy their emergency food, put it into a suitable storage area, and then forget about it. May I suggest a compromise between these two extremes. Most of the recommended long-term storage food items have a shelf life of five-years or longer. The major exceptions are yeast, spices, lemon juice, fresh butter, Velvetta Brand cheese, flour, and corn meal. If you will store these items where you can easily get to them then you could gradually use these items and re- place them as they are consumed. If you discover that two or three years have passed and some of these items have not been used then you should consider replacing them with fresh food. However the balance of your emergency storage food should still be safe and enjoyable to eat, even though you did not rotate it the same way you did your short shelf life foods.

Consumption: Carefully ration your food at the beginning of hard times. Don’t wait until half your food is gone before you consider rationing.

Chef Boyardee Macaroni and Cheese: The Chef Boyard- ee Brand Macaroni and Cheese is recommended instead of the boxed macaroni and cheese because it contains al- most twice the calories and it is already cooked so it only needs to be heated before you eat it (you don’t have to add both milk and butter to cook it). In addition, the powdered cheese packages in the boxes of macaroni and cheese have a relatively short shelf life and they will go bad long before the dry macaroni noodles. Therefore, the canned macaroni and cheese is a better value from a nutritional perspective and an ease of preparation perspective and a shelf life per- spective.

Campbell’s Chunky Brand Soup: Canned chicken was removed from the list because many families, including my own, do not find the taste of canned chicken to be very enjoyable. However, the Campbell’s Chunky Brand Soups that contain chicken also contain a lot of other tasty foods, and they have more volume, and they have more nutrients, and they cost less than a can of chicken. Therefore, in order to add chicken to the menu in addition to beef, tuna, and ham, the Campbell’s Chunky Brand Chicken Based Soups are perfect. Some examples would be: Chicken Broccoli

Cheese with Potato, Chicken Corn Chowder, Chicken and Dumplings, Grilled Chicken and Sausage Gumbo, and Fajita Chicken with Rice and Beans.

Cooking From Scratch: At the current time you may not use some of the food items in the recommended food list. However, in the event of an emergency you will probably discover you will need all the foods in the list, including the spices. I recommend you access the recipes on my web site and print a hard copy of all my recipes. Then store those recipes in a three-ring binder with your emergency food supplies. During an actual emergency those recipes will help you to prepare an interesting and pleasant variety of meals using the basic staple foods and spices in the above recommended list of foods.

Additional Food Items: If you have the money and the space, then purchase extra white rice, beans, and wheat.

White Rice: Ordinary white rice should be one of the primary emergency foods every family has stored in their home. White rice goes well as a side dish with almost any meal (including wild game and fresh fish). White rice is nor- mally enriched with several vitamins and it is a complex carbohydrate which is something the human body needs.
White rice is extremely cheap when compared to other foods. A ten-pound bag of white rice can be purchased at many grocery stores for about six-dollars (or a twenty- pound bag for about twelve-dollars). At approximately
60-cents per pound you are buying 1,500 calories per pound or 15,000 calories per ten-pound bag. That is a true bargain. And white rice has a shelf life between twenty to thirty-years if stored in a cool, dry area that is kept between
40 to 70 degrees year round. (Note: Brown rice has a shelf life of six-months or less.)
In a hard times survival situation a ten-pound bag of white rice would feed one person for about 52 days if the per- son ate 1.5-cup of cooked rice per day (equal to 1/2 cup uncooked rice). This would be approximately 300 calories per day from rice. A recommended one-year food supply of white rice for one person would be approximately 70 pounds of white rice. Obviously other foods would also need to be eaten but the white rice could serve as an inex- pensive part of the daily menu.
However it should be noted that white rice has two disad-
vantages in a hard times survival situation:
White rice needs to be prepared with fresh clean water. Therefore each family must determine how they are going to address the water issue. Additional information about water is on this web site at: How to Find Water and How to

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Make Water Safe to Drink.
White rice has a tendency to become very unexciting after it has been eaten on a regular basis for an extended period of time.
There are a vast multitude of recipes that use white rice as a primary ingredient. Unfortunately most of those recipes require an assortment of herbs, spices, and many other in- gredients that most of us don’t have in our kitchen pan- tries. The recipes listed on this web site are unique in that respect. Most of the white rice recipes on this web site only require a few ingredients, and many of those ingredients are ones that most of us already have in our kitchen pan- tries. Therefore the white rice recipes on this web site will help to relieve the problem of dietary boredom or appetite fatigue.
Beans: A small quantity of dry beans may be substituted for some of the canned beans. Dry beans can be planted as seed in a garden and they will produce a new crop of beans at the end of the summer growing season. Dry beans are sold at most grocery stores inside 1, 2, and 4 pound plas- tic bags. However, it should be noted that dry beans will continue to get drier and drier with the passage of time and they will gradually become too hard to cook and eat after about 3 or 4 years in storage. Therefore, if you an- ticipate storing your beans for an extended period of time then the canned beans are a better option. Canned beans are already fully cooked inside the can and they will be ed- ible many, many years after the printed expiration date on the can. (Note: I have personally eaten canned beans that were ten years old and they tasted just like they had been recently canned.)
Salt: The above food list recommends the purchase of more salt than you would need in one-year because almost all the canned and processed foods already contain ade- quate salt. The reason salt is on the list is to provide the op- tion to cook, season, and/or preserve any fresh vegetables or meat you may be able to obtain during a long-term di- saster event. Salt is one of the basic ingredients the human body requires to maintain good long-term health. At the present time salt is very cheap but during a disaster event it may become very difficult to acquire.
Pure Salt may be used to help preserve food. Iodized salt should not be used as a food preservative. However, io- dized salt is the best salt to use when adding salt to your food just before you eat it. Your body needs a little iodine on a regular basis and a good way to get iodine is by adding a little iodized salt onto your food at the table. I recom- mend the Morton Lite Iodized Salt because it can also be used to create an “electrolyte beverage.” Therefore, in ad- dition to Pure Salt, it would probably also be a good idea to

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purchase one or two 11-ounce Morton Lite Salt containers and add them to your one-year emergency food supply.
Pepper: If your family enjoys the taste of pepper then you will need to store some pepper as part of your emergency food supplies. You have two options: ground black pep- per or whole peppercorns. Whole peppercorns have an indefinite shelf life if stored in their original packaging in the dark in a temperature controlled environment. Or you can vacuum seal the peppercorns to completely eliminate any aroma or taste loss as a result of exposure to the air or humidity. If you invest in peppercorns then you will also need to invest in a pepper grinder. I suggest you purchase a refillable normal pepper grinder and not one of those little pepper grinders in the spice rack of your grocery store that contains a small amount of peppercorns. The majority of those little pepper grinders cannot be opened and refilled.
Yeast: Freeze store bought yeast until it is needed. Stir a lit- tle crumbled yeast into some warm water (105ºF to 115ºF or 40ºC to 46ºC). Test the water on your wrist. It should feel warm but not hot. If the water is too hot it will kill the yeast. If the water is too cold it will slow down the process. Adding a little sugar to the water will speed up the process. Adding salt or fat will slow it down. Good yeast will become foamy and creamy after about 10 to 12 minutes.
Don’t waste your package yeast. After you have added yeast to some bread dough, pinch off one handful of the bread dough after the first rise and save it in an airtight container in a cool dark place. The next day thoroughly mix (knead) the old dough into a new batch of dough. The yeast will multiply and spread throughout the new batch. After the first rise, pinch off a handful of dough and save it. Con- tinue this process each time you make yeast bread and you will be able to make bread for a very long time from that one original package of yeast.
Baking Powder: Both yeast and baking powder will cause your bread dough to rise. But both yeast and baking pow- der have relatively short shelf lives. The good news is that you can make your own baking powder as follows:
1 part baking soda.
1 part corn starch.
2 parts cream of tartar.
Mix together to make fresh baking powder.
Baking soda, corn starch, and cream of tartar have an in-
definite shelf life if properly stored.
However, after you mix them together a slow chemical re- action begins and the shelf life of the resulting baking pow- der is much less.

Therefore make your baking powder as you need it and do not make more than you will need in a specific recipe.

Coleman Camp Oven Baking Options: During a serious hard times event you may need to cook and bake using a wood burning fire.

For baking you have two options as follows:

Cast Iron Dutch Oven: Instructions for using a Dutch oven for baking are at the following link on my web site: Cast Iron Cookware.

Folding Camp Oven: You could purchase a folding metal camp oven and bake over a propane stove or a campfire. These folding ovens come in a variety of different sizes and they may be purchased at some Army/Navy stores, some hardware stores, and some Walmarts.

Seasoned Meat Tenderizer: The reason the seasoned meat tenderizer is on the list is because it is really cheap at the current time and it will make it a lot easier for your entire family to gradually adjust to the flavor of any “wild game meat” you may be able to acquire during a long-term hard times event.

Bouillon Cubes: Bouillon cubes are also a seasoning. A large cube should be cut into quarter sections so each piece is the same size as a regular small cube. These cubes may be used to enhance or improve the flavor of a variety of dif- ferent foods. For example, a cube may be used to enhance the flavor of white rice by adding it to some boiling water before you add the white rice, or it may be used to enhance the flavor of a casserole. A large cube only contains twenty calories and a small cube only contains five calories. Some of the different brands of cubes do not contain any calories. Bouillon cubes do not contain any carbohydrates, or pro- tein, or vitamins. Therefore their food value is negligible, the same as any other seasoning or flavoring. If you simply add a bouillon cube to some water then you will change the taste of that water but you will not be creating a full- bodied soup that will sustain you and restore your energy. You will only be creating some flavored water.
Long-Term Storage Foods: Freeze-dried and dehydrated foods are also an outstanding choice for long-term food storage and you should include them in your food storage plan if you can find them available at a price you can afford. Occasionally these items are on backorder and it may take weeks or months before the food is delivered to you. That is one of the advantages of buying food at your local gro- cery store. You take possession of your food immediately and you don’t have to worry about receiving a very polite notice at some future date that your order has been can
celed and it will not be shipped to you for reasons beyond the control of the seller.

Vitamins

The following is not medical advice nor is it a medical rec-
ommendation. If you have a medical question then please
consult a licensed medical professional.
During a long-term hard times event the nutritional value of your daily meals will probably not be as high as during normal times. To help maintain your health and to help pre- vent a number of vitamin deficiency health problems, your family should have a reasonable supply of complete multi- vitamins. The health benefits of vitamins is usually not fully appreciated by people in the United States until they have a vitamin deficiency and a health problem develops as a result of that deficiency, such as bleeding gums and loose teeth. Therefore each member of your family should take a complete multivitamin on a regular basis, unless they have been advised not to by a medical professional.
During a hard times event if you are not sure how long it will be before you can replenish your supply of vitamins then you may need to ration your vitamins and only take one vitamin every two or three days. This is a decision you will need to make yourself.

Vacuum Food Sealer

Many foods can be protected from insects, oxygen, and humidity by sealing them inside a vacuum seal bag. Some examples would be salt, peppercorns, baking soda, corn starch, corn meal, sugar, dry noodles, grits, instant pota- toes, instant milk, oatmeal flakes, white rice, tootsie rolls, and hard candies.
Vacuum sealing will preserve the freshness and the original flavor of the sealed food approximately three to five times longer than if the food is not sealed.
Vacuum sealing will also significantly extend the shelf life of some foods because you eliminate the oxygen and the humidity that can gradually destroy the food.
If you use vacuum sealed storage bags you will not need to purchase any of the “oxygen absorber packets” because the vacuum sealing process will remove all the oxygen from inside the specially designed bags.
A cheap good quality food vacuum sealer will cost about
$40 and a two-roll box of vacuum seal bags will cost about
$22.

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If you buy the 11-inch wide rolls that are 16-feet long then you can cut individuals bags from the roll to the exact length you need. Therefore there will be very little waste because:
You won’t need to seal a small item inside a large bag, and You can seal the foods in the quantities you think you will need so you can open one bag at a time and the rest of your food will remain fresh inside its own vacuum sealed bag.
Immediately after you vacuum seal an item inside a vacu- um storage bag use a medium tip permanent black magic marker to write a brief description of the contents on the top of the bag and the date you sealed the bag, such as:
16 ounces Pure Salt, Sealed Feb. 2010.
Note: Vacuum sealing is not a substitute for refrigeration or freezing. Any food item than needs to be refrigerated or frozen will still need to be kept in the refrigerator or freezer after you vacuum seal it. However, vacuum sealing will help that food item to remain edible about 3 to 5 times longer than if it wasn’t sealed. It will eliminate the problem with freezer burn because you will have isolated the food from the cold dry air inside the freezer.

Instant Non-Fat Dry Powdered Milk

Instant Nonfat Powdered Milk will last at least 20 years if
properly stored.
The easiest way to store and preserve instant milk for fu- ture consumption is to use a vacuum food sealer. However, if you simply pour some instant milk powder into a vacuum seal bag and then you attempt to draw a vacuum on the bag you will discover that some of the milk powder will be sucked into the seam area. This will result in the bag not being properly sealed and air will gradually enter the bag and your instant milk will deteriorate more rapidly.
The simple solution to this problem is to purchase instant powdered milk in the one-quart paper packs. There are usually several of these one-quart packs in a box of instant milk. Open the box and remove the one-quart packs of in- stant milk. Select a vacuum bag of a matching size or cut a bag that will work from a long roll of vacuum seal mate- rial. Either two or four of the one-quart instant milk packs will usually fit nicely in one vacuum bag, depending on the size of the bag. Use some scissors to snip a very short cut (about 1/4 inch long) into the edge of each paper milk pack to break the seal of the pack. Then place the milk packs in- side the vacuum bag and draw a vacuum on the bag. The air inside the paper milk packs will be withdrawn but almost none of the dry milk powder will escape. This means you will have succeeded in vacuum sealing your instant milk.

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Then store your sealed instant milk inside a suitable con-
tainer with a lid in a dark cool dry place.

Wheat Berries

I recommend the Golden 86 or White Wheat in a six-gallon
pail. This type of wheat is closer in flavor to the average bread that most people in the United States now eat.
A six-gallon pail of wheat berries will cost about $72 (which includes the shipping fee) and a six-gallon pail contains about 72,000 calories.
One internet store that sells wheat berries is: http://www.pleasanthillgrain.com/buy_wheat_whole_ grain_red_white_wheat_berries_making_bread_flour. aspx
The wheat is vacuum sealed inside a mylar bag and then sealed inside the six-gallon pail.
Therefore the shelf life of the wheat inside one of these pails will be more than 30 years.
You will also need a hand-operated wheat grinder.
If you can afford it then you should consider buying an equal amount of red wheat berries and white wheat ber- ries. One type of wheat is better for loaves of bread and one type of wheat is better for cakes, cookies, and donuts. The above web site has some good information on the dif- ferent types of wheat berries.
Unlike some of the other food items, if a hard times event does not force you to eat your wheat berries, then your wheat pails can be an investment that you can pass on to your children and grandchildren.

Copyright © 2008,2012 by Robert Wayne Atkins, P.E. All Rights Reserved. http://www.grandpappy.info/hfood1yr.htm

The Seven Major Mistakes in Food Storage

By Vickie Tate

A month or two ago I met a cute little gal who was talking to me about her newly begun food storage. “You know,” she be- gan, “I’ve dreaded doing my food storage for years, its seems so blah, but the way national events are going my husband and I decided we couldn’t put it off anymore. And, do you know, it really hasn’t been hard. We just bought 20 bags of wheat, my husband found a place to get 60 pound cans of honey, and now all we have to do is get a couple of cases of powdered milk. Could you tell me where to get the milk?” After I suggested several distributors, I asked, “Do you know how to cook with your wheat?” “Oh,” she laughed, “if we ever need it I’ll learn how. My kids only like white bread and I don’t have a wheat grinder.” She had just made every major mistake in storing food (other than not storing anything at all.) But she’s not alone. Through 14 years of helping people prepare, I found most people’s storage starts out looking just like hers. So what’s wrong with this storage plan? There are seven serious problems that may occur trying to live on these basics:

1.) VARIETY -

Most people don’t have enough variety in their storage.

95% of the people I’ve worked with only stored the 4 basic
items we mentioned earlier: wheat, milk, honey, and salt. Statistics show most of us won’t survive on such a diet for several reasons. a.) Many people are allergic to wheat and may not be aware of it until they are eating it meal after meal. b.) Wheat is too harsh for young children. They can tolerate it in small amounts but not as their main staple. c.) We get tired of eating the same foods over and over and many times prefer not to eat than to sample that particular food again. This is called appetite fatigue. Young children and older people are particularly susceptible to it. Store less wheat than is generally suggest and put the difference into a variety of other grains, particularly ones your family likes to eat. Also store a variety of beans. This will add variety of color, texture and flavor. Variety is the key to a successful storage program. It is essential that you store flavorings such as tomato, bouilion, cheese, and onion.
Also, include a good supply of the spices you like to cook with. These flavorings and spices allow you to do many creative things with your grains and beans. Without them you are severely limited. One of the best suggestions I can give you is buy a good food storage cookbook. Go through it and see what your family would really eat. Notice the ingredients as you do it. This will help you more than anything else to know what items to store.

2.) EXTENDED STAPLES -

Few people get beyond storing the four basic items, but it is extremely important that you do so. Never put all your eggs in one basket. Store dehydrated and/or freeze-dried foods as well as home canned and store bought canned goods. Make sure you add cooking oil, shortening, baking powder, soda, yeast and powdered eggs. You can’t cook even the most basic recipes without these items. Because of limited space I won’t list all the items that should be included in a well-balanced storage program. They are all included in the The New Cookin With Home Storage cookbook, as well as information on how much to store, and where to purchase it.

3.) VITAMINS -

Vitamins are important, especially if you have children, since

children do not store body reserves of nutrients as adults

do. A good quality multi-vitamin and vitamin C are the most vital. Others may be added as your budget permits.

4.) QUICK, EASY AND PSYCHOLOGICAL FOODS Quick and easy foods help you through times when you are psychologically or physically unable to prepare your basic storage items. No cook foods such as freeze-dried are wonderful since they require little preparation. MRE’s (Meals Ready to Eat), such as many preparedness outlets carry, canned goods, etc. are also very good. Psychological Foods are the goodies - Jello, pudding, candy, etc. - you should add to your storage.
These may sound frivolous, but through the years I’ve talked with many people who have lived entirely on their storage for extended periods of time. Nearly all of them say these were the most helpful items in their storage to normalize their situations and make it more bearable. These are especially important if you have children.

5.) BALANCE -

Time and time again I’ve seen families buy all of their wheat,
then buy all of another item, and so on. Don’t do that. It’s important to keep well-balanced as you build your storage. Buy several items, rather than a large quantity of one item. If something happens and you have to live on your pres- ent storage, you’’ll fare much better having a one-month supply of a variety of items than a year’s supply of two to
three items.

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6.) CONTAINERS -

Always store your bulk foods in food storage containers.

I have seen literally tons and tons of food thrown away
because they were left in sacks, where they became highly susceptible to moisture, insects and rodents. If you are using plastic buckets make sure they are lined with a food grade plastic liner available from companies that carry packaging supplies. Never use trash can liners as these are treated with pesticides. Don’t stack them too high. In an earthquake they may topple, the lids pop open, or they may crack. A better container is the #10 tin can which most preparedness companies use when they package their foods. Note: Mice and Rats can know their way through plastic buckest if given the opportunity. If this is a concern, go with the

#10 Tin Cans for added security.

7.) USE YOUR STORAGE -

In all the years I’ve worked with preparedness one of the

biggest problems I’ve seen is people storing food and not knowing what to do with it. It’s vital that you and your family become familiar with the things you are storing. You need to know how to prepare these foods. This is not something you want to learn under stress. Your family needs to be used to eating these foods. A stressful period is not a good time to totally change your diet. Get a food storage cookbook and

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learn to use these foods!
It’s easy to solve these food storage problems once you know what they are. The lady I talked about at the first of the article left realizing what she had stored was a good beginning, but not enough. As she said, “It’s better to find out the mistakes I’ve made now while there’s still time to make corrections.” This makes a lot more sense.
If you’re one who needs to make some adjustments, that’s okay. Look at these suggestions and add the things you’re missing. It’s easy to take a basic storage and add the essen- tials to make it liveable, but it needs to be done. As I did the research for my cookbook I wanted to include recipes that gave help to families no matter what they had stored. As I put the material together it was fascinating to discover what the pioneers ate is the type of things we store. But if you have stored only the 4 basics, there’s very, very little you can do with it. By adding even just a few things it greatly increases your options, and the prospect of your family surviving on it. As I studied how the pioneers lived and ate, my whole feeling for food changed. I realized our storage is what most of the world has always lived on. If it’s put together the right way we’ll be returning to good basic living with a few goodies thrown in.

COMMON STORAGE FOODS

Herein is covered a range of foods suited for incorpora-

tion into home storage programs.

As you review them there are several considerations you should keep in mind when deciding on what foods you want to include.

The first is variety in the diet. This is of great importance but many do not give it adequate thought. Some simply buy however much wheat, corn, rice, or beans they think is necessary to meet their needs and leave it at that. Others rely on prepackaged decisions made for them by their storage food retailer who put together a “year’s supply of food” to buy all at once. Either deci- sion could possibly be a mistake.

There are many food storage plans one may use as a guide. Some are based on the so-called “Mormon Four” of wheat, milk, honey and salt, with as many additional foods as the planner found desirable. This plan was developed in the 1930’s and we’ve learned a great deal about workable food storage in the decades hence. Among which are the food allergies that an unfortunate number of people in our society develop.

One of the more common food allergens is wheat. Even more unfortunate is the fact that many who have such an allergy are unaware of it. They won’t become aware until they try to live with whole grain wheat as a large part of their diet and their latent allergy reveals itself. Another thing we have learned is that many adults suffer from an intolerance to the milk sugar lactose, especially those of certain ethnic backgrounds. For these reasons and more you should always make it a practice to store what you eat AND TO eat what you store, so that ugly surprises such as these do not arise after it’s too late to easily avoid them.

A second reason to think about storing a wide variety of foods is appetite fatigue. There are those who think providing variety in the diet is relatively unimportant and that if and when the time comes they’ll eat what they’ve got and that will be that. For healthy, well adjusted adults under ordinary circumstances or for those who have the vital survival mindset this might be possible without too much difficulty. However, the

reason for having a home food storage program in the first place is for when circumstances aren’t ordinary.

Times of crisis produce stress - possibly physical, but always mental. If you are suddenly forced to eat a diet both alien and monotonous, it is going to add that much more stress on top of what you are already deal- ing with. If your planning includes the elderly, young children, and/or infants there is a significant risk they will quit eating or refuse to eat sufficient amounts of the right foods leaving them unable to survive. This is not a trivial problem and should be given serious consideration. When it’s wheat, day in and day out, wheat’s going to start becoming unpopular fast. Far better to have a variety of foods on hand to forestall appetite fatigue and, more importantly, to use those storable foods in your everyday diet so that you’ll be accustomed to eating them. In his book, Making the Best of Basics, James Stevens mentions a post-WWII study by Dr. Norman Wright, of the British Food Min- istry, which found the people of England and Europe were more likely to reject unfamiliar or distasteful foods during times of stress than under normal condi- tions. Consider the positive aspects of adding variety and comfort foods to your storage program.

A last thought that I want to give for ALL foods you might put into your program. Unless you are already familiar with and eating a particular type and brand of food do not put large quantities of it into your pantry until you – preferably everyone who will be depend- ing on that food – have eaten some of it first. It’s not always as easy to pick up a new food as it may first appear. Differences between brands of foods alone can sometimes be enough to disappoint you when consumed. You’d hate to discover that you cannot abide a particular food item after you’ve brought home a case of Brand X. Seriously relying on any food that you are not already familiar with is making a fools bet. Copyright© Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

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ABOUT GLUTEN:

GRAINS AND FLOURS


retains more of the nutritious germ and bran, but does not
As you read through the grain descriptions below you will
come across frequent mention of “gluten”. Gluten is a com- bination of proteins found in some grains which enables the dough made from them to rise by trapping the gases produced by yeast fermentation or chemical reaction of baking powder or soda. The amount of these proteins var- ies depending on the species of grain and varieties within a species. Some grains such as rice have virtually no gluten at all and will not produce a raised loaf by itself while others like hard winter wheat have a great deal and make excellent raised bread. As a general rule yeast raised breads need a fair amount of gluten to attain good dough volumes while non- yeast raised breads may need little or none at all. Whether gluten content is of importance to you will depend upon the end uses you intend for your grain.
Some of the common and relatively uncommon types of grains are listed below.

AMARANTH:

Amaranth is not a true cereal grain at all, but is a relative of
the pigweeds and the ornamental flowers we call “cocks- comb”. It’s grown not only for its seed, but for its leaves that can be cooked and eaten as greens. The seed is high in protein, particularly the amino acid lysine which is limited in the true cereal grains. It can be milled as-is, or toasted to provide more flavor. The flour lacks gluten, so is not suited for raised breads by itself, but can be made into any of a number of flat breads. Some varieties can be popped like popcorn, boiled and eaten as a cereal, used in soups, granolas, and the like. Toasted or untoasted, it blends well with other grain flours.

NOTE: Like some other edible seeds, raw amaranth contains biological factors that can inhibit proper absorption of some nutrients. For this reason amaranth seeds or flour should always be cooked before consumption, whether for human food or animal feed.

BARLEY:

Barley is thought by some to be the first grain intentionally
cultivated by man. It has short, stubby kernels with a hull that is difficult to remove. Excluding barley intended for malting or animal feed, this grain is generally consumed directly by humans in two forms. Most common is the white, highly processed pearl barley with much of its bran and germ milled off along with its hull. It is the least nutritious form of barley. The second offering is called pot or hulled barley and it has been subjected to the same milling process as pearled, but with fewer trips through the polisher. Because of this, it

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keep as well as the more refined product without special
packaging. Unless you are prepared to try to get the hulls off I don’t recommend buying unhulled barley. Although it can be milled into flour, barley’s low gluten content will not make a good loaf of raised bread. It can be combined with other flours that do have sufficient gluten to make leavened bread or used in flat breads. Barley flour and flakes have a light nutty flavor that is enhanced by toasting. Whole barley is commonly used to add thickness to soups and stews.
Recently, a hull-less form has become available on the mar- ket through a few suppliers. This is whole grain barley with all of its bran and germ intact and should have the most nutrients of any form of this grain available. I don’t know yet how suitable it is for long term storage.

BUCKWHEAT:

Buckwheat is another of those seeds commonly considered
to be a grain, but which is not a true cereal. It is, in fact, a close relative to the docks and sorrels. The “grain” itself is a dark, three cornered seed resembling a tiny beechnut. It has a hard, fibrous hull requiring a special buckwheat huller to remove. Here in the U.S., buckwheat is most often used in pancakes, biscuits and muffins. In Eastern Europe and Russia it is known in its toasted form as kasha. In the Far East, it’s often made into soba or noodles. It’s also a good bee plant, producing a dark, strongly flavored honey. The flour is light or dark depending on how much of the hull has been removed before grinding. Dark flour is much more strongly flavored than lighter flour, but because of the high fiber and tannin content of its hull, which can interfere with nutrient absorption, it is not necessarily more nutritious. Buckwheat is one of those foods with no middle ground in peoples opinions — they either love it or they hate it. Like amaranth, it’s high in lysine, an amino acid commonly lack- ing in the true cereal grains.

CORN (maize):

Corn is the largest grain crop in the U.S., but is mostly con-
sumed indirectly as animal feed or even industrial feedstock
rather than directly as food. As one of the Three Sisters (maize, squash and beans) corn was the staple grain of nearly all of the indigenous peoples of the American continents before the advent of European colonization. This American grain has an amazing variety of forms. Major classes are the flint, dent, flour, and popcorns. To a certain extent, they’re all interchangeable for milling into meal (sometimes known as polenta meal) or flour (very finely ground corn, not cornstarch). The varieties intended to be eaten as sweet corn (fresh green corn) are high in sugar content so do not

dry or store well relative to the other corns but instead are usually preserved as a vegetable. There are a number of lesser corn varieties with specialized uses that do not lend themselves to direct food use, but these are seldom found in the open market.
As a general rule of thumb, the flint varieties make better meal as they have a grittier texture than most other corns. If meal, hominy and hominy grits (commonly called just “grits”) are what you are interested in then use the flint type if you can find a source. If you intend to make corn masa for tortillas and tamales, then the flour corns are what you want, but these are fairly uncommon on the commercial market so the dent corns are next best. Yellow dent seems to be the most commonly available and will work for almost any purpose except popping.
Popcorn is for snacks or used as a cold cereal after popping or can be ground into quite acceptable meal. In my experience I have found it difficult to hull popcorn with alkali treatment for making hominy (posolé, nixtamal) though your mileage may vary. Popcorn is one form of a whole grain available to nearly everyone in the U.S. It is so common a snack food, particularly at movie theaters, fairs, and ball games, that the smallest of towns will often have at least one business sell- ing it cleaned, dried, and ready to pop in twenty-five or fifty pound bags. Popcorn is harder than other varieties of corn so if your mill is not of the heavy duty sort you may want to consider cracking the kernels into coarse pieces first then grinding into finer textured meal. The Family Grain Mill states that it should not be used to mill popcorn at all and the Back To Basics mill should not be used for any great quantity. All other manual and electric mills that I am aware of will mill popcorn without problem.
Once you’ve decided on your preferred corn type you may also be able to choose your preferred color. There are yel- low, white, blue, red, and multicolored varieties. The yellow and whites are the most common by far with the blues, reds, and parti-colored varieties mostly being relegated to curiosities, though the blue and red corns have been gaining in popularity these last few years. These would be worth investigating if you can find a good source. It should be kept in mind that white corn does not have the carotene content (converts into vitamin A) of yellow corn. As vitamin A is one of the major limiting nutrients in long term food storage, any possible source of it should be utilized. For this reason I suggest storing yellow rather than white corn. Additionally, much of the niacin content of corn is chemically bound up in a form not available for human nutrition unless it has been treated with an alkali. This is really of importance only if most of your sustained daily calorie intake will come from corn, but grits, hominy (posolé) or corn masa (for tortillas and tamales) are traditional uses of this grain and can go
a long way toward increasing the number of recipes you can make with corn. Give them a try, they’re quite good.
Any grain as widely grown as corn is naturally going to be processed into many products. Here are a few suited for use in home storage programs.

Corn Meal (polenta meal):

This is simply dry corn ground into a meal. Corn meal in-
tended for polenta may be found in either a coarse or a fine
grind. In the U.S. corn meal for making corn bread and most other uses is typically ground to a fairly fine meal. Very finely milled corn is often used for breading foods to be fried and is known as corn flour to distinguish it from coarser meals. This sometimes causes confusion because corn starch (see below)is also known as corn flour in Great Britain - a very different product and not really interchangeable.
The germ of the corn kernel contains about twice the oil content of wheat and is highly susceptible to rancidity once the kernel is broken in the milling process. Because of this most commercially available corn meal will have had the germ and hull removed to extend shelf-life then nutritionally enriched to make up for some of the vitamins and minerals lost with the grain germ. This is desirable for the miller and the grocer, but for the diner it comes at a cost of flavor and some of the nutrition of the whole grain. Some grocers may offer a whole grain corn meal that keeps the grain germ and bran which gives a superior flavored product and retains the full nutrition of the grain but makes for a more perishable commodity. If you go this route be sure of your product’s freshness then store it in your refrigerator or freezer.
The grocer’s corn meal is mostly milled from yellow or white corn, but some suppliers are now offering blue or even red corn meals. The flavor of the degerminated yellow and white meals are largely indistinguishable from each other, but blue and red corns are interestingly different. Might be worth investigating if you can find them.
Storage life of degerminated corn meal is about one year in average conditions in store packaging and a good deal longer if you repackage it for long term storage. Whole grain meal is good for about four weeks on the shelf, months in the re- frigerator, and several years in the freezer or if carefully put up in oxygen free packaging. If you have a grain mill I recom- mend storing your corn meal in the form of whole corn and milling it as needed. This is what we do, milling a few weeks worth of meal at a time then keeping it in the freezer until needed. The fresh whole grain meal has a much fuller corn flavor than the degerminated meal from the grocery store.

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Hominy (posolé’):

This is corn with the hull, and possibly the germ, removed.
Hominy cooks faster than unhulled whole corn, is easier to digest, and in some circumstances the alkali peeled variet- ies can present a superior nutritional profile to whole corn. There are two methods of producing hominy: Mechanical dehulling in a wet milling process or by treating with one of a number of various alkalis such as industrial lye (sodium hydroxide), wood ash lye (mostly potassium hydroxides) or by using some form of lime (calcium hydroxide).
Dry lye peeled hominy is now seldom found for sale, but canned white or yellow hominy is still common across the Southern U.S. and many other areas as well as in Latin American groceries. Generally speaking hominy produced using lime is known by its Spanish name – posole’ – but this will not always be clear on labels. I have seen can labels of lime peeled hominy simply called hominy. Whether this is important to you depends on the particular flavor you are trying to achieve in the dish you are preparing. Freshly hulled corn using the lime process that is to be ground to make masa (dough) for corn tortillas is called nixtamal. Dry posole’ can be found in Latin American groceries or ordered from the Internet in nearly any color that corn offers. There’s a world of things that can be done with hominy other than simply heating it up and serving with butter and salt. A few minutes spent searching the Internet will produce dozens of recipes using hominy as a major ingredient. It’s an excellent ingredient in hearty soups and stews.

Hominy Grits:

Usually just called “grits” this coarsely ground meal

can be either simple whole corn ground coarse or corn that has been hulled in a process using a form of lye to make hominy then dried and coarsely ground. Grits produced from lye peeled corn typically cook faster, have a longer shelf life, and presents a different, possibly superior, nutritional profile than the whole grain product. Grits produced from whole corn take much longer to cook, have a short shelf life if not refrigerated or put up in special packaging, a superior flavor to the lye peeled product, and retains the nutrition of the whole grain. Very coarsely ground grits is also known as samp.

Hominy grits in the U.S. must be enriched like many other refined grain products and are now typically industrially produced. They are usually what you will find at your local grocers. Whole grain grits are primarily the product of grist mills making stone ground products and are often found in living history demonstrations, heritage fairs, pioneer day celebrations, and so on. Both yellow and white corns are commonly milled for grits and which one you should buy probably depends on what you ate growing up. If you’re indifferent as to the color of your grits then I suggest buy-

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ing yellow corn grits as the beta carotene content of yellow corn can be converted by our bodies into Vitamin A whereas white corn has none.

Masa Harina:

In Spanish “masa” means “dough” and “harina” means
“flour” which is a straight forward description of what masa harina is: A lime peeled corn that has been dried and milled into meal to be made into tortilla dough. It’s flavor is distinctively different from either corn meal or hominy grits and is used in making tortillas, tamales, and many other Southwestern, Mexican, Central and South American dishes. Can often be found in mainstream grocery stores and grocers catering to a Latin American trade. Will store on the shelf for about a year and even longer if refrigerated or put up in good storage packaging. If you have a mind to try making your own tortillas you will save yourself much time and effort by using a tortilla press. These can be found in some groceries catering to a Latin American clientèle or ordered over the Internet.

Corn Starch:

A common starch used as a thickener. Made by a roller mill-
ing process removing the hull and germ leaving behind a
nearly pure starch. Storage life is indefinite if kept dry. In the United Kingdom and some other areas it is known as corn flour which occasionally causes confusion with very finely milled corn also known as corn flour here in the States. The two products are largely not interchangeable.

MILLET:

Millet is an important staple grain in North China and In-
dia, but is little known in the U.S, where we mostly use it
as bird feed. The grain kernels are very small, round, and usually ivory colored or yellow, though some varieties are darker. A lack of gluten and a rather bland flavor may ac- count for the anonymity of this cereal. Millet has a more alkaline pH (and a higher iron content) than other grains which makes it very easy to digest. A major advantage of millet is that it swells a great deal when cooked and supplies more servings per pound than any other grain. When cooked like rice millet makes an excellent breakfast cereal. It has little gluten of its own, but mixes well with other flours. Adding whole millet kernels to the dough can add a pleasant crunch to your home made breads.

OATS:

Though the Scots and the Irish have made a cuisine of oats,
it is mostly thought of in the U.S. as a bland breakfast food. Seldom found as a whole grain, it’s usually sold processed in one form or another. Much like barley, the oat is a dif- ficult grain to separate from its hull. Besides its longtime role as a breakfast food, oats make an excellent thickener

of soups and stews and a filler in meat loafs and casseroles. Probably the second most common use for oats in America is in cookies and granolas. A little creative thought can really increase their culinary range. Listed below are the forms of oats found in the U.S. Rolled and cut oats retain both their bran and their germ.

Oat groats:

These are whole oats with the hulls removed. They are not
often found in this form, but can sometimes be had from natural food stores and some storage food dealers. Oats are not the easiest thing to obtain a consistent grind from so producing your own oat flour takes a bit of experience. If you have a roller mill or attachment you can produce your own oatmeal using whole oat groats.

Steel cut oats:

Also known as Irish, pinhead or porridge oats. They are oat
groats cut into chunks with steel blades. They’re not rolled and look like coarse bits of grain. Steel cut oats can be found in many supermarkets and natural food stores. They take longer to cook than rolled oats, but retain more texture. They need oxygen free packaging to be kept at their best for long term storage.

Rolled oats:

These are also commonly called old fashioned, thick cut or porridge oats. To produce them, oat groats are steamed and then rolled to flatten. They can generally be found wherever oats are sold. They take slightly longer to cook than do the quick cooking oats, but they retain more flavor, texture and nutrition. This is what most people will call to mind when they think of oatmeal.

Quick cooking rolled oats:

These are just steamed oat groats rolled thinner than the
old fashioned kind above so that they will cook faster. They can usually be found right next to the thicker rolled oats.

Instant rolled oats:

These are the “just add hot water” or microwave type of oat
cereals and are not particularly suited for a storage program. They do, however, have uses in “bug out” and 72 hour food kits for short term crises.

Whole oats:

This is with the hulls still on. They are sold in feed & seed
stores and sometimes straight from the farmer who grew them. Unless you have some means of getting the hulls off, I don’t recommend buying oats in this form. If you do buy from a seed supplier, make certain that they have not been treated with any chemicals that are toxic to humans.

QUINOA:

Quinoa is yet another of the grains that is not a true cereal.
It’s botanical name is Chenopodium quinoa (pronounced “keen-wah”), and is a relative of the common weed Lambs- quarter. The individual kernels are about 1.5-2 mm in size and are shaped rather like small flattened spheres. When quinoa is cooked, the germ of the grain coils into a small “tail” that lends a pleasant crunch when eaten. Some forms of this grain have a bitter tasting water soluble component that should be removed by a thorough washing unless this was already done by the processor as most of the quinoa sold in the U.S. apparently has. There are several varieties of quinoa that have color ranging from near white to a dark brown. The larger white varieties are considered superior and are the most common.

RICE:

Rice is the most widely consumed food grain in the world
with the U.S. being the leading exporter of this important staple, though we actually only produce about 1% of the global supply. The majority of the world’s rice is eaten within five miles of where it was grown.
Much like wheat and corn, rice comes in a number of vari- eties, each with different characteristics. They are typically divided into classes by the length of their kernel grains; short, medium and long.

Short grain rice:

The short grain variety is a little softer and bit moister when
it cooks and tends to stick together more than the longer rices. It has a sweeter, somewhat stronger flavor than long grain rice.
Medium grain rice: The medium grain variety is not very common in the States. It has flavor like the short variety, but with a texture more like long.

Long grain rice:

The long grain variety cooks up into a drier, flakier dish than the shorter types and the flavor tends to be blander. It is the most commonly found size of rice on American grocery shelves.

Each of the above may be processed into brown, white, parboiled or converted, and instant rice. Below is a short discussion of the differences between the various types.

Brown rice:

This is whole grain rice with only the hull removed. It retains
all of the nutrition and has a pleasant nutty flavor. From a nutritional standpoint it is by far the best, but it has one flaw: The essential oil in the germ is very susceptible to oxidation and soon goes rancid. As a result, brown rice has a shelf life

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of only about six months unless given special packaging or storage. Freezing or refrigeration will greatly extend this. It’s possible to purchase brown rice from long term food suppliers already specially packaged in air tight containers with an inert nitrogen atmosphere or you can do it yourself. In this kind of packaging, (if properly done), the storage life can be extended for several years.

Converted rice:

Converted rice starts as whole rice still in the hull which un-
dergoes a process of soaking and steaming until it is partially
cooked. It is then dried, hulled and polished to remove the bran and germ. The steaming process drives some of the vitamins and minerals from the outer layers into the white inner layers. This makes it more nutritious than polished white rice, but also makes it more expensive. Its storage life is the same as regular white rice.

White rice:

This is raw rice that has had its outer layers milled off, taking
with it about 10% of its protein, 85% of its fat and 70% of its mineral content. Because so much of the nutrition is lost, white rice sold in the U.S. has to be “enriched” with vitamins to partially replace what was removed. It stores very well and is generally the cheapest form of rice to be found in the market place making it a very common storage food.

Instant rice:

The type of rice is fully cooked and then dehydrated needing
nothing more than the addition of water to reconstitute it. In a pinch, it’s not even necessary to use hot water. It’s not particularly suitable for inclusion in storage programs, but may have a place in “seventy-two hour” and other short- term emergency kits. The white variety is by far the most common, but in the last few years instant brown rice has made an appearance on the market.

RYE:

Rye is well known as a bread grain in the U.S. It has dark
brown kernels longer and thinner than wheat, but less gluten. Rye flours can be found in varying stages of refine- ment from dark whole grain flour to semi-refined medium to pale fully refined offerings. Bread made from this grain tends to be dense unless gluten is added (often in the form of a lot of wheat flour). German pumpernickels and Russian black breads, made with unrefined rye flour and molasses, are two of the darkest, densest forms of rye bread. Many sourdoughs are built upon a rye base with a resulting inter- esting, intense flavor.

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SORGHUM:

Sorghum is probably more widely known here in the States
for the syrup made from the sweet juice squeezed from the stalks of some varieties of this grain. Also known as “milo”, it is one of the principle cereal grains of Africa. Its seeds are somewhat round, a little smaller than peppercorns, of an overall brown color with a bit of red and yellow mixed in. The varieties called “yellow endosperm sorghum” are considered to have a better taste. It is a major feed grain in the Southwestern U.S. and is where the vast majority of the national production goes. Like most of the other grains, sorghum is low in gluten, but the seeds can be milled into flour and mixed with higher gluten flours or made into flat breads, pancakes or cookies. In the Far East, it is cooked and eaten like rice, while in Africa it is ground into meal for
porridge. It’s also fermented for alcoholic beverages.

TEFF:

Easily the smallest of the grains, teff kernels are only about
1/32nd inch in diameter. The name itself means “lost” be- cause if dropped on the ground, it’s too small to recover. It’s been very little known until recently, but has been a staple grain in Ethiopia for nearly five millennia. Small amounts are now being grown in South Africa and the United States. This grain ranges in color from reddish brown to near white. It has a protein content in the 10-12% range, good calcium and a useful source of iron. It is traditionally used in making the Ethiopian flat bread “injera”, but has no gluten content of its own. It’ll combine well with wheat flour though and
has something of a sweetish flavor.

TRITICALE:

Triticale is not a creation sprung from the smooth brows
of Star Trek script writers. It is, in fact, a cross between durum wheat and rye. This youngest of grains combines the productivity of wheat with the ruggedness of rye and has a high nutrition value. The kernels are gray-brown, oval shaped larger-than-wheat and plumper than rye. It can be used in much the same way as either of its two parents. It will make a raised bread like wheat does, but its gluten is a bit weak so wheat flour is frequently added to strengthen it. Because of the delicate nature of its gluten, excessive kneading must be avoided.

WHEAT:

The most widely consumed grain in the United States and
along with rice and corn one of the three most widely grown in the world. Wheat is also one of the most intensively processed to turn into food of all the grains. It comes in a number of different varieties each more suitable for some purposes than others based on its particular characteris- tics. The most common classifications of these varieties are based on their respective growing season, hardness of

kernel, and color of their bran layers - spring or winter, hard or soft, red or white.
The hard wheats have kernels that tend to be small, hard in texture, and with high protein (primarily gluten) contents. As a general rule, hard varieties have more protein than soft varieties. Yeast raised breads that need a lot of gluten are where it’s at for the hard wheats.
The soft wheats have kernels tending to be larger, plumper and softer in texture than hard wheats. As their gluten con- tent is lower they are primarily used in biscuits, pastries, quick breads, some pastas, and breakfast cereals where a higher gluten content would contribute an undesirable tougher texture. Soft wheats do not produce as fine a loaf of yeast raised bread as high gluten hard wheat, though it can still be used for yeast breads by combining with higher gluten flours or using methods suitable for its protein level. Many traditional European yeast raised breads are made with lower protein flours.
Durum wheat also has a very hard kernel and a high protein content, but of a somewhat different nature than the other hard wheats. Durum is not primarily used for breads but is instead consumed mostly in the manufacture of pasta where it lends its characteristic yellowish color to the fin- ished product. There are some specialty breads that call for durum/semolina flour so it can be used for bread making even if it’s not best suited to the task.
Winter wheats are planted in the Fall, over winter in the field, grow through the Spring and are harvested early the next Summer. Spring wheats are planted in the early Spring and are harvested the following Fall. Red wheats comprise most of the hard varieties while white wheats comprise most of the soft. Recently, hard white wheats have been developed that are very suitable for yeast raised bread making. Some feel the hard white varieties make a better tasting whole wheat bread than the hard reds and I am inclined to agree. When milled, whole grain hard white wheat flour looks somewhat like unbleached refined white flour in appear- ance.
The hard red varieties, either spring or winter, are commonly chosen for storage programs because of their high protein content which should be no less than 12% with 14% or more being excellent. The hard white spring wheats are still relatively new and not yet as widespread but are steadily growing in popularity. They have the same excellent storage characteristics as the hard red wheats and should be selected with the same protein contents as well.
With so many different varieties of wheat it should come as no surprise that there are a number of different types of wheat flour offered to the home baker. Distinguishing
between the array of products available through both retail grocery stores and commercial supply houses catering to bakers nearly requires the knowledge of a professional baker or a cereal chemist and would take up page after page to ex- plain it all. Instead I will briefly cover only those flours or flour products that one can usually find in supermarkets in the U.S. and elsewhere. If you need more advanced knowledge in order to purchase through commercial or institutional food channels I recommend taking your questions to the Usenet newsgroups rec.food.baking, sci.bio.food-science, or alt.bread.recipes where you may be able to get answers from professionals in the field.

All Purpose Flour:

Of all the flours in the retail market all-purpose flour is the
one most subject to major differences between brands, regions of the U.S., and/or other nations. This refined flour is typically made from a blend of hard and soft wheats with a protein content that can range from as low as 8% to as high as 12%. The regional brands of the Southern U.S. have traditionally been on the lower end of the protein scale. This is due to the fact that historically only soft wheats were grown in the South and the resulting flour was best used is in making biscuits and other types of non-yeast raised breads that did not require high gluten levels. The regional brands of the Northern U.S., and Canada are typically at the high end of the protein scale at or approaching 12%. This is because hard wheats are primarily northern grown and are well suited to making yeast raised breads which need higher gluten levels as were customarily made there. The national brands either differ by region or are in the 10-11% range in an effort to try to satisfy all markets.
In the U.S. all-purpose flour is enriched and can be had either bleached or unbleached and may possibly have small quan- tities of malt added as well (see below about enrichment, bleaching and malting).
As the name implies all-purpose is meant to serve as a general all-around flour from which you can make anything from cakes and pie crusts to sandwich bread. So far as it goes you can, but it’s a lot like one-size-fits-all clothing in that chances are it won’t work as well for a given project as a flour milled with that particular use in mind. The lower protein all-purpose flours sold in the Southern U.S. will pro- duce a more tender biscuit, cake, or pie crust than the higher protein all-purpose flours of the Northern U.S. and Canada, but unless you use some special techniques (like how true French bread is made) it won’t produce a very satisfying loaf of yeast bread. The flours in 10-11% range try to strike a happy medium between the two, but still won’t serve as well as flour produced specifically with a given end use in mind. If you want to limit the number of types of flour you put into your storage program I’d recommend going with the

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10-11% flours and either plan on adding gluten as needed to make the best yeast raised breads or cornstarch to produce more tender cakes and pie crusts.
In the United Kingdom and Canada all-purpose flour is oft times labeled as “plain flour”, “top patent”, “general pur- pose”, or “family flour.”

Bread Flour:

A refined white flour with a higher protein (gluten) content
than most all-purpose flours to achieve better performance in making yeast raised breads. Protein levels should be at least 12% with 13-14% better still.
As this is a refined flour in the U.S. it will be enriched with added vitamins and iron, and can be found either bleached or unbleached. Because it is intended primarily for use in yeast raised breads this flour will usually have other addi- tives such as small amounts of malt to improve yeast per- formance and vitamin C (ascorbic acid) to improve dough volume and texture. Some bread flours may also be treated with potassium bromate to improve gluten qualities, but concerns over possible toxicity of this additive is leading to its diminished use.
A high gluten refined bread flour is commonly added to whole wheat doughs to strengthen them which can improve loaf rises and volume. Bread flour is most commonly used in the production of yeast raised breads, pizza crusts, and some specialty baked goods. In Great Britain bread flour is often labeled as “Strong Flour” meaning it has a high protein content.

Whole Wheat Flour:

Real whole wheat flour should include 100% of the bran and
germ so read your ingredient labels carefully to be sure this is so. This flour is mostly milled from hard red wheats, but whole grain hard white flour is available from some mills and will produce a bread that looks closer to refined white bread if that is what you are accustomed to eating. Protein contents can vary, but as most whole wheat flour is used in yeast bread making it should be at least 12% with 13-14% being better still. This is good because the bran and the germ can interfere with good gluten development as the dough is mixed and kneaded. Some do not mind this while others strengthen their flour by adding vital wheat gluten or high protein refined bread flours to achieve the rise and volume they are accustomed to in yeast breads. Approximately 90% of the total protein of a kernel of wheat is gluten with the remaining 10% other proteins being mostly found in the grain germ. Refined flours have had the germ removed so a statement of protein content can be taken as an indication of that flour’s suitability for making raised yeast breads. With whole wheat flours one must remember that ten percent

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of non-gluten germ proteins and judge that flour’s protein content accordingly. Whole wheat flour milled from lower protein soft wheats may be offered as “whole wheat pastry flour” so be sure of what you are buying. Some whole-wheat flours are also enriched.
Whole wheat flour may also be called “Graham Flour”, sometimes simply “Stone Ground Wheat Flour” and in Great Britain, Canada, and Australia may be known as “Whole Meal Flour.” In Britain there is also a “Brown Flour” which is midway between whole meal and white flour in that it retains about 85% of the wheat kernel rather than only the
72-75% that is typical of refined white flours.
The real disadvantage to storing whole wheat flour is that like other processed grain products that includes the oil rich germ it wants to go rancid. How fast this can happen depends upon temperature, moisture, etc, but four to six weeks is generally enough time for rancidity to become noticeable. One can, of course, package the flour in good containers with oxygen absorbers and the like, but better still would be to buy the flour in the form of whole wheat ber- ries and mill them yourself. This is exactly what I and many other folks with food storage programs do. Baking with fresh, whole wheat flour is something of an art so the time to get good with it is right NOW while you can toss your failures to the chickens rather than having to eat them regardless
because you can’t afford to waste the food.

Vital Wheat Gluten:

Sometimes labeled as simply “wheat gluten.” This is the
purified gluten of hard wheat extracted from flour. It is generally 75-80% protein and is used to strengthen weak or whole grain flours for making yeast raised breads or made into “seitan” a wheat protein meat substitute. Somewhat confusing the issue is “High Gluten Flour” which is avail- able in some markets. Careful investigation is needed here because this flour can range from a mere high gluten bread flour (approx 14%) to a gluten enriched flour typically 40%+) all the way up to purified wheat gluten (75%+). Be clear as to what it is you’re buying and if you’re not certain contact the manufacturer. If your whole wheat bread is not rising for you as much as you’d like then an addition of a few spoon- fuls of gluten or some high gluten flour may perk it up a bit.

Cake Flour:

Typically the lowest protein content (6-8%) flour available
to the home baker. This highly processed flour will make the tenderest cakes, cookies, and biscuits but performs poorly for yeasted breads. The flour is nearly always bleached (chlo- rinated) both to give it a bright whiteness and to improve its moisture holding capacity for cakes calling for a high ratio of sugars or fats. Unless you make a lot of cakes this is a rather
specialized item to store.

Pastry Flour:

Similar to cake flour, but generally slightly higher in protein,
not chlorinated, and may be found bleached or unbleached. Used to produce tender pie crusts, biscuits, etc. Very similar to the regional all-purpose flours of the Southern U.S. Can also sometimes be found in a whole-wheat version as well. In Great Britain, Canada, and Australia may be known as “soft flour.”

Semolina/Durum:

Produced from durum wheat this flour is typically high in pro-
tein, 12% or more, enriched, unbleached with a distinctive
pale yellow color. Texture depends largely on brand and can range from fairly coarse to bread flour fine. Most commonly used in the production of pastas, noodles, and couscous, but some specialty bread types call for semolina flour. May also be known as “alimentary flour”, “macaroni flour”, or “pasta flour.” Farina, a coarse meal used as a breakfast cereal, is
made from durum wheat.

Self-Rising Flour:

This is ordinary refined and enriched all-purpose flour to
which approximately 1.5 teaspoons of baking powder and
0.5 teaspoons of salt have been added to each cup of flour. This flour has its fans, but it’s not well suited to long storage as the baking powder wants to go flat over time even with special packaging. Nor is it suited to making yeast raised breads. Most self-rising flours are in the mid to low end of the protein scale (8-10%) because this is where chemi- cally leavened quick breads perform best to achieve good rises and textures. You can make your own self-rising flour by adding in the requisite amount of double acting baking powder and salt mentioned above which is what I recom- mend doing rather than trying to store the ready-made product. Self-rising flour is sometimes known as phosphated flour (for the baking powder used in it) and in Great Britain, Canada, and Australia may be known as “self-raising flour” or “raising flour.”

Instant Flour:

This specialized flour product is also sometimes known as
“shaker flour” for the shaker can in which it’s usually found This is a low-protein flour in a granular form processed for easy and rapid dissolution into hot or cold liquids for making sauces, gravies, and batters. A fairly specialized item which any worthy cook can use ordinary flour to replace.

FLOUR TREATMENTS AND ADDITIVES

Flour milling companies (and home bakers) use a variety of
additives and treatments in their flours to improve or sup- press a particular quality in their product. If you read the package labels carefully you can discern quite a lot about what has and has not been done. Here are a few of the
more common:

Enrichment:

U.S. law (and some other nations) requires that refined flours
which have had their bran and germ portions removed to be “enriched” by adding back a portion of the niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, folic acid, and iron that were lost in the refining process. Some milling companies go even further by adding vitamins A & D as well. There are various opinions about the value of this enrichment, but it’s there. It has no affect on the taste, color, texture, caloric value, or baking qualities of the flour. Outside of the U.S. refined white flours may or may not be enriched so study your package labels carefully
if this concerns you.

Bleaching:

White bread and white cakes come by their snowy beauty
thanks to bleaching. This is a process by which the yellow- ish carotenoid pigments that naturally occur in wheat are bleached white in order to improve the appearance of the flour and perhaps to change some of its physical charac- teristics as well. This would occur naturally by itself were the refined flour allowed to sit around for several months, but it’s an uneven process and time is money to the milling companies who cannot afford to have large stocks of product sitting around in their warehouses for long periods of time.
Beyond making naturally off-white flour snowy in appear- ance bleaching can perform several other functions which the individual baker must decide if they are important to his needs. Until fairly recently much refined flour was also “bromated” using potassium bromate both to lighten the color, and to improve the qualities of the gluten. Concerns over the toxicity of this chemical has led to its gradual de- cline or outright ban on its use. Other bleaching agents are now used such as chlorine gas, chlorine dioxide, benzoyl peroxide and possibly others as well. Flours treated in this fashion will often exhibit improved loaf volume, finer grain, and look better in the finished product.
Cake flour is generally chlorinated not only whiten but also to improve its moisture holding ability when used in cakes with a high ratio of sugar and fat to flour. This bleaching also further tempers the already low gluten of the flour to produce the tenderest possible texture.

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For the folks who do not care to buy bleached flours, small amounts of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) are often added as a dough conditioner and yeast nutrient. Home bakers often add their own vitamin C to their breads when they make them for the same reasons. A mere 1/8 tsp of ascorbic acid per cup of flour is all that is necessary.
All bleached flours must be so labeled in the U.S.

Malting:

Many bread flours and some all-purpose flours will have
small amounts of malt, malted barley flour, malt flour, or diastatic malt added to them. This additive improves the performance of the yeast by providing enzymes which speed the conversion of some of the flour starches into the digest- ible sugars the yeast use as fuel which can improve both the rise of the dough and the flavor of the finished product. The malt can also serve to improve the appearance of the bread when baked and lengthen its shelf life. You can add your own diastatic malt in the ratio of about 0.5-1.0 teaspoons
for every three cups of flour.

Organic:

This is flour produced and processed under the guidelines of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Organic foods program. Most of the basic flour types (all-purpose, bread, pastry, etc.) can be found in organic forms though you may have to

search a bit to find them.

Pre-Sifted:

This is flour sifted at the mill before it was packaged. Suppos-
edly this means you do not need to sift it again at home, but
many feel that due to settling during transport and storage if the recipe calls for sifted flour it should be done again.

Other Additives: There are many other potential additives that you may potentially come across in flour which would require more space than is possible here to cover them. Most are for use within the commercial/industrial baking fields and you would need to contact the supplier to determine precisely what it is they can do for you.

STORING FLOUR PRODUCTS

As already mentioned above whole wheat flour wants to go
rancid rather quickly after it has been milled. Once ground it will stay fresh for about four to six weeks sitting on your room temperature kitchen shelf. In a sealed container in the refrigerator the flour will stay good for a year or so. In the freezer it will keep for years. Personally, I think it best to store your whole wheat flour in the form of wheat berries and only mill as much flour as you will use in a week or two and keep that in the refrigerator or freezer until you do. If for some reason you cannot do this then buy the freshest

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product you can and package it well in Mylar bags, glass jars, or metal cans with oxygen absorbers. Due to the fine texture of flour it will not gas flush very well at all.
Even the refined white flours have limited shelf-lives. In spite of what some would have you believe they are not “dead foods.” The bran and germ may have been removed, but a minute portion of the germ oils will remain as well as the naturally occurring enzymes found in the grain. Refined white flour won’t noticeably go off on you the way whole wheat flour will, but given sufficient time and exposure to heat and atmospheric humidity the protein content of the flour will slowly breakdown. Your first indications of trouble may be a slowly developing musty smell or degraded dough performance – poor rises and bad loaf volumes. In a sealed, air tight container you should easily achieve six months to a year at room temperatures. Sealed containers in the refrigerator or freezer will last for at least several years. If you want your white flour to stay at its best for the longest possible time then package it in Mylar bags, glass jars, or metal cans air tight with oxygen absorbers. At a decent storage temperature sealed in a low oxygen environment you should easily achieve five years of shelf life or more.
Copyright©
Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

LEGUME VARIETIES

If you’re willing to spend what it takes on preserved meats
and dairy products it’s not necessary to store legumes at all. But most people do choose to keep a selection of beans, peas, and lentils in their larders either for reasons of economy, because they like them, or both. There are few non-animal foods that contain the amount of protein to be found in legumes with the varieties commonly available in the U.S. ranging from 20%-35%. As with most non-animal proteins, they are not complete in themselves for purposes of human nutrition, but become so when they are combined with the incomplete proteins found in grains. This is why grains and legumes are so often served together the world around.
The legume family, of which all beans, peas, lentils, and peanuts are a part, is one of the largest in the plant king- dom. Because of this and the many thousands of years of cultivation and development that man has given them on several continents the variety of edible legumes available to us is huge. Both their appearance and their names are colorful and varied. They range from “adzuki beans”, a type of soybean from the Orient, to “zipper peas”, a common field-pea here in the Southern U.S. Their color can range from a clean white, to deep red, dull green to flat black with thousands of mixtures and patterns in between.

In spite of this incredible variety, many legumes are largely interchangeable in cooking, although some dishes just wouldn’t be the same if a different type were used. Below is a partial list of common legumes.

ADZUKI BEANS:

These small, deep red beans are very popular in Japan, China
and other Asian nations, but are not as well known in the U.S. They are actually a cousin of the soybean and are com- monly used in producing sweet bean paste for Chinese buns and other dishes. Pressure cooking will sometimes impart a bitter flavor so they are best presoaked then boiled in the conventional fashion. Their flavor is somewhat milder than kidney or small red beans, but they can serve as an adequate substitute for either in chili and other dishes in which those beans are commonly used.

BLACK BEANS:

Also known as “turtle beans”, they are small, dark brownish-
black and oval-shaped. Well known in Cuban black bean soup and commonly used in Central and South America and in China. They tend to bleed darkly when cooked so they are not well suited to being combined with other beans, lest they give the entire pot a muddy appearance. The skins of black beans also slip off easily so for this reason they are generally not recommended for pressure cooking for fear of clogging the vent. This can be lessened by not presoaking before cooking.

BLACK-EYED PEAS:

Also known as “cowpeas” or “field peas” there are many
varieties these peas eaten across the Southern United States, Mexico, and Africa with black-eyed peas being the most commonly known in the U.S. The coloring of field-peas is as varied as the rest of the legume family, with black-eyed peas being small, oval shaped with an overall creamy color and, of course, their distinctive black-eye. Dried field-peas cook very quickly and combine very tastily with either rice or cornbread and are often eaten as Hoppin’ John every New Years for luck. They’re also reputed to produce less flatulence than many other beans.

CHICKPEAS:

Also known as the “garbanzo bean” or “cecci pea” (or bean),
they tend to be a creamy or tan color, rather lumpily round- ish and larger than dried garden peas. Many have eaten the nutty flavored chick-pea, even if they’ve never seen a whole one. They are the prime ingredient in hummus and falafel and are one of the oldest cultivated legume species known, going back as far as 5400 B.C. in the Near East. Chickpeas tend to remain firmer when cooked than other legumes and can add a pleasant texture to many foods. I like them in red spaghetti sauces in particular and they are often used
in Spanish cuisine in a tomato based sauce. Roasted brown then ground they have also served as a coffee substitute.

FAVA BEANS:

Not as well known in the U.S. as in Europe and the Medi-
terranean favas are also known as “broad beans” or “horse
beans” being broad in shape, flat and reddish brown in color. This is one of the oldest legume species in European cultiva- tion, but it does require more effort to consume. The hull of the bean is tough and not conducive to being tenderized by cooking so is often peeled away. The skinless bean falls apart so is made into a puree. A small number of people with Mediterranean ancestry have a genetic sensitivity to the blossom pollens and undercooked beans, a condition known as “favism” so should avoid consuming them.

GREAT NORTHERN BEANS:

A large white bean about twice the size of navy beans they
are typically bean flavored and are frequently favored for soups, salads, casseroles, and baked beans. One of the more commonly eaten in the U.S. Milled into meal these mild flavored beans can be included in many baked goods as a protein booster or used to thicken soups and stews.

KIDNEY BEANS:

Like the rest of the family, kidney beans can be found in
wide variety. They may be white, mottled or a light or dark red color with their distinctive kidney shape. Probably best known here in the U.S. for their use in chili and bean salads, they figure prominently in Mexican, Brazilian and Chinese cuisine.

LENTILS:

Lentils are an odd lot. They don’t fit in with either the beans
or the peas and occupy a place by themselves. Their shape is different from other legumes being roundish little discs with colors ranging from muddy brown, to green to a rather bright orangish-red. They cook very quickly and have a dis- tinctive mildly peppery flavor. They are much used in Far Eastern cuisine from India to China. Next to mung beans they make excellent sprouts though their peppery flavor tends to
strengthen somewhat so are best mixed with milder sprouts.

LIMA BEANS:

In the Southern U.S., they are also commonly called “butter
beans”. Limas are one of the most common legumes, found in this country in all manner of preservation from the young small beans to the large fully mature type. Their flavor is pleasant, but a little bland. Their shape is rather flat and broad with colors ranging from pale green to speckled cream and purple. They combine very well with rice.

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MUNG BEANS:

Best known here in the States in their sprouted form, they
are quite common in Indian and other Asian cuisines and are a close relative of the field peas (cowpeas). Their shape is generally round, fairly small with color ranging from a medium green to so dark as to be nearly black. They cook quickly and presoaking is not generally needed.

NAVY BEANS:

Smaller than Great Northerns these petite sized beans are
also sometimes knows as pea beans. They are the stars of Navy and Senate Bean Soups, favored for many baked bean dishes, and are most often chosen for use in commercial pork and beans. They retain their shape well when cooked. Ground into meal they can be added to many soups and stews without overpowering them.

PEANUTS (Groundnuts):

The peanut is not actually a nut at all, but a legume. They are
another odd species not much like the more familiar beans and peas. Peanuts have a high protein percentage and even more fat. Whatever their classification peanuts are certainly not unfamiliar to U.S. eaters. They are one of the two legume species commonly grown for oilseed in this country, and are also used for peanut butter, and boiled or roasted peanuts. Peanut butter (without excessive added sweeteners) can add body and flavor to sauces, gravies, soups, and stews. Many Central and South American, African, Chinese, and Thai dishes incorporate peanuts so they are useful for much more than just a snack food or cooking oil.

PEAS, GREEN OR YELLOW:

More often found as split peas though whole peas can some-
times be had. The yellow variety has become somewhat
uncommon but has a milder flavor than the green types which well lends them to blending inconspicuously into other foods. Probably best known in split pea soup, particularly with a smoky chunk of ham added. They are also used in Indian cuisine, especially dals. Whole peas need soaking, but split peas can be cooked as is. Split peas and pea meal makes an excellent thickener for soups and stews. Because splitting damages the pea, this more processed form does not keep for as long as whole peas unless given special packaging.

PINK AND RED BEANS:

Related to the kidney bean these are smaller in size but
similar in flavor. The pink bean has a more delicate flavor than the red. The are both often favored for use in chili and widely used across the American Southwest, Mexico, and Latin America. They can add nicely to the color variety in multi-bean soups.

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PINTO BEANS:

Anyone who has eaten Tex-Mex food has likely had the pinto
bean. It is probably the most widely consumed legume in the U.S., particularly in the Southwestern portion of the country. Stereotypically bean shaped, it has a dappled pattern of tans and browns on its shell. Pintos have a flavor that blends well with many foods. When ground together with great northern or navy beans they make my favorite homemade version of falafel. When milled into a meal pintos will cook in mere minutes, making a near instant form of refried beans.

SOYBEANS:

The soybean is by far the legume with the highest protein
content in large scale commercial production and it’s amino acid profile is the most nearly complete for human nutrition. Alongside the peanut it is the other common legume oilseed. The beans themselves are small, round, and with a multitude of different shades though tan seems to be the most com- mon that I’ve seen. Because of their high oil content, they are more sensitive to oxygen exposure than other legumes and precautions should be taken accordingly if they are to be kept for more than a year in storage, especially if they are to be processed for soymilk or tofu. Although the U.S. grows a large percentage of the global supply, we consume virtually none of them directly. Most go into cattle feed, are used by industry, or exported. What does get eaten directly has usually been intensively processed. Soybean products range from soymilk to tofu, to tempeh, to textured vegetable protein (TVP) and hundreds of other forms. They don’t lend themselves well to merely being boiled until done then eaten the way other beans and peas do. For this reason, if you plan on keeping some as a part of your storage program you would be well served to begin to learn how to process and prepare them now while you’re not under pressure to produce. This way you can throw out your failures and order pizza, rather than having to choke them down, regardless.
Copyright©
Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

AVAILABILITY OF GRAINS AND LEGUMES

Grains and legumes of all types may be purchased in a num- ber of different ways depending largely on where you live and the time of year. The following will cover the various steps of the processing chain starting with the forms most immediately suitable for storage and progressing all the way back to the farmer.

Each type of availability has its good and bad points. As you might expect, the more processing a product receives, the higher its price is likely to be. The further back along the pro- cessing chain you go the cheaper a product should become in terms of purchase price. It will, however, cost you more in time and effort to get it ready for storage.
The easiest and simplest way to incorporate grains and le- gumes into your storage program is to purchase your items pre-cleaned and prepackaged. These are products that have been harvested, passed through fans and screens to remove chaff, smut balls, insect parts, mouse droppings and other debris, then put up in retail sized bags or other contain- ers - possibly even going so far as to already be packaged for long-term storage. This would be either from your local grocer or a storage food dealer. If you don’t live in the area where what you want is grown it may be your only option. If you want to purchase in bulk then you may be able to find pre-cleaned but not yet packaged products. These sources would be commercial or institutional food suppliers, food co-ops, warehouse grocers like Sam’s Club or Costco, local food companies that package their own product lines, and the like. If what you want is not already in 50-100 lb bags you may have to provide your own container and there may be minimum purchase amounts as well. If the moisture content is in the right range then nothing will need to be done other than to put it up in your own storage packaging. If you don’t buy it from some sort of foods dealer then be certain read the cautionary text below.
Should you happen to live in the area where the type of grain or legume that you are interested in purchasing is grown you may be able to purchase direct from the producer or distributor.
If you are interested in doing this, it may be possible to find your product field-run which simply means that it’s been harvested and sold shortly thereafter. It will not have been given any cleaning or processing and is likely to be rather dirty depending upon the conditions under which it was grown and harvested.
A second form called field-run from storage is product that has been harvested then put into storage for a time. It will have the dirt and debris of field run grain and whatever it may have picked up from the grain elevator as well.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you have purchased your grains and legumes from a foods dealer then you needn’t worry about hidden mold infections, fungicides or insecticides that are unsafe for human consumption. In the U.S., the products will have been checked several times by Federal and State agriculture departments and probably by the major foods dealers as well, to ensure its quality.

This is not necessarily the case when you purchase your grains or legumes directly from the farmer or elevator op- erator as field-run or field-run from storage grain. Nor is it necessarily the case if you’ve made the decision to utilize grains marketed as animal feed. Inspection procedures vary from nation to nation, so if you buy outside of the U.S. inquire of your supplier.
If you are buying your grains and legumes from some place other than a foods dealer, you need to know the history of what you are buying. There is the remote possibility that field-run from storage or any grade of grain not specifically sold for human consumption may have had fumigants, fun- gicides or insecticides not certified as safe for human foods added while it was in the bin. It is important to know what it has been treated with before you buy it.
Straight field-run grain, other than being dirty, is not likely to have had anything added that would make it undesirable for human consumption. There is, however, the also remote possibility it may have been infected with fungi that would make it unsafe for eating.
One of these fungal infections of grain is called “ergot”. This fungal disease affects the flowering parts of some members of the grass family, mostly confined to rye. Consuming the fungus causes a nervous disorder known as St. Anthony’s Fire. When eaten in large quantities the ergot alkaloids may cause constriction of the blood vessels, particularly in the extremities. The effects of ergot poisoning are cumulative and lead to numbness of the limbs and other, frequently serious, symptoms.
The fungus bodies are hard, spur like, purple-black struc- tures that replace the kernel in the grain head. The ergot bodies can vary in size from the length of the kernel to as much as several times as long. They don’t crush as easily as smut bodies of other funguses. When they are cracked open, the inner broken faces can be off-white, yellow, or tan. The infected grain looks very different from ordinary, healthy rye grains and can be spotted easily. Ergot only rarely affects other grains and will generally afflict rye only when the growing conditions were damp. If you purchase field run rye, you should closely examine it first for the presence of ergot bodies. If you find more than a very, very few pass up that grain and look elsewhere.
Ergot is typically not a problem in the U.S and is easily spotted when it does occur. Other grain fungi, however, are much harder to spot and also have serious consequences should they be consumed. The various species of Aspergillus and Fusarium molds can be a problem almost anywhere.
Animal feed grains or seed grain/legumes are widely avail-
able and there are those who want to consider using these

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sources. Keep in mind that animal feeds are typically dirtier than food grains and may have a higher contaminant level than what is permissible for human consumption. The USDA allows the sale of grain or legumes for animal feed that could not be sold for direct human food use. It may even be mixed varieties of one grain and not all one type. In the case of feed wheat it may have an acceptable protein content but still make miserable raised bread so try milling and baking with a small amount before you put a lot of it away. Seed grains, in particular, must be investigated carefully to find out what they may have been treated with. It is quite common for seed to be coated with fungicides, and possibly other chemicals as well. Once treated, they are no longer safe for human or animal consumption. Be sure to inquire of your supplier.
If you do purchase field-run grain of any sort, examine it closely for contamination and moldy grain. Ask the farmer or distributor whether it has been tested for mold or myco- toxin (fungal toxin) content. This is especially the case if you are buying field-run CORN, RYE, SOYBEANS or RICE. When you purchase direct from the field, you may be getting it before it has been checked. Be certain of what it is that you are buying and ask questions if you choose to go this route. Know who you are dealing with. Unless you just can’t find any other source, I don’t recommend using animal feed or seed grains for human food use.
Copyright ©
Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

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MOI S TU RE C ON TE N T

The moisture content of the grain or legume you want to put by has a major impact on how long you will be able to profitably keep it in storage. Some of the available literature states that grain with a moisture content as high as 13% can be safely put up, but there is a risk to keeping it at that level that should be understood.
The outside of every kernel of grain and bean you buy or grow hosts thousands of fungi spores and bacteria. This is all perfectly natural and is not a cause for alarm. The prob- lem is that at moisture levels between 13.5% to 15% some fungal species are able to grow and reproduce. Aerobic bacteria (needing free oxygen to survive) require moisture in the 20% range. If you have grain with a moisture content as high as 13% you are perilously close to having enough moisture to enable mold growth which could lead to the spoilage and loss of your product. For this reason, I suggest you keep all grains and legumes to a moisture content of no more than 10%. An exception to this is raw peanuts which are particularly susceptible to an Aspergillus mold growth that produces aflatoxin (a type of mycotoxin) so should be stored with an 8% moisture content or less.
If you do not have a clue as to what the moisture level of your grain is here are several methods to determine it. The first method is quick, simple and will usually give you a close enough idea to work with of how much moisture there is in your grain or legume. The last two require a great deal more time and effort, but give more precise results.

METHOD ONE

This is the method I use myself. It’s quick and dirty requir-
ing nothing more than crushing a kernel of grain or a bean
between two solid objects like a hammer and a brick. You don’t have to hit it like you’re driving spikes, just give it a sharp rap. If the grain shatters nicely into powdery debris or many small bits then the moisture level ought to be in the right range and you can package as-is. If the kernel just mashes flat or only reluctantly breaks into pieces it probably has too much moisture. If you’re not sure of what you’re seeing try drying a small amount overnight at only a warm temperature (100º Fahrenheit) such as you’d get from the pilot light in a gas oven. The next day take another sample from the same container and rinse in warm water for a few seconds, rub dry on a towel and let sit for about ten minutes. Now try the crush test on both samples. One should give you a good result and the other should be much different. Any seed with a high fat content such as soybeans and peanuts will not work well with this method.

COMMON TO METHODS TWO AND THREE
The more precise moisture content measurements require more time and effort. Nevertheless, you can make useful determinations with home equipment and I include them here for those who find Method One to be unsatisfactory.
You’ll need some way to measure weight with a fair degree of accuracy. The better the scale you use, the more reliabil- ity you’ll have in your determinations. Provided that it will weigh accurately to the half-ounce or less, any scale that can be calibrated with a known check weight will do. Postal scales can be made to serve if they are carefully calibrated against a known weight. Many individuals interested in start- ing storage programs may have grain weight scales used in ammunition reloading that might serve well.
Also necessary is a thermometer capable of withstanding and accurately measuring oven temperatures. As many bakers can tell you, home oven thermostats are often notoriously inaccurate so it is better to rely on a decent thermometer. Most kitchen supply stores can supply one that is oven safe and will accurately measure to the degree Fahrenheit or Celsius.
Proper technique calls for preheating the oven for a half- hour or more before starting the dehydrating process so that it will be of a uniform heat throughout. The sample pan should be placed on the middle rack as close to the vertical and horizontal center of the oven as possible. The bulb or dial of the thermometer should be placed next to the pan.

METHOD TWO

This method is for measuring moisture content in whole
grains and legumes. Grain flours or meals, milk powders and any other finely textured foods should use Method Three detailed below.
To be done prior to measuring — choose a shallow heat resis- tant container that has a close fitting lid. Clean it thoroughly and dry completely in your oven for 10-15 minutes. Allow it to cool and then weigh it carefully. This will give you the tare weight or what your container weighs empty.
Depending on how your scale is calibrated you can use a smaller sample size than what is indicated below. Using the twenty-ounce sample mentioned in the following text will allow for fairly accurate readings with the average postal scale. A scale that will measure to the gram could use as small a sample as 20 grams. A powder scale could use even less, but the smaller your sample size becomes the more finicky care you must exercise not to allow error to creep in. Keep your sample size large enough to easily work with.
Allowing for the weight of the sample pan, measure out a weighed twenty-ounce representative sample of the grain or legumes in question. Ideally, you should thoroughly mix
the entire lot immediately before removing the sample, but if this is not possible then take it from the middle center of the container. It is important that you use care in this mea- surement since it will affect all following determinations.
Put the sample in the container making sure it is not more than an inch deep. Place it in the oven with the lid off and allow to heat. Below is a table giving the oven temperatures and times per grain or legume type:
Time and Temperature Settings for Determining Moisture
Contents of Whole Seeds
Seed Oven Temperature F* Oven Temp C* Time
Barley 266 130 20
Beans 217 103 72
Corn 217 103 72
Oats 266 130 22

Rye 266 130 16

Sorghum, millet 266 130 18
Soybeans, peanuts 217 103 72
Wheat, rice 266 130 19
*No home oven that I am aware of will allow for such precise temperature control. Try to keep the temperature within ten degrees either way of what is listed and you will still achieve useful results. When the dehydration period is over place the close fitting lid on the sample pan and allow to cool in the oven with the door closed. Remove and carefully weigh the pan.
A one ounce loss in weight indicates your grain has a roughly five percent moisture content, 2 ounces indicates that it has a 10% moisture content, etc., etc. You might even be able to cut it as fine as a half-ounce loss, but I wouldn’t try to take it further than that. Obviously, this is only a rough measure, but it works and can be done with postal or dietetic scales that are available virtually everywhere. As I mentioned above, if you have a scale with a finer calibration it is possible to use a smaller sample size and achieve the same result.

METHOD THREE

This method is much faster to use than the first, but

greater care must be taken to prevent error. It can be used to determine moisture contents of whole grains

and legumes, flours, meals and various food powders.
The same equipment as was used in Method Two will be required here as well as a low-RPM grain mill or some other device that can reduce a quantity of the grain to a meal consistency with only minimal heating of the sample. If the food to be tested is already at a meal consistency or finer then it can be used as-is.

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Grind a quantity of product from which you want to measure the moisture content. Take care to grind the sample slowly enough to keep friction heat build up to a minimum (should not be more than mildly warm) or else moisture will be lost due to heat evaporation before it can be weighed. Immedi- ately upon finishing the grinding, weigh out your sample so as to minimize unmeasured moisture loss.
Place the sample in the oven and dehydrate in the manner used in Method Two for a period of two hours at a tempera- ture setting of 275º F (135º C). When the heating period is finished cover with the tight-fitting lid and allow to cool in the oven. Remove and weigh carefully. Moisture determination is the same as above. If anyone has a better way of measuring moisture levels which can be done without a lab or special equipment I’d surely like to hear from you.

CLEANING IT YOURSELF

If you’ve chosen to purchase field-run grain or if the pre-
cleaned product you’ve bought isn’t clean enough to suit you it can be given further cleaning.
The fastest and easiest method is “fanning”, a form of win- nowing. This is done by pouring the grain slowly through the air stream of a fan or blower into a clean, deep container such as a cardboard box or trash can. The wind blowing through the falling grain will blow out most of the broken kernels, chaff, smut balls, mouse droppings, etc. If you’re losing too much good grain, try turning the fan down or moving it fur-
ther back from the container. The deep container will cut down on the amount of kernels that bounce out. Repeat fanning as necessary until the grain is clean enough to suit or you’ve blown all of the lighter contaminants out.
If the fanning didn’t get the grain clean enough it can be further cleaned by running it through a screen or sieve. This should be made with holes just big enough to pass an average sized grain of what it is you’re cleaning. Obviously, the size of the holes will necessarily vary depending upon the kernel size of the grain.
Should the kernels still not be clean enough to suit then you’ll just have to resort to hand picking out the offending particles. I’d strongly suggest doing this just prior to grinding where it can be done in small batches rather than trying to do your entire storage all at once. It’s much easier to do a few pounds at a time than fifty or a hundred.
If you have it in mind to wash the grain, this should not be done prior to storage, but rather just before use. After rins- ing, dry the grain immediately in an oven heated to 150º F (117 º C) for an hour in a layer no deeper than 1/2 inch deep stirring often.
Copyright©
Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

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BASIC COOKING INSTRUCTIONS FOR GRAINS & LEGUMES.

A basic cooking direction for all grains begins with measuring the grains and water into a saucepan. If you are cooking 1 cup (240 ml) of grains, use a 2-quart (2 liter) saucepan.

Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt if desired.

Cover the saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn the heat down to low, and steam for the recommended cooking time. Lift the lid and test the grains for tenderness. If the grains need more time, cover the saucepan and steam 5 to 10 min- utes longer. If the grains need more cooking time and all the water has been absorbed, add up to 1/4 cup (60 ml) of water, cover, and continue steaming.

If tender, turn off the heat and allow the grains to rest 5 to 10 minutes before serving to fluff.

Buckwheat is the exception to the basic directions. Be- cause the grain is so porous and absorbs water quick- ly, it’s best to bring the water to a boil first. Then, add the buckwheat.

When the water returns to a boil, cover the saucepan, turn the heat down to low, and time the steaming pro- cess.

*Buckwheat groats are available toasted and untoast-

ed. Cooking times are the same.

* Quinoa should be well rinsed in a fine strainer for

1 to 2 minutes to remove the saponens, a natural, protective coating which will give a bitter flavor if not rinsed off.

* Short grain brown rice is sometimes labeled sweet, glutinous, or sticky brown rice.

*Teff can be enjoyed raw as well as cooked. Sprinkle it on salads or over cooked cereals to increase fiber and nutrition.

*Bulgur wheat can be covered with 1-inch of warm water and soaked for 1 hour to soften. It is then ready to use in raw salads such as tabbouli.

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PREPARING BEANS & LEGUMES

Begin by washing beans and discarding any which

are discolored or badly formed. Check for debris in the package such as small rocks or twigs and discard them. Beans cook more quickly and their digestibil- ity benefits with soaking in water to cover by about

3 inches (7.5 cm) for 8 hours or overnight. Discard the soak water and cook the beans in fresh water.

Some bean cookery aficionados feel that salt and seasonings added during the cooking tends to make beans cook more slowly. Since beans require lengthy cooking, we recommend adding salt and seasonings during the last few minutes and find they absorb fla- vor quite readily.

There are other factors which contribute to the length of cooking, such as, hard water and beans that have been dried for a long period of time. For some of the longer cooking beans we have found that soaking 24 hours and changing the soak water 2 or 3 times has- tens the cooking time.

Many people are concerned with the reputation that beans have for causing flatulence.

Starting your bean ventures with small amounts helps to increase your body’s enzyme production gradu- ally. Soaking and cooking the beans thoroughly helps to break down the complex sugars (oligosaccharides) which challenge our digestive systems.

Some herbs that help the digestion of beans can be added during the cooking process.

These include bay leaf, cumin, and winter or sum- mer savory, fresh epazote (available in Hispanic mar- kets). Many people from India maintain the tradition of chewing on dried fennel seeds or drinking a cup of fennel tea at the end of a legume meal to aid the di- gestion.

QUICK-SOAK METHOD:

When time is limited, you can wash and pick over

beans and put them into a stock pot with water to cover by 3 inches (7.5 cm). Bring to a boil and boil for

10 minutes to remove toxins. Then cover and allow to


soak for 1 hour. Discard soak water, add fresh water, and cook until tender.

As a general rule of thumb, 1 cup of dried beans will yield about 2 1/2 - 3 cups (.5 to .75 liters) of cooked beans.

PRESSURE COOKING

For pressure-cooking beans you can choose to soak

the beans overnight, use the quicksoak method, or forego soaking altogether. There are well-known chefs, like Emeril Lagasse, who do not soak beans be- fore pressure-cooking.

Whether you choose to soak or eliminate that step, put the beans in the pressure cooker with 3 times as much water as beans. Cook at 15 pounds of pressure for 30 minutes for small beans. For large beans, such as limas or fava beans, pressure cook for about 40 minutes.

COOKING FRESH BEANS

Because few people actually grow beans and go

through the time-consuming process of shelling and cooking them, most of the information about prepar- ing beans refers to dried beans. However, fresh beans are delicious and easy to prepare and can often be found at farmers’ markets. Fresh black-eyed peas, gar- banzos, cannellini, limas, and others offer excellent flavor and nutrition.

There are two methods of cooking fresh beans: boil- ing or steaming. To boil, drop the shelled beans into boiling water to cover, and boil gently for 5 to 10 min- utes. You may want to add some onions, garlic, herbs of your choice, and a dash of salt to the water to flavor the beans.

To steam, put about an inch of water into the bottom of a saucepan, and place the beans into a steamer basket that fits into the saucepan. Cover the pan, and steam over boiling water for 5 to 10 minutes.

After fresh fava beans are cooked, their tough skins are usually peeled and discarded.

When left on, they give the beans a bitter flavor. To peel the skins, use a small paring knife and peel away one end. Then squeeze the opposite end and the bean will slip out easily.

Copyright

Zel Allen, 2011

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SUGAR, HONEY AND OTHER

SWEETENERS

There are a wide number of sugars to be found for purposes of sweetening foods. Fructose is the primary sugar in fruit and honey; maltose is one of the sugars in malted grains; pimentose is found in olives, and sucrose is what we know as granulated or table sugar. Sucrose is a highly refined product made primarily from sugar cane though sugar beets still contribute a fair amount of the world supply. Modern table sugar is now so highly refined as to be virtually 100% pure and nearly indestructible if protected from moisture. Powdered sugar and brown sugar are simple variations on granulated sugar and share its long life.
Liquid sweeteners do not have quite the longevity of dry sugars. Honey, cane syrup, molasses, corn syrup and maple syrup may crystallize or mold during long storage. These syrups are chemically not as simple as table sugar and therefore lose flavor and otherwise break down over time.

GRANULATED SUGARS:

Buying refined sugar is a simple matter. Select a brand you know you can trust, be certain the package is clean, dry and has no insect infestation. There’s little that can go wrong with it.

GRANULATED:

Granulated sugar does not spoil, but if it gets damp it will grow lumpy or turn into a sugar rock. If it does, it can be pulverized into smaller pieces and used. Granulated sugar can be found in varying textures, coarser or finer. “Castor/ caster sugar” is a finer granulation than what is commonly sold as table sugar in the U.S. and is more closely equivalent to our super fine or berry sugar.

POWDERED, CONFECTIONERS, ICING:

All names refer to the same kind of sugar, that is white granulated sugar very finely ground. For commercial use there is a range of textures from coarse to ultra-fine. For home consumption, what is generally found is either Very Fine (6X) or Ultra-Fine (10X), but this can vary from nation to nation. Not all manufacturers will indicate the grind on the package. Sugar refiners usually add a small amount of cornstarch to prevent caking which will make it undesirable for use in sugar syrups or solutions where clarity is needed.
Powdered sugar is as inert as granulated sugar, but it is even more hygroscopic and will adsorb any moisture present. If it soaks up more than a little it will cake and become hard. It’s difficult to reclaim hardened powdered sugar, but it can

still be used like granulated sugar where clarity in solution
(syrups) is not important.

BROWN, LIGHT & DARK:

In the United States brown sugar is generally refined white sugar that has had a bit of molasses or sugar syrup and caramel coloring added to it. Dark brown sugar has more molasses which gives it a stronger flavor, a darker color and makes it damp. Light brown sugar has less molasses which gives it a milder flavor, a blonder color and is slightly dryer than the dark variety. Light brown sugar can be made by combining one fourth to one third white sugar to the remainder dark brown sugar and blend thoroughly.
Both varieties need to be protected from drying out, or they will become hard and difficult to deal with. Nor do you want to allow them to become damper than what they already are.
There are dry granulated and liquid brown sugars available, but they don’t have the same cooking qualities as ordinary brown sugars. They also don’t dry out and harden quite so readily either.

RAW, NATURAL, TURBINADO & OTHERS:

In recent years, refiners have realized there is a market for less processed forms of cane sugar in the U.S. so have begun to sell these under various names and packaging. None of them are actually raw sugar as it is illegal to sell in the States due to the high impurities level in the truly raw product. All will have been processed to some degree, perhaps to remove the sticky surface molasses or to lighten the color, but will not have been subjected to the full refining and whitening processes of ordinary white table sugar. This leaves some of the natural hue and a strength of flavor that deepens with the color. All of these less refined sugars may be stored and handled like brown sugar.
Outside of the United States it is possible to buy cane sugars from the truly raw product with all of the detritus remaining from the cane juice extraction process up through various stages of refinement much like we have here in the United States. Many can be found with names such as “muscavado”, “jaggery” (usually a raw palm or date sugar), “demerara”, “succanat,” and others. Colors will range from quite dark to blonde and may or may not be sticky with molasses. Generally the darker the color the stronger the flavor will be. In spite of any impurities they can be stored like brown sugar since their sugar content is high enough to inhibit most microbial growth. Recently I have found demerara sugar for sale here in the U.S.

STORING GRANULATED SUGARS

All granulated sugars have basically the same storage
requirements. They need to be kept in air tight, insect and
moisture proof containers. For powdered, and granulated sugar you might want to consider using some desiccant in the storage container if your local climate is damp. Since brown sugars and raw sugars are supposed to be moist, they do not need desiccants. Shelf life is indefinite if kept dry, but anything you intend to eat really should be rotated occasionally. Time has a way of affecting even the most durable of foods.
I’ve used brown sugar that was six years old at the time it was removed from storage and, other than the molasses settling somewhat toward the bottom, it was fine. A friend to whom I gave a bucket of the brown sugar finished it off three years later which was nine years after it was packaged and it, too, was fine.

HONEY

Honey may be the oldest sweetener known to man - its use predates recorded history. Remains of honey have been found in the Egyptian pyramids. This product of honeybees is typically sweeter than granulated sugar by a factor of
25%-40% depending upon the specific flowers from which the bees gathered their nectar. This means a smaller amount of honey can give the same amount of sweetening as sugar. The source flowers also dictate the flavor and the color as well. Honey color can range from very dark (nearly black) to almost colorless. As a general rule, the lighter the color and the more delicate the flavor, the greater the price the honey will bring. As you might expect, since honey is sweeter than table sugar, it also has more calories as well — an average of twenty two per teaspoon compared to granulated sugar’s sixteen. There are also trivial amounts of minerals and vitamins in the bee product while white sugar has none. Honey is not a direct substitute for table sugar however, its use in recipes may call for a bit of alteration to make them to turn out right.
Although the chance is remote, raw honey may also contain minute quantities of Clostridium botulinum spores so should not be fed to children under one year of age. PLEASE READ THE POST FROM GERI GUIDETTI CONCERNING THIS BELOW. Raw honey is OK for older children and adults.
Honey comes in a number of forms in the retail market and all with somewhat different storage characteristics:

WHOLE-COMB:

This is the bee product straight from the hive. It is the most unprocessed form of honey, being large pieces of waxy comb floating in raw honey. The comb itself will contain many unopened honey cells.

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RAW:

This is unheated honey that has been removed from the comb. It may contain bits of wax and other small particles.

FILTERED:

This is raw honey that has been warmed slightly to make it easier to filter out small particles and impurities. Other than being somewhat cleaner than raw honey it is essentially the same. Most of the trace amounts of nutrients remain intact.

LIQUID/PURE:

This is honey that has been heated to higher temperatures to allow for easier filtering and to kill any microorganisms. Usually lighter in color, this form is milder in flavor, resists crystallization and generally clearer. It stores the best of the various forms of honey. Much of the trace amounts of vitamins, however, are lost.

SPUN, CRYSTALLIZED or CREAMED:

This honey has had some of its moisture content removed to make a creamy spread. It is the most processed form of honey. It keeps quite well. Also available in various flavors.

BUYING HONEY

Much of the honey sold in supermarkets has been blended
from a variety of different honeys and some may have even had other sweeteners added as well. Like anything involving humans, buying honey can be a tricky business. It pays to deal with individuals and brands you know you can trust. In the United States you should buy products labeled U.S. GRADE A or U.S. FANCY if buying in retail outlets. However, be aware there are no federal labeling laws governing the sale of honey, so only honey labeled pure is entirely honey and not blended with other sweeteners. Honey grading is a matter of voluntary compliance which means some producers may be lax in their practices. Some may also use words like “organic”, “raw”, “uncooked” and “unfiltered” on their labels, possibly to mislead. Fortunately, most honey producers are quite honest in their product labeling so if you’re not certain of who to deal with, it is worthwhile to ask around to find out who produces a good product.
Honey may also contain trace amounts of drugs used in treating various bee ailments, including antibiotics. If this is a concern to you, then it would be wise to investigate with your local honey producer what they may have used.

STORING HONEY

Honey is much easier to store than to select and buy. Pure
honey won’t mold, but may crystallize over time. Exposure to air and moisture may cause color to darken, flavor to intensify and may speed crystallization as well. Comb honey

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doesn’t store as well liquid honey so you should not expect it to last as long.
Storage temperature is not as important for honey, but it should not be allowed to freeze or exposed to high temperatures if possible. Either can cause crystallization and heat may cause flavor to strengthen undesirably.
Filtered liquid honey will last the longest in storage. Storage containers should be opaque, airtight, moisture and odor- proof. Like any other stored food, honey should be rotated through the storage cycle and replaced with fresh product.
If crystallization does occur, honey can be reliquified by placing the container in a larger container of hot water until it has melted. Avoid adding water to honey you intend to keep in storage or it may ferment.
Avoid storing honey near heat sources or petroleum products (including gasoline/diesel engines), chemicals or any other odor-producing products which may infuse through plastic packaging.

RAW HONEY AND BOTULISM

From: Geri Guidetti arkinst@concentric.net
Duane Miles wrote:

If I recall correctly, honey contains very, very small amoun ts of the bact eri a that c ause botul i sm. F or adult s, this se ldom c ause s pr oble ms. Our

i mmune s ys t em is c apable of deal ing with smal l numbers of even nasty bacteria, they do it all the

t ime . The pr oble m is w he n w e ge t lar ge numbe r s of bacteria, or when our immune system is damaged or not yet developed.

That is whe re the proble m with hone y c ome s

in. Some people used to use honey to sweeten milk

or other foods for infants. Infants immune systems

some time s c annot handle the bact e r ia that

cause botulism, and, of course, those infants became

seriously ill. So pediatricians now advise strongly against

using honey for children under a certain age.

Yes, raw honey can contain the temperature resistant spores of Clostridium botulinum, the bacterium that causes botulism. The organism is a strict anaerobe, meaning that it only grows in the absence of molecular oxygen. The problem with infants and honey is that the small, intestinal tract of an infant apparently is sufficiently anaerobic to allow the spores to germinate into actively growing C. botulinum organisms. Essentially, the infant serves the same role as a sealed, airtight, contaminated can of beans as far as the organisms are concerned. There in the infant’s body the bacteria secrete the dangerous toxin that causes the symptoms of

botulism. There have been quite a few documented infant deaths due to honey. As I recall, the studies identifying honey as the source were done in the ’80s. Most pediatricians recommend no honey for the first year. It is probably best to check with your own for even later updates...Geri Guidetti, The Ark Institute

EDITOR’S NOTE: The advice not to give raw honey or foods containing raw honey to infants under one year of age still stands. Do please understand, though, that honey is not the only means by which infants can suffer from botulism, in many of which cases no certain source of contagion could ever be determined. The actual chances of any infant being stricken is very, very small and keeping the child’s colon open, active and healthy can reduce it still more. Breast-fed children seem to be more resistant as well.

HONEY OUTGASSING

Q: My can of honey is bulging. Is it safe to use?
A: Honey can react with the can lining to release a gas especially when stored over a long period of time. Honey’s high sugar content prevents bacteria growth. If there is no sign of mold growth, it is safe to eat. FREQUENTLY ASKED FOOD QUESTIONS, FN250

CANE SYRUPS

CANE SYRUP:

Seldom found in supermarkets pure cane syrup is a sweet symbol of the U.S. Deep South. Produced by boiling down the extracted juice of the sugarcane in much the same fashion as sorghum and maple syrups are produced. The best syrup is clear with a dark amber color and a smooth intense flavor. Cane syrup usually has to be purchased from roadside stands, living history recreations, farm festivals, or state and county fairs. Some syrup makers will add small quantities of lemon juice or corn syrup to deter crystallization. Flavored cane syrups can sometimes be found, but are usually a sign of inferior syrup.

MOLASSES:

A by-product of sugar refining, molasses is generally composed of sugars such as glucose that are resistant to crystallization, browning reaction products resulting from the syrup reduction process, and small amounts of minerals. Flavor can vary between brands, but is usually strong and the color dark and opaque. Sulfured molasses can sometimes be found but its intense flavor is unappealing to most. Brands labeled as ‘blackstrap molasses’ are intensely flavored.

SORGHUM SYRUP:

This is produced in the same manner as cane syrup, but sweet sorghum cane, rather than sugar cane, is used. Sorghum tends to have a thinner, slightly sourer taste than cane syrup. Good syrup should be a clear dark amber with a smooth flavor. It can sometimes be found in the supermarket, but more often is found in the same types of places as genuine sugar cane syrup.

TREACLE:

This sweetener comes in varying colors from a rather dark version, similar to, but not quite the same as blackstrap molasses, to paler versions more similar to golden syrup. If you cannot find it in your store’s syrup area check in their imported foods section.
All of the above syrups are generally dark with a rich, heavy flavor.

GOLDEN SYRUP:

This syrup is both lighter and paler in color than any of the above four, more similar to what we would call a table syrup here in the U.S. Can usually be found in the same areas as treacle above.

TABLE SYRUP:

There are many table syrups sold in supermarkets, some with flavorings of one sort or another such as maple, various fruits, butter, etc. A close examination of the ingredients list will reveal mixtures usually of cane syrup, cane sugar syrup or corn syrup along with preservatives, colorings and other additives. Table syrup usually has a much less pronounced flavor than molasses, cane or sorghum syrup or the darker treacles. Any syrup containing corn syrup should be stored as corn syrup.

STORING CANE SYRUPS

All of the above syrups, except for those having corn syrup
in their makeup, have the same storage characteristics. They can be stored on the shelf for about two years and up to a year after opening. Once they are opened, they are best kept in the refrigerator to retard mold growth. If mold growth does occur, the syrup should be discarded. The outside of the bottle should be cleaned of drips after each use. Some pure cane and sorghum syrups may crystallize in storage, but this causes no harm and they can be reliquified using the same method as for honey. Molasses or other sugar refining by-products won’t usually crystallize, but will dry into an unmanageable tar unless kept sealed.

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CORN SYRUP

Corn syrup is a liquid sweetener made by breaking down
cornstarch into its constituent sugars through an enzyme reaction. Available in both a light and a dark form, the darker variety has a flavor similar to molasses and contains refiners syrup (a by-product of sugar refining). Both types often contain flavorings and preservatives. It is commonly used in baking and candy making because it does not crystallize when heated. Corn syrup is common in the U.S., but less so elsewhere.
Corn syrup stores poorly compared to other sweeteners and because of this it often has a best if used by date on the bottle. It should be stored in its original bottle, tightly capped, in a cool, dry place. New unopened bottles can be expected to keep about six months past the date on the label and sometimes longer.
After opening, keep the corn syrup four to six months. These syrups are prone to mold and to fermentation so be on the lookout for bubbling or a mold haze. If these present themselves, throw the syrup out. You should wipe off any drips from the bottle after every use.

MAPLE SYRUP

Maple syrup is produced by boiling down the sap of the
maple tree (and a lot of it too) collected at certain times in the early Spring until it reaches a syrup consistency. This native American sweetener is slightly sweeter than table sugar and is judged by much the same criteria as honey: Lightness of color, clarity and taste. Making the syrup is energy and labor intensive so pure maple is generally expensive. Maple flavored pancake syrups are usually mixtures of corn and cane sugar syrups with either natural or artificial flavorings and should be kept and stored as corn syrups.
New unopened bottles of maple syrup may be kept on a cool, dark, shelf for up to two years. The sweetener may darken and the flavor get stronger, but it is still usable.
After the bottle has been opened, it should be refrigerated. It will last about a year. Be careful to look out for mold growth. If mold occurs, discard the syrup.
Copyright© Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

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DAIRY PRODUCTS

Got milk? Butter? Cheese? In the refrigerator, right? Dairy products are a great source of essential amino acids, vitamin D, and calcium, but in their usual forms found in the refrigerator case of your local supermarkets are perishable commodities. Fortunately, there are a number of dairy products that lend themselves to food storage.

DRY MILKS

Dry, powdered milk is available in nearly as many varieties as the fresh fluid product. Most can be found on the shelves of your local supermarket while a few may have to come from rather more specialized suppliers. Skillfully and knowledgeably used they can vastly improve the quality of your food storage program.

NONFAT (skim):

This is pasteurized skim milk reduced to a powdered
concentrate and is found in two forms - regular and instant. They are both made from the same type of milk, but the instant variety has been given further processing to make it more easily soluble in water than regular
dry milk. Both types have essentially the same nutrient composition. The regular variety is more compact, requires less storage space than the instantized variety, usually costs somewhat less, but is a little more difficult to reconstitute. Instant dry milk is commonly available in nearly any grocery store. The regular type generally has to be sought out from baking and restaurant suppliers or storage food dealers. There is a retail brand by the name of “Milkman” that has a bit of fat content that makes it similar to 1% milk. The fat content means it should be stored like whole milk, described below.
It takes 3.2 oz or about 3 tablespoons of instant nonfat dry milk added to 32 oz of water to make 1 quart of milk you can drink or cook with like fresh milk. Combining the dry milk with water at least several hours before you plan to use it gives it time to dissolve fully and to develop a fresher flavor. Shaking the fluid milk vigorously will incorporate air and will also help to improve flavor. Add the powder to baked goods, gravies, smoothies, hot cereals, casseroles and meat loaf as a nutrition booster. It can also be used to make yogurt, cheese and most any cultured dairy product that does not require a high fat content. Several of the ways that we use dry milk powder is in making grits, oatmeal, and our favorite whole wheat bread. A few tablespoons of dry milk greatly improves the amino acid composition of any grain product.

FLAVORED NONFAT:

This may be found packaged in a variety of forms from a low calorie diet drink (artificially sweetened) to the other end of the scale, as cocoa mix or malted milk. The key ingredient is the dry milk so buy and store these products accordingly.

WHOLE MILK:

This is whole dry milk with all of its fat content (roughly
28% milkfat) and therefore has a shorter shelf life than nonfat. Other than that, it may be reconstituted and used in exactly the same way as nonfat dry milk. Dry whole milk can sometimes be found in the Hispanic foods area of grocery stores (Nido and Klim by Nestlé are the two brands I know), natural or health food stores, and some storage food suppliers carry it as well as institutional and restaurant foods businesses. It can also sometimes be found where camping and outback supplies are sold. Because of the high fat content this form of dry milk really needs to be either vacuum sealed or packaged with oxygen absorbers in gas impermeable containers such as canning jars, Mylar bags, etc. Rotate and use dry whole milk within two years, less if not packaged for long-term storage.

BUTTERMILK:

Dry buttermilk is for use in recipes calling for buttermilk. It can be reconstituted into liquid buttermilk, but it’s not much like the fresh liquid product and is best used in baked goods. Since it has a slightly higher fat content than nonfat dry milk, it generally does not keep as long. If properly packaged it should keep for several years.

SOUR CREAM:

Made from cultured sweet cream like the fresh product then dried and processed into a powder. Like the real thing it has a high milkfat content (25-28%) and should be stored like whole milk using vacuum sealing and/or oxygen absorbers and kept in a cool place. Mixed with the proper amount of cold water it can be reconstituted into a rich, thick product much like fresh sour cream and can be used in a similar manner or just used as a powder to add a tangy richness to many foods. Properly stored in oxygen free packaging and kept in a cool environment it is possible to achieve about a three year shelf life.

MILK SUBSTITUTES:

There are a number of products on the market that purport to take the place of cow or goats milk. They range from soy “milk”, rice or other grain “milks”, and beverages based on milk components such as whey. If there is not a substantial fat content they may all be stored as you would nonfat dry milk. Those products with a significant fat content (above
1% by weight) should be stored as you would whole dry milk. Do keep in mind that nearly all of these products DO NOT have the same nutritional composition as either nonfat or whole milk. In storage food programs dairy products serve as important sources of high quality complete proteins, calcium, vitamin D and possibly vitamin A. If the milk substitute you’re considering does not you’ll need to find another adequate source of these important nutrients.

BUYING DRY MILK PRODUCTS

(a) - Be sure the dry milk you are buying has been fortified with vitamins A and D. All of the whole and nonfat dry milks I’ve seen come fortified with these two vitamins. The dry buttermilk does not come this way, at least the SACO brand does not. The flavored dry milks vary by manufacturer.

(b) - There should be no artificial colors or flavors. I believe it is illegal to add preservatives to any dry milk sold in the U.S. so a claim of “no preservatives” on the label is of no consequence. Other nations may be different, however.
(c) - “Extra Grade” on the label indicates the manufacturer has held to higher processing and quality standards and the milk is somewhat lower in fat, moisture and bacterial content, is more soluble, and has fewer scorched particles.
There are still some manufacturers of dry milk that sell ordinary Grade A product, but they are becoming fewer. Every brand of instant powdered milk in my local grocery store is the Extra Grade, even the generic store brand. This, too, may vary outside of the States.
(d) - If you’ll be buying your milk in bulk from businesses such as restaurant and institutional foods suppliers be sure to specify “low-temperature spray process” dry milk. The high-temperature process dry milks will not give you a very desirable product unless you intend to use it solely for baking.
(e) - Try to buy your dried milk in containers of a size that makes sense for the level of consumption in the household. Once it is opened, powdered milk has a short shelf life before undesirable changes in flavor and nutrient content occurs. If you buy large packages and do not use much at one time, consider breaking it down and repackaging into smaller containers at the time of purchase. I vacuum seal mine in glass canning jars.
(f) - As with any storage food you buy, try to deal only with reputable dealers. It is particularly important to do this with dry milk because of its short shelf life and sensitivity to storage conditions. Check expiration dates, then date and rotate packages.

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STORING DRY MILKS

Dry milk products are highly sensitive to environmental conditions, particularly temperature and moisture. Their vitamins A and D are also photosensitive and break down rapidly if exposed to light.
The area where your dry milk is stored should be kept as cool as possible. Air-conditioning or even refrigeration can greatly extend the nutrient shelf life.
If the storage container is transparent or translucent then it should be put into a second container opaque to light or stored in a dark room.
Dry milk will absorb moisture and odors from the air so storage containers should be impervious to both air and moisture. The drier it can be kept, the better it will keep which makes the use of desiccants is an excellent idea. Oxygen also speeds decomposition so vacuum sealing or oxygen absorbers will decrease the available oxygen. Because of its fine powdery texture gas flushing with nitrogen or carbon dioxide generally yields poor results.
If the dry milk you purchased was not packaged for long term storage then it should be repackaged right away.
I purchase the instant variety of dry skim, whole milk, and sometimes buttermilk powder at my local grocery and repack it at home. The method I now use is to pour the powder into clean, dry canning jars then vacuum seal them with my Tilia Foodsaver using the jar adapter then storing in the ubiquitous cool, dark place. They must be guarded against breakage, but they offer the advantage of not holding odors, thus allowing for reuse after cleaning. Since the glass is transparent they must be protected against light.
Clean, sound plastic one and two liter soda bottles can also be used, but probably should be used just once since the plastic is somewhat permeable and will hold odors.
If you have access to a can sealer, #10 cans make wonderful storage containers for dry milk, particularly if used in conjunction with O2 absorbers.

SHELF LIFE OF DRY MILKS

Dear Mr. Hagan:
Thank you for your e-mail today and for your interest in
SACO Mix’nDrink Pure Skim Milk.
Our Mix’n Drink will keep its nutrition value for up to about two years if kept cool and dry, and the only vitamins that actually decrease over time are the vitamins A and D. These are not shelf-stable vitamins and are sensitive to heat and light. A good rule of thumb to follow is that the vitamins A

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and D will dissipate at a rate of about 20% every year if stored properly. The less heat and moisture the milk is exposed to, the better the vitamins will keep. A freezer could extend the shelf life, as long as the powder does not get moisture in it. If you had to put a time limit on the Mix’nDrink, for rotation purposes, I would date it at two years after the date of purchase.
After opening a package of dry milk, transfer the powder to a tightly covered glass or metal container (dry milk can pick up odors from plastic containers) and keep it in the refrigerator. Unsealed nonfat dry milk keeps for a few months; dry whole milk for a few weeks.
Copyright Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

CANNED FL UID MILK S AND CREAMS

Preserved liquid milk comes in a number of forms, none of which are very similar to each other. The most common are as follows:

CANNED MILKS: These are commonly called UHT milks (Ultra High Temperature) for the packaging technique used to preserve them. They come in the same varieties as fresh liquid milks: Whole, 2%, 1% and skim. I’ve even found whipping cream in UHT packaging (Grand Chef - Parmalat), though this may be offered only in the commercial and restaurant trade. In the U.S. they all have vitamin D added. The lesser fat content milks do not keep as long as whole milk and their use by dates are correspondingly shorter term. This milk is packaged in aseptic laminated paper cartons. It has the same composition as fresh milk of the same type, and can be stored at room temperature because of the special pasteurizing process used. The milk has a boiled flavor, but less so than evaporated milk. The dates are usually for approximately six months. The milk is still usable past its date, but the flavor soon begins to go stale and the cream separates.

With a six-month shelf life this type of canned milk naturally requires a much faster rotation cycle than other types. Several companies sell flavored milks (chocolate, etc.) in this packaging, usually in the smaller single-serving sizes. UHT milk makes excellent yogurt, losing the boiled flavor.

EVAPORATED MILK: Made from fresh, unpasteurized milk using a vacuum-heating process that removes 60% of the water, the concentrate is heated, homogenized, and in the States, vitamin D is added. It is then sealed in cans and heated again to sterilize the contents. Some brands may have other nutrients and/or chemical stabilizers added so read


can labels closely. A mixture of one part water and one part evaporated milk will have about the same nutritional value as an equal amount of fresh milk. It does not taste like fresh milk but many do not find the flavor to be disagreeable. Both whole and skim milk varieties are available with the higher fat content type having the best storage life. The typical recommended storage time is six months. There is generally no date or use by code on evaporated milk.
Some grocers along with health food stores carry canned, evaporated goat’s milk, in a similar concentration.

SWEETENED CONDENSED MILK: A less processed product than evaporated milk. It starts with pasteurized milk combined with a sugar solution. The water is then extracted until the mixture is less than half its original weight. It is not heated because the high sugar content prevents spoilage. It’s very rich as well: 8 oz contains 980 calories. Obviously with a greatly reduced water content and a high sugar level it won’t taste like fresh milk but it does have many uses in cooking. Some use condensed milk to cream their coffee. This type too is available in whole and skim varieties.

A fairly new entry into the sweetened condensed milk field is Dulce de Leche a popular dessert item in Latin America. It’s basically sweetened condensed milk that has been heated to the point that the sugar begins to brown which produces a rich tasting caramel dessert. In the past you had to make it yourself, but now it can be purchased ready made in the can. I have seen it in the canned/dry milk areas or the Hispanic/ ethnic foods areas of many grocery stores here in Florida.
Although it is often hard to find, the condensed milk can label should have a stamped date code which indicates the date by which it should be consumed. Condensed milk may thicken and darken as it ages, but it is still edible.

CANNED CREAM: So far as I have found here in the U.S. only the Nestlé company produces canned creams, both being imports. One is “Media Crema” produced in Mexico with a pull-top can and the other is “Table Cream” produced in Australia in a standard (as in use an opener) can. There is a slight difference in preservatives and thickeners, but basically both are a shelf stable light cream which can be used in any way that you would use fresh light cream. I haven’t yet determined a shelf-life for these products, but it seems to be in excess of two years in any decent storage environment. Like the Dulce de Leche above I found them either in the dry/canned milk areas or the Hispanic/ethnic areas of my local grocery stores. Would be worth looking or asking for in your local markets.

BUTTER

Butter can be found in several forms each with their particular strengths and weaknesses.

BUTTER POWDER: Probably the easiest to find of the shelf-stable butters the powder is a moisture free product consisting of butter fat condensed on milk solids generally with added antioxidants. It can be reconstituted by mixing with water to make a spread similar to whipped butter, but it cannot be used for frying or other applications requiring high heat that would burn the milk solids. Most butter powders have something of a milky taste due to the additional milk solids necessary to create the powder, but many do not find this objectionable. Because it is a powder (lots of surface area) with a high fat content it needs good packaging to keep it at its best. Vacuum sealing and/or oxygen absorbers will work well if you are doing your own packaging.

CLARIFIED BUTTER (GHEE): Another form of butter suitable for storage programs is clarified butter or ghee as it is known in India. This is fresh, unsalted butter gently heated to drive off the moisture with the remaining fat poured off of the butter solids. It can be purchased commercially but most choose to make it themselves. As it’s essentially pure butterfat with no water there is little to spoil so will keep for years in a glass jar protected from oxygen, heat, and light. A good source of fat calories and useful in cooking, but maybe not something you’d want to spread on a biscuit.

CANNED BUTTER: For those whom only the real thing will do it’s now possible to find shelf stable real butter. It seems mostly to be sold in those nations where home refrigeration is not as common as it is here in the U.S. As a rule I do not single out suppliers for any given product but at the time of this writing (11/2003) the only U.S. importer of shelf stable canned butter I’ve been able to find is Bruce Hopkin’s Internet Grocer (http://www.internet-grocer.com). His product is Red Feather brand canned butter from New Zealand. It is salted though not as heavily as most salted butter in the U.S. The manufacturer claims an eighteen month shelf-stable storage life though they do advise keeping it in a cool, dry place. Like all butter it will liquefy it allowed to warm too much. Each can contains twelve ounces (equivalent to about three sticks of butter) and once opened should be handled like any other butter.

CHEESE

There are a number of shelf-stable cheese products that are suited for storage programs. Each of them have particular strengths or weaknesses for given uses. The basic forms storage cheeses can take are:

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CANNED CHEESE: Actually, it’s “Pasteurized Processed Cheddar Cheese Product” but it’s the closest thing to a shelf-stable real cheese that I’ve yet found. It’s another one of those products produced for use in countries where home refrigeration is scarcer than it is here in the U.S. The only brand available in the States that I know of at this time is made by Kraft’s Australian division whose product most resembles a mild white cheddar or perhaps an American cheese. The only U.S. source for this cheese that I have found thus far is again Bruce Hopkin’s Internet Grocer (http://www. internet-grocer.com). It comes in an eight ounce can and the manufacturer claims it will keep “indefinitely” at any reasonable storage temperature.

DRIED GRATED CHEESES: These are the familiar grated dry Parmesan and Romano cheeses, possibly others as well. They’re generally a coarse dry powder, low or nonfat, and often with a fair amount of salt. Kept dry, cool, and dark they’ll keep as they come from the store for several years though to get the maximum possible shelf life you should vacuum seal them in glass. Usually fairly expensive for the amount you get but as they’re also strongly flavored a little will go a long way.

CHEESE SAUCES AND SOUPS: These are products such as Cheez Whiz, Campbell’s Cheddar Cheese Soup, chip dips and related. They’re not really cheese, but a mixture of cheese, milk, flour, and other ingredients. Depending on what your end uses may be they can provide a cheese flavor, calories, and a degree of protein, fat, and calcium. In any decent storage conditions they’ll keep for several years at least. Aerosol cheese is an abomination that will not be discussed here.

POWDERED CHEESE: Used in products such as boxed macaroni and cheese, au gratin potatoes, snacks, and the like, this is basically cheese that has had its moisture removed leaving behind mostly protein, fat, a fair amount of calcium and various flavoring and coloring compounds (naturally occurring or added) along with a fair amount of salt. It can’t really be melted, but it can add a nice cheese flavor where a real cheese texture is not needed.

There are also cheese powder blends, typically a mixture of cheese powder, food starch, whey, milk solids and other non- cheese ingredients. It has less fat than true cheese powder, about the same protein, but less calcium. You can make it yourself with dry milk and cornstarch so there’s little point in not getting real cheese powder.
Cheese powder will keep for many years in sealed metal cans kept at cool temperatures. You’ll probably have to get it from restaurant foods suppliers or order it from storage foods dealers. It’s high fat content means that it needs low- oxygen packaging.

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EGGS

The noble fruit of the hen, eggs play an important role in the kitchen arts. Unfortunately, outside of regular runs to the store to buy fresh eggs or keeping your own hens (which is what I do) they’re problematical to store. There are two basic ways to keep eggs for those times when fresh eggs may be hard to come by. One is to preserve them in the shell, a process which must be done at home as there are no commercial sources of preserved shell eggs that I know of. The second is to buy dry, or powdered, eggs. I may address home shell egg preservation in a future FAQ update but for now I will concentrate on dry eggs which anyone can buy.

DRY EGGS

Dry eggs are generally available in four different forms –
whole eggs, egg whites, egg yolks, and as a mix for making scrambled eggs and omelets. Which you should buy depends on how you expect to use them. As a general rule I find dry eggs reconstitute more easily when mixed with warm (not hot) water. Mixing the dry powder with other dry ingredients before adding liquids also increases the ease by which they can be reconstituted. Allowing the eggs to sit a few minutes before using improves water adsorption.

WHOLE EGGS: This is everything but the shell and the water. Usually found in the form of a somewhat clumpy, eggy smelling yellow powder. Typically one tablespoon of whole egg powder mixed with two tablespoons of water will equal one large fresh egg. Can be used to make most anything you’d make with fresh eggs though personally I prefer to use them in baking rather than as scrambled eggs or omelets. Whole egg powder is commonly used in baking mixes of all kinds, but I’ve never seen plain powdered eggs for sale in any grocery. Fortunately, they’re easy to come by from mail order suppliers. A #10 can of powdered eggs is quite a lot so give some thought as to how fast you might use them and either order smaller cans, repackage an opened can into smaller containers, or plan on eating eggs often.

EGG WHITES: Nearly pure protein, egg white powder can add a high-protein boost to anything you put it in. The powder itself is whitish in color and not as clumpy as whole egg powder. When properly reconstituted it will whip into meringue like fresh egg whites and can be used in producing angel food and sponge cakes. Dry egg whites are often found in the baking section of many supermarkets. The brand name I have seen is “Just Whites” by Deb El. Powdered egg whites are also available from many mail order suppliers.

EGG YOLKS: High protein, high fat, and a source of lecithin (a natural emulsifier). Egg yolk powder can add richness and flavor to any number of foods, used to make custards, sauces, noodles, even mayonnaise. Not generally as easy to find as whole eggs and whites, but can be mail ordered. Being


pure yolks this powder has a high fat content and most be appropriately packaged to achieve a good shelf life.

EGG MIX OR SCRAMBLING MIX: Typically a mix of whole egg powder, nonfat milk powder, oil, and salt. Used for making scrambled eggs, omelets, or general egg cookery. This mix does offer a degree of convenience but you can easily make it yourself and save the trouble of having to store it as

a separate product.

STORING DRY EGGS

All dry egg products are exceedingly sensitive to moisture
and will go off quickly if allowed to become the least bit damp. Whole eggs, egg yolks, and egg mix have high fat contents which make them very sensitive to oxygen. I highly recommend vacuum sealing in glass jars or using oxygen absorbers in conjunction with some other form of high barrier property packaging to keep these products at their best. If you bought quality products, packaged them well in oxygen free packaging, and put them away in a good storage environment then whole eggs, egg yolks, and egg mix should be able to achieve at least a three year shelf life, possibly more. Egg whites will easily achieve five years. Naturally, if you’re packaging your eggs in any sort of transparent or translucent packaging then they should be stored in a dark place.

INFANT FORMULA

While not universal, it’s safe to say that most folks interested in food storage are planning for families, real or as yet hypothetical. Many of these families include children (or hope to) under the age of two. Very young children such as this have nutritional requirements that are different from adults and require somewhat different preparations than adults or even older children.
If at all possible, it’s best for children up to the age of six months to be breast fed by their mothers and up to the age of one year breast milk should contribute a significant portion of the child’s nutritional intake. Indeed, breast feeding can supplement a child’s diet in an important way until age two. Even the American Academy of Pediatrics now recognizes and recommends this. There are those who nurse even longer, but I mention this only as an observation, not necessarily as a recommendation. For the preparedness- minded breast feeding makes particularly good sense as mama can consume a far wider range of storable foods than a baby can, and she can produce from those foods a nutrition source perfectly suited to her child.
To promote this end here is the contact information for the largest and best known breast feeding support group.
La Le c he Le a g ue I n t e r na t iona l 1 4 0 0 N . Meacham Road Schaumburg, IL (USA) 60173-4808
Web: http://www.lalecheleague.org
They can help you to find local chapters of the League in your area and point out useful books and sources of information. When our daughter was born my wife has attended a number of our local chapter’s meetings and borrowed books with which to educate ourselves.
Also in this same line, there is a useful document put out by the World Health Organization titled How to Breastfeed During an Emergency. It apparently is no longer hosted on any WHO sites so I have taken the liberty of hosting it myself at:
h t tp:// a thag an.membe r s.a tlan tic.ne t/PF SFA Q / Breastfeeding_in_an_emergency.html
It would be an excellent idea to print out a few copies and put them away. You never know who you might come across who’ll desperately such information should there come a Fall.

ALTERNATIVES TO BREASTFEEDING

If breastfeeding should not be a viable option you’ll need
to find another source of infant nutrition. I STRONGLY RECOMMEND AGAINST USING HOME-MADE INFANT FORMULAS AS A SOLE SOURCE OF NUTRITION FOR A BABY. If you know you’re going to have a nursing infant on your hands, if and when the balloon should go up, you should take steps in advance of the crisis to put away a suitable food supply for the child. Young children have nutritional needs that are different from those of adults or even older children. Lacking human breast milk, you should put by a store of commercially made infant formula. Evaporated milk, dry milk, sweetened condensed milk, goat’s milk and all the rest can be an important supplement for children over the age of six months, particularly over one year of age. For children under six months of age these products simply do not contain sufficient amounts of the appropriate nutrients to provide adequate nutrition when used as the sole source of sustenance.
As for soy milk, there are considerable important differences in soy nutritional content compared to cow’s milk which is to say nothing of human milk. Soy milk alone is simply not nutritious enough to serve as a sole source of nutrition for children under the age of six months and should not be used as more than a supplement for children over six months of age. This does not apply to commercially made soy protein infant formula which is a very different product than soy milk.

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S E L E C T I N G A N D F E E D I N G A N

INFANT FORMULA

If the child you’re concerned with is already on the scene
then you probably already know which formula you need to put away. Unless instructed against doing so by your doctor, my only suggestion here is to make sure the formula has iron in it. The problems of iron in formulas from the nineteen fifties and sixties have long ago been solved and young children very much need this nutrient.
If you feel the need to store formula in advance for a child not yet on the scene (or who is only a contingency to plan against) I suggest storing one of the cow’s milk based lactose-free formulas. Two brand names that will work well are “Lactofree” from Mead Johnson and “Similac Lactose Free” from Ross Laboratories. Lactose is the sugar found in milk and an inability to properly digest lactose is the most common source of infant formula feeding problems. Of course, there is the remote chance the child could have a true allergy to cow’s milk protein, but the child could be allergic to soy protein too. It’s been known to happen for a child to be allergic to both at the same time. There is no absolute certainty in preparedness, but you can plan for the most likely problems which is why I suggest storing lactose free cow’s milk formula.
Unless you store only disposable bottles and “ready to feed” formula, don’t forget that both reconstituting formula from dry powder or liquid concentrates and washing feeding equipment requires the use of clean, safe drinking water. You’ll need to carefully examine your water storage in this regard.

S T ORI N G I N F A N T F OR MU L AS A N D BABY FOODS

Storing infant formula and baby food is easy. Infant foods are
one of the few areas in which the (US) Federal government regulates shelf life labeling. All containers of infant formula and baby food should have a clear “best used by” or similar date somewhere on the container which is generally longer than a child will require such food. Unopened containers of formula should be stored the same way you would keep dry milk, in a dark, cool, dry place and used before the date on the container is reached. Opened containers of dry formula powder should be used within one month of opening and the contents should be kept bone dry, cool and in the dark.
If it hasn’t been needed by the time the expiration date begins to near it’s an excellent idea to donate the infant formula to a nursing infant or organization like a food bank that can put it to use before it expires. There’s too much valuable high quality nutrition in infant formula to allow it to go to waste.
Copyright © Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

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FATS AND OILS

All oils are fats, but not all fats are oils. They are similar to each other in their chemical makeup, but what makes one an oil and another a fat is the percentage of hydrogen saturation in the fatty acids of which they are composed. The fats which are available to us for culinary purposes are actually mixtures of differing fatty acids so for practical purposes we’ll say saturated fats are solid at room temperature (70ºF, 21º C) and the unsaturated fats we call oils are liquid at room temperature. For dietary and nutrition purposes fats are generally classified as saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated, which is a further refinement of the amount of saturation of the particular compositions of fatty acids in the fats.

BUYING AND STORING OILS AND FATS

There is a problem with storing oils and fats for the long
term and that is they want to go rancid. Rancid fats have been implicated in increased rates of heart disease, arteriosclerosis and are carcinogenic (cancer causing) so are best avoided whenever possible.
Oxygen is eight times more soluble in fat than in water and it is the oxidation resulting from this exposure that is the primary cause of rancidity. The less saturated a fat is, the faster it will go off. This may not, at first, be readily apparent because vegetable oils have to become several times more rancid than animal fats before our noses can easily detect it. An extreme example of rancidity is the linseed oil (flaxseed) that we use as a wood finish and a base for oil paints. In a matter of hours the oil oxidizes into a solid polymer. This is very desirable for wood and paint, very undesirable for food.
Because of this difficulty in storing fats and oils for any long period of time many books and articles on the subject of food storage make only passing mention of them, if they say anything at all. This is unfortunate because fat contains nine calories to the gram compared to the four calories contained by either carbohydrates or protein. This makes fat a valuable source of concentrated calories that could be of real importance if faced with a diet consisting largely of unrefined grains and legumes. For small children, infants, nursing mothers, and the elderly, they may not be able to consume the volume of food that would be necessary in the course of a day to get all of the calories they would need to avoid weight loss and possible malnutrition. Additionally, fats play an important role in our perception of taste and texture and their absence would make many foods more difficult to prepare and consume. Furthermore, a small amount of dietary fat is necessary for our bodies to properly absorb fat soluble vitamins like A,D,E and K.

Long term storage of fats may be problematical, but it is not impossible. There are some general rules you can follow to get the most life out of your stored cooking oils and fats.

#1 - Exposure to oxygen, light and heat are the greatest factors to rancidity. If you can, refrigerate your stored oil, particularly after it’s been opened. If possible, buy your oils in opaque, airtight containers. If you purchase it in plastic, particularly clear plastic, then transfer it to a gas impermeable glass or metal container that can be sealed airtight. If you have a means of doing so, vacuum sealing the storage container is an excellent idea as it removes most of the air remaining inside, taking much of the oxygen with it. Transparent glass and plastic containers should be stored in the dark, such as in a box or cabinet. Regardless of the storage container, it should be stored at as cool a temperature as possible and rotated as fast as is practical. All other considerations being equal, oils and fats with preservatives will have a greater shelf life than those without, provided they are fresh when purchased.

#2 - Unless they have been specially treated, most unopened cooking oils have a shelf life of about a year to a year and a half, depending upon the above conditions. Some specialty oils such as sesame and flax seed have shorter usable lives. If you don’t use a lot, try to not buy your fats in big containers. This way you won’t be exposing a large quantity to the air after opening, to grow old and possibly rancid, before you can use it all up. Once opened, it is an excellent idea to refrigerate cooking fats. If it turns cloudy or solid, the fat is still perfectly usable and will return to its normal liquid, clear state after it has warmed to room temperature. Left at room temperatures, opened bottles of cooking oils can begin to rancid in anywhere from a week to a couple of months, though it may take several more months to reach such a point of rancidity that it can be noticeably smelled.

#3 - Although darker colored oils have more flavor than paler colored, the agents that contribute to that flavor and color also contribute to faster rancidity. For maximum shelf life buy paler colored oils.

EXTENDING SHELF LIFE BY ADDING

ANTI-OXIDANTS

I take no position on doing this, but if obtaining the maximum
possible shelf life in your cooking fats is important to you, it is possible to add antioxidant preservatives to the fat you have purchased. Used in conjunction with a gas impermeable container, either opaque in color or stored in a dark place, and cool storage temperatures (70º F 21ºC or less) then shelf life can be extended to about five years, possibly longer.
The antioxidant in question is Butylated HydroxyToluene (BHT). It is often used in the food industry to slow the development of off-flavors, odors and color changes caused by oxidation, mostly in foods with significant fat contents. BHT is on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) list as a common preservative. The FDA limits the use of BHT to 0.02% or 200 parts per million (ppm) of the oil or fat content of a food product. The directions that I give below will be for the FDA limit. BHT is available over the counter in the retail trade, typically found in health or natural foods stores or vitamin and nutritional supplement suppliers. It may also be found from various suppliers on the Internet.
To get the best results you will need the freshest oil you can find. Purchasing from a large, busy supermarket will usually suffice. You’ll also need containers that are gas impermeable such as glass jars, or metal cans. There may be plastic containers with high gas barrier properties that will also serve, but I cannot knowledgeably say about this. It is important that your containers be food grade, clean, dry and dust-free. In keeping with the FDA’s GRAS guidelines you want to add 5.3mg of BHT crystals per fluid ounce of oil or fat. If you’re using a scale calibrated in grains, such as a reloading powder scale, you may use the following table.

HT in grains OIL BHT in milligrams

0.1 grain 1 fl oz 5.3 mg
0.7 grain 8 fl oz (1 cup) 42.4 mg
1.3 grain 16 fl oz (1 pint) 84.8 mg
2.6 grain 32 fl oz (1 quart) 169.6 mg
5.2 grain 64 fl oz (1/2 gal)339.2 mg
10.3 grain 128 fl oz (1 gallon) 678.4 mg

NOTE: The grain weight measurements have been rounded up to the nearest tenth grain since most powder scales will not accurately measure less than one-tenth of a grain. IMPORTANT NOTE: If you are using a reloading powder scale, be sure the balance pan is clean and the balance has been calibrated recently with a reliable set of check weights.

Remove the BHT crystals from their gelatin capsules and weigh them, if you’re going to. Once you have the appropriate amount, add the crystals to a pint or so of the oil, shaking vigorously. It may take several hours for the preservative to dissolve completely. Bringing the oil up to a warm, NOT HOT, temperature will speed the process. Once completely dissolved, pour the antioxidant laden oil into the rest of the oil and mix thoroughly. Once mixed, the oil can then be poured into its storage containers leaving approximately 1/2 inch of headspace. If you have a vacuum sealer the jars or cans may be vacuum sealed to remove most of the oxygen laden air from the container, otherwise just seal the lid. Store in a cool place and if using transparent

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jars, be certain to put them in a larger container such as a box to keep the contents in the dark. Don’t forget to label and date the jars.
Before I close out this section on fats and oils, please allow me to reemphasize that no amount of preservatives that can be added to your stored fats will substitute for proper storage and rotation. Don’t sit on your oil supply for years without rotating it. A little bit rancid is a little bit poisonous.

‘Nuff said.

COOKING ADJUNCTS

BAKING POWDER

Baking powder is a combination of an acid and an alkali
with starch added to keep the other two ingredients stable and dry. The powder reacts with liquid by foaming and the resulting bubbles of carbon dioxide can aerate and raise dough. Almost all baking powder now on the market is double acting, meaning it has one acid that bubbles at room temperature and another acid which only reacts at oven temperatures. Unless a recipe specifies otherwise, this is the type to use.
Don’t expose baking powder to steam, humid air, wet spoons, or other moisture. Store in a tightly lidded container for no more than a year. Even when kept bone dry it will eventually loses its potency. To test its strength, measure 1 tsp powder into 1/3 cup hot water. The mixture should fizz and bubble furiously. If it doesn’t, throw it out.

For those folks concerned with aluminum in the diet, the

Rumford brand has none and there may be others.

BAKING SODA

This gritty powder is sodium bicarbonate also known as
sodium acid bicarbonate (NaHCO3), a mild alkali. When combined with an acid ingredient such as buttermilk it is used in baking to leaven quick breads and other baked foods working in the same manner as baking powder. It can also be used to make hominy. When combined with an acid ingredient, the bicarbonate reacts to give off carbon dioxide bubbles which causes the baked good to rise. If kept well sealed in an air- and moisture-proof container its storage life is indefinite. If kept in the cardboard box it usually comes in, it will keep for about eighteen months. Do keep in mind that baking soda is a wonderful odor absorber. If you don’t want your baked goods tasting of whatever smells it absorbed then keeping it in an airtight container is a good idea.

HERBS AND SPICES

It is difficult to give exact instructions on how best to store
culinary herbs and spices because there are dozens of different seeds, leaves, roots, barks, etc., we call an herb or

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a spice. There are, however, some general rules that may be followed to best preserve their flavors. All spices, particularly dried, are especially sensitive to heat, air, moisture, and light. Room temperature is satisfactory for storage but refrigeration or freezing is even better. What ever you do they should be kept away from heat sources. It is common for the household spice cabinet or shelf to be located over the stove, but this is really about the worst possible place to keep herbs and spices even if it is convenient. Dark opaque glass is best for storage, but failing that, keeping a tightly sealed glass container in a dark place is next best. The cellophane packets some products come in won’t do. Tightly sealed metal containers will work as well. Even dense plastic will do, but glass is best.
Where possible, buy spices whole. Whole nutmegs will keep their flavor far longer than ground nutmeg, the same for other seeds and roots. You’ll have to use a grater, grinder or whatever, but the difference in flavor is worth it.
If you buy spices in bulk containers (which is certainly cheaper) consider transferring some into smaller containers and keeping the larger one tightly sealed in a cool, dark place. This will prevent unwanted light and air from continually getting in and playing havoc. My large jars of reserve spices are kept in vacuum sealed jars with smaller jars of ready spices kept in the kitchen.
There are many mail order or online suppliers of bulk herbs and spices. My personal favorite is Penzey’s (http:// www.penzeys.com). Their products have been consistently excellent with good prices. It’s worth investigating some of these companies as they can really take the sting out of purchasing large quantities.

SALT

Storage life for salt is indefinite. So long as you do not let it
become contaminated with dirt or whatever, it will never go bad. Over time, iodized salt may turn yellow, but this is harmless and can still be used. Salt is rather hygroscopic and will adsorb moisture from the air if not sealed in an airtight container. If it does cake up, it can be dried in the oven and then pulverized again with no harm done.
All salt, however, is not the same. Salt comes in a number of different varieties, and very little of what is produced in the U.S. is intended for use in food. The rest of it, about 98%, has other uses. Therefore, it is important to be certain the salt you have is intended for human consumption. Once you are satisfied it is, you should then determine its appropriateness for the tasks to which you might want to set it to. Below is a list of some of the available salts

TABLE SALT: This is by far the most widely known type of salt. It comes in two varieties; iodized and non-iodized. There


is an ingredient added to adsorb moisture so the salt will stay free flowing in damp weather. This non-caking agent does not dissolve in water and can cause cloudiness in solutions if sufficiently large quantities are used. In canning this won’t cause a problem since little per jar is used. For pickling, though, it would be noticeable. If you are storing salt for this purpose, you should be sure to choose plain pickling salt, or other food grade pure salt such as kosher salt. In the iodized varieties, the iodine can cause discoloration or darkening of pickled foods. For folks in areas that are historically iodine deficient a store of iodized salt for table consumption should be kept.

CANNING SALT: This is pure salt and nothing but salt. It can usually be found in the canning supplies section of most grocery stores. This is the preferred salt for most food preservation or storage uses. It is generally about the same grain size as table salt.

KOSHER SALT: This salt is not really, in itself, kosher, but is used in “kashering” meat to make the flesh kosher for eating. This involves first soaking the meat then rubbing it with the salt to draw out the blood which is not-kosher and is subsequently washed off along with the salt. The cleansed meat is then kosher. What makes it of interest for food storage and preservation is that it is generally pure salt suitable for canning, pickling and meat curing. It is of a larger grain size than table or canning salt, and usually rolled to flake the grains for easier dissolving. Frequently it is slightly cheaper than canning salt and usually easier to find in urban/ suburban areas.

NOTE: Not all brands of kosher salt are exactly alike. Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt is the only brand that I’m aware of that is not flaked, but still in its unaltered crystal form. The Morton brand of Coarse Kosher Salt has “yellow prussiate of soda” added as an anti-caking agent but unlike other anti-caking agents it does not cause cloudiness in solution. Morton even gives a kosher dill pickle recipe on the box.

Whether flaked or in its unaltered crystal form, kosher salt takes up more volume for an equivalent amount of mass than does canning salt. If it is important to get a precise amount of salt in your pickling or curing recipe you may want to weigh the salt to get the correct amount.

SEA SALT: This type of salt comes in about as many different varieties as coffee and from many different places around the world. The “gourmet” versions can be rather expensive. In general, the types sold in grocery stores, natural food markets and gourmet shops have been purified enough to use in food. It’s not suitable for food preservation, though, because the mineral content it contains (other than the sodium chloride) may cause discoloration of the food.

ROCK or ICE CREAM SALT: This salt comes in large chunky crystals and is intended primarily for use in home ice cream churns to lower the temperature of the ice filled water in which the churn sits. It’s also sometimes used in icing down beer kegs or watermelons. It is used in food preservation by some, but none of the brands I have been able to find label it as food grade nor do they specifically mention its use in foods so I would not use it for this purpose.

SOLAR SALT: This is also sometimes confusingly called “sea salt”. It is not, however, the same thing as the sea salt found in food stores. Most importantly, it is not food grade. It’s main purpose is for use in water softeners. The reason it is called “solar” and sometimes “sea salt” is that it is produced by evaporation of sea water in large ponds in various arid areas of the world. This salt type is not purified and still contains the desiccated remains of whatever aquatic life might have been trapped in it. Those organic remains might react with the proteins in the foods you are attempting to preserve and cause it to spoil.

HALITE: For those of us fortunate enough to live where it is warm, halite is the salt that is used on roads to melt snow and ice. It, too, is not food grade and should not be used in food preservation. This form of salt is also frequently called rock salt, like the rock salt above, but neither are suitable for food use.

SALT SUBSTITUTES: These are other kinds of metal salts such as potassium chloride used to substitute for the ordinary sodium chloride (NaCl) salt we are familiar with. They have their uses, but should not be used in foods undergoing a heated preservation processing, as they can cause the product to taste bad. Even the heat from normal cooking is sometimes sufficient to cause this.

VINEGAR

There is vinegar and then there is vinegar and it is not all
alike. The active ingredient in all vinegars is acetic acid, but how the sour stuff was made can vary widely. The most common vinegar is white distilled which is actually diluted distilled acetic acid and not true vinegar at all. It keeps pretty much indefinitely if tightly sealed in a plastic or glass bottle with a plastic cap. The enamel coated metal caps always seem to get eaten by the acid over time. It is usually about
5-6% acetic acid and for pickling it is the type most often called for.
The next most common is apple cider vinegar which is available in two varieties. A cider flavored distilled acetic acid type and a true cider vinegar fermented from hard cider. Either will store indefinitely at room temperature until a sediment begins to appear on the bottom. Non-distilled vinegar will sometimes develop a cloudy substance. This is called a mother of vinegar and it is harmless. As long as

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the liquid does not begin to smell foul it can be filtered out through cheesecloth or a coffee filter and rebottled in a clean container. The mother can even be used to make more vinegar. If it begins to smell bad, however, it’s gone over and should be tossed out.
The more exotic wine, balsalmic, malt, rice and other vinegars can be stored like cider vinegar. Age and exposure to light and air, however, eventually begin to take their toll on their delicate flavors. Tightly capped in a cool, dark cabinet or refrigerator is best for their storage.

YEAST

Yeast is just not a product you can stow away and forget
about until you need it in a few years. After all, this single celled microscopic fungus is a living organism so if it’s not alive at the time you need it, you‘ll get no action. When we incorporate yeast into our bread dough, beer wort or fruit juice it begins to ferment madly (we hope) and produce several by-products. If you’re baking, the by-product you want is carbon dioxide which is trapped by the dough and subsequently causes it to rise. In brewing or vintning what is wanted is the ethyl alcohol and, if the drink is to be carbonated, the carbon dioxide as well.
Almost all yeasts used for these purposes are in the same genus (Saccharomyces or sugar fungi), but several different species or strains within species have evolved and some are more suitable for a particular task than others. It’s entirely possible to use grocery store bread yeast to brew beer or ferment wine, but the flavor may leave a great deal to be desired. It’s also possible to use yeast from ale brewing to make bread. From my limited experience with trying it myself the results were pretty much indistinguishable from bread yeast.

Types of Baking Yeasts

Leaving aside the brewing and vintning yeasts that are
outside the scope of this FAQ I am going to concentrate on bread yeast. It comes in two generally available forms; compressed or fresh yeast and dried yeast which is further broken down into active dry yeast and rapid acting also known as rapid rise or bread machine yeasts. Although both of the dry yeasts are in the same species they come from different genetic strains with different performance characteristics and are processed somewhat differently from each other.

COMPRESSED (FRESH) YEAST: Compressed yeast is only partly dried (about 70% moisture), requires refrigeration and keeps even better in a deep freezer. If kept in an air- and moisture-tight container to prevent desiccation this type of yeast will keep for a year in the freezer (0ºF, –17ºC or less), but only about two weeks in the refrigerator. Unless your kitchen is quite chilly it will not keep on the shelf. It should

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not have a mottled color or a sour odor. Compressed Yeast is generally available in 0.6-ounce and 2-ounce foil-wrapped cakes. For traditional baking, dissolve compressed yeast in warm (90°-95°F, 32º-35ºC ) liquids. A 0.6-ounce cake will leaven up to 4 cups of flour (about a pound). A 2-ounce cake will leaven about 12 cups or roughly three pounds of flour.

ACTIVE DRY YEAST: A granular powder with about an 8% moisture content, active dry yeast can be found in either single use foil packets or vacuum packed foil covered one pound ‘bricks’. In general bread making active dry yeast is typically dissolved in water (105º-115ºF, 40º-46ºC) along with an equal amount of sugar to give it time to resuscitate and actively begin growing before being mixed into the dry ingredients. Bread machines, however, are often different in this regard and you should follow the directions your particular machine’s manufacturer gives. Mine calls for putting the dry yeast atop the other dry ingredients completely out of contact with the liquid ingredients until the machine mixes them together. One envelope (roughly

2 ¼ teaspoons) is sufficient to leaven about four cups or roughly one pound of flour.

RAPID ACTING & BREAD MACHINE YEAST: A more finely granulated powder with a lower moisture content than standard active dry yeast the rapid acting version is designed to raise bread as much as fifty percent faster. This lends it to the ‘quick’ or ‘rapid’ cycles of many bread machines that eliminate one rise cycle of the bread dough to facilitate faster production. This form of yeast is also generally mixed with a small amount of ascorbic acid which acts as a dough conditioner to give improved rise performance. Rapid Acting yeasts often perform poorly in recipes calling for long fermentation periods. Because of its finer granulation it does not need to be dissolved in liquid first and should be added to the dry ingredients instead. In the case of bread machines follow the manufacturer’s directions. One envelope (roughly

2 ¼ teaspoons) is sufficient to leaven about four cups or roughly one pound of flour.

Interchanging Yeast Types

Can fresh, active dry, and rapid acting yeasts be used

interchangeably?

Yes, to a certain extent. To substitute Rapid Acting yeasts for Active Dry yeasts reduce the amount of Rapid Acting used by 25% from the amount of Active Dry the recipe calls for then add the dry yeast to the dry ingredients before mixing.
To substitute Active Dry for Rapid Acting increase the amount of Active Dry by 25% over what the recipe calls for of Rapid Acting yeast and dissolve in warm water (105º-115ºF,
40º-46ºC) with an equal amount of sugar before mixing in with the dry ingredients.

Once 0.6 ounce cake of fresh, compressed yeast is roughly equivalent to one pack of active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons) or to about 1 3/4 teaspoons of Rapid Acting yeast.

NOTE: Substituting one yeast type for another can be done, but will oft times require a bit of tweaking. If at all possible use the yeast type specified in the recipe. If you can’t be prepared to make adjustments where necessary.

PROOFING YEAST: Although it’s generally not necessary anymore if you are concerned that your yeast may be dead due to age or poor storage conditions any type of yeast can be tested for viability by proofing. This is nothing more than mixing a small amount of the yeast with an equal amount of sugar in warm water 105º-115ºF, 40º-46ºC for dried; 90°-95°F, 32º-35ºC for fresh. Within about five to ten minutes active yeast will become bubbly and begin to expand (at normal room temperature). Yeast which only slowly becomes active can still be used, but you will have to use more. If there is no activity at all, the yeast is dead and should be tossed. If you’ve stored your yeast in half-way decent conditions, or better yet in the freezer, proofing will usually not be necessary.

NOTE: Rapid Acting yeast loses its fast rising capabilities if dissolved in liquid for proofing, and will require two complete rises like standard active dry yeast.

STORING YEAST: All of the dry yeasts will last for months on the shelf, until the expiration date which should be clearly stamped on the package. If packaged in an air/moisture tight container and kept in the freezer it may last for several years though one year is the general recommendation most often found among various authorities. I’m presently (12/2003) using yeast stored in my refrigerator freezer in a tightly sealed canning jar with a “Best Used By” date of June, 1998 that is still going strong. The larger packs of yeast should be transferred to an air and moisture tight container after opening. A canning jar with a decent lid will suffice.

There is another means of providing leavening for breads besides buying yeast from a grocery store and that is by using a sourdough starter. I’m not going to address it here, but I will point out that it has a Usenet newsgroup all its own (rec. food.sourdough) which has several FAQ’s devoted to it. You can find addresses for these FAQs in the Resources section. Drop in and read for awhile and you’ll learn more than you thought you could ever want to know.
Copyright © Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

Storage Life of

Dehydrated Foods

Determining the storage life of foods is at best an inexact science as there are so many variables. These range from the condition your food was in when you first purchased it and includes many other factors. This page was written with input by Mr. Stephen Portela who has over 30 years of professional food storage experience. This information should be used as a general guide only, and should not be followed “as the gospel truth” because your results may be different.

Four Factors that effect food storage:

Factor #1: The Temperature:

Temperature has more to do with how long well dried foods
store than anything else. The USDA states, “Each 5.6 C. (10.08F) drop in temperature doubles the storage life of the seeds.” Obviously, there is a limit as to how far this statement can be taken. However I expect it basically holds true from room temperature down to freezing. No doubt, the inverse could also be considered true. “Each 5.6C. (10.08F) rise in temperature halves the storage life of seeds.” This theory holds true for non-garden seeds as well.

Storage Life Differences

Depending on Temperature

Constant Storage Storage life

Temp in degrees F In Years

———————— ——————

39.76 - - - 40

49.84 - - - 30

59.92 - - - 20

70.00 - - - 10

80.08 - - - 5

90.16 - - - 2.5

100.24 - - 1.25

Note: the above chart is not for a specific food but shows the relationship between temperature and storage life.

Lets look at a couple of real life examples of good and

poor food storage practices:

About a year ago we got an unopened paper bag of white
flour which had been stored at 70 degrees F, in a dry climate. It had been sitting for 3 years in a closet. It made fine looking bread but had such an ‘old’ and bad flavor that it was difficult to eat. For another example, a couple of years ago in the Puget Sound area we were given a 4 gallon can of wheat that had been stored up high in a garage for about 30 years. This

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part of the country is not as hot as some places, yet in the summers the average garage still gets up into the 90’s. Even though wheat will store for 30+ years under good conditions, the bread from this particular wheat was very bad tasting and after a few batches we ended up throwing the wheat away (something I always dislike doing).
Counter these stories with several examples told by Mr. Stephen Portela, Walton Feed’s manager: He stores his long term food storage in his basement where the temperature hovers around 60 degrees F. The experts give brown rice a 6 month storage life because of all the oils in it that go rancid. Yet, Mr. Portela has been eating from a supply of brown rice that has been in his basement over 10 years. It is still wholesome! In another example, there is a family living near him who purchased a supply of food in #10 cans 30 years ago. Their basement hovers around 58 degrees F. After 28 years, Mr. Portela took a sample of many of these items to the Benson Institute at BYU to have it tested. The results can be seen at the bottom of Mr. Portela’s welcome page. You will see everything tested had a ‘good’ to ‘satisfactory’ rating except for the eggs which had a ‘minimum passing’ rating. After 28 years I think it is most interesting that it passed at all. Mr. Portela tells me as 30 years have now passed, their storage is still in very good condition.
The bottom line is even with the very best packaging methods, if you are planning on storing your food in a warm environment, it will only last a fraction of the time it would last if stored in a cool, dry place. You can expect good storage life if your storage temperature is at 60 degrees F or below. Optimum storage temperature is at 40 degrees F or less. It is important you also find a place where the temperature remains constant. Frequent temperature changes shorten storage life. If you don’t have a cool place for your food storage, plan on rotating your storage quickly enough to prevent food loss.

Factor #2: Product moisture content:

By looking at the USDA nutritional tables, dry beans, grains,
and flours contain an average of 10% moisture. Although it is very difficult and unnecessary to remove all moisture from dry foods, it is imperative that any food be stored as dry as possible. Foods with excess moisture can spoil right in their containers. This is an important consideration when packing food with dry ice as moisture condenses and freezes on the outer surface of the dry ice. For long term storage, grains should have a moisture content of 10% or less. It is difficult to accurately measure this without special equipment. See the misc.survivalism faqs for a quick and easy way of getting a rough estimate of the water content in your foods. It is also important to know that you can not dehydrate foods at home that reach these levels. Food that is dried to a moisture level of 10% moisture crisply snap when bent.

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Those of you who dehydrate foods at home know dehydrated foods from your dehydrator are quite pliable when bent, especially fruits. These will not store well long term.

Factor #3: Atmosphere the product is stored in: Foods packed in air don’t store as well as in oxygen free gasses. This is because air contains oxygen which oxidizes many of the compounds in food. Bacteria, one of several agents which make food go rancid also needs oxygen to grow. Food storage companies have a couple of different

processes for removing the oxygen:

·Displacing the oxygen: This is done by purging out all the air in the product with an inert gas. Nitrogen is almost always used because it is the most inert gas known. People doing their own packing occasionally use dry ice which gives off carbon dioxide gas, and probably works just about as well.

·Absorb the oxygen: Oxygen absorber packets do just that. Air contains about 78% nitrogen and 21% oxygen, leaving about 1% for the other gasses. If the oxygen is absorbed, what remains is 99% pure nitrogen in a partial vacuum.

If oxygen absorber packets are used, care must be taken to use a storage container that can stand some vacuum. If it’s not air tight, air will be sucked into your container as the oxygen is absorbed, reintroducing more oxygen that must be absorbed. Before long, the oxygen absorbers will have absorbed all the oxygen they can. Obviously, your product won’t be oxygen free under these circumstances.

Seeds store better in nitrogen. On the other hand, seeds you plan on sprouting, such as garden seed, or seeds set aside for growing your own sprouts store better in air. For this reason Walton cans their garden seed packs in air. Oxygen absorbers also contain a minute amount of moisture to activate the absorber. Sometimes, with the heat generated by the absorber, they can cause sweating if you use glass bottles or tupperware type containers.

Factor #4: The container the product is

stored in:

To get the best storage life out of your product it must have
a hermetic (air tight) seal. Containers that do this well are:
·#10 Cans (Use only cans that are enamel lined, otherwise your food flavor will be tainted by the steel it comes in contact with. An enamel lined can also prevents the inside of the can from rusting.)
·Sealable food storage buckets
·Sealable food quality metal (lined) or plastic drums. Whatever container you use, be sure it is food grade as your product can be tainted with whatever the container is made from. Plastic sacks are not good air tight containers, for

even if they are sealed, the relatively thin plastic ‘breathes,’ allowing air to pass through. Paper sacks are of course even worse.
There is some concern as to how good a seal is made by the lids on plastic buckets used by food storage companies. Manufacturer studies show an extremely small amount of air transfer. This amount is so small, however, that it can be considered a hermetic seal. It has also been found that the lids can be re-used several times without dramatically degrading the performance of the seal.
People who purchase products from food storage providers are often concerned about receiving their buckets bulging or with one side collapsed in. Collapsed buckets occasionally occur when ordering from Walton’s as the elevation of their packing facility is above 6,000 feet. As the buckets are shipped to a lower elevation, the increased ambient air pressure can sometimes push in one side. If a side is popped in, it is a great indication that the bucket is indeed sealed. And this also holds true for buckets that might be under a slight amount of pressure. If either condition concerns you, crack the lid to equalize the air pressure. You can do this without seriously degrading the storageability of the product within the bucket. Remember to re-seal the lid after doing this.

Bulging cans:

Some bulging cans have been returned to Waltons. In almost
every case, these cans held mixes that contained baking powder or soda. It is believed that occasionally the extremely small amount of moisture found in the product interacts over time with the baking powder or soda and creates a small amount of carbon dioxide gas. Oxyten absorbers can also react with the baking powder causing the cans to buldge. These cans have been sent off for bacteria analysis and and in each case came back negative.

Storage Life Notes About Specific

Foods:

The Soft Grains

Barley Hulled or Pearled, Oat Groats, Rolled Oats,

Quinoa Rye.

Soft Grains have softer outer shells which don’t protect
the seed interior as well as hard shelled seeds and therefore won’t store as long. Hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 8 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should keep
proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.

The Hard Grains

Buckwheat, Corn, Dry Flax, Kamut, Millet, Durum wheat,

Hard red wheat, Hard white wheat, Soft wheat, Special bake

wheat, Spelt, Triticale.

The Hard Grains all store well because of their hard outer
shell which is nature’s near perfect container. Remove that container and the contents rapidly deteriorate. Wheat, probably nature’s longest storing seed, has been known to be edible after scores of years when stored in a cool dry place. As a general rule for hard grains, hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 15-20 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should
keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.

Beans

Adzuki Beans, Blackeye Beans, Black Turtle Beans, Garbanzo

Beans, Great Northern, Kidney Beans, Lentils, Lima Beans,

Mung Beans, Pink Beans, Pinto Beans, Small Red Beans, Soy Beans. As beans age they lose their oils, resist water absorbtion and won’t swell. Worst case, they must be ground to be used. Storing beans in nitrogenhelps prolong the loss of these oils as does cool temperatures. Hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 8-10 years ata stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should keep proportionately longer if stored 10-20 degree F cooler temperatures.

Dehydrated Vegitables

Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Celery, Onions, Peppers,

Potatoes.

Dehydrated vegetables store well if hermetically sealed in
the absence of oxygen. Plan on a storage life of 8-10 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.

Dehydrated Dairy Products

Cheese Powder, Cocoa Powder, Powdered Eggs, Butter/

margarine Powder, Powdered Milk, Morning Moo, Whey

Powder.

Dehydrated Dairy Products generally store very well if
stored dry in hermetically sealed containers with the oxygen removed. Plan on a storage life of 5 to 10 years if stored at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should keep, probably 5 years longer, if stored at cooler temperatures. One exception is Morning Moo. As a new whey based product, it hasn’t been tested for long term storage. Plan on rotating this product after 5 years. Our dairy powders (excluding our sour cream powder) contain no fat, an agent that markedly decreases the storage life of dairy products.

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Flours and Other Products made from

Cracked / Ground Seed.

All Purpose Flour, Bakers Flour, Unbleached Flour, White

Flour, Whole Wheat Flour, Cornmeal, Mixes, Refried Beans,

Cracked wheat, Germade, Gluten, Wheat flakes.

After seeds are broken open their outer shells can no
longer protect the seed contents and seed nutrients start to degrade. Don’t try to store unprotected flours longer than a year. Hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 5 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.Note: Granola is not a long storing food because of the nuts. They contain high concentrations of oil which go rancid over the short term. Expect granola to last about 6-9 months.

Pasta

Macaroni, Noodles, Ribbons, Spaghetti.

Pasta will store longer than flour if kept dry. Hermetically
sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 10 -
15 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. Pasta should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.

Dehydrated Fruit

Fruit doesn’t keep as well as many dehydrated items.
Hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 10-15 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.

Honey, Salt and Sugar

Honey, Salt and Sugar should keep indefinitely if stored
free of moisture. Watch out for additives in the honey. It is possible to buy honey with water and sugar added. This honey generally doesn’t crystallize like pure 100% honey does when stored for a long time. If there are additives, there is no saying how long it will last.

Peanut Butter Powder

Peanut Butter Powder will not store as long as wheat flour.
Hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 4-5 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. It should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.

Brown and White Rices

Brown and white rices store very differently. Brown rice is only
expected to store for 6 months under average conditions. This is because of the essential fatty acids in brown rice. These oils quickly go rancid as they oxidize. It will store much longer if refrigerated. White rice has the outer shell removed along with those fats. Because of this, white rice isn’t nearly as good for you, but will store longer. Hermetically sealed in the

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absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life for white rice of
8-10 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. It should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures. Stored in the absence of oxygen, brown rice will last longer than if it was stored in air. Plan on 1 to 2 years. It is very important to store brown rice as cool as possible, for if you can get the temperature down another ten degrees, it will double the storage life again.

Garden Seedor Sprouting Seed

All viable seeds are hibernating tiny living plants that only
need moisture and warmth to sprout. And much like a chick in an egg, all the nutrients this little life needs to spring into existence is contained within it’s shell. Like boiling an egg, heating a seed will kill that little life within it. However, unlike an egg, a seed can withstand cold temperatures. As seeds usually remain edible after the life within it dies, we must use different criteria when determining sproutable seed storage life. And again the big deciding factor is temperature. Plan on a storage life of 2 to 3 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. They should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures. And remember, you want to store all of these seeds in air. Packed in nitrogen, the viability of some seeds will last longer than others. This is still to a large degree an unexplored science, and therefore we recommend you store all the seeds you plan on sprouting in air. Alfalfa is a unique seed as it actually germinates better if the seed is
2 or 3 years old. Most any sample of alfalfa contains ‘hard’ seed and ‘soft’ seed. Soft seed germinates within two days while hard seed germinates in about a week. The problem is, by the time the soft seed sprouts are ready to harvest, the hard seed may not have germinated yet. As storage time draws on, the hard seed turns into soft seed. Older seed germinates closer together. Stored in cool conditions, alfalfa seed should have a good percentage of germination up until it is 8 years old.

Total Vegetable Protein

Total Vegetable Protein, made from soy beans, has an
unusually long storage life. Hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life of 15-20 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. meat substitute should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures.

Yeast

Yeast, a living organism, has a relatively short storage life.
Keep yeast in the original metal foil storage containers. If the seal remains intact, yeast should last 2 years at 70 degrees F. However it is strongly recommended that you refrigerate it, which should give you a storage life of 5 years. Frozen yeast should store for a long time.

copyright Al Durtschi.

Shelf Life Studies:

Canned Food Study One

A Food and Drug Administration Article about a shelf life
test that was conducted on 100-year old canned foods that were retrieved from the Steamboat Bertrand can be read at the following link:
http://web.archive.org/web/20070509153848/http://
www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/CONSUMER/CON00043.html
Following is a brief summary of a very small portion of the above article:

Among the canned food items retrieved from the Ber- trand in 1968 were brandied peaches, oysters, plum to- matoes, honey, and mixed vegetables. In 1974, chemists at the National Food Processors Association (NFPA) ana- lyzed the products for bacterial contamination and nutrient value. Although the food had lost its fresh smell and ap- pearance, the NFPA chemists detected no microbial growth and determined that the foods were as safe to eat as they had been when canned more than 100 years earlier. The nutrient values varied depending upon the product and nu- trient. NFPA chemists Janet Dudek and Edgar Elkins report that significant amounts of vitamins C and A were lost. But protein levels remained high, and all calcium values ‘were comparable to today’s products.’”

“NFPA chemists also analyzed a 40-year-old can of corn found in the basement of a home in California. Again, the canning process had kept the corn safe from contaminants and from much nutrient loss. In addition, Dudek says, the kernels looked and smelled like recently canned corn.”

“According to a recent study cosponsored by the U.S. De- partment of Agriculture and NFPA, canned foods provide the same nutritional value as fresh grocery produce and their frozen counterparts when prepared for the table. NFPA researchers compared six vegetables in three forms: home-cooked fresh, warmed canned, and prepared frozen.
‘Levels of 13 minerals, eight vitamins, and fiber in the foods were similar,’ says Dudek. In fact, in some cases the canned product contained high levels of some vitamins that in fresh produce are destroyed by light or exposure to air.”

Canned Food Study Two

A canned food shelf life study conducted by the U.S. Army
revealed that canned meats, vegetables, and jam were in

an excellent state of preservation after 46 years.

The Washington State University summary article can be
read at:
http://www.whatcom.wsu.edu/family/facts/shelflif.htm

Dry Food Study One

A scientific study conducted at Brigham Young University
on the shelf life of a variety of different dry foods can be read at both of the following links:
h t tp :// ce. b yu. edu / cw/w o men sc on f er ence/ ar -
chiv e /2005/ sharing_s t a tions/pdf/52a.pdf
h t tp: //w w w.pr o v ide n tliv ing .or g / c on t e n t/dis -
play/0,11666,7797-1-4222-1,00.html
A brief summary of the above web site information shows the following estimated shelf life per dry food item:
Over 30 years for wheat and white rice. 30 years for pinto beans, macaroni, rolled oats, and potato flakes. 20 years for powdered milk.
All dry food items should be stored in airtight moisture proof containers at a temperature between 40ºF to 70°F. Salt, baking soda, and granulated sugar still in their original containers have no known shelf life limit if properly stored.

Dry Food Study Two http://www.sciencedaily.com/videos/2007/0208-keep- ing_food_for_years.htm

Food scientists now know that, when properly sealed, some dried food that’s been sitting on shelves for years, could still be OK to eat.

It lasts a lot longer than we thought,” Oscar Pike a food scientist at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, tells DBIS.

Scientists have known certain foods like sugar and salt can be stored indefinitely, but wanted to learn the shelf life of other food like dried apples -- stored since 1973 -- tried by taste testers.
“I like to call it the emergency shelf life of the food, food that you’d still be willing to eat in an emergency,” Pike says. “It’s not as though it were freshly canned, but it’s certainly edible.”

Copyright 2007,2010 by Robert Wayne Atkins, P.E.

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Pros and Cons of Freeze-Dried, Dehydrated,

MRE, Food Bars, & Basic Commodities.

Pros Cons

Freeze-Dried / Instant

Very low moisture Most expensive food storage option Very lightweight Most items require water to prepare Long shelf life Items are bulkier than if dehydrated Reconstitutes quickly
Retains original shape, texture, color after resonstitution
Best way to dry meat items

Dehydrated (most items)

Low moisture Requires water to prepare
Lightweight Some items take a long time to reconstitute
Long shelf life Some items loose taste after recontitution
No waste Dehydration process can affect nutritional value
Not easily spoiled Some items have poor visual appeal

MRE (Meal Ready to Eat)

Can be eaten right from pouch without preparation Taste of MREs considered poor by some Requires no water to prepare Artificial additives added in many recipes Can be heated for hot meal by many methods Expensive considering actual food received
Convenient to use Many entrees more like sauces & require additional
Familiar foods available quality carbohydrates for a filling meal
No mixing or blending required Entrees alone will not supply adequate nutritional value Because of foil pouch, they are susceptable to puncture Can be heavy if larger quantities need to be transportated

Emergency food bars

Compact - convenient Limited nutritional value
Low cost Not a satisfying substitute for a hot meal
5 year shelf life Not adequate for prolonged use
Can take exposure to high heat

Grains, Beans, Basic Commodities

Very familiar Not generally appropriate for shorter term emergencies
Low cost Very heavy weight
Long storage life Requires large quantities of water and fuel to prepare
Traditional basic foods More time consuming to prepare
Good nutritional value Time is required to adapt to basic comodity oriented diet
Many sproutable seeds, grains, and beans increase For higher calorie requirements a fairly large quantity of nutritional value grains/beans must be consumed when eaten
exclusively.

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MREs: MEALS, READY TO EAT

This category includes more than the modern day military rations known by the above acronym, but also their civilian equivalents which are marketed by two of the major U.S. military MRE contractors, and a number of other products on the civilian market that fit better into this category than any other. Over the last several years the number of self-contained meals available in either the new style flexible pouches or old fashioned metal cans has greatly increased. I can’t cover them all in detail so for this section I will cover only those meals that also include some form of self-contained heating device to warm the food to serving temperature. This allows one to have a hot meal yet needing no equipment other than a spoon to eat with. Whether you buy self-heating meals or supply the heat yourself to non- self heating meals you should investigate the offerings your local grocer may now be carrying. They have great potential for those situations where cooking food would be difficult or impossible.

U.S. MILITARY MREs

The Meal, Ready to Eat (MRE) is the current U.S. military field
ration for those times when troops are out of contact with their regular mess facilities. In the early 1980’s they replaced the older C & K-rations that had honorably served since the Second World War. These new rations represented a major leap forward in food preservation technology by disposing of the heavy, unwieldy metal can and replacing it with the much lighter, flexible “retort pouch.” These pouches are the beefier cousins of the aluminized Mylar bag much used in long-term food storage and are basically constructed the same way. A thick outer layer of tough polyester film, a thin middle layer of aluminum foil for its excellent gas barrier properties, and an inner layer of food safe polypropylene film to allow heat sealing. Food is placed in the pouch then specially heat processed for preservation which renders it microbiologically shelf-stable, fully cooked, and ready to eat.

What’s in an MRE?

From the Defense Logistics Agency Subsistence web site (http://www.dscp.dla.mil/subs/rations/meals/mres.htm) we find this:

The twenty-four different varieties of meals can be seen in the menu table. Components are selected to complement each entrée as well as provide necessary nutrition. The components vary among menus and include both Mexican and white rice, fruits, bakery items, crackers, spreads, beverages, snacks, candy, hot sauce, and chow mein noodles for the pork chow mein entrée. The fruits may be applesauce, pears, peaches, pineapple, or strawberry. The bakery items include a fudge brownie, cookies, fruit bars, a

toaster pastry, and pound cake in flavors of lemon, vanilla, orange, pineapple, and chocolate mint. Each meal also contains an accessory packet. The contents of one MRE meal bag provides an average of 1250 kilocalories (13 % protein, 36 % fat, and

51 % carbohydrates). It also provides 1/3 of the Military Recommended Daily Allowance of vitamins and minerals determined essential by the Surgeon General of the United States.

All of which is then placed inside of a heavy plastic pouch and sealed. Being field rations they had to be designed to take considerable punishment in packs, air drops, and other forms of abuse remaining safely intact until consumed. By and large they do just that.
All of this sounds rather attractive to the person interested in emergency preparedness and they are. So much so, in fact, that several years ago the U.S. military finally said “enough!” to the continuing losses of their rations to the civilian market and banned any further civilian sale. All new MRE complete ration packs now bear the words “U.S. Government Property. Commercial Resale Is Unlawful.”
This did slow the loss rate somewhat, but anyone that wants the real thing can still get them from military personnel they may know, at gun shows, some military surplus shops, or via E-Bay. Whether you should do this is up to you, but I will give a couple of cautions here:
#1 – Being a back channel acquisition chances are you have no way of knowing the storage history of what you’re buying. Maybe it’s been sitting in some nice cool warehouse since it was produced or maybe it bounced around in the back of a deuce-and-a-half in the Nevada desert for a month last summer. If you don’t know where it’s been how can you estimate how much useful shelf-life it may have left?
#2 – Make sure what you’re buying really is a military MRE or MRE component. Some of the civilian commercial products can look remarkably similar, but are not quite the same. Know what

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you’re looking at and make it clear with the person you’re buying from that you want genuine military issue (if that’s what you want).

MRE Heaters: These devices will either come with your MRE at the time of purchase or they can be bought separately. They contain a small amount of salt, magnesium, and iron and when you add a small amount of water they undergo a flameless chemical reaction that will heat an 8 oz MRE entrée by roughly 100° Fahrenheit (37°C) in about ten minutes. As water is what starts the reaction it is imperative the heaters be kept dry until used. If stored in an area of high humidity the heaters can undergo a slow reaction leading to degraded performance later or even complete failure over time. As a part of the chemical reaction the heaters release small amounts of hydrogen gas which is generally harmless but large numbers of heaters in a damp, sealed storage area could conceivably present a danger. This is unlikely unless you’re storing many cases of heaters. In such an event keep them in an air tight storage container with some desiccant.

While any MRE can be eaten cold these heaters can certainly improve the palatability of the food. Lacking a heater you can simply boil the individual retort pouches in water for a few minutes, lay them in the sun to warm, or tuck them in your shirt. The one thing you should not do is expose them to direct flame.

For more detailed information on U.S. military, civilian, some foreign military MREs, and other rations please see the excellent MRE Info website at http://www.mreinfo. com/index.html

U.S. MILITARY MRE SHELF LIFE

Much discussion has gone into how long one should
keep MREs on hand before rotating them out of stock. In this regard they’re no different than any other type of preserved food. The longer you keep them on hand the more unpalatable and non-nutritious they will become with heat playing a large role in shortening their useful lifespan.
The short answer to the shelf-life question (from http:// www.dscp.dla.mil/subs/rations/meals/mres.htm) is simply “The shelf life of the MRE is three (3) years at 80 degrees F. However, the shelf life can be extended through the use of cold storage facilities prior to distribution.” Of course, that’s at 80° Fahrenheit (27°C). What if your storage temperature is different? Then you need the storage life chart that was developed by the U.S. Army’s NATIC Research Laboratories which basically says that at a given storage temperature an MRE will remain palatable for so many months as illustrated below:

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Storage Temperature Shelf Life

120° F (49°C) 1 month
110° F (43°C) 2 months
100° F (37°C) 6 months
90° F (32°C) 18 motnhs
80° F (27°C) 36 months
70° F (21°C) 40 months
60° F (15°C) 48 months
50° F 60 months

Note: As with any other stored food, time and temperature have a cumulative effect. A complete shelf-life chart for all U.S. military rations may be found here:

U.S. CIVILIAN MREs (WORNICK, SOPAKCO,

OTHERS?)

Except for contract overruns on individual components actual military MREs, especially complete MRE ration packs, are not legal for sale on the civilian market. Recognizing there was a civilian market for such rations both Wornick and Sopakco through its Crown Point, limited, subsidiary brought out similar products for commercial sale. Their complete civilian ration packs are not precisely the same as their military cousins, but the individual components are usually produced on the same production lines.
Because there are no legal restrictions on their sale these civilian MREs are easier to find and are generally available in three basic forms –individual components, complete ration packs, and multi-serving tray packs meant for group feeding. Exact menus vary over time, usually being a subset of whatever the companies are producing for the military at the time of their production so I’m not going to try to address specific menus.
Some of the typical differences between military and civilian
MREs are:

Menu choi ce . Military MREs presently have twenty four different menu choices. Their civilian equivalents are currently limited to twelve.

Ration heaters. These are standard with military MREs, but you may have to pay extra to get them with the civilian equivalents.

Total amount of food. Many of the civilian offerings contain less total food than military MREs, typically in the form of fewer side items. One notable difference is that fewer of the civilian rations contain the little Tabasco packets than their military counterparts.

The spoon. The spoons in the civilian packets are not the same as in the military rations. The civilian spoon is white plastic while the military spoon is brown and of a longer length which makes it easier to get to the bottom of the pouches without getting food on your fingers. This strikes me as particularly chintzy on the manufacturer’s part.

For more detailed information on U.S. military, civilian, and some foreign military MREs, and other rations please see the excellent MRE Info website at http://www.mreinfo. com/index.html

U.S. CIVILIAN MRE SHELF LIVES

One would think that the shelf lives of U.S. military and
civilian MREs would be the same, but are they? If you look at the manufacturer’s websites for what they say about their civilian equivalent rations we find:

Crown Point, Ltd (SOPAKCO)

From http://www.crownpt.com/Q&As.htm

How long will these products last? < /p>

SOPAKCO Packaging uses an estimated shelf life figure of “3-5 years, plus or minus” for its MRE- type pouched food products. Actual shelf life may vary from this estimate. A key factor effecting actual shelf life is the temperature of the storage environment. Storage at temperatures higher than

85F (85 degrees Fahrenheit) may shorten the shelf life of MRE-type food products. On the other hand, lowering the storage temperature will help extend the products’ shelf life. This effect is common to most processed food products.

The shelf life figures given below for MRE’s are based on studies conducted by the U.S. Army’s NATIC Research Laboratories. This study was conducted by NATIC without participation of the MRE manufacturers. As such, SOPAKCO Packaging cannot verify the test procedures used by the NATIC labs, nor do we adopt these shelf life figures as a guarantee of any sort. The data is useful, though, as a general indication of the effects of storage temperatures on the shelf life of MRE-type food products.

The above storage data and time periods were based on “acceptable taste” measures, which is a subjective standard that may vary among each

individual. Test participants were asked to indicate which products they were presented would be rated to still be of “acceptable taste”. Responses were noted, and average values were calculated to yield the data above.

The above data does not indicate the maximum useful life of MRE food products. The NATIC study noted that nutritional value and product safety value of the products often extended far beyond these time points.

Again, SOPAKCO Packaging in no way adopts the NATIC shelf life figures as any form of express or implied guarantee of the actual shelf life of its MRE food products. This information is provided as a general indication of the effects of storage temperature on MRE-type packaged foods.

Long Life Food Depot (The Wornick Company’s

civilian sales agent)

How long do MRE products last - what is their

Shelf Life

We guarantee our MRE products to last 5 years from the date of sale, in a room temperature environment (70 deg. F), no matter what the production date.

Of course, the production date is visible on all our entrees and on most side dishes, desserts, and other components.

The production date is a four digit number (date code) on each item, example “2156.” In this example the 2 represents the year 2002 (a “3” would represent 2003, etc.), the 156 represents the 156th day of the year. See the top of the individual box or look on pouch for the Date Code.

At this time nearly all of our MRE products were manufactured between 2002 and 2003 and have always been kept in a climate-controlled warehouse to ensure freshness.

The official MRE Shelf Life Chart, created by the Army’s Natick Research Lab, gives the whole picture and explains why we are prepared to guarantee our products for 5 years from date of sale. It is clear that the wholesomeness of the products extends well beyond 5 years. To see this chart and a more complete discussion of MRE Shelf LIfe, click here.

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MRE Shelf Life:

A main concern in the development and testing of rations for our armed forces has always been SHELF LIFE. An amazing amount of research has been done in the development of the retort pouch and the MRE to determine the exact length of time and the exact conditions under which it is safe to store the entrees and the side dishes.

The main thing we have to work with is the shelf life chart (shown below) compiled by the Army’s Natick Research labs. This gives a very good overview and summary of all the findings gathered from all the testing of MRE products. However, it leaves many questions unanswered. Here are additional facts and observations we have gathered about MRE shelf life:
1) The shelf life ratings shown in the chart below were determined by taste panels, panels of “average” people, mostly office personnel at the Natick labs. Their opinions were combined to determine when a particular component or, in this case, the entire MRE ration, was no longer acceptable.
2) The shelf life determinations were made solely on the basis of taste, as it was discovered that acceptable nutritional content and basic product safety would extend way beyond the point where taste degradation would occur. This means that MREs would be safe and give a high degree of food value long after the official expiration of the products as determined by taste.
3) MRE pouches have been tested and redesigned where necessary according to standards much more strict than for commercial food. They must be able to stand up to abuse tests such as obstacle course traversals in field clothing pockets, storage outdoors anywhere in the world, shipping under extremely rough circumstances, 100% survival of parachute drops, 75% survival of free-fall air drops, severe repetitive vibration (1 hour at 1 G vibration),
7,920 individual pouch drops from 20 inches, and individual pouches being subjected to a static load of 200 lbs for 3 minutes.
4) Freezing an MRE retort pouch does not destroy the food inside, but repeated freezing increases the chances that the stretching and stressing of the pouch will cause a break in a layer of the laminated pouch. These pouches are made to withstand 1,000 flexes, but repetitive freezing does increase the failure rate by a small fraction of a percent.

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MRE Storage Life Chart A graphic of the chart I have reproduced above.
As we can see both company’s refer to the NATIC shelf- life chart then give qualifiers “The NATIC study noted that nutritional value and product safety value of the products often extended far beyond these time points.” and “This means that MREs would be safe and give a high degree of food value long after the official expiration of the products as determined by taste.” Neither state how much or what kinds of nutrition would remain once the food goes beyond it’s recommended shelf life, but it can be safely assumed the most sensitive nutrients (notably vitamins A and C among others) will have significantly declined. Old food is not likely to be attractive food, nor will it give long term nutrition, but if it’s all you’ve got it’ll still be safe to eat it.

BRITISH/CANADIAN MREs

These are basically MREs little different in form than the
American made product but made by companies in these respective nations. Shelf-life is the same. Menu choices reflect British/Canadian tastes, of course. Company contact information can be found in the Suppliers Section.
One minor difference seems to be with the Hot Pack company of U.K./Canada in that they claim their ration heaters are somewhat larger than the ones packaged with U.S. MREs
From the company’s web site:

Will defrost ice or snow for drinking water.

Will heat 300 g (10.6 oz.) of food or water from

room temperature to 80°C (178°F) in 12 minutes.

Will provide a source of heat for up to forty five

minutes after activation.

Is sometimes reusable for a limited heat cycle (dependent on how much of the heating element was exhausted in the first cycle).

The chemical reaction is totally safe. When water is added to the heater, the mixture bubbling away inside the sleeve (magnesium hydroxide) is a pharmaceutical chemical used by doctors to treat stomach acidity.

Food grade ingredients are used in the manufacturing

of the heater.

Onc e activat e d, the heat e r will

keep hot for approximately 45 minutes.

It can be used as a body warmer or to heat a drink

after heating the meal.

O T H E R S E L F - H E A T I N G R E A D Y TO EAT TYPE PRODUCTS

As one might expect once the bugs were worked out of
retort pouch and flameless ration heater technologies the manufacturing companies that produce them would try them on the civilian market. This has been a little slow in coming, mostly because in the modern day ‘fresh is best and refrigeration is cheap’ world their market segment is somewhat small, but they are arriving. At the time of this writing there are several products now available, some of them quite new.

HEATERMEALS

HeaterMeals are a type of MRE in casual clothing. Like the
rations above they are a retort pouch preserved meal with its own built in heater. The heater itself is the same technology as the MRE heaters (the company makes them for the military), but a little different in form, to include having its own self-contained water to start the heating reaction. The meals themselves aren’t packaged with the idea of rough handling in mind, but they’ll keep well on the shelf.
The meals themselves come in two basic forms:
An entrée pack with the heater, seasoning packet and cutlery
A complete meal pack with the heater, entrée, seasoning packet, cutlery, side items like fruit, snack, and dessert, and a bottle of water to drink.
If you’re not having to use them under rough field conditions they represent a self-heating, completely self contained meal.
These meals can be ordered from the manufacturer, a number of dealers which are listed on the company website, or you can often find them at truck stops, some supermarkets, sporting goods stores, and other such businesses.

Shelf life info for HeaterMeals was found at: http://www.

heatermeals.com/faq.html#shelflife

What is the shelf-life of HeaterMeals and HeaterMeals

Plus Meals?

HeaterMeals are a high quality canned food, so storage is

easy.

HeaterMeals Dinner entrees do not require refrigeration, and are shelf-stable for approximately 2 years. HeaterMeals entrees come with a “Please use by” date stamped on each box. This date is two years after we package the meals, as this is the optimum time to eat your HeaterMeals.

The HeaterMeals Breakfast “Pancakes, Syrup & Sausage Links” and all HeaterMeals Plus meals have a one year shelf-life.

HeaterMeals dinner entrees are designed to safely store (at

80 degrees Fahrenheit) for at least two years; three years

or more, if stored at a temperature of 60ºF or cooler. The

shelf-life of HeaterMeals can be even longer; and the unique

packaging of the entree and water pouch permits freezing

for unlimited storage.

HOT CANS – UNITED KINGDOM

In the United Kingdom there is another entry in the self-
heating meal field. This is the Hot Can from Hot Can UK, Limited. It’s an interesting blend of old and different new tech in that the food itself is contained in a run-of-the- mill pop-top metal can, but the food can is contained in a sealed larger can filled with calcium oxide (quicklime) and a separate water capsule. When needed the self-contained water capsule is pierced with the provided tool allowing moisture to seep into the dry quicklime below and the food can pop-top is removed. In twelve to fifteen minutes the can will have heated to 65°-70° Celsius and remains at that temperature for roughly forty five minutes which means once you’ve finished the food inside you can quickly rinse the can and heat something else, perhaps a beverage.
There are a variety of meals available from the company, each weighing about 400 grams (roughly 14 ozs). Shelf life is “Three years from manufacturing date, or as indicated on printed bottom end of can.” The heater itself releases no harmful or dangerous gasses and if for some reason you should break one open and spill some of the quicklime on yourself it can simply be washed off again with water.
Company contact information can be found in the Suppliers Section. Hot Cans are probably also available through retail dealers in the U.K. and elsewhere.

ALPINEAIRE INSTANT – SELF HEATING MEALS

New on the market from AlpineAire is their entry into the
self-heating meal arena. Uses the same retort and flameless heater technology as MREs but in different packaging. Snap the bottom of the package and in eight minutes your entrée is hot and ready to go. As I write this there are only two entrees with more coming in the near future. They’re rather pricey at a suggested retail of $8.95 for a mere 240 calories worth of vegetarian food. Still, it’s a start and with time they may both lower the price and increase the menu choices.
Alpineaire advises an eighteen month shelf life for this particular product line. They may be ordered directly from AlpineAire or through their many stocking dealers.

MOUNTAIN HOUSE MOUNTAIN OVEN

Mountain House isn’t really offering a true Meal, Ready to
Eat since you still have to add water to their freeze dried/ dehydrated food, but I’m including it here since it’s close. Basically, what they’re offering is their own version of a flameless ration heater and some new packaging of a few

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of their entrees that allows the pouches to be put into their heaters to be warmed. They call their heater a “Mountain Oven” though they really don’t bake anything, just warms things up.
To use their heater you dissolve one of the furnished salt tablets in a plastic bottle that comes in the kit. Place a “heat activation pad” in the bottom of the insulated over pouch then pour the salt water on it. Open up the food pouch, pour in the required amount of water then put the pouch inside the insulated bag and zip it closed (the outer bag is vented). Twenty minutes later the food should be about 100° F. (38°C) hotter than when you started.
Each Mountain Oven kit is good for five uses. At a suggested retail of $11.99 per kit that’s about $2.40 per use which makes it rather pricey compared to the ordinary MRE heaters already on the market which can usually be purchased for about a buck apiece or less. Still, like the AlpineAire entry it’s a start and with time they may come down in price and perhaps be easier to use as well.
The Mountain Oven kits can be ordered from Mountain House directly or purchased from one of their many dealers as they are distributed.

RATION BARS

U.S. Coast Guard approved lifeboat ration bars are not
common storage foods. Nevertheless they have a specific use important enough to warrant inclusion in personal preparedness programs.
As many involved with emergency preparedness discover, finding foods capable of being stored for long periods of time under harsh conditions that will remain both palatable and nutritious is a real undertaking. This is especially a problem with vehicle emergency kits where interior temperatures in the Spring, Summer, or Fall may exceed 120°F (50°C) for hours at a time each day. Very little in the way of anything usefully edible will survive such sustained temperatures for long before it breaks down, becomes unpalatable, with most or all of its nutrients damaged or destroyed.
This is a problem not only for those of us trying to build vehicle emergency kits but also for mariners needing to provision life boats that might be exposed to anything from desert temperatures to artic climates. In reaction to this and a number of other marine emergency preparedness needs most of the world’s maritime nations met to develop the Safety Of Life At Sea (SOLAS) conventions, one of which concerns itself with emergency provisions for lifeboats. In the United States responsibility for implementing the SOLAS regulations falls to the U.S. Coast Guard and they have developed guidelines by which manufacturers must abide in order to become Coast Guard approved suppliers of life boat rations.

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Among the guideline requirements are:
· Lifeboat rations must be capable of withstanding long periods of high temperatures or sub freezing weather without significant deterioration;
· must not increase bodily water needs with high protein or salt levels yet provide sufficient calories to keep the body from burning its fat reserves which also increases bodily water needs;
· be compact in size and lightweight;
· be sufficiently palatable that injured or ill passengers would be able to eat them;
· not constipate nor cause diarrhea;
· use packaging that is sufficiently durable to withstand rough conditions.
Those manufacturers that meet these guidelines can submit their products for approval to be placed on the U.S. Coast Guard Equipment List 160.046 - Emergency Provisions for Merchant Vessels which may be found here: http://www. uscg.mil/hq/g-m/mse/equiplists/160046.pdf
Each of these companies produces lifeboat rations. In the U.S. the two most commonly available product lines are the Mainstay Emergency Food Ration and the Datrex Red (or White) or Blue ration.
The Mainstay rations are lemon flavored and available in
1200, 2400, and 3600 calorie packages. The Datrex rations are coconut flavored and available in 2400 (red or white ration) or 3600 (blue ration) calorie packages. As per regulations both have a five year shelf life. Each package from either company has been tabletized and subpackaged to make it easier to serve them out in controlled portions.
Both are primarily composed of complex carbohydrates, fairly low protein, enriched with extra vitamins and minerals then vacuum sealed in heavy aluminized plastic pouches similar to military MREs. Flavors are noted above, textures are similar to a fairly dense pound cake. I’ve sampled both and while I wouldn’t care to eat them for a week straight for the relative few days a vehicle or similar emergency kit is intended to get you through they’ll get the job done and not turn into something nasty after a few months of hot weather. In the cool times of the year when vehicle interiors do not climb into oven temperature ranges food options increase considerably with some form of military or civilian- equivalent MRE being well suited to the task.
Something to consider if you’re building emergency kits or bug-out bags.
Copyright ©Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved.

Growing and Using Sprouts

Sprouts are great to eat for everyday living and especially so in an emergency situation. Typical foods set aside for storage are traditionally low or nonexistent in vitamin C and many of the B vitamins. Yet it is exciting to know the seeds from those same storage foods can be sprouted to give a rich source of these important nutrients. Sprouts are an excellent source of vitamin C and also contain many good B vitamins. And you probably won’t find a less expensive way to get these vitamins than from low calorie sprouts. Green leafy sprouts are also a good source of vitamin A. Sprouts are a good source of fiber, protein, and contain enzymes that aid digestion. In addition, sprouting destroys the seed’s natural preservative enzymes that inhibit digestion.

Different kinds of seeds you can sprout: (This list gives the popularly sprouted seeds and is not all enclusive as you can sprout almost any kind of seed.)

Generally eaten raw: Alfalfa, radish, mung bean, sunflower, clover, cabbage.

Generally cooked: Kidney, Pinto and other miscellaneous beans.

Eaten raw or cooked: Lentils, Soy beans, green peas and wheat. (In addition, all the sprouts that are generally eaten raw can be easily cooked.)

Alfalfa: Alfalfa, one of the most popular sprouts, is a good source of vitamins A, B, C, D, E, F, and K and is rich in many minerals, as well as many enzymes needed for digestion.

Radish sprouts are high in vitamin C and potassium and have a rich flavor.

Wheat is high in Vitamins B, C, and E and has three times the vitamin E of dry wheat. Wheat also has many minerals.

Mung Beans: These sprouts should be sprouted under pressure to produce long and juicy sprouts. Mung bean sprouts are an excellent source of protein, vitamin C, A and E, along with many minerals.

Green Pea sprouts are rich in many of the B vitamins and vitamin C. Green pea sprouts make a rich addition to any green salad.

Soybeans: An extremely rich source of protein and vitamins A, B, C and E. Soybeans are rich in minerals and lecithin. They can be sprouted under pressure like mung beans.

Kidney beans, pinto beans and miscellaneous beans:

They are a good source of vitamin C, many of the B vitamins
and many minerals. Sprouting these beans also changes their indigestible carbohydrates to digestible carbohydrates thereby greatly reducing the intestinal gas they otherwise cause.

Lentils: Rich in protein, vitamin C and the B vitamins. They have a mild ground pepper flavor.

Buckwheat: Makes a great salad green. High in vitamins A, B, C and D.

Sunflower: Rich in vitamins B, D, and E, many minerals, and

Linoleic Acid, the W6 EFA.

Do Not eat tomato, peppers or potato sprouts as they are poisonous.

Growing Sprouts:

Sprouts are easy to produce and require no special

equipment or knowledge. All that is required to produce
sprouts is seeds, moisture, warmth, darkness and maybe
10 minutes of your time every day. Methods vary from high tech production to something as simple as quart jar or a cloth covered pan. Perhaps the simplest method is to take your seeds, place them in a quart jar, and cover them with water to start the process.

Seed amounts to use per quart jar:

1/2 Cup Seeds: Wheat, All Beans, Rye, Oats, Rice, Sunflower,

Lentil, Hulled Buckwheat, and Garbanzo Beans.

2 Tablespoons: Alfalfa, radish, clover, cabbage.

Be aware that seeds soak up 2 or 3 times their dry volume in water. After they have absorbed all the water they are going to absorb (2-12 hours depending on the size of the seed), drain the water off, rinse them, and put them in a dark, warm place, with the bottle upside down and tipped up against a corner so water can drip out. Of course you need to put something under the bottle to catch the dripping water. Use a lid that permits air to move in and out of the jar. You can use a thin cloth, a nylon stocking, or anything you have that’s handy. Fasten it down around the opening of the jar using an elastic or bottle ring. After the seeds have stopped draining, if you are sprouting very small seeds like alfalfa, cabbage or radish seeds, roll the bottle, coating the outer wall of the bottle with seeds. Leave the bottle on it’s side in the dark. Room temperature is best for growing sprouts, around 70 degrees F. Rinse the seeds twice a day, being sure to drain them well.

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(Do not neglect to rinse them. They will sour and be useless.)

Within two days your seeds should begin sprouting.

For sprouts you are going to cook, let the sprout grow only as long as the seed. For sprouts you will eat raw (except wheat) let them grow up to 2-3 inches. Expose mature alfalfa, wheatgrass, buckwheat or sunflower sprouts to indirect sunlight for 4-5 hours. As they turn dark green their vitamin A content dramatically increases. (This is an important step, for if you don’t, your sprouts will have only about 1 percent of this vitamin’s RDA. Don’t expose bean sprouts to sunlight as this will give them an unpleasant bitter taste.) When your sprouts have grown to the desired length, rinse them again, then put them in a sealed container with something to absorb the water on the bottom and store them in the refrigerator.

Sprouting mung beans under pressure

Place soaked beans in a small colander inside another
container. Place several layers of burlap over the top of the seeds, then place a 3-5 pound bag of marbles or small stones on top of this. Water every two or three hours to ensure adequate moisture (this prevents the root systems from over developing in their search for water). Keep them in the dark at all times or they will turn bitter as they begin to green. When they are 2 to 3 inches long, remove them from the colander and refrigerate.

Using your sprouts

After sprouts reach their peak, they immediately begin to

loose their vitamin C. Because of this, don’t attempt to store
sprouts longer than a week. Only grow small quantities of sprouts that can be used in a short period of time. If you plan on getting many of your vitamins from sprouts, it would be a good idea to have one or two small batches of sprouts growing all the time.

Cook sprouted beans using the same recipes you normally use. Sprouted beans cook in 2/3rds the time of unsprouted beans. Heat kills a percentage of the vitamins and enzymes gained by sprouting, so simmer or steam slowly depending on your recipe, and don’t cook longer than necessary.

You can sprout a mixture of seeds to make great green salads all by themselves. You can also use raw sprouts in just about anything:

Blended in drinks.
Added to bean or lettuce salads.
Mixed with already cooked breakfast cereals. Wrapped in tortilla or taco shells and smothered in your favorite sauce.
Added to soups and stews just before eating. Sprout filled Won Tons.
Put into sandwiches.

Raw sprouts are so versatile that they can also be thrown into just about anything then cooked, such as:

Breads and biscuits. Soups.
Pancakes.
Eggs and omelets.
Oatmeal or cracked wheat. Sauces.
Mexican or Chinese foods. Potato Patties.
Casseroles. Dips. Meatloaf.
Any vegetable.
Stir fried all by themselves.
Even desserts. Really, the sky’s the limit.

When cooking sprouts, it is better to steam or stir fry them than to boil them and discard the water. You only lose 20-30 percent of the vitamin C compared to 60 percent.

How much sprouting seed you should store and tips on purchasing.

It is suggested that if you plan to get all your vitamins from sprouts alone, that you store up to 125 lbs of a variety of seeds per year per person. If you have other sources for your vitamins, it is suggested you have 30 lbs of seeds set aside for sprouts to be eaten raw, and

30 lbs of sprouts intended to be cooked per year per person.

Many specialty companies exist that deal exclusively in sprout seed. Usually these seeds cost several times more than other seeds of the same type. One study shows that mung beans sold exclusively for sprouting cost 4.5 times more than regular mung beans. Yet 99 percent of the time the cheaper seed will sprout and grow as quickly as the more expensive seed. It is the web page author’s opinion that it is a waste of money to buy ‘sprouting seed’ over regular seed. Before purchasing a large amount of storage seed intended for sprouting, purchase a small amount and test it to see if it sprouts well.

Do not attempt to store your sprouting seed for more than 5 years unless it is stored in a cool (at least 60-65 degrees F) dry place. If you are storing large seed, it may be packed in the absence of oxygen. Seed may last up to 15 years stored in this way. As your seeds get old they will take longer to sprout, and you will progressively get more seeds that won’t sprout. The key again is rotate, rotate, rotate.

Use several different kinds of sprouts to find what you like before purchasing a large quantity of seed. Do not purchase seeds intended for anything except human consumption. Many seeds processed by farmers and gardeners for planting have been treated with fungicide and or insecticide agents and are very poisonous. These seeds are usually, but not always dyed red. If in doubt, ask.

All contents copyright © Al Durtschi.

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Survival Seeds — Every family should have a robust

store of garden seeds

by suburbanprep http://survival5x5.com/?p=239
I love tomatoes. Love fresh tomatoes in salads, tomato sauce over pasta, pizza with tomato sauce and topping’s
— all wonderful. Tomato with fresh mozzarella, basil, and aged balsamic vinegar is truly a gift from god and nature.
For those who are over age 30, as I well am, you might re- member the taste of tomatoes from your childhood. I re- member the robust sweetness and rich flavor of vine ripen local tomatoes.
How does your store bought tomatoes taste today?? In my opinion, store tomatoes are utterly tasteless. Store toma- toes have been breed and modified to survive transporta- tion from far distances to your store. Today’s typical store tomato is produced form genetically modified seeds. (Ref- erence to GMO tomatoes from wikipedia: “Variety in which the production of the enzyme polygalacturonase (PG) is suppressed, retarding fruit softening after harvesting“)
Tomatoes can be raised in nearly any climate, including hot houses and greenhouses in the very Northern cold cli- mates. So it does not make sense to buy tomatoes, which were grown 1000 miles away.
Genetically modified organism (GMO) is found through- out our food chain. There is good and bad in the GMO concept. I believe technology is needed to increase the amount of food needed to feed 7 billion people on this planet. Without GMO grains (rice, wheat, corn), the world would be starving. India and China have become self-suffi- cient in their food production in large part to GMO technol- ogy. The bad aspects of GMO is the loss of flavor, micro- nuturients, and natural reproduction. The major problem with many GMO seeds is their lack of ability to create new productive seeds for the next year’s planting.
When you harvest seeds from your own garden, and those seeds originated from a GMO plant, there is a high likeli- hood that the seed will not be productive. GMO seeds are often not open pollinating.
For the home gardener and survival prepper, GMO garden seeds are a bad thing. The reason for having a garden is provide fresh, natural, nutritious, and flavorful food to your family. Home gardening is a way to provide food for your family in a cost effective manner. During World War I, the Great Depression of 1930′s, and World War II, many family had their own gardens, also known as Victory Gardens.
With the economy degrading, unemployment high, and the potential of various SHTF/TEOTWAWKI events, it is time for all of us to establish our own Victory Gardens. As a suburban prepper, I am very land constrained. No doubt, many of you also have limited space. But there are various solutions to lack of land for a garden. Flower boxes and window boxes allow many of us to raise small vegetables, such as tomatoes, green beans, herbs, and peppers. I highly recommend that you acquire the book: The Back- yard Homestead: Produce all the food you need on just a quarter acre! by Carleen Madigan, (Editor).
Every survival prepper needs a large reserve of non-GMO garden seeds. This is an absolute must requirement for long-term survival plans. After a SHTF or TEOTWAWKI event, you must be able to produce your own food. You cannot count on government or the global food supply- chain to feed you. As I see a TEOTWAWKI world unfolding, you will need about 3 years of long-term food storage. This is a lot, but you can build up to it slowly over time. Here is the rational for needing 3 years of food storage:
During the first year of TEOTWAWKI or SHTF, you need to hunker down and maintain a low profile. Security and defending your family will be the focus of your days and nights. Spending your days gardening will be a high risk endeavor, as you are an easy target. You need enough food not be become a refugee. The first year will have you pri- marily eating from your food storage.
During the second year after TEOTWAWKI or SHTF event, you will need to start your own food production and be able to survive until through a full planting and harvesting cycle. You need enough food to survival through a full har- vest.
A third year of long-term food storage will give you the capacity to survive a bad harvest or to provide charity to your local community.
A must for this long-term survival scenario is a rich and deep reserve of non-GMO seeds. You should store and rotate on an annual basis enough seeds to feed your family for years.
There are many source for non-GMO seeds. Many survival food providers sell packaged non-GMO seeds in #10 met- al cans. This is a quick and easy solution. Buy a couple cans and then you have a modest supply. One of my fa-

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vorite places to obtain non-GMO seeds is on eBay. Search for “survival seeds” on ebay to find numerous providers. Nearly all retail seed companies now offer non-GMO seeds. A couple providers include:
http://www.arkinstitute.com/seed.html http://rareseeds.com/ http://www.victoryseeds.com/ http://www.heirloomseeds.com/ http://www.seedsnow.com/
Many many more – do a web search for “non-GMO seeds”
Personally, I have no problem with seed companies that provide both GMO and non-GMO seeds. GMO seeds have their place. GMO plants grow quickly and uniformly. But you cannot harvest the seeds from GMO plants for the next year’s planting.
So how much seeds to store? In my opinion, a lot. Garden seeds, even non-GMO seeds, are cheap, cheap, cheap. For
$50, you can obtain thousands of seeds for a wide variety of different grains, fruits, and vegetables. Of the grains, I recommend rye, because rye is very tolerant of climate extremes. If properly stored in a cool, dry place away from any sunlight, garden seeds should last for 5 years. I rec- ommend that you buy a new package of non-GMO seeds every year, and rotate. Seeds older that 5 years are to be discarded or given to charity. After 5 years of rotation, you will have a rich and deep reserve of seeds.
Another important aspect of storing seeds is sprouting.

Ark Institute Seed List

Eventually you will need to start raising your own food. To do this, you will need seeds, but not the kind of seeds you buy at the store. Why? Because those are hybrid seeds, and most hybrid seeds have no capacity to reproduce.
Hybrid seeds are a cruel trick played out on humanity. Seeds are God’s gift to mankind, and for corporations and marketing people to purposely create seeds that can’t produce offspring seems criminal. Yet this is exactly what goes on every day, all over the world. It’s all about protect- ing patents and “profits.” Well, those profits might get you killed if you’re dumb enough to go along with the main- stream and buy hybrid seeds.
You need non-hybrid seeds. These are genetically-pure seeds, grown for hundreds or thousands of years, that consistently produce viable offspring. There’s only one place I know of to get a complete garden-package of non- hybrid seeds at an affordable price: the Ark Institute. Buy their non-hybrid seed package and store it away as if it were gold. If civilization breaks down, these seeds may be the key to your survival and prosperity. While everyone else is scratching their heads wondering why their green beans won’t sprout, you’ll be reaping a huge harvest of self-proliferating, non-hybrid fruits and vegetables.
When you buy the non-hybrid seed package from the Ark

Institute, you’ll receive these seeds:


Sprouting is a hugely valuable way to provide your fam-
ily with vitamins and nutrients. During the winter, when
perhaps there is little other ways to produce fresh food, anyone can do sprouting. It is very easy!!! You should defi- nitely include sprouting seeds in your long-term food stor- age plans. Even folks in small apartments can do sprouting. Recommend that you store many, many months worth of sprouting seeds and have a sprouting kit.
Another reason stock up on garden seeds is for charity and barter. After a TEOTWAWKI or SHTF event, the most important barter items will be ammunition, food, garden seeds, medicines, gold and silver. If these, garden seeds will be the most important, since everyone will revert to having their own victory garden. My plan for after a TEO- TWAWKI or SHTF event is to provide all my neighbors with non-GMO seeds, so that we may all grow robust gardens. In the future, I’ll provide a blog posting on the concept of stealth or “guerrilla” gardening, which will be important if there ever becomes a break-down in civil society or a long- termWROL situation.
Wish you all a thriving garden and thriving family…

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· Asparagus

· Green Bush Beans

· Yellow Bush Beans

· Red Kidney Beans

· White Navy Beans

· Pinto Beans

· Sweet Green Peas

· Snow Peas

· Red Beets

· White Sweet Corn

· Yellow Sweet Corn

· Spring Broccoli

· Fall Broccoli

· Red Cabbage for Salads

· Cabbage for coleslaw

· Early Carrots

· Mid-Season/Late Carrots

· Salad Cucumbers

· Pickling Cucumbers

· Eggplants

· Butterhead Lettuce

· Red Lettuce

· Mildew-resistant Canta-

loupe

· Summer Oak Leaf Lettuce

· Basil

· Spanish Onions

· Red Onions

· Yellow Onions

· Scallions

· Green/Red Sweet

Pepper

· Long Yellow Sweet

Peppers

· Cayenne Hot Pepper

· Pie Pumpkins

· Giant Radish

· Spinach

· Canning/Catsup To-

mato

· Yellow Summer Squash

· Zucchini Summer

Squash

· Butternut Squash

· Acorn Winter Squash

· Solid Salad/Canning

Tomato

· Italian Plum Tomato

· Large Salad Tomato

· Heirloom Slicing

Tomato

· Flour/Meal Corn

· Wheat

· Drought-resistant

Cantaloupe

· Romaine Lettuce

· Parsley

STORAGE CONTAINERS

WHAT IS FOOD GRADE PACKAGING?

Q: OK, I’m ready to start my storage program. What should I put the food in?

A: You should use food grade packaging for storing anything you intend to eat. A food grade container is one that will not transfer noxious or toxic substances into the food it is holding. If you are uncertain whether a package type is food grade you can contact the manufacturer. Ask if that particular container is (US) FDA approved meaning that it is safe for food use. When inquiring be sure to specify the characteristics of the food you are storing; wet, dry, strongly acidic or alkaline, alcoholic or a high fat content. A container that is approved for one of the above types of food may not be approved for another.
The major functions of a food storage container are to:

#1. Protect its contents from outside environmental influences such as moisture, and oxygen, but possibly also heat or cold, light, insects and/or rodents as well.

#2. Prevent damage during handling and shipping.

#3. Establish and/or maintain microbiological stability. The container should not allow microorganisms such as fungi and bacteria from outside the container to come into contact with its contents. This is of critical importance to wet-pack foods such as canned vegetables, fruits and meats.

#4. Withstand the temperatures and pressures it will be exposed to. This is necessary if the contents are to be pasteurized or sterilized, either immediately before or after filling. It must not have any structural failures nor release any noxious or toxic breakdown chemicals into the food it contains. This is the reason why purpose built canning jars are recommended for home canning and mayonnaise jars aren’t. The former are made heavier to withstand high temperatures and handling whereas the latter are not and have an increased risk of breakage if used for that purpose.

Virtually all containers used in home food preservation involving exposure to high temperatures are made of glass or metal, with the exception of some specialized “heat & seal” type of plastic bags. Glass can be used with any food type providing it is clean and in sound condition but the lids, particularly the liner inside the lid, may not be so you’ll need to investigate suitability.
Metal cans are more specialized. They must be intended for food use and must also have a lining or coating of the inside that is suitable for the pH level of the food it will be in contact with.
If the foods are not subjected to some form of heat processing before or after packaging your selection of container types for home use is a great deal larger. Virtually any kind of clean, sound glass jar can be used and many types of new metal containers. Several sorts of plastics have become popular. These various kinds of plastics are each suited for different purposes, making selection a more complex task.

WHERE DO I FIND FOOD GRADE CONTAINERS?

Food grade packaging is everywhere. Every time you go into the grocery store you are surrounded by it. Many well known companies such as Tupperware and Rubbermaid manufacture and sell empty packaging for the express purpose of containing repackaged foods. The kinds of containers you are interested in and the types of foods you want to put in those containers will dictate where you need to look for a particular packaging system.
For food storage purposes most folks are usually interested in five and six gallon plastic pails, certain recycled plastic containers such as soda or juice bottles, glass jars from half pint to gallon sizes, metal containers such as the institutional sized #10 cans, and Mylar or other high barrier property plastic bags. Those are the containers most often used, but virtually anything that can protect foods from outside environmental influences, safely contain something you’re going to later eat and have a volume capacity large enough to be worthwhile may be used.
A number of food storage retailers such as those listed in the Resources section sell plastic buckets, Mylar bags and a few even sell new #10 cans with lids. It may also be possible to purchase #10 cans through the LDS Family Canneries and dealers such as Lehman’s Hardware, Cumberland General Store or Home Canning Specialty and Supply. On the local scene, plastic five gallon buckets are widely available, but only if you purchase them through a company catering to a food related trade will you likely be able to tell if they’re safe to keep food in. If you can locate a customer service number for the manufacturer of a container that interests you call them and ask. Many times manufacturers will make products that are FDA approved and sell them as general purpose containers, but you need to ask to be sure.
Packaging supply houses have large FDA approved packaging lines. Several such companies are listed in the Resources section and a bit of detective work will certainly turn up more. Some require minimum orders and others don’t. The cost of shipping the containers will probably play a major

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role in your decision making. If you are going to package a great deal of food all at once, perhaps for a group, some of the companies that require minimum purchases may save you a fair amount of money and supply packaging you might otherwise have a difficult time finding. Some time spent searching the Thomas Register, available both online (http:// www.thomasregister.com) and in library reference sections, might turn up some valuable leads.
For glass jars, don’t overlook flea markets, yard sales, thrift shops and similar places. Canning jars can sometimes be had for very little. Delicatessens, sub shops and restaurants of all sorts can be a source of one gallon glass jars formerly containing pickles, peppers, etc. If the lids are still in good condition, they are well suited to bulk storage and can be reused over and over. When I need new buckets I go to a neighboring town to buy them from a beekeeping supply house which sells them for bulk honey storage. A bit of looking will turn up other potential sources as well.
Metal cans, by and large, are not reusable for food storage, but some companies might be able to sell you new cans. The traditional single use #10 can is only the beginning of what might be available with a little looking. Gallon sized or larger cans with double friction lids (like paint comes in) make excellent storage containers and some companies make them food safe. One gallon and larger cans with wide diameter screw caps are available from some companies as well. You might have seen some of these holding edible oils, soy sauce, honey and other liquid food. If they come with a cap that will seal air tight they would be well suited for bulk storage of grains and legumes, particularly if they come in a four to six gallon size.
Pick up your local phone book, log on to your favorite search engine or head to your local public library and explore the possibilities. Make it clear that what you want must be FDA approved and be up front about how many you need or can deal with. If one company won’t deal with you, try another. You’ll eventually get what you want.

PLASTIC PACKAGING

Before we can discuss plastic packaging it is necessary to
understand what is the substance we call “plastic.” Plastics are produced from basic polymers called “resins”, each of which have differing physical properties. Additives may be blended in for color or to modify particular properties such as moldability, structural rigidity, resistance to light or heat or oxidation. Additionally, it is common for several different kinds of plastic to be laminated together each performing a particular desired task. One might offer structural rigidity and the other might be more impermeable to the transfer of gasses and odors. When bonded together a rigid, gas impermeable package can be made.

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Whether that package is safe for food use will depend on the exact nature of the additives blended into the plastic. Some of them, notably plasticizers and dyes, can migrate from the packaging material into the food it’s containing. This may be exacerbated by the food it’s in contact with especially if it is high in fat, strongly acidic, or alcoholic in nature. Time and temperature may also play a prominent role in the migration of plastic additives into food. For this reason, the (US) FDA assesses the safety of packaging materials for food contact and conducts toxicological studies to establish safety standards. Only plastics that are FDA approved for a particular food type should be used for direct contact with that food.
Being FDA approved, however, may not be all of the story. It must still be determined whether the particular plastic in question has the physical properties that would make it desirable for your purpose.
As mentioned above each base resin has somewhat differing physical properties that may be modified with additives or combined by laminating with another plastic or even completely unrelated materials such as metal foils. An example of this is “Mylar”, a type of polyester film. By itself, it has moderate barrier resistance to moisture and oxygen. When laminated together with aluminum foil it has very high resistance and makes an excellent material for creating long term food storage packaging. One or more other kinds of plastic with low melting points and good flow characteristics are typically bonded on the opposite side of the foil to act as a sealant ply so that the aluminized Mylar can be fashioned into bags or sealed across container openings. The combined materials have properties that make them useful for long term storage that each separately do not have.
The most common plastic that raises suitability questions is High Density PolyEthylene (HDPE). It’s used in a wide array of packaging and is the material from which most plastic five and six gallon buckets are made. It has a moderate rigidity, a good resistance to fats, oils, moisture and impacts, a fair resistance to acids, but is a relatively poor barrier to oxygen.
Whether it is suitable for your purpose depends on how sensitive to oxygen your product is and how long you need it to stay in optimal condition. Foods such as whole grains are not particularly delicate in nature and will easily keep for years in nothing more than a tightly sealed HDPE bucket. Most legumes are the same way, but those that have high fat contents such as peanuts and soybeans are more sensitive to O2. Other foods such as dry milk powder might only go a
year before deleterious changes are noticed. If that milk were
sealed in an air-tight aluminized Mylar bag with the oxygen inside removed, the milk would keep for much longer. Better still would be to seal the milk in a metal can or glass jar. HDPE alone can be used for long term storage with one or more of the following precautions to keep a high food quality: The

food should either be put on a shorter rotation cycle than packaging also using a second gas barrier such as Mylar; be periodically opened and re-purged or fresh absorbers should be inserted.
Another common plastic used in food storage is polyethylene terephthalate commonly known as PETE or PET plastic. Used to make soda, juice, and some water bottles among other products it is available for recycling into food storage containers in nearly every home. Properly cleaned and with intact screw-on lids PETE plastic containers will serve for keeping nearly any kind of food providing the containers are stored in a dark location. PETE has good barrier properties against oxygen and moisture and when used in combination with oxygen absorbers presents a complete dry-pack canning system in itself. About the only drawbacks to PETE plastics are that they are nearly always transparent to light, container volumes typically are limited to a gallon or less, and when used in conjunction with oxygen absorbers the sides will flex sufficiently to make stacking difficult though you could simply lay them on their sides.
There are other plastics and plastic laminates with good oxygen and moisture barrier properties that are suited for long term food storage, but they are not as easy to find, though some used containers might be available for reuse.

HOW DO I GET THE ODOR OUT OF PICKLE BUCKETS?

I’ve had fairly good luck doing it in the following way. As vinegar is the primary smell in pickles and it’s acidic in nature, we use a base to counteract it. First we scrubbed the bucket well, inside and out, with dish detergent, most any sort will do. Then we filled the buckets with hot water and dissolved a cup of baking soda in each. Stir well, get the bucket as full as you can and put the top on. Put the bucket in the sun to keep it warm so the plastic pores stay open as much as possible. In a couple of days come back and empty the buckets. Rinse them out, fill with warm water again and add about a cup of bleach and reseal. Put back in the sun for another couple of days. Empty out and let dry with the tops off. We completely eliminated the vinegar smell this way. It might be possible to cut the time down a lot, but we haven’t experimented that much.

METAL CANS

Metal cans and glass jars being heat resistant, can both be
used for heat processed, wet-pack foods and for non-heat treated dry pack canning. Relative to glass jars though, metal cans have several disadvantages for the do-it-yourselfer. They are hard to come by, and they need specialized equipment to seal them that can be difficult to locate. The greatest flaw which makes them unpopular for home canning is they can only be used once. As the commercial canning industry is not
interested in reusing the containers, metal cans make great sense for their purposes. The cans are both cheaper (for them) and lighter than glass jars. This adds to the economy of scale that makes canned foods as cheap as they are in the grocery store.
For home canning, glass jars are better because even the smallest of towns will usually have at least one business that carries pressure and boiling water canners along with jars, rings and lids. With metal cans a sealer is also necessary which usually has to be ordered from the manufacturer or a mail-order distributor. A few of which are listed in the Resources section.
Tin cans are not really made of tin. They’re actually steel cans with a tin coating on the inside and outside. Some kinds of strongly colored acidic foods will fade from long exposure to tin so an enamel liner called “R-enamel” is used to forestall this. Certain other kinds of food that are high in sulfur or that are close to neutral in pH will also discolor from prolonged contact with tin. For those foods, cans with “C-enamel” are used.
The excellent food preservation book, Putting Food By Chapter 6 (see reference list) has a section on the use of metal cans for wet packed foods as does the Ball Blue Book.
Probably the most common use of metal containers is the
#10 cans such as are used by the LDS Family Canneries discussed below. This is not the only way metal containers may be used though. It will probably take a bit of searching, but there are various food grade metal containers available of sufficient volume to make them useful for food storage. They usually have double friction lids similar to paint cans or screw caps like jars that can achieve an air-tight seal. If you can find them with a sufficient volume capacity they can be of real use for storing bulky foods such as grains, legumes and sugar. Smaller cans of a gallon or less would be useful for storing items like dry milks. If properly sealed, metal cans have a far higher barrier resistance to gasses such as oxygen,
CO2, and nitrogen than any plastic.
Although they can hardly be considered portable the use of clean metal drums (not garbage or trash cans), either themselves food grade or used with food grade liners, is also a possibility. A fifty five gallon drum of grain will weigh several hundred pounds, but may make for a much easier storage solution than multiple buckets. The advantage of using such a large container is that a great amount of a single product can be kept in a smaller amount of space and fumigating or purging the storage atmosphere would be simpler. The disadvantages are the difficulties of moving it and rotating the stock in the drum. If using oxygen absorbers make sure the drum you want to use is capable of making an air-tight seal, otherwise you should stick with carbon dioxide fumigation.

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POOLING RESOURCES:

THE C HUR C H O F JE SUS C HRIS T O F LAT TER

DAY SAINTS — THE MORMONS

Although the purchase of a can sealer and metal cans for
home use is not generally economically feasible for most people there is one method by which it can be made practical. This is by pooling community resources to purchase the equipment and supplies. It may even not be necessary to form your own community to do this. If you live in the right area your local Latter Day Saints church may have facilities they will allow you to use. They may even have suitable food products to sell you. This is an offshoot of the church’s welfare programs and is done in their Family Canneries also known as Home Storage Centers. Rather than using plastic buckets they have gone over to using metal cans and aluminized Mylar bags church-wide for dry-pack canning. By sharing the cost of the equipment and purchasing the cans in bulk quantities, they are able to enjoy the advantages of metal cans and professional equipment over plastic containers while minimizing the disadvantages of cost.
Any food products you want to have sealed in cans or pouches will need to fall within the LDS cannery guidelines of suitability for that type of packaging. This is for reasons of spoilage control as many types of foods aren’t suitable for simply being sealed into a container without further processing. If you purchase food products from them, they will already be within those guidelines.
Once you have your foodstuffs on hand, either supplying your own or by purchasing them from the cannery you’re ready to package them. It is here that using some forethought concerning your packaging system can save you much time and aggravation.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Please keep in mind that the individuals responsible for the family canneries are all volunteers with demands on their time from many areas. Be courteous when speaking with them and, if there are facilities for use, flexible in making arrangements to use them. You will, of course, have to pay for the supplies that you use, cans and lids at the least, and any food products you get from them. As a general rule they cannot put your food in storage for you. Be ready to pay for your purchases in advance. They do not take credit cards and probably cannot make change so take a check with you.

The following is a list of suggestions to make the most efficient use of your access time:

#1 - Make your appointment well in advance. Possibly you may be able to go with another church member if you cannot go for yourself alone. Many people may be trying to make use of the canneries so making advanced reservations is a must.

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#2 - Have enough people to set up an assembly line type operation. Make sure each of your people knows what they need to do and how to do it. At least four people for any serious amount of food is a good number. Ask the cannery volunteer to go over the process with you and your crew.

#3 - Make sure you have enough muscular helpers to do the heavy lifting so you don’t wear yourself out or hurt your back. Some of the supplies you will be working with, such as wheat, come in fifty pound bags and a box of #10 cans or pouches full of sugar or other weighty food is heavy.

#4 - Make labels in advance for any foods you bring with you to pack that the cannery does not carry. This will save time and possibly much confusion after the cans or pouches are filled. Once sealed one anonymous looking can or pouch looks like another.

#5 - Take out only as many as oxygen absorbers as you will use in fifteen minutes. They use most of their adsorptive capacity within two to three hours depending on temperature and humidity so you don’t want to waste any by soaking up the oxygen in the room. The ones you don’t use right away should be tightly sealed in a gas proof container.

#6 - Save powdery food items such as dry milk powder, pudding mixes, grain flours and meals till last. They can be messy to can and this will keep them out of your other foods. Dust masks may not be a bad idea.

#7 - Leave time to clean up after yourself. The cannery is doing you the courtesy of allowing you to use their equipment and selling you the supplies at cost. You should return the favor by leaving the place at least as clean as you found it. If they give you a set amount of time to work in then finished or not honor that time slot. Others may be waiting to use the equipment too.

#8 - Always keep in the back of your mind how much volume and weight your vehicle can haul. You’d hate to find you had canned more than you could carry home.

PREV ENTING EXTERIO R C O RR O SIO N OF CANNED GOODS

Some areas have difficulty storing metal canned goods for
long periods of time. This is usually caused by high humidity or exposure to salt in a marine environment. If this is a problem, it is possible to extend the life of metal cans by coating their outsides. I’ve seen this used on boats here in Florida, especially when loading for a long trip. There are at

least five methods that can be used to do this, but for cans that require a can opener only the paraffin or mineral oil methods should be used.

PARAFFIN METHOD: Using a double boiler, paraffin is melted and brushed on the clean, unrusted cans. Be certain to get a good coat on all seams, particularly the joints. If the can is small enough, it can be dipped directly into the wax. Care must be taken to not cause the labels to separate from the cans. Do not leave in long enough for the can contents

to warm.

MINERAL OIL METHOD: Use only food grade or drug store (medicinal) mineral oil. Wipe down the outside of each can with only enough oil to leave a barely visible sheen. Paper labels will have to be removed to wipe underneath with the contents written on the outside beforehand with a marker or leave the under label areas uncoated. Even with a barely visible sheen of oil the cans will tend to attract dust so you will need to wipe off the can tops before opening.

PASTE WAX METHOD: Combine 2-3 oz. of paste or jelly wax with a quart of mineral spirits. Warm the mixture CAREFULLY in its container by immersing it in a larger container of hot water. DO NOT HEAT OVER AN OPEN FLAME! Stir the wax/ spirits thoroughly until it is well mixed and dissolved. Paint the cans with a brush in the same manner as above. Place the cans on a wire rack until dry.

B: A light coating of ordinary spray silicone may be used to deter rust. Spray lightly, allow to dry, wipe gently with a clean cloth to remove excess silicone.

CLEAR COATING: A clear type of spray or brush on coating such as Rustoleum may be applied. This is best suited for larger resealable cans, but will keep them protected from corrosion for years.

GLASS JARS

Compared to metal cans, glass jars are very stable, although
they obviously don’t take being banged around well. Fortunately the cardboard boxes most jars come in are well designed to cushion them from shocks. The box also has the added bonus of keeping damaging light away from food.
The major advantage of glass jars is they are reusable. For wet-pack canning the lids should be replaced, but the rings can be reused until they finally rust away or become too dented to use. For dry pack canning even the lids may be reused nearly indefinitely if you’re careful in removing them. In my personal experience I’ve grown to prefer Ball lids rather than Kerr, especially for vacuum sealed dry pack canning. The red sealing compound Ball uses seems to more reliably achieve a seal than the gray compound Kerr uses.
When you get right down to the bottom line, it is seldom practical strictly in terms of dollars and cents to wet-pack your own food in jars. When you count the cost of your equipment, including the jars, rings, lids and all the rest, along with a not inconsiderable amount of your personal time, the cost of purchasing or growing your produce, you’ll almost always come out ahead to buy food canned for you by the commercial canning industry. That said, forget about the strict bottom line and examine more closely why you want to put up your own food. For many, gardening is a pleasure and they have to have something to do with the food they’ve grown! There’s also the fact that for many, you simply cannot buy the quality of the food you can put up for yourself. The canning industry tries to appeal to a broad spectrum of the general public while you can put up food to your own family’s specific tastes. Home canning is not so much about saving money as it is about satisfaction. You get what you pay for.
If home canning appeals to you, please allow me to point you toward the rec.food.preserving FAQ where much good information about methods and techniques may be found.
Dry-pack canning using glass jars, on the other hand, may well make a great deal of economic sense. It is usually far cheaper per pound to purchase dry foods in bulk quantities, but often unsuitable to store it that way. Breaking the food down into smaller units allows for easier handling and exposes a smaller quantity to oxygen and moisture before it can be eaten. Of course, packaging used for doing this can be made of many different materials, but glass is often the easiest and most convenient to acquire and use. Used containers are often free or of little cost. One source of gallon sized glass jars are sandwich shops and restaurants that use pickles, peppers and other sandwich condiments. There are also half-gallon canning jars, though they are sometimes difficult to find. Both Ball and Kerr make these jars and I have a local Ace hardware order mine.

MYLAR BAGS

The word “Mylar” is a trademark of the DuPont corporation
for a special type of polyester film. Typically made in thin sheets, it has a high tensile strength and is used in a wide variety of industrial settings.
In food storage, particularly for the long term, it is commonly found as a laminate with Mylar as the top layer, a very thin aluminum foil in the middle and one or more other types of plastic films on the bottom acting as sealant plies. This laminate combination possesses a high resistance to the passage of oxygen, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, other gasses, water vapor, and light which is what makes it valuable for our purposes. Unfortunately, it has a poor puncture resistance so must be used as an interior liner for more puncture resistant containers rather than as a stand-alone package.

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Food grade aluminized Mylar complies with US FDA requirements and is safe to be in contact with all food types except alcoholic.
For food use, Mylar is most commonly available as pre-made bags of various sizes. Flat sheets or rolls of the material might also be found from which bags could be fashioned as well.
When Mylar bags are used by the storage food industry they are generally for products sealed in plastic buckets. The reason for doing this is the High Density PolyEthylene (HDPE) from which the pails are made is somewhat porous to gasses. This means that small molecules, such as oxygen (O2),
can slowly pass through the plastic and come into contact
with the food inside. The problem is further compounded if oxygen absorbers are used, as the result of their absorbing action is to lower the air pressure inside the container unless it has first been carefully flushed with an inert gas such as nitrogen. How fast this migration activity will occur is a function of the specific plastic formulation, its wall thickness and the air pressure inside the container. In order to gain the maximum possible shelf life a second gas barrier, the Mylar bag, is used inside the pail.
Whether the use of these bags is necessary for your home packaged storage foods depends on how oxygen sensitive the food item is and how long you want it to stay at its best. If the container is made of a gas impervious material such as metal or glass then a second gas barrier inside is not needed. If it is HDPE or a plastic with similar properties and you want to get the longest possible storage life (say 10+ yrs for grain) then Mylar is a good idea. If you’re going to use the grain in four to five years or less then it is not needed. Provided the oxygen has been purged from the container in the first place, either with a proper flushing technique, or by absorption, there will not have been sufficient O2 infiltration
to seriously impact the food. Particularly oxygen sensitive
foods such as dry milk powders that are to be kept in plastic containers for more than two years would benefit from the use of Mylar. Naturally, storage temperature and moisture content is going to play a major role as well.
There is also the question of the seal integrity of the outer container. If you are using thin walled plastic buckets in conjunction with oxygen absorbers the resulting drop in air pressure inside the pail may cause the walls to buckle. If this should occur, there would be a risk of losing seal integrity, particularly if the buckets are stacked two or more deep. If the food was packed in Mylar bags with the absorbers inside this would keep the vacuum from seriously stressing the container walls. Better still would be not to have the problem at all by either using containers of sufficient wall thickness or flushing with inert gas before sealing. Heavy wall thickness is one reason why the six gallon Super Pails have become so widespread. It should be noted that Mylar is not

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strongly resistant to insect penetration and not resistant at all to rodents. If mice chew through your buckets, they’ll go right through the bags.

HOW DO I USE MYLAR BAGS?

Sealing food in Mylar bags is a straight-forward affair, but it
may take a bit of practice to get it right, so purchase one or two more bags than you think you’ll need in case you don’t immediately get the hang of it.

#1 - The bags typically sold by storage food dealers look rather large when you compare them to the five or six gallons buckets they are commonly used in. That extra material is necessary though if you are to have enough bag material left over after filling to be able to work with. Unless you are sure of what you are doing, don’t trim off any material until after the sealing operation is completed.

#2 - Place the bag inside the outer container and fill with the food product. Resist filling it all the way to the top. You need at least an inch or so below the bucket rim left open to get the lid to seat completely. If you’ll be using desiccants and oxygen absorbers together place the desiccant on the bottom of the bag before filling.

#3 - When the pail seems to be full, gently thump it on the floor a few times to pack the product and reduce air pockets. Add any makeup food necessary to bring level back to where it should be.

#4 - Take the bag by the corners and pull out any slack in the material so that all sides can be pulled together evenly. Place your oxygen absorbers inside if you are going to use them. Now place a board over the top of the bucket and fold the bag end down over it keeping it straight and even. Place a piece of thin cotton fabric such as sheet or t-shirt material over the edge of the bag mouth. Using a clothes iron set on the cotton, wool or high setting run it over the cloth-covered Mylar about a half-inch from the edge for about twenty seconds or so until it seals. You’ll probably have to do the bag in sections. Temperature settings on irons vary so experimenting on a left-over strip to find the right setting is a good idea.

#5 - When you’ve done the entire bag allow it to cool then try to pull the mouth of the bag open. If moderate pressure doesn’t open it, fold the bag down into the pail until you feel the trapped air pillowing up against the material and wait to see if it deflates. If it stays buoyant, your seal is good. You can seal on the bucket lid at this point or take the further step to vacuum or gas flush the bag.

Once a seal has been obtained the bags can be left as-is, vacuum sealed or gas flushed. To obtain the most efficient oxygen removal the bags can be first drawn down with a vacuum pump and then purged using an inert gas.

Vacuum Sealing Mylar Bags

Once you have obtained a good seal on the bag, pulling a
vacuum on the contents is straight forward.
First you’ll need something to make a vacuum with. This can be either a regular vacuum pump, a vacuum sealer such as the Tilia Food Saver or even the suction end of your household vacuum cleaner. The end to be inserted into the bag will need to be of fairly small diameter in order to keep the hole in the Mylar from being any larger than necessary. This means that if you use a vacuum cleaner you’ll need to fashion some form of reduction fitting. One such that I’ve seen is a plastic film canister with a hole drilled in the bottom and a piece of plastic tubing epoxied in place.
Cut a hole into the Mylar bag on a corner, making the opening only just large enough to admit the vacuum probe. Insert the nozzle and using a sponge, or something similar, push down on the material over the probe to make a seal. Now draw down a vacuum on the bag. When it’s drawn down as much as possible, run a hot iron diagonally across the cut corner resealing the bag.

Gas Flushing Mylar Bags

Flushing with inert gas works essentially like vacuum sealing
except that you’re putting more gas into the bag rather than taking it out. You’ll want to keep the entry hole small, but don’t make a seal around it as above. Beyond that, follow

the directions as given in Section III.B.2 - CO2 and Nitrogen.

When you feel that the bag has been sufficiently flushed,
run the iron across the corner as above to seal.
Flushing with dry ice can also be done, but it is important to wait until the frozen carbon dioxide has completely sublimated into gas before making the final seal otherwise the bag will burst like an overfilled balloon.

REUSING OR RECYCLING PACKAGING

In an effort to save money or because new packaging may
be hard to come by, it is common for many people to want to re-use previously used containers. There is nothing wrong
that all plastics are porous to some degree. Small amounts of the previous contents may have been absorbed by the packaging material only to be released into your food, particularly if it is wet, oily or alcoholic.

#2. Previously used containers should only be used with foods of a similar nature and exposed to similar processes. This means that if a container previously held a material high in fat, such as cooking oil, then it should not be used to store a strong acid such as vinegar. Nor should a container be exposed to extreme conditions, such as heat, if the original use of the package did not subject it to that treatment. An exception to this is glass which is covered below. Generally speaking, dry, non-oily, non-acidic or alkaline, non-alcoholic foods may be safely contained in any food safe container. An example of this is keeping grains and legumes in HDPE buckets formerly containing pickles.

#3. Glass may be used to store any food provided it is in sound condition and has only been used to store food previously. The lid or cap, however, that seals the jar is subject to the cautions given above. Glass jars not specifically made for home canning, either boiling water bath or pressure canning, have a significant risk of breakage if used for that purpose.

#4. Porous packaging materials such as paper, cardboard and Styrofoam should not be reused. Their open texture can trap food particles and are difficult to adequately clean. Packaging formerly holding raw meats, seafoods, or egg products are particularly at risk.

#5. Containers previously holding odorous foods may trap those odors and transfer them to foods later stored. Pickle flavored milk leaves a lot to be desired. Foods such as dry milk powders, fats and oils, flours and meals will absorb any odors seeping from your container material. Be sure to get the smell out before you fill them.

CARBON DIOXIDE AND NITROGEN

Carbon dioxide (CO ) and nitrogen (N ) are commonly used

2 2


with this, but it is sometimes more complicated than using
new containers would be. Here are some general rules if you have an interest in doing this.

#1. Do not use containers that have previously contained products other than food. There are two risks this can expose you to. The first is that the particular package type may not have been tested for food use and may allow the transfer of chemicals from the packaging into your food. The second is

in packaging both fresh and shelf-stable foods, in order to
extend their shelf lives. Fresh foods are outside the scope of this work so attention shall be focused on those foods suitable for use in storage programs.
The most common use of these gasses is for excluding oxygen (O2) from the atmosphere contained inside of a
storage container (called head gas). When head gas oxygen
levels can be dropped below 2% the amount of undesirable oxidation reactions in stored foods can be greatly decreased

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resulting in longer shelf lives. Actually achieving this is not a simple matter when limited to the equipment and facilities typically available in the home. Still, with careful technique and proper packaging materials it is possible to achieve useful results.
In order for either gas to be used most effectively it is should be contained inside of packaging with high barrier properties to prevent outward diffusion over time or allowing oxygen to infuse in. Examples of this kind of packaging are aluminized Mylar or other high barrier property plastics, metal cans or glass jars. Buckets made of HDPE plastic are relatively poor gas barriers and will, over time, allow oxygen to infuse into the container. In order for foods to be kept for their maximum shelf lives the containers would need to be re-purged every three to four years. Foods that are particularly oxygen sensitive, such as dry milk powders, should not be stored in HDPE without a secondary gas barrier. It is possible to use HDPE buckets alone when gas purging if a shorter rotation period is used. An example would be using wheat in four to five years instead of the eight to ten that would be achievable if a high barrier container were used.
Purging efficiency can be greatly improved when used with a vacuum device. By first drawing down the head gas of the container and then flooding with the purging gas much more oxygen can be removed. Repeating the process once more will improve removal efficiency even more. If a true vacuum pump is not available, the suction end of a home vacuum-cleaner can be made to serve and still achieve useful results. With careful technique, oxygen levels can be dropped to between 0.5-2%. Finely textured materials such as grain flours and meals, dry milk powders, dry eggs, and similar textured foods will purge poorly and are better packaged with oxygen absorbers. Instructions for vacuum usage are given in A.5.1 Using Mylar Bags. Instructions for gas purging are given below in B.1 Dry Ice and B.2 Compressed Nitrogen.
A less common, but important use for carbon dioxide is fumigation. This is killing or retarding insect life contained in a product. Many chemical fumigants are available to do this but are not thought desirable by many who have foodstuffs they want to put into storage. CO2 is not as certain as the
more toxic fumigants, but it can be made to work and will
not leave potentially harmful residues behind. It is possible for nitrogen to work in a similar manner, but it must be in a head gas concentration of 99%+ whereas carbon dioxide can be effective over time at levels as low as 3%. The precise amount of time necessary for the gas to do its work will vary according to the specific insect species and its growth stage along with the temperature and humidity level of the product being fumigated. In general, the more active the growth stage and the warmer the temperature the more
effective CO2 is in killing weevil infestations. The gas also exhibits bacterial and fungal inhibiting properties, but for

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our purposes this will be of little moment since all foods should be too dry to support such growth in the first place.
The procedure for fumigating foodstuffs with carbon dioxide is precisely the same as the one used in purging oxygen from storage containers mentioned below. The only change is that for the fastest effectiveness the sealed container should be left in a warm place for a week or so before moving it into its final storage location. The gas is still effective at cooler temperatures, but because insect life is slowed by lower temperatures the carbon dioxide takes longer to complete its mission.

NOTE: Both Mitsubishi Gas-Chemical, maker of the Ageless line of oxygen absorbers, and Multisorb, manufacturer of the FreshPax D 750 absorbers, state the their products should not be used in a high carbon dioxide environment. There are absorbers that will work well in high carbon dioxide atmospheres but they require an external moisture source which would make them difficult to use for our purposes.

DRY ICE

Using dry ice to displace oxygen from food storage containers
is straightforward. To get the best results it is recommended that all foodstuffs and packaging materials be put in a warm location for a few hours before beginning the purging
process. The reason for this is that the cold CO2 sublimating from the dry ice will be denser than the warmer, lighter
oxygen containing air. The cold gas will tend to stay on the bottom, gradually filling the container and pushing the warm air out the top.
When you first pick up your dry ice from the supplier, put it in a moisture proof container so that air humidity will be less able to condense and freeze on it. The sublimating gas will prevent you from achieving a tight seal, but you can slow down the water ice accumulation.
Gather your containers and any interior packaging materials. Break off a piece of dry ice of sufficient size for the volume to be purged. One pound of dry ice will produce about 8.3 cubic feet of carbon dioxide gas so approximately two ounces per five gallon bucket will do. Wipe off any accumulated water frost which should look whiter than the somewhat bluish frozen gas. Wrap in a paper towel to keep foodstuffs out of direct contact. Place in the bottom of the container that will actually contain the food, i.e. the bag. Fill the package with the food product, shaking and vibrating while doing so to achieve the maximum packing density.
If a vacuum process is not to be used then place the lid on the container, but do not fully seal. If a liner bag is being used then gather the top together or heat seal and cut off a small corner. This is to allow the air being purged to escape as it is pushed upward by the expanding gas from the dry ice. Do not move or shake the container while the ice is sublimating

so as to minimize turbulence and mixing. After about two hours feel the bottom of the container immediately below where you put the ice. If it’s not still icy cold complete the seal. Check the container every fifteen minutes or so to be sure that a pressure build up is not occurring. A small amount of positive pressure is OK, but do not allow the container to bulge.
If a vacuum process is used then cut off a corner of the bag and insert the probe or place the container in the vacuum chamber. Draw a vacuum and when it has reached the desired point shut it off, but do not allow air back inside. When the dry ice has finished sublimating seal the container. If a slightly larger piece of dry ice is used this process may be repeated once more to improve oxygen removal. Watch for pressure signs as above.

NOTE: It is natural for some grains and legumes to adsorb carbon dioxide when stored in an atmosphere with high levels of the gas. This will result in a drop in head space air pressure much like using oxygen absorbers will cause as they absorb oxygen. Precautions should be taken in thin walled containers against buckling and possible loss of seal integrity. When the food products are removed from the container they will release the adsorbed CO2 and suffer no harm.

WARNING: Dry ice is extremely cold (about –110° degrees

F.) and can cause burns to the skin with prolonged contact.
Because of this you should wear gloves whenever handling it. Also, dry ice evaporates into carbon dioxide gas, which is why we want it. CO2 is not inherently dangerous, we breath
it out with every breath we exhale, but you should make sure
the area where you are packing your storage containers is adequately ventilated so the escaping gas will not build to a level dangerous enough to asphyxiate you. If you must pack your containers in a coat closet, leave the door open <grin>.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Because dry ice is very cold, if there is much moisture (humidity) in the air trapped in the container with your food, it will condense. Try to pack your containers on a day when the relative humidity is low or in an area with low humidity, such as in an air-conditioned house. Use of a desiccant package when using dry ice to purge storage containers may be a good idea.

DRY ICE SUPPLIERS

Dry ice may be found at ice houses, welding supply shops, some ice cream stores, meat packers or you could look in your local phone book under the headings “ice”, “dry ice” or “gasses”. If you are still unable to locate a source, contact your local hospital and ask to speak to the laboratory manager. Ask where the hospital gets the dry ice they use to ship biological specimens. You may be able to use the same source.


Copyright © Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved

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Plastic Buckets for Longer-Term Food

Storage

Plastic buckets may be used to store food commodities that are dry (about 10 percent moisture or less) and low in oil content. Only buckets made of food-grade plastic with gaskets in the lid seals should be used. Buckets that have held nonfood items should not be used.

To prevent insect infestation, dry ice (frozen carbon dioxide) should be used to treat grains and dry beans stored in plastic buckets. Treatment methods that depend on the absence of oxygen to kill insects, such as oxygen absorbers or nitrogen gas flushing, are not effective in plastic buckets. Avoid exposing food to humid, damp conditions when packaging them.

Dry Ice Treatment Instructions

1. Use approximately one ounce of dry ice per gallon (7 grams per liter) capacity of the container. Do not use dry ice in metal containers of any kind or size because of the potential for inadequate seals or excessive buildup of pressure.

2. Wear gloves when handling dry ice.

3. Wipe frost crystals from the dry ice, using a clean dry towel.

4. Place the dry ice in the center of the container bottom.

5. Pour the grain or dry beans on top of the dry ice. Fill the bucket to within one inch (25 mm)

of the top.

6. Place the lid on top of the container and snap it down only about halfway around the container. The partially sealed lid will allow the carbon dioxide gas to escape from the bucket as the dry ice sublimates (changes from a solid to a gas).

7. Allow the dry ice to sublimate completely before sealing the bucket. Feel the bottom of the container to see if the dry ice is all gone. If the bottom of the container is very cold, dry ice is still present.

8. Monitor the bucket for a few minutes after sealing the lid. If the bucket or lid bulges, slightly lift the edge of the lid to relieve pressure.

9. It is normal for the lid of the bucket to pull down slightly as a result of the partial vacuum caused when carbon dioxide is absorbed into the product.

Storage of Plastic Buckets

• Store plastic buckets off the floor by at least ½ inch (1.3 cm) to allow air to circulate under the bucket.

• Do not stack plastic buckets over three high. If buckets are stacked, check them periodically to ensure that the lids have not broken from the weight.

Visit providentliving.org for additional information.

© 2007 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. English approval: 3/07

Additional copies may be obtained from providentliving.org

140






Pouch Sealer Instructions

For Portable Operation of AIE (and ME) 305 A1 Sealers

Please read the entire sheet before starting.

Setting up

1. Place the sealer on a sturdy surface about 5 inches (13 cm) above the table top. This will place the sealer jaw opening about

8½ inches (22 cm) above the table for the correct sealing position. Connect the foot switch to the back of the sealer, and place the foot switch on the floor. Plug in the power cord. Caution: Do not allow children in the area when the sealer is plugged in.

2. Set Recycle dial to 2, Congealing dial to 6, Sealing dial to 4, and Action Selector switch to Manual.

3. Open the bag containing oxygen absorbers. Remove the number of packets that you will use in the next 20–30 minutes.

Reseal the bag with the impulse sealer. Open and reseal the bag as you need additional groups of absorbers.

Filling pouches

1. Fill a pouch with one gallon (4 liters) of product. (Overfilling will result in a poor seal.) A two-quart (2-liter) pitcher, cut off at the two-quart (2-liter) line, is a good measure to use in when you are filling pouches. Fill with two level measures, tapped down.

2. Place an oxygen absorber packet on top of the product in each pouch.

3. For powdered products, wipe product dust from inside the seal area using a dry towel.

Sealing pouches

1. Turn the Power switch on. (Do not allow small children in the area when the sealer is on.)

2. Place the pouch in an upright position in front of the sealer. Rest its weight on the table or shelf; do not let it hang.

3. Close the pouch by grasping the side seams and firmly pulling them outward. Fold the top 1½ inches of the pouch (30–40 mm) over at a right angle, and push down on the pouch to expel extra air from the package. Settle the product, and flatten the pouch opening. If the top will not flatten and fold over easily, check if the pouch is too full.

4. Hold the pouch by the side seams, and insert the top edge of the pouch into the jaw opening. Keep fingers clear of the jaw.

5. Position the pouch to seal it near the top. Stretch outward on the side seams to remove wrinkles. Press the foot switch to activate the sealer. Release hold on the pouch after the jaw closes. Remove the pouch when the cycle is finished.

6. Label the pouch with contents and packaging date.

Testing seals

1. Inspect the seams to ensure that they are adequate and without burned spots. The seam should resemble factory seams.

2. Check to see if the seam can be pulled apart.

3. Push on the pouch to see if air or product can be forced out.

4. If seams pull apart, check for inadequate cleaning of seam area or for overfill. If necessary, increase sealing setting by ¼

step (for example, from 4 to 4.25). Verify that the congealing setting is at 6.

5. If seams are burned, decrease the sealing setting by ¼ step.

Notes

1. The sealer comes from the factory with two bolts protruding from the front of the machine. These bolts are for holding the shelf provided in the box. Remove the bolts, and do not use the shelf unless it is used as part of a separate stand.

2. If the Teflon cover on the lower jaw is burned, unplug the sealer, loosen and lift up the cover, and carefully clean off any burrs that may be on the heat strip. Advance the cover approximately ½ inch (12 mm), trim excess, and retighten.

3. If the sealer fails to operate, check the two fuses mounted in the lower back of the case. If necessary, replace them with fuses of the correct size.

4. Dry foods that are packaged for long-term storage should be limited to those that best retain flavor and nutritional value.

These foods should be low in moisture (approximately 10 percent or less), of good quality, and insect free. Avoid exposing dry foods to humid, damp conditions when packaging them. Warning: Products that are too high in moisture should not be stored in reduced oxygen packaging because botulism poisoning may result. Visit providentliving.org for specific product guidelines.

© 2007 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. English approval: 3/07

Additional copies may be obtained from providentliving.org

141






Pouch Sealer Instructions

For Portable Operation of AIE (and ME) 305 A1 Sealers

Please read the entire sheet before starting.

Setting up

1. Place the sealer on a sturdy surface about 5 inches (13 cm) above the table top. This will place the sealer jaw opening about

8½ inches (22 cm) above the table for the correct sealing position. Connect the foot switch to the back of the sealer, and place the foot switch on the floor. Plug in the power cord. Caution: Do not allow children in the area when the sealer is plugged in.

2. Set Recycle dial to 2, Congealing dial to 6, Sealing dial to 4, and Action Selector switch to Manual.

3. Open the bag containing oxygen absorbers. Remove the number of packets that you will use in the next 20–30 minutes.

Reseal the bag with the impulse sealer. Open and reseal the bag as you need additional groups of absorbers.

Filling pouches

1. Fill a pouch with one gallon (4 liters) of product. (Overfilling will result in a poor seal.) A two-quart (2-liter) pitcher, cut off at the two-quart (2-liter) line, is a good measure to use in when you are filling pouches. Fill with two level measures, tapped down.

2. Place an oxygen absorber packet on top of the product in each pouch.

3. For powdered products, wipe product dust from inside the seal area using a dry towel.

Sealing pouches

1. Turn the Power switch on. (Do not allow small children in the area when the sealer is on.)

2. Place the pouch in an upright position in front of the sealer. Rest its weight on the table or shelf; do not let it hang.

3. Close the pouch by grasping the side seams and firmly pulling them outward. Fold the top 1½ inches of the pouch (30–40 mm) over at a right angle, and push down on the pouch to expel extra air from the package. Settle the product, and flatten the pouch opening. If the top will not flatten and fold over easily, check if the pouch is too full.

4. Hold the pouch by the side seams, and insert the top edge of the pouch into the jaw opening. Keep fingers clear of the jaw.

5. Position the pouch to seal it near the top. Stretch outward on the side seams to remove wrinkles. Press the foot switch to activate the sealer. Release hold on the pouch after the jaw closes. Remove the pouch when the cycle is finished.

6. Label the pouch with contents and packaging date.

Testing seals

1. Inspect the seams to ensure that they are adequate and without burned spots. The seam should resemble factory seams.

2. Check to see if the seam can be pulled apart.

3. Push on the pouch to see if air or product can be forced out.

4. If seams pull apart, check for inadequate cleaning of seam area or for overfill. If necessary, increase sealing setting by ¼

step (for example, from 4 to 4.25). Verify that the congealing setting is at 6.

5. If seams are burned, decrease the sealing setting by ¼ step.

Notes

1. The sealer comes from the factory with two bolts protruding from the front of the machine. These bolts are for holding the shelf provided in the box. Remove the bolts, and do not use the shelf unless it is used as part of a separate stand.

2. If the Teflon cover on the lower jaw is burned, unplug the sealer, loosen and lift up the cover, and carefully clean off any burrs that may be on the heat strip. Advance the cover approximately ½ inch (12 mm), trim excess, and retighten.

3. If the sealer fails to operate, check the two fuses mounted in the lower back of the case. If necessary, replace them with fuses of the correct size.

4. Dry foods that are packaged for long-term storage should be limited to those that best retain flavor and nutritional value.

These foods should be low in moisture (approximately 10 percent or less), of good quality, and insect free. Avoid exposing dry foods to humid, damp conditions when packaging them. Warning: Products that are too high in moisture should not be stored in reduced oxygen packaging because botulism poisoning may result. Visit providentliving.org for specific product guidelines.

© 2007 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. English approval: 3/07

Additional copies may be obtained from providentliving.org

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OXYGEN ABSORBERS

WHAT IS AN OXYGEN ABSORBER?

Oxygen absorbers are a relatively recent food storage tool
whose arrival has been a real boon to the person wanting to put up oxygen sensitive dry foods at home. The packets absorb free oxygen from the air around them and chemically bind it by oxidizing finely divided iron into iron oxide. This removes oxygen from being available for other purposes such as oxidative rancidity and respiration by insects, fungi or aerobic bacteria. The practical upshot of all this is that by removing the free oxygen from your storage containers, you can extend the storage life of the foods inside. Not all foods are particularly oxygen sensitive but for those that are the absorbers truly simplify getting the job done.

The absorbers themselves have only a relatively short life span, roughly about six months from the time they were manufactured for the types that do not need an external moisture source. They don’t suddenly become ineffective all at once, it’s just at that point you will begin to notice (if you can measure it) that the absorbers no longer soak up as much as they would when they were new. Better to use them while they’re fresh.

HOW ARE OXYGEN ABSORBERS USED?

In order to make the best use of your absorbers you need
to know three things:

#1 – Is the food I want to put by particularly oxygen sensitive for the time I want to keep it in storage? Whole grains that have not been polished or hulled such as wheat, corn, and rye are not especially oxygen sensitive. If you intend to use them up in five years or so, there’s no great advantage to using oxygen absorbers, unless used to deter weevil infestations. The same for most beans and peas. Processed or high fat grains and legumes such as oats, barley, brown rice, soybeans, peanuts and split peas would benefit from their use if they are to be kept for more than a year. Whole grain products such as whole wheat flour and rolled oats would as well. Refined grain products such as white rice, white flour, degerminated cornmeal will keep fine for a year or so, possibly longer, without oxygen absorbers if kept dry and protected from weevils. Dry milk, dry eggs, dry meats, and many kinds of dehydrated foods and any kind of freeze dried foods would benefit from oxygen absorbers. Foods with an easily transferable fat content should not be used with oxygen absorbers, nor should they be used with foods that are high in moisture or with free liquids in the storage container. These should be preserved using pressure or boiling water bath canning as appropriate.

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#2 – Will the packaging I want to use seal air-tight and is the packaging material itself a good gas barrier? Obviously if the container won’t seal air tight you’re wasting your time trying to use oxygen absorbers but the barrier properties of a container stump many folks. Canning jars with good lids, properly sealed #10 (or other size) cans, properly sealed Mylar bags, PETE plastics with appropriate lids or caps, military surplus ammo cans with good gaskets, and many other types of packaging will seal air-tight and provide good barrier properties against oxygen infusing through the packaging material. Non-laminated flexible plastic packaging (bags, sheets, etc.), HDPE plastic buckets and any kind of non-laminated paper or cardboard container have poor gas barrier properties. “Poor” is a relative term, though, and if you’re going to use the food up in two or three years, even oxygen sensitive foods can be kept in unlined HDPE buckets if you use an appropriately sized absorber and make sure the bucket is well sealed. You’ll be using the food before sufficient oxygen has been able to infuse through the walls of the container to make a significant impact.

#3 – What is the volume of the container and how much air volume remains after I’ve filled it with food? This is important to know if you want to make the most efficient use of your absorbers and be certain your food is adequately protected. Taking the question in two parts, here is how to determine the answer:

A. Absorber capacity is rated by the amount of oxygen in milliliters that each will absorb so you’ll need to know what the volume of your container is in milliliters. The table


below gives conversions between common U.S. container sizes and their milliliter equivalents.
Pint jar (16 fl oz) 475 milliliters Quart jar (32 fl oz) 950 milliliters Half-gallon jar (64 fl oz) 1,900 milliliters
#10 can (112 fl oz) 3,300 milliliters One gallon jar (128 fl oz) 3,800 milliliters Five gallon pail (640 fl oz) 19,000 milliliters Six gallon pail (768 fl oz) 22,800 milliliters
Fifty-five gallon drum (7,040 fl oz)208,175 milliliters

Fluid ounces x 29.57 = milliliters = cubic centimeters

Now multiply the volume of your container times the 21% (0.21) of the atmosphere that oxygen constitutes and you’ll come up with the volume of oxygen, in milliliters, that your container holds when it’s empty.

An exam ple: A quart jar (32 ozs) is approximately 950 milliliters in volume. Multiply 950 x 0.21 (21%) and you get 199.5 milliliters of oxygen in an empty quart jar. This leads to the second half of the above question.

B. Determining remaining air volume in a container that has been filled can be difficult. Foods vary widely in their density and porosity from flour, which will pack tightly to elbow macaroni which is mostly air even if you pack it to just short of crushing. The following are three rough and ready rules that can be used and will work.

i> Foods that have a lot of open space between the food particles (called intersitial space) such as macaroni, pasta, instant dry milk, instant potato flakes, many coarsely chunky dehydrated foods, cold cereals, etc. should use one half the container volume as the remaining air space. Using the example above with the quart jar, there would be approximately 100 milliliters of oxygen remaining.
ii> Foods that pack more densely such as non-instant milk, dry eggs, flours and meals, grains with small kernels, dehydrated foods with fine particles and the like should use one-third the container volume as the remaining air space. Using the
example above, there would be 66 milliliters of oxygen remaining.
iii> Alternatively, you could do what many of the commercial storage food packagers do and use the entire container volume. This is not as efficient as more closely determining remaining air volume but it does add certainty that your absorbers will soak up all available free oxygen and still leave some capacity to deal with any microscopic leaks or infusion through the packaging material.

NOTES: #1 — Both Multisorb and Mitsubishi corporations advise that their oxygen absorbers should not be used in a high carbon dioxide environment. This is apparently for reasons that the absorbers will also absorb carbon dioxide as well as oxygen and may run out of capacity before all of

the oxygen in the container has been absorbed.

#2 — If you do choose to use oxygen absorbers in packing your food give some consideration to the sturdiness of your containers. In doing its job the absorber is going be removing the 21% of the atmosphere that oxygen constitutes. Since nothing is replacing the absorbed gas this will leave the storage container with a lower atmospheric pressure inside than outside. If the container is sufficiently sturdy this pressure differential will be of little consequence. For containers with thinner walls the pressure drop could cause them partially collapse or buckle, particularly if other containers are stacked upon them. Should this occur the entire stack could fall causing one or more to burst. Metal cans and glass jars should have no problems, but some plastic buckets made of HDPE have relatively thin walls which can buckle when the internal air pressure drops. To deter this, a liner bag of Mylar or other high gas barrier plastic should used. Heavier walled buckets won’t need a liner unless you’re trying to achieve the maximum possible shelf life. Seal the absorbers inside of the liner bag so that the pressure drop with not stress the walls of the container. Other containers should probably be tested or first flushed with an inert gas (N2) before the absorber is sealed in.

#3 — If the pack of absorbers you need to open contains more than you are going to use in fifteen minutes or so, you should minimize exposure of the remaining packets. This can be done by heat sealing the bag they came in with an iron after expelling as much air as possible or better yet by vacuum sealing the bag. You can also put the remaining absorbers in as small a jar or metal can as they will fit in and closing with an air tight lid.

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#4 — The chemical reaction that absorbs the oxygen releases minor amounts of heat. This heat release is trivial in an individual packet but if they are piled one atop another as you’re using them they can warm each other and speed the absorptive reaction. This costs you capacity lost to open room air so it’s best to spread the packets in immediate use out on a tray so they lay atop each other.

#5 — If absorbers are sealed in a package with desiccants some thought should be given to how low the relative humidity will become. Silica gel will reduce humidity to approximately 40% which should not interfere with the absorbers oxidation reaction. Other desiccants, however, are capable of reducing relative humidity to very low levels. This might adversely affect your absorber’s ability to carry out its mission by removing moisture from the absorber package that is necessary to sustain the oxidation reaction. If you do use desiccants and oxygen absorbers in the same package, place the desiccant on the bottom, fill the package and then

place the oxygen absorber on top of the food before sealing.

MOISTURE IN PACKAGING AND FOOD STORAGE

WHY MOISTURE IS IMPORTANT

Moisture in inappropriate amounts and places is damaging
to food. Because of this, much effort is put into reducing the water content of dry foods in order to prolong their shelf lives. Once it is reduced to the desired level the product can then be packaged for storage. Unfortunately, merely reducing moisture content is not always sufficient. Environmental conditions can play a role as well.
There are four mechanisms by which environmental conditions may cause a moisture problem in your food storage:

1. - The air trapped in the container with the food may have held sufficient humidity to raise the moisture content of the food to undesirable levels.

2. - Even if the water vapor content wasn’t too high, a falling temperature level may cause the trapped humidity to reach its dew point causing water to be squeezed out of the air to condense on your food much the same way as dew forms on your lawn on cool mornings after a warm, humid night. This can be a particular problem if the condensation is localized

– say, only the portion of the food next to the walls of the container – resulting in excessive moisture in that local area even though the contents as a whole would be at a satisfactorily low moisture level.

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3. - The seal of the container may not be sufficiently tight enough to prevent moisture laden air from leaking in.

4. - The packaging material itself may be porous to water vapor to one degree or another. All paper, wood and cardboard has this fault. Depending upon their particular physical properties some plastics do as well. Metal and glass containers have excellent barrier properties though their seals may not.

The solution for moisture problems is multi-faceted.

1 - Make sure the product to be stored is at an appropriate water content for that particular foodstuff. Beans and grains store well at a 10% moisture level, but milk powders, dried eggs and dehydrated or freeze dried foods should be lower for best results. As a general rule, nearly any dry food will store well at moisture contents between

3%-10% with the lower the better. Don’t get carried away with this though. Extreme low moisture levels (below 3%) can make some foods difficult or impossible to reconstitute and damage the viability of seeds.
Ideally, the dry foodstuffs you have on hand will have no more than a 10% moisture content. If they do not then you will need to reduce moisture to a level appropriate for the kind of food you are storing.
One of the following methods might be of use in lowering moisture content.

A - The least involved is to wait until the driest time of year for your location making sure there is plenty of free air circulation around the food product. If this doesn’t suit, then turn your air conditioning on a little high. Bring in your buckets, lids, and the storage food. Let everything sit in a well-ventilated place where it’s going to get plenty of cool, dry air from the A/C (avoid anywhere near the kitchen or bathroom areas, as they put out a lot of moisture). Stir the food frequently to maximize moisture loss. A few days of cool, constant air flow and low humidity ought to dry things out. Due to its odor absorptive nature, I would not do this with any dried milk products or other powdered foods, flours or meals . This method works best with coarse particles such as grain, legumes and dried foods.


B - Warm, dry air can also be used to lower moisture content and works well if you have large quantities of grains and legumes. This is similar to what is used on farms for drying harvested grain. You’ll need a source of forced, warm, not hot, air. Place the grain in a drum or barrel and blow the heat from the bottom so that the warm and the moisture it will carry can exit from the top. It’s important to not let the bottom product get too hot. You should also monitor the top, center of the drum to be certain the product there is not getting damp from the moisture escaping other areas. Stirring occasionally may be necessary. I’ve seen this done with an old, drum style vacuum cleaner that put off fairly warm exhaust air and it worked pretty well. Do be sure to clean the vacuum thoroughly so you don’t blow the grain full of dust.

C - If the above methods won’t do or you have powdery foods to dry, you can put the food and a large quantity of desiccant (see below) in a storage container. The desiccant should be in its own container placed on top of the food and the container lid sealed on. After about a week, unseal and check the desiccant. If it’s saturated, change it out with dry desiccant and reseal. Continue to do this until the contents are sufficiently dry. If it doesn’t become saturated the first time, change it anyway before sealing the bucket permanently to deter saturation in storage.

If your food products are sufficiently dry you can pack them in storage containers using the packaging method of your choice and have a reasonable expectation of your food staying in good condition. Whether you will need to use a desiccant will be dependent upon the conditions discussed below.

2 - Try to package your goods in a dry atmosphere and do not allow extreme temperature swings in storage areas. Warm temperatures and a high relative humidity when a container is sealed means the air trapped inside the container will have a high dew point. This will lead to condensation should storage temperatures fall below that dew point. An example of this would be a container sealed on a day that was 70º F and 40% relative humidity. At that temperature the relative humidity would be quite reasonable for all but the most moisture sensitive food. However, should the temperature fall to 44º F the capacity of the air to hold water vapor would

have dropped to the point that it could not contain what was sealed in at 77º F and the excess would be squeezed out to condense on the food, i.e. - it will grow moister. Possibly the food will be able to adsorb this moisture without harm and then again, it may not.

3 - Use appropriate packaging materials and make certain it is sealed correctly. If you are going to consume them in four to five years, storing grains, beans and peas in unlined HDPE buckets at normal humidities is fine. If you want to keep them at their best for many years beyond that, the plastic the pail is made of is too porous to water vapor for best results and should have an interior liner of a material with better barrier properties. Dry milk powders should not be kept for more than a year in unlined HDPE, but can be kept for much longer in

#10 metal cans, glass jars or Mylar bags. Naturally, even the most highly resistant packaging material is useless if its seal isn’t good so be sure you use good technique when making closures.
Lastly, you may wish to consider using a desiccant if good humidity control at the time of packing is difficult or if the storage area is in a high humidity environment or if the packaging material does not have sufficiently high barrier properties.

NOTE: There has been some confusion in the past over the appropriate use of desiccants in food storage which I would like to address here. Any desiccants you may seal in your storage containers (if you use them) are not for lowering the moisture content of the foods therein, but for moderating any shifts in moisture levels caused by those factors I mention above. If the food you want to put up is too high in moisture for good storage this needs to be dealt with BEFORE you seal the packaging. An example of what I’m trying to communicate here would be 10lbs of wheat with a

15% moisture content. That’s too high for safe storage and needs to be lowered, preferably to 10% or less. To lower the moisture content of that grain to 10% you need to remove the 5% excess. 5% of 10lbs is eight ounces of water. Good dry silica gel (one of the most common desiccants) will hold
40% of its mass in moisture so to soak up that extra water you would need 20 ounces of silica gel – quite a large amount
– all to remove that 5% excess moisture in ten pounds of grain. Fifty pounds of grain at that same moisture level would require 100 ounces or six and a quarter pounds of silica gel. Clearly no practical amount of desiccant you can put inside your storage packaging will do for you what should have been done before the food was put by. Desiccants can be used for lowering food moisture content, but this will involve rotating packages of desiccant in and out of the foodstuff until the desired moisture content has been reached. Once

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the package is sealed any desiccant you leave inside should be there to control moisture fluctuations or to guard against moisture infiltration from the outside.

WHAT IS A DESICCANT?

A desiccant is a substance with strong hygroscopic properties,
meaning it will soak up water vapor from the surrounding
air. A number of different substances are capable of doing this, but only a relative few of them are of practical use and fewer still are going to be readily available to the average person. Before elaborating on the different types that might be useful for our purposes it’s necessary to explain how to choose a desiccant.
The U.S. military has done much of the best research on the use of desiccants in packaging and have largely set the standards by which they are judged. Each type of desiccant has temperature and humidity ranges where it performs best and particular physical and chemical characteristics that may need to be considered in relation to what you propose to do with them.
The most applicable standard for home food storage defines a unit of desiccant as the amount of desiccant that will adsorb at least 6 grams of water vapor at 40% relative humidity at

77º F (25º C).

Desiccant Needed to Adsorb 6 Grams of Water

Vapor

Desiccant Type Mass (weight)of Desiccant

Needed

Silica Gel 15 grams
Indicating Silica Gel 75 grams1
Montmorillonite Clay 24 grams Calcium Oxide (quicklime) 21.5 grams Calcium Sulfate (gypsum, Drierite) 60 grams Wood 43 grams 1

1 S e e d e s i c c a n t d e s c r i p t i o n s f o r clarification.

In order to maximize surface area to obtain optimal adsorption, desiccants are manufactured in granular or powder forms. This presents a problem of keeping the desiccant, which may not be safe for direct contact with food, out of the product while still allowing sufficient air flow for it to carry out its task. Manufacturers call this “dusting” and deal with it by packaging the adsorbent in materials such as uncoated Tyvek, a spunbonded high-density polyethylene material produced by the Dupont corporation. Unfortunately, I have not yet been able to locate a retail source of uncoated Tyvek, just the coated variety such as is used in postal envelopes. Second best, and what I use, is two or more layers of coffee filter paper securely sealed over the mouth of the

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container holding the desiccant. I’ve also made “cartridges” of filter paper for use in narrow necked containers such as two-liter bottles. For this I used ordinary white glue. Getting a good seal all the way around requires some care in execution. Brown Kraft (butcher paper) may be used as well.
For coarse granular materials tightly woven fabrics might serve the purpose providing the seams are tightly stitched.

TYPES OF DESICCANTS

SILICA GEL

The most commonly known and used desiccant is silica gel
which is a form of silica dioxide (SiO2), a naturally occurring mineral. It will work from below freezing to past the boiling
point of water, but performs best at room temperatures (70-90º F) and high humidity (60-90%). Its performance begins to drop off over 100º F, but will continue to work until approximately 220º F. It will lower the relative humidity in a container to around 40% at any temperature in its range until it is saturated. Silica gel will absorb up to 40% of its weight in moisture. Some forms are approved by the FDA for direct food use (check with your supplier to be sure). It recharges easily (see below in the indicating silica gel text) and does not swell in size as it adsorbs moisture.

INDICATING SILICA GEL

In the retail trade, the most common form of silica gel is

indicating silica gel composed of small white crystals looking much like granulated sugar with pink or blue colored crystals scattered throughout. This is ordinary silica gel with the colored specks being coated with cobalt chloride, a heavy metal salt. When the gel has absorbed approximately eight percent of its weight in water the colored crystals will turn from blue to pink making an easy visual indicator of whether the gel has become saturated with moisture. Because cobalt is a heavy metal, indicating silica gel is not food safe and should be kept from spilling into anything edible.

The indicating silica gel will still adsorb up to 40% of its weight in water vapor like the non-indicating type will but once it has gone past the 8% level and the crystals have turned pink there is no way to tell how close it is to saturation. This isn’t necessarily a problem, you’ll just have to treat like the other non-indicating desiccants and either weigh it to determine adsorption or use a humidity indicator card. These cards are made to show various humidity ranges and can be had from many desiccant and packaging suppliers.
When saturated, both varieties of silica gel can be dried out and used again. This is done by heating the crystals in an oven at a temperature of no more than 300° F (149° C) for approximately three hours or until the crystals turn blue. Dehydrating the desiccant may also be accomplished by heating in a microwave oven. Using a 900 watt oven heat

the crystals for three minute intervals until the color change occurs. The exact amount of time necessary will depend upon the oven wattage. Spreading the desiccant in a broad pan in a shallow layer will speed the process. Heating to 325° F (149° C) or more, or using a microwave oven over 900 watts can damage the gel and render it unable to adsorb moisture.
If your desiccant is packaged in Tyvek, do not heat above 250° F (121° C) or you could damage the material. This leaves a fairly narrow temperature window since silica gel will not begin to desorb moisture below 220° F (104° C). It’s a good idea to use a reliable oven thermometer to check your oven temperature as the thermostats in home ovens are often off by more than twenty five degrees. Start with the packets in a cold oven and raise the temperature to 245° F (118° C), keeping it there for twenty four hours. Spread the packets so they are not touching and keep them at least 16 inches from any heating elements or flames so that radiant heat does not damage the packaging. Tyvek should not be microwaved.

HOW DO I USE DESICCANTS?

Before you get to this point you should have already used
the charts above and determined how much of the particular desiccant you’re interested in you need for the size of the storage containers you’ll be using. Once you know that you’re ready to put them it into use.
Although they perform different functions, desiccants and oxygen absorbers are used in a similar fashion. They both begin to adsorb their respective targets as soon as they are exposed to them so you want to only keep out in the open air as much desiccant as you are going to use up in fifteen minutes or so. If you’ll be using oxygen absorbers in the same package, place the desiccant on the bottom of the package and the oxygen absorber on the top. This is to keep the desiccants from robbing needed moisture from your oxygen absorbers which will hinder their operation.
If your desiccant is pre-packaged, that’s all there is to it, put it in the package and seal it up. If you have purchased bulk desiccant you’ll first need to make your own containers.
I use indicating silica gel for practically everything. My usual procedure is to save or scrounge clear plastic pill bottles, such as aspirin bottles or small plastic jars. Fill the bottle with the desiccant (remember to dry the gel first) and then use a double thickness of coffee filter paper carefully and securely tied around the neck of the bottle to keep any from leaking out (remember the indicating type of silica gel is not food safe). The paper is permeable to moisture, but it’s tight enough not to let the crystals out. I use several winds of plain cotton string for this as both adhesive tapes and rubber bands have a way of going bad over time which might allow the cap to come off spilling the desiccant into the food.
For containers that have openings too narrow to use a desiccant container such as described above you can make desiccant packets with the same filter paper. The easiest way I’ve found is to wrap at least a double layer of paper around the barrel of a marker pen and use a thin bead of white glue to seal. Slide the packet off the pen and allow to dry. When ready, fill with the necessary amount of desiccant. You can then fold the top over twice and tie with string or staple closed. Take care that the top is closed securely enough not to allow any desiccant to leak out. Virgin (not recycled) brown Kraft paper can be used to make the packets with as well.
The above method will also work other desiccants, subject to whatever precautions the individual type may have.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The indicating form of silica gel (has small blue or pink specks in it) is not edible so you want to use care when putting together your desiccant package to insure that is does not spill into your food.

WHERE DO I FIND DESICCANTS?

I buy indicating silica gel at Wal-Mart in their dry flower
section where it is sold in one and five pound cans for flower drying. I’ve seen it sold the same way in crafts stores and other department type stores that carry flower-arranging supplies. You can also buy it from many other businesses already prepackaged in one form or another to be used as an adsorbent. All of the desiccant that I’ve found packaged this way has been rather expensive (to me) so shop carefully. There are a number of Internet sources available which will probably provide your best route for finding what you want.
Businesses carrying packaging supplies sometimes also sell desiccants. Some businesses commonly receive packets or bags of desiccants packaged along with the products they receive. I’ve seen montmorillonite clay in bags as large as a pound shipped with pianos coming in from Japan. Small packets of silica gel seem to be packed in nearly everything. Naturally, any salvaged or recycled desiccant should be of a type appropriate for use with the product you want to package.
It is possible to make your own desiccants using gypsum from drywall and maybe Plaster of Paris. Calcium oxide can also be produced from limestone (calcium carbonate) or slaked or pickling lime (calcium hydroxide) by roasting to drive off the adsorbed water and carbon dioxide. I don’t have any clear instructions, as of yet, on how to go about this. Please do keep in mind that calcium oxide (quicklime) is caustic in nature and is hazardous if handled incorrectly.

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DIATOMACEOUS EARTH

WHAT IS DIATOMACEOUS EARTH?

Diatomaceous earth is a naturally occurring substance
partially comprised of the fossilized remains of diatoms. Diatoms are microscopic sized hard shelled creatures found in both marine and fresh waters. The diatom shells are covered in sharp spines that make them dangerous to exoskeletal insects, but not to animals with internal skeletons. The spines of the diatom skeletons pierce the soft body tissues of insects between their hard exoskeletal plates and it is through these numerous microscopic wounds that the insect loses bodily moisture to the point of desiccating and dying. Creatures with internal skeletons such as humans, cattle and pets have means of resisting such damage and are not harmed. Thus, it is possible to mix a small amount of DE into your stored grains and beans to deter insect infestations without having to remove the dust again before you consume them. Diatomaceous earth works in a purely physical, not chemical, manner thus has no chemical toxicity.
As neat as this sounds, in the limited number of controlled studies that I have been able to find it seems that DE is not as effective in controlling food storage insects as properly used freezing techniques, fumigation with carbon dioxide (dry ice) or sealing in air-tight containers with oxygen absorbers. This is primarily for reasons that most of the insects that cause a problem in grain storage are hard-shelled weevils which have only a limited amount of soft tissue exposure. I now mostly use DE for controlling ants and roaches in areas where I feed my animals and bedding areas. Still, some folks want to use DE in their food storage so the following information is provided.

WHERE DO I FIND D.E. AND WHAT TYPE SHOULD I BUY?

IMPORTANT NOTE: There are two kinds of diatomaceous earth to be found on the market and only one of them is suitable for use as an insecticide in your stored grains. The type you DO NOT WANT FOR FOOD USE is sold by swimming pool suppliers as a filtering agent. DE to be used for filtering

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has been subjected to a heat treatment that dramatically increases it’s crystalline silicate content which makes it unsuitable for use with your foodstuffs. The diatomaceous earth that is needed for use in food storage has not been heat treated and has a crystalline silica content of no more than

1-1.5%. It is commonly sold in hardware and garden stores as an “organic pesticide” and is available from a number of storage food dealers. A few of these suppliers are listed in the Resources section.

I have always purchased my DE from my local hardware store and have had no concerns about its safety. However, a number of correspondents have reported to me that their local suppliers keep their DE in the same area as their chemical pesticides. This causes some concern about possible contamination and I no longer recommend using DE from these sources. Since the actual amount of DE (by weight) that is necessary to protect grains is fairly small I recommend ordering yours from suppliers who will guarantee their product is food grade as stipulated by the US FDA. This will insure you receive a product that has no deleterious contaminants and is safe to use.

HOW DO I USE D.E. IN FOOD STORAGE?

To use, you should mix thoroughly one cup (8 fl ozs) of DE to every forty pounds of grain, grain products or legumes. This works out to approximately one cup of DE to every five gallon bucket of food you want to treat. You need to make certain that every kernel is coated so it is better to do the mixing in small batches where you can insure more even coating. Both the grain and the DE should be quite dry when doing the mixing otherwise you’ll get an uneven distribution.

WARNING: DE is a powdery dust which you need to take steps to keep out of your lungs and eyes. A paint or hardware store filter mask and a pair of goggles will do the job. It’s a good idea to do the actual mixing outside in a slight breeze otherwise you’ll get DE all over everything. Even whole wheat flour dust can cause lung irritation if you breathe in a sufficient amount.

Being inactive and usually covered in a hard shell, DE works poorly on insect eggs or pupae. It has more effectiveness on larvae and adult insects with a fair amount of soft tissue exposure.
Copyright © Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved

SPOILAGE

INSECT INFESTATIONS

PESTS OF STORED GRAINS, LEGUMES AND DRY FOODSTUFFS

Insect infestations can occur in a wide variety of foodstuffs such as flours, meals, pastas, dried fruits or vegetables, nuts,
sweets, whole grains, beans, sugars, TVP, jerky, bird seed and pet foods.
Naturally, the best way to deal with an insect infestation is not to have one in the first place. Try to purchase your goods from suppliers who are clean and who turn over their inventory quickly so the products you purchase will be less likely to have bugs.
When you buy foodstuffs examine them closely to be sure they are insect free. Check for any packaging or use by dates to insure their freshness. Don’t shake the package, most adult insects will be found in the top couple of inches of the product and shaking the package will mix them into the contents disguising their appearance. If the package does turn out to be infested, return it for replacement.
If not already packaged for storage when you buy them transfer your foods into air- and moisture-tight containers so they cannot be invaded after you have brought them home. With sufficient time, some adult and larval insect forms can penetrate paper, cardboard and thin plastic packaging. Storage containers should be glass, metal, or heavy plastic with tight fitting lids. As with everything in food storage, you should use older packages before newer ones and opened packages before unopened ones.
Storage areas should be kept clean. Don’t allow grain, flour, beans, bits of pasta or other food particles to accumulate on shelves or floors. Cracks and crevices should be sealed or otherwise blocked. Except for sticky spills, vacuuming is the best method of cleaning as soap and water can wash food particles into cracks.
Insects may also get their start in chairs, sofas and carpets where food is dropped and not cleaned up. Don’t forget to replace the filter bag on the vacuum as some insects can survive and reproduce in the bag.
Bags of dry pet food and bird seed can harbor insect infestation. Decorative foodstuffs such as ears of colorful Indian corn, colored beans and hard squashes can carry insects that may infest your edible food. Even poison baits can harbor flour beetles.

CONTROL OF INSECT INFESTATIONS

Should you find that in spite of buying fresh products and using careful packaging techniques you have an insect infestation,
you can try some of the following steps:

1. If the food is too heavily infested to try to save it should be disposed of as soon as possible. Remove from the kitchen or food storage area immediately so as to not infest other foods.

2. Large bugs can be sifted or winnowed out if the food’s not too heavily infested and you want to try to save it. Then treat by placing into a deep freezer at 0º F (-18º C) for three to seven days depending upon the size of the package. Refrigerator freezers usually do not freeze low enough to effectively kill all of the life stages of insects, but if left there, will slow their development. If freezing is not workable then the product could be spread on baking sheets and heated to 150º F for fifteen to twenty minutes, cooled and repackaged. This will shorten shelf life so heat treated foods should be consumed shortly thereafter.

3. The surface areas where the food containers are stored can be treated with an insecticide. This is not a replacement for clean storage habits and good containers, but is rather a supplement. This will not control insect infestations already in your stored foods.

Spray the shelf surface with 0.5% chlorpyrifos (Dursban), 1% propoxur (Baygon), 0.5 percent diazinon, or 0.25 percent resmethrin. You can find any of these in the hardware store in ready to apply packages. If a sprayer isn’t feasible then they can be applied with a paint brush. Allow the solution to dry thoroughly. Cover the shelves with clean, untreated shelf paper then put properly packaged foods back on shelves. READ THE PRODUCT LABEL FOR SAFETY INFORMATION CONCERNING CHILDREN AND PETS.

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Household bleach, Lysol and other sterilizers will not control insect infestation, though they can be used for mold, mildew and algae.
You may continue to find some insects after the cleanup is finished. This could be for several reasons. It may be they escaped from the packages they were infesting and did not get cleaned up. There may be more packages infested than were originally found or, there may be hiding places in the storage area that need attention. Once you have carefully eliminated all food sources, the bugs should disappear in a few weeks.

MOLDS IN FOOD

Molds are fungi like mushrooms and yeast. Also like mushrooms, they reproduce by releasing spores into the air that land
on everything, including your food and food storage containers. If those spores begin to grow, they create thin threads that spread through their growing medium. These threads are the roots of the mold fungus, called mycelium. The stalk of a mold fungus is the portion above or on the surface of the food. It produces the spores and gives the mold its color. We’ve all seen examples of this when we discover a dish of something or other left too long in the refrigerator only to become covered in a mold fuzz.
Molds can grow anywhere they have a growing medium (their food), sufficient moisture and warmth. Some can even grow at refrigerator temperatures, albeit more slowly than they would if it were warmer. These fungi can also withstand more salt and sugar than bacteria, which is why you sometimes find mold in jellies and jams with their high sugar content and on dry cured products like ham or bacon with their high salt content.
In the past, a slight amount of mold was commonly felt to be harmless and the food consumed anyway. For molds that were intentionally introduced, such as the mold in bleu cheese, this is fine. For the unintentional molds, it could possibly be a serious error in judgment. These unwanted molds could be producing toxic substances called mycotoxins which can be very bad indeed. Mycotoxins are produced around the root or mycelium of molds and these mold roots can penetrate deeply into the food. Mycotoxins can survive for a long time and most are not destroyed by cooking. The molds probably best known for this dangerous spoilage are the various Aspergillus species which produces a mycotoxin known as aflatoxin, but there are other dangerous fungi as well, such as the Fusarium molds. Both of the above affect grains and some legumes. See B.3 Molds In Grains and Legumes.
IMPORTANT NOTE: In wet pack foods such as your home canned goodies, molds can do something else as well, possibly with lethal consequences. If they find their way into wet pack acid foods canned by the boiling water bath method, whether by reasons of improper procedure or contamination after the fact, they can consume the natural acids present in the food. The effect of this is to raise the pH of the food in the container, perhaps to the point that it becomes possible for spores of Clostridium botulinum, better known as botulism, to become active and reproduce. For this reason, moldy wet pack foods should be safely discarded. This most deadly kind of food poisoning has an entry of its own in the bacterial spoilage section.
Molds in low acid foods canned by the pressure canning method are equally dangerous and should also be discarded in a safe manner.

MINIMIZING MOLDS

You can do a number of things to minimize unwanted mold growth in your kitchen, food storage areas and refrigerators.
If your kitchen is at all like mine, it is the refrigerator that is going to collect the most fungal growth. This can be dealt with by washing the inside every couple of months with a tablespoon of baking soda dissolved in a quart of warm water. Rinse clean and allow to dry. The black mildew that grows on the rubber door gaskets and other places can be dealt with by wiping down with a solution of three tablespoons of household bleach in a quart of water. I generally use a soft bristle brush for this. A really bad case will not bleach back to a white color, at least it won’t for me, but will instead turn pink or red after the bleach has carried out its disinfection mission.
The rest of the kitchen can be kept mold free by keeping the area clean, dry, and spraying occasionally with a product such as Lysol. Patches of mold can be eliminated with the bleach solution used on the refrigerator doors.
Try not to purchase more fresh food than you’ll be able to eat in a short period of time. This will keep you from having to deal with the moldy remains that didn’t get eaten. If food does go moldy, don’t sniff it. This is a good way to give yourself respiratory difficulties if you are at all susceptible to mold allergies. Moldy food should be disposed in such a manner that your animals and children won’t be able to get into it. Mycotoxins are every bit as bad for your animals as they are for you.

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Obviously, you don’t have to throw out everything that shows a spot of mold on it. Some foods can be safely dealt with and still partially saved if they show signs of fungal growth. Below is a set of guideline from M. Susan Brewer, Ph.D., R.D., a specialist in food safety. Her articles and works are found in many state university extension services publications lists.

If the food shows even a tiny mold spot, follow these guidelines:

1. Hard or firm foods with tiny mold spots can be trimmed; cut away the area around the mold (at least an inch)

and rewrap in clean wrap. Make sure that knife does not touch the mold.

TRIM:

Hard Cheese (Cheddar, Swiss, etc.)
Bell Peppers, Carrots, Cabbage
Broccoli, Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts Garlic, Onions Potatoes, Turnips Zucchini
Apples, Pears

2. Soft foods such as cheese slices, cream cheese, sour cream and yogurt should be thrown away.

TOSS:

Soft Cheeses, (Mozzarella, Brie, etc.)
Sour Cream, Yogurt, Cottage cheese Bacon, Hot d ogs, Sliced lunch meats Meat pies
Opened canned ham
Most left-over food
Bread, Cakes, rolls, flour, pastry
Peanut butter
Juices, berries
Jam, Jellies, Syrups
Cucumbers, Tomatoes
Spinach, Lettuce, other leafy vegetables
Bananas, Peaches, Melons
Corn-on-the-cob
Stored nuts, whole grains, rice

MOLDS IN CANNED GOODS

If good equipment and proper technique are used, it is unlikely you will ever have mold growth in your unopened canned
goods. If you do have such, there was either a flaw in the procedure used, or something affected the jar or can after the fact to break its seal. In any event, once the food has molded, it is past saving and should be discarded in such a way that children and animals will not be able to get into it. The most likely home canned products to show mold growth are jams and jellies sealed with paraffin wax.
There are a number of points in the canning process where this can occur:
(1) In the time after the jar is taken out of its boiling water bath, but before it is filled. (2) In the time between when the jar is filled and covered with the melted wax.
(3) When the wax cools, if it pulls away from the side of the jar, leaving an opening for the mold to get in. (4) If bubbles form in the paraffin, which break and leave holes.
For these reasons most canning authorities no longer recommend using this technique. If you must do so, the jars should be boiled for at least 10 minutes before the jelly is poured. The filled and wax capped jars should then be covered with some

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sort of protective lid. The book, Putting Food By has excellent instructions on this or see the applicable section of the rec.

food.preserving FAQ.

MOLDS IN GRAINS AND LEGUMES

It has long been known that eating moldy grain is bad for your health with the ugly consequences of eating ergot-infected
rye being a well known example. It has only been about thirty years, though, that intensive study has been carried out on other species of grain fungi and their respective mycotoxins. Fortunately, for those of us in the U.S., the USDA and the various state departments of agriculture go to a great deal of trouble to detect grain and legumes infected with these toxic fungi. In some of the less developed countries, the citizenry are not so lucky. It is good to have something of an understanding of what one should do to prevent mold growth in ones stored grains and to have an idea of what to look for and ask about when purchasing grains and legumes.
The one fungal group that has caused the most commotion in recent history are the various Aspergillus species of molds. Under certain conditions with certain grains, legumes, and to a lesser extent, nuts, they can produce a mycotoxin called aflatoxin. This is a serious problem in some parts of the world, most especially in peanuts, occasionally in corn. I am not aware of any documented deaths in the United States from aflatoxicity, but other nations have not been so fortunate. What makes aflatoxin worrisome in this country is that it is also a potent carcinogen (cancer causing agent).
In addition to the Aspergillus molds, there is also a large family of molds known as Fusarium which can produce mycotoxins of their own, none of which do you want to be eating directly or feeding to your food animals where you will get the toxins back indirectly when the animal is slaughtered and eaten.
The Federal and state governments continuously monitor food and forage crops entering the marketplace. Those products found to be contaminated with mold or mycotoxins are not allowed to be sold for food. Once purchased however, the responsibility is yours to keep your food safe from mold growth. If you have already found mold growth in your whole grains, meals, flours or other grain products, they should be discarded. Most mycotoxins are not broken down or destroyed by cooking temperatures and there is no safe way to salvage grain that has molded.

PREVENTING MOLD GROWTH IN STORED GRAINS AND LEGUMES

The easiest method to prevent mold growth in your stored grains and legumes is to keep them too dry for mold to grow.

The Aspergillus and Fusarium molds require moisture contents of 18% and above to reproduce. This is subject to some variability, but in all grains and soybeans, they must have a moisture content of that level. If you are storing raw (not roasted) peanuts, in the shell or shelled, you want to get the moisture content to less than 8% as peanuts are particularly susceptible to mold growth. The recommended moisture content for all other grain and legume storage is no more than

10%. Please see part Grains and Legumes for a method to determine moisture content. At 10% moisture, there is simply too little water for fungi to grow.

BACTERIAL SPOILAGE

Like the fungi, bacteria are everywhere, in the water, soil, air, on you, your food and your food storage containers. Fortunately,
the vast majority of the bacteria we encounter are relatively harmless or even benign and only a few represent a danger to us and our stored foods.
Bacteria can be much more difficult to kill than molds and insects. Some are capable of continued growth at temperatures that would kill other spoilage organisms. When conditions are such that they are unable to grow, some bacteria can go dormant and form spores. These spores can be quite hardy, even to the point of surviving boiling water temperatures.
In order to grow, bacteria must have water, some species needing as little as a 20% moisture. For properly packaged dry grains, legumes, powdered milk and other low moisture foodstuffs bacterial spoilage will never be a problem as their moisture levels should be too scant to support growth.

WARNING: It is in wet pack canned goods (where the container has free liquid in it) and fresh foods we must be the most concerned about spoilage bacteria. It is here that a little bad luck and a moment’s inattention to what you are doing could kill or seriously injure you or some other person who eats the foods you’ve put by. In both home-canned and commercially- canned goods, IF THE CAN IS BULGING, LEAKING, SMELLS BAD, OR SPEWS LIQUID WHEN YOU OPEN IT THEN THROW IT OUT! But, throw it out safely so that children and animals cannot get into it.

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BOTULISM

Clostridium botulinum is one of the oldest life forms on this planet dating from a time before the Earth had an abundant

oxygen atmosphere. Like the gangrene bacteria, it is an anaerobic organism meaning it lives and grows only in the absence of
free oxygen. When conditions are not suitable for growth the bacteria can form durable seed like spores which are commonly found in the soil. This means that C. botulinum can be brought into your life on raw produce, tools, hands or anything else that came into contact with dirt. To further complicate matters, botulinum spores are extremely heat-hardy. The bacteria itself can be killed by a short exposure to boiling water (212º F AT SEA LEVEL PRESSURE), but its spores can not. To kill them, the food product and container must be exposed to temperatures of 240º F (AGAIN AT SEA LEVEL PRESSURE) for a long enough period of time to allow all of the food in each container to come completely up to the proper temperature. Only a pressure-canner can reach the necessary temperature.
It’s not the bacteria or its spores which are directly deadly, but the toxin the bacteria creates when it grows and reproduces. In its pure form, botulism toxin is so potent that a mere teaspoon would be enough to provide a fatal dose to hundreds of thousands of people. It is this lethality that is why every responsible book on home canning, food preservation, and food storage hammers constantly on the need for care in technique and method and why spoilage must be taken seriously.
Like any other life form Clostridium botulinum must have suitable conditions for its growth to become a danger. One of the most important of these is water - the botulism bacterium needs moisture in the 35% range to grow making it a danger only in improperly processed high moisture foods. Another requirement is suitable pH, which is the measure of acidity or alkalinity in a substance and is measured on a scale of 1-14. Anything above 7 is considered alkaline and everything below
7 is considered acid. If the acidity of your wet pack food is BELOW pH4.6 then C. botulinum is unable to grow. Keep in mind that in foods pH is not necessarily stable and could possibly change if other spoilers like mold are able to grow. If the product should change to a lesser acidity than pH4.6 your previously botulinum proof food may start allowing the lethal spoiler to grow (see molds in canned goods). This is why it is vital to use proper technique, even for acid foods like tomatoes. It has been found that when this pH shift occurs allowing C. botulinum to become active producing its lethal toxin the bacterium also produces minute amounts of acid which can lower the pH of the poisoned food back into what should have been the safe zone had the pH not jumped up and allowed the bacteria to grow. Again and again — use good technique and pay attention to what you are doing.
Unlike fungal mycotoxins Botulinum toxin can be destroyed by boiling food briskly in an open vessel for fifteen minutes. Because of this, if your canned food shows any safety problems you should follow this procedure. If the food shows even the slightest mold growth, keep in mind that mycotoxins are not for the most part broken down by heat and dispose of the food safely.
I won’t go into the hows of home canning here. For that I strongly recommend that you read the rec.food.preserving FAQ,
the Ball Blue Book or most especially the book Putting Food By for in depth information on this subject.

ENZYMATIC ACTION IN FOOD SPOILAGE

Every living organism uses enzymes of many sorts in its bodily functions as part of its normal life cycle. Enzymes are used
in creating life. After death, enzymes play a role in the decomposition of once living tissue. The enzymes in a tomato help it to ripen and enzymes produced by the tomato and whatever fungal and bacterial spoilers are on it cause it to decay.
Fortunately, slowing down or stopping the action of a food’s enzymes is much easier than slowing or stopping some of the bacterial spoilers mentioned above. Enzymes are most active in a temperature range between 85-120º F and begin to be destroyed when the temperature goes above 140º F. Cold also slows down the action of enzymes, which is why fresh tomatoes last longer in the refrigerator than they do on the kitchen table. Most enzymatic action also requires moisture to occur. In foods stored at 10% moisture or less, there is not enough moisture for most enzymes to be active.
Copyright ©
Alan T. Hagan. All rights reserved

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RECOMMENDED FOOD STORAGE TIMES

Food Keep Comments

Baking powder Till can date Sealed & bone dry

Baking soda 2 years Sealed & dry

Biscuit, brownie, muffin mix 9 months Sealed, cool, dry, weevil proofed

Bouillon, cubes or granules 2 years Sealed, cool and dry

Cake mixes, regular 9 months Sealed,cool, dry, weevil proofed angel food 1 year Sealed, cool, dry, weevil proofed

Canned food: metal can, Non-Acidic 2 years Cool & Dry

Metal Can, Acidic 12-18months Cool & Dry

Glass jars 2-3 years Dark, Cool & Dry Chocolate, semi-sweet or unsweetened, bars or chips 18 months Cool and dark Chocolate syrup 2 years Cool & tightly sealed Cocoa, powder or mixes 8 months Sealed and cool Coffee creamers, powdered 9 months Sealed and cool

Cornmeal 1 year Keep dry & weevil proofed

Cornstarch 18 months Keep dry

Crackers 3 months Keep dry & weevil proofed

Flour, refined white 8-12 months Dry & weevil proofed,

whole wheat 4-6 weeks refrigerate/freeze for longer shelf life

Frostings, canned 3 months Cool

Mix 8 months Dry and cool

Fruits, dried 6-12 months Cool, sealed, weevil proofed Gelatin, all types 18 months Protect from moisture Grains, whole 2 years Dry and weevil proofed Hominy, hominy grits, masa harina 1 year Dry and weevil proofed Honey 2 years Cool, tightly sealed, dark Jellies, jams, preserves 2 years Dark, cool, tightly sealed. Molasses & syrups 2 years Tightly sealed

Mayonnaise 6 months Cool & dark

Milk, condensed or evaporated 1 year Turn over every 2 months non-fat dry 6 months Bone dry and cool

Nuts, vacuum canned 1 year Cool and Dark

other packaging 3 months Cool and dark – better Refrigerated in shell

Pancake mix

4 months

6-9 months

Cool, dry & dark, better refrigerated or frozen

Dry and weevil proofed

Pastas (macaroni, noodles, etc)

Peanut butter

Peas and beans, dry (not soybeans) Potatoes, instant

Pudding mixes

Rice, white brown

2 years

6-9 months

2 years

6-12 months

1 year

2+ years

3-6 months

Dry and weevil proofed

Sealed, cool, dark

Dry and weevil proofed Dry and weevil proofed Cool and very dry

Dry and weevil proofed

Dry & weevil proofed, better refrigerated or frozen

flavored or herb

Salad dressings

Salad oils

Sauce and gravy mixes

6 months

10-12 months

6 months

6-12 months

Sealed, dry and weevil proofed Sealed, dark, cool. Better refrigerated Sealed, dark, cool. Better refrigerated Cool and dry

Shortening, solid Soup mixes Sugar, brown

confectioners

1 year

1 year

2 years

18 months

Cool, dark, tightly sealed. Cool, dry, and weevil proofed Tightly sealed, Dry.

Tightly sealed, Dry.

granulated

Syrups (corn syrup based)

2+years

8-12 months

Dry

Sealed and cool

Vegetables, dried

1 year

Cool, dark, dry, weevil proofed

Vinegar

2+ years

Sealed

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Space Cramp???

(er.. cramped space...

where to hide all that Food Storage!)

by Kim Hicken

Storage space got you down? Do you feel as though you are tripping over your food storage? Never fear - there is a light at the end of the storage tunnel! Storage space seems to be a never ending problem these days. Many new homes are built with terrific vaulted ceilings, great views, and NO stor- age space!!! Older homes can also have a shortage of space. With a little creative thinking, and some planning, Saints can have space to store the important things in your life.
The first thing that must be done, (and this is the very hardest part) is that you must de-junk your home. Saints are all pack-rats to a certain extent. At a speech regarding the de-junking of our homes, the presenter asked how many people present had a watch at home that did not work. Every single person in the room held up his hand. Do YOU have one of these treasures in your home? (Be honest, now!) We all have things in our homes that were once priceless treasures, but have now become a nuisance. Get rid of them! There are probably a million suggestions of ways to de-junk. Choose one that fits with your life style. A book that can help you with this is Clutter’s Last Stand: It’s time to de-Junk Your Life by Don Aslett. Check your local library for this, and other books on this subject.

Once you have gotten rid of some of the non-essentials, you must become creative.

Stand in each room of your home and take a good look
around.
· Is there storage space that is currently not being utilized?
· Is there space that is being used ineffieciently?
· Are there shelves that could be built taller?
· Are there shelves that are deep that are only filled partially?
· Making efficient use of the storage space you already have may net you enough new space to store quite a bit.
· There are a lot of nice, new plastic storage con- tainers on the market that may help you store things more easily, and stack them a bit deeper. Sturdy carboard boxes can also help. Grocery stores will generally give you fruit boxes if you ask.

One Saint who is raising four children in a very small turn- of-the-century stone house has come up with some very creative storage space. She built her own couches using a basic toy-box type design. She purchased thick foam rub-

ber, and made cushions to go on top of the boxes. Then she made coordinating pillows to add more comfort to the couch. The hollow bottoms have given her lots of extra space.
When she moved into the home, the cupboards had space above them. She modified them so that now her kitchen cupboards go all the way to the ceiling. No space has been wasted. She completely utilizes the space under her stairs. An upstairs bedroom built into the attic space still has some space (under the eves) that she utilizes for additional storage.
Since she does not care for crawling around in dark places, she built small doors into the wall approximately every four feet. When she needs to put something in the space or take something out, she simply reaches in the closest door.
She does not like to move things to vaccuum, so she puts many shelves on the walls, and up off the floor. By build- ing shelves in this manner, she has moved miscellaneous family items out of prime food-storage space, allowing her to store more food. In many cases, our best food-storage space is full of things that could be stored elsewhere.
Another Saint who has six children in a modular home has learned to be creative with her space as well. She stood in her rooms and looked around, and before long, she dis- covered that there was a hollow space between two walls. This was not a huge space, but it was enough to provide her some more storage space. She took the paneling off that portion of the wall, and put a cupboard door on. Cupboard doors are not expensive, nor are they difficult to install. Now she has a storage closet where non existed originally.
The floor in a small bedroom has a trap door in it that al- lows her to actually go under her home. There she has found a lot of great space to store things that need to be kept cool. Even in the heat of summer, this space is cool. She uses it to store potatoes, and foods that are in air-tight containers. She has buckets of honey, buck- ets of wheat, and buckets of beans under this room.
One good trick is to use garbage cans as bedside tables. This is done by purchasing regular garbage cans at a discount store. New ones are recommended because they have no odd smells or dirt attached! One sheet of plywood is then used to cut two circles four to five inches bigger in diameter than the top of the can. The lids to the garbage cans are not used. Let the kids use them as shields when they play. Place the plywood circles over the top of the garbage cans, and then cover your new bedside tables with nice round covers (called “table rounds”) that coor- dinate with your bedspread. Nobody will know that your lovely bedside tables are actually garbage cans! This pro-

157


vides wonderful food storage space for some of the items
that need to be stored in bulk, such as beans or wheat.

Don’t forget the space under your beds! There are lots of food items that can be stored in the small spaces under your beds. Salt, peanut butter, cans of potato flakes, canned vegetables, and cans of shortening can all be stored easily under the beds. They are also easily accessible.

Take a look at your closets. Is there room on the floor of the closet? There are many commercial closet storage systems on the market that can help you more efficiently use your space. But you can also build your own for less expense. Five gallon buckets can be stored on the floor of the closet, and a board put across the top of them to make a handy shelf for shoes and boots. Does the space in the top of the closet go all the way to the ceiling? Five gallon buckets could be stored up there as well, but it is not recommended to store heavy things in them. This may be a good place to store tissue, paper towels, or toilet paper. If you buy your laundry detergent in big buckets, these make terrific storage containers for such items.

One Saint who struggled with a tiny dining area solved two problems with one solution. She built her own benches with hollow bottoms (the toy box design again).

158

She put colorful cushions on top, and then used her own dining room table. Benches generally seat more people than traditional chairs. Now her entire family can fit in her small dining area, and she has extra storage space as well. Don’t let storage problems scare you! You are smarter than the things you own! A little creativity and elbow grease can go a long way toward providing more storage space in your home. Now roll up those sleeves and take a good look at YOUR home!
Here are a few more ideas sent by Food Storage Editor, Andrea Chapman:
“I have some ideas for storing in small places. One idea is a little radical, but my husband and I did it and it worked well. We took apart our bed frame and used buckets, about 12-16 to hold up our bed. It was a little higher than before, but it looked fine.
I have a friend who used the #10 cans in boxes that the fit in 6 at a time. She stacked those and used that under the bed. Also, you can stack those three high and put a table cloth over it for a nice little table in the Living Room or Family room. I have also put food storage in the boys room, in their closet on the floor. Not many little kids use all their closet space.”
Copyright The Family Connection

160

In emergency preparedness, a “72 hour kit” is widely considered the first step in becoming prepared. Sitting in a closet or some other area close to the front door, it can be grabbed in a moment’s notice, should you have to depart your home with little or no warning. Two days ago, only a block from my house, a neighbor’s home caught fire at 3 AM. After getting everyone out, the

fire hastily spread and quickly destroyed this family’s home. Everything inside it was totally destroyed. What did they have left? Only the pajamas on their backs. They lost literally everything. They didn’t even have shoes on their feet. They wish they’d had a good 72 hour kit. Fortunately, the whole community is pulling together for them. But not everyone is this lucky. Sometimes, whole communities are affected at the same time. This same tiny farming village back in 1978 had to be immediately evacuated for several days because of derailed and leaking butane cars. Before that, everyone here thought this was a place where disasters ‘never hap- pened.’ Seventy-two hour kits would have been really handy then as well. It’s not necessary that you live in a tornado or hurricane alley to need a 72 hour kit. Every family needs one for the unexpected.

A deluxe “72” hour kit should contain all the essential things your family would need to take you through 3-4 days of being on your own. There’s a reason behind the length of time the kit’s contents should last. It general- ly takes the disaster relief agencies at least 3-4 days to move in and set up before offering assistance. Generally speaking, you’re on your own during this time. Depending on how bad the situation is, it could even be longer. Whether you start with our kit or put one together yourself from scratch, it’s important for your family’s wel- fare to have one. In any type of disaster things will be bad. Not having the necessities to sustain your life and the lives of your family members could turn an otherwise manageable problem into a personal cataclysm you

could never recover from. Prepare now for life’s surprises.

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Building The Right Bug Out Bag for You


Factors When Building a Bug Out Bag

Factor 2: Going At It Alone Or As A Group?

The next important factor is if you are creating a kit just for you or for a group or family. This will affect your setup in many ways. I suggest that you build your setup so that you can cover your own basic needs if you would be unable to meet up with your group or get separated from them. For more advice on this sub- ject check out the article Bugging Out As a Group.

Factor 1: You

As I see it the most important aspect of making it

through a Survival Situation is You. It’s your effort, your Skills, your Knowledge, your Experience and your Will to Survive that will ultimately make biggest dif- ference if you make it or not. The Bug Out Bag is im- portant, but this is only a tool that will help you get the job done. It’s still you that will have to get the job done. It’s easy to discuss equipment, what items to store and other physical aspect of crisis preparedness and survivalism. But it’s important to not lose track of your prioritize and to continue to work on yourself as much as you work on your gear. Your Physical Fitness and Health are also crucial factors that will determine how much you can carry and how long distances you can carry it.

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Factor 3: Climate and Terrain

Your climate and terrain will affect the choice for Shel-

ter, Clothing, how much water you have to carry, what

food that is most appropriate and what type of source for light you should bring. Some people may have to travel through different types of terrains so solution for clothing and shelter must work for all this types of terrains.

Factor 4: Season

In many parts of the world the temperature, rain and

wind vary over the seasons and the setup must be adjusted depending if it’s spring, summer, autumn or winter. This can affect factors like:

• Clothing and Footwear

• Shelter

• What type of Stove and Food you should bring

• The Access to Water


Factor 5: Your Every Day Carry and Pocket

Survival Kit

Most Survivalists will most likely have some form of Every Day Carry or even a Pocket Survival Kit that they carry on an Every Day Basis. You should build your Bug Out Bag so that it complements your EDC and Pocket Survival Kit. Examples can be:

• Trying to find products that use the same type of batteries for Flashlight, Headlamps, Radios, GPS units and other electronics.

• Use different types of Equipment to Build a Fire in your Bug Out Bag, Pocket Survival Kit and in your Ev- ery Day Carry.

Factor 6: Do You Use Your Bug Out Bag For

Other Activities?

Building a fully equipped Bug Out Bag can be a very costly process especially if high quality equipment is preferred. The equipment in your Bug Out Bag can also be used for a number of other activities like hiking, camping, hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities. If you engage in this type of activities I suggest that you try to find solutions and equipment that will the same functions both during this type of activities and during an evacuation. Using the same gear for differ- ent activities also give you the chance to get familiar with your equipment, learn how to use properly and see what works well and not. But most importantly it gives you the opportunity to enjoy the investment that you have made.

Factor 7: What Kind Of Scenarios Do You Pre-

pare For?

What types of situations that you are trying to pre- pare for is also a critical aspect for what type of Bug Out Bag that you should put together. There is big dif- ference if you are putting together a kit to assist for hurricane evacuation or to function as tool during a total breakdown of modern society. I suggest that you make a comprehensive Risk Assessment before you make up your mind about what type of situations that you base your BOB upon.

Factor 8: Budget

For most people the economical aspect will also limit what kind of setup that they can build. If one has an almost unlimited budget this is of little concern but for most people this will be a factor when deciding what setup they will build. I recommend that you try to prioritize the items that you will use often and try to build a basic well functioning setup that you can up- grade as you go. For the budget it can also be impor- tant that you get the right equipment the first time, it’s even more expensive to have to buy a completely new solution if you get a cheap piece of equipment that does not work.

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The Process of Building a Bug Out Bag

Step1: Decide what you want the Bug Out Bag to Per-

form for You

After you have taken these factors into consideration

you will face the process of putting the Bug Out Bag together. Taking a look at the different factors present- ed above can give you a basic idea of what you want the bag to do for you and what functions you want it to have.

Step 2: Research

From this perspective you will first have to make some

research in order to find items that can allow you to perform these tasks. Picking the tools that can provide you with shelter, water and water purification, help you to build a fire, light, food and ability to prepare food, hygiene, first aid, navigation, a survival knife and other tools can be quite a long process. Here you also have to take factors like price, weight, quality and function into consideration. You should also consider how the different items that you have complement the other items that you choose and how they can help to reinforce your skills. I suggest that you try to check out equipment like clothing, tents, knives and other gear in a physical store before you purchase them, or check out what equipment, friends, family or professionals that work in your area use.

Step 3: Acquire the Equipment

After you decided what items you want to get you still

have process of finding the items and buying them. You might already have some of the equipment need- ed in your possession or you might have to buy the equipment. Make sure that you check with your fam-

ily, friends, at E-Bay and the second hand market and multiple sources before you buy a piece of equipment, you can often save allot of money by doing some re- search.

Step 4: Test the Bug Out Bag

After you have put the kit together you still have to

test the kit so that you actually know if it performs as intended. Taking the Bag for a longer hike in your local terrain can give you the chance to practice skills but also to see what items that you really need and what items that you don’t need.

Step 5: Adjust the Setup

After you have tested the Bug Out Bag you normally

make adjustments to the setup and question comes back again: What do you want your Bag to perform?

One Size Does Not Fit All

This article is written to give you some ideas of what

factors that you have to take into consideration when building a Bug Out Bag. There can of course be more factors that have to be taken into consideration than the ones that have been mentioned above, every per- son has specific consideration that must govern what a specific setup should contain. The important aspect is that your BOB will reflect what you need and be designed for your particular situation. One Size does not fit all; this is something that applies to all kinds of crisis preparedness and survival situations. Others can often provide good suggestions and feedback but in the end you have to make the decisions for yourself. http://sibitotique.blogspot.com/2011/04/building- right-bug-out-bag-for-you.html

Copyright 2012 Sibi Totique, by Westfalia

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OK, But What Do I Prepare For?


Before you can prepare, you must determine what you are preparing to survive and how each disaster threatens you, your safety and survival. That will give you the parameters necessary for the following steps.
This initial exercise isn’t tough, it only takes a few minutes of thought. We suggest you jot notes or switch into your word processor while you work.
But first, it’s important to realize that you cannot prepare for everything — only the army tries to do that, and we’ve yet to meet anyone with their resources. Captain Dave suggests you prepare only for those potential disasters that are likely to occur within the next five years. Sure, you may wait seven years for the next earthquake, but remember the survivalists creed: better safe than sorry.
What’s going to happen in the next five years? If we knew, our web page would look different. You’ll have to extrapolate, evaluate trends, read the newspaper, conduct your own research. At the very least, take a few minutes and consider your location. Pull out a map and look what’s within a two- mile, five-mile 10-mile and 25-mile radius of your home and place of work. Put on your pessimist hat and consider what might go wrong that could directly impact you. Decide if that’s something you want to prepare for (see questions one and two, below).
For example, if you live a “safe” distance outside of a flood plain, your house might still gets flooded in the 100-year flood, should you prepare for it? We would, but it’s your call. It’s your ass on the line, so you have to decide.
That nuclear plant 20 miles away has an excellent safety record. Should a nuclear disaster be on your list? Again, you make the call.
Are you worried about a meteorite crashing into your house? Well, it has happened, but it’s probably not worth preparing for.
Finally, if you’ve been afraid of something since you were a child — whether it’s a raging fire or nuclear war — prepare for it. At the very least, you’ll sleep better at nights knowing you have done all you can.

Here are some questions to ask yourself:

What natural disasters or extreme conditions am I (we)

l likely to face in the next five years?

Make a list and rank them in order of most to least likely to
impact you. Your list might look like this:
Natural Disasters

Weather-related Hurricanes Tornadoes Heavy thunder storms

Flash flooding Flooding
Mud/rock slides
High winds Hail
Severe winter weather
Avalanche Extreme high heat
Drought
Wildfire

Non Weather-related Earthquake Volcano eruption Tidal wave/Tsunami

Man-made Disasters

War (conventional, biological, chemical or nuclear)
Toxic material emission or spill (from a train, semi-

truck or nearby plant)

Riot or other civil disorder
Nuclear plant melt down or other nuclear disaster
Terrorism Fire Government action against you Stock market crash
Sever depression

Other

Plague or disease outbreak
Comet strike or giant meteor

Personal Emergencies

Kidnapping Mugging,
robbery or other criminal attack
Unemployment financial disaster Death in family
Home destroyed by fire
Random acts of violence

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What are the ramifications of each item on my list.??

Now, take your list and create a second column. Put the ramifications of each disaster in the second column. What do we mean by ramification? How the disaster or emergency situation could affect you. Think this one through very carefully, as everyone’s situation is different. For example, families with children have different concerns than those without or singles.

Potential Disaster Ramifications

Thunder storm with electrical outage for 2 (average)

to 48 hours (severe)
Food spoilage possible
Lack of air conditioning/furnace
Damage to house or car from nearby trees
Possible local flooding (see below)
Local transportation impaired by fallen trees, wires
Lightning damage/fire potential

Severe winter weather, Electrical power outage

for 4hrs (average) to 72 hours (severe)
Would affect furnace operation
Exposure problems
Frozen pipes
Disruption of travel, transportation
Self or family members possibly stranded away from home
Possible food shortages and empty shelves at local markets

Nearby flash flooding

Local transportation disrupted
Danger while traveling in car or by foot
Possible loss of some utilities

Nearby train derailment

Possible leak or spill of chemicals Short-term exposure problem Long-term cancer concerns Evacuation may be necessary

Riot or other civil disorder Disruption of commute

(ala Los Angeles)
Stranded in car or office while family is at home and/or school
Danger of riot spreading to my neighborhood Danger of local kids/low lives taking advantage of situation
Attack or threat to personal safety
Looting and rampaging by otherwise lawful citizens

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Fire with potentially no response by authorities Police are overwhelmed, cannot protect law- abiding citizens

Nuclear plant problems

Reactor vessel damage could result in release of
radioactive chemicals to atmosphere
Evacuation necessary

Terrorism Threat to safety at work and during business travel

Disruption of commerce, travel
Less personal freedom, privacy as a result of government reaction to terrorism
Once you’ve created a chart like the one above, you know what situations you are most likely to face and can prepare your survival plan
Copyright Capt. Dave

Survival Priorities:

The Rule of Three

While I took issue with the conclusions drawn from the facts employed in a recent article titled ‗The Coming Food Armageddon‘, the truth is you could find yourself and your loved ones in a struggle for survival at any time. For what it‘s worth, not only am I a big booster of ‗prepping‘, I have a realistic strategy if the SHTF and my outdoor skills are bet- ter than most, although that‘s not really saying much given our predominantly urban population. But prepping is not what I want to talk to you about. I want to talk to you about Survival. And I‘m not going to offer you any strategies, tac- tics or supply sources. Rather, I just want you to get your head into a slightly different place than it probably is right now. For some of you, this might be a remedial review. You may be military, firefighter, law enforcement, rescue work- er or just plain folk with an inordinate amount of common sense. Regardless, it never hurts to revisit the basics.
And all of the basics can be summed-up in ―The Rule of Three‖ which says, absent sudden death (such as an acci- dent) or terminal illness, your survival is generally contin- gent upon you not exceeding:

3 minutes without breathing (drowning, asphyxiation)

3 hours without shelter in an extreme environment (ex-

posure)

3 days without water (dehydration)

3 weeks without food (starvation)


We‘ll leave accident avoidance and healthy lifestyle choices for another discussion and just focus on the ramifications of the Rule of Three. However, this essay is offered merely to encourage you in proactively conducting your own ongo- ing risk assessment.
Nothing in this essay is intended nor is to be construed as advice, professional or otherwise. Any information con- tained in this essay is not to be relied upon. You‘re going to have to go find it out for yourself!

Starvation

Most ‗preppers‘ are stocking food. You will note that
starvation is the slowest form of death among the Rule of Three. You would likely have three weeks before you starve. Your level of physical exertion has an impact on the body‘s caloric requirements. Personally, I might sur- vive starvation for five or six weeks if I stay in repose as I‘m carrying a lot of extra weight (just in case!). Don‘t call me obese. Call me prepped! Keep in mind, too, that your survival strategy must consider the likelihood of you being separated from your food supply in an emergency. When that happens, stay calm, focus on any immediate threats or hazards and remember that you have three weeks to implement Food Plan B or Plan C. You do have a Food Plan B and Plan C, don‘t you?

Dehydration

Dehydration occurs much more quickly than starvation.
As such, water supply is much more critical to address in an emergency. Consider that in a temperate climate and without exertion, the human body requires approximately
2.5 liters of fluids per day. In extreme heat this require- ment goes up significantly. Diarrhea can lead to rapid, cata- strophic dehydration as well. Given that water is far bulkier to store and/or transport than food, and that dehydration is potentially a far more pressing concern than starvation, your ability to procure water in an emergency should sup- plant food in your ranking of Survival priorities. Stated sim- ply, water is far more important than food. What is your base plan for water? What is your mobile plan for water?

Exposure

Exposure occurs far more rapidly than dehydration. Hot or
cold, you could find yourself unable to function in less than three hours. Immersion in cold water, such as breaking through ice, could reduce your time to act down to mere minutes. So what‘s your shelter strategy when you‘re away from base? Here in TheNorth, we‘ve already had temps below minus 40 this winter. February is typically our cold- est month where I‘ve personally experienced minus 52 F actual. If you have an accident on a slick road late at night in such conditions, you will likely not be waking up ever
again unless you have prepared for such an eventuality. Ex- posure kills in hours, or less. Countering exposure is your number two priority for survival in any emergency situa- tion. Yet most preppers are not thinking about exposure while stocking their pantries. Prepare for exposure.

Asphyxiation

Asphyxiation kills in three minutes. This is the emergency
situation that gives you the least amount of time to react for your survival. This is your Priority One Survival issue. An interior fire is the most common cause of asphyxiation. How many of you have a home escape plan in the event of a fire? I thought so. Make one. It‘s free. It takes minutes.
And it might save your life. Unless you‘ve been in a burning building, I guarantee that you cannot imagine how blind- ing the smoke is nor how quickly a structure can become fully engulfed. If you have children, periodic rehearsal of the escape plan is mandatory. In the unthinkable event of a fire, panic is inevitable. Rehearsal helps to moderate the flight reaction, which might otherwise lead to death. Also, test your smoke detectors. Notwithstanding my disclaimer above, check them regularly. I mean it! Our friends out West can attest to the power, speed and terror of a large scale wildfire.
Most of us assume such an occurrence will provide ad- equate forewarning, thereby allowing avoidance. While normally that‘s true, you wouldn‘t be prepping if you only planned for ‗typical‘ events. The Peshtigo, WS Fire of 1871 is an example of a wildfire that ‗upgraded‘ to firestorm. While obviously a confluence of enabling conditions is re- quired in order for a firestorm to occur, be assured that this could occur in most parts of the country. While the devel- opment of those enabling conditions will be obvious (i.e. extreme drought) to anyone on the lookout, once com- menced, the firestorm expands far too quickly to allow for evacuation. 1.5 million acres burned that day.
While fire is a common cause, there are other causes of asphyxiation worth your consideration:
Carbon monoxide poisoning – usually from a combustion source in the home. This has also occurred in vehicles stranded in snowstorms. Vehicles were run for heat. Ac- cumulating snow shrouded the tailpipe resulting in vehicle exhaust entering the passenger compartment.
Other poisonous fumes – tanker trucks, rail cars and chemi- cal & other industrial plants often have hazardous materi- als that, in an emergency situation, could cause you grave bodily harm if exposed.

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Smothering- confined space entrapment, such as a building collapse (snow or volcanic ash loads on roofs, earthquakes, etc). Consider also avalanches, landslides and mudslides.
Drowning – while common sense on and around bodies of water is presumed, consider also flash floods, tsunami, the aforementioned breaking ice, catastrophic dam failure, bridge failure while crossing. Flash floods are relatively common and often deadly. While a tsunami is much less common, consider the scale of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsu- nami before you dismiss its‘ likelihood. If you live in a coast- al region, it would only take one to bring all of your pantry efforts to naught.
All of these events are sudden, unexpected and leave you minutes or less to choose a course of action. Taking the proper action may save your life.

Perils, Perils Everywhere

As you continually assess and prioritize your survival risks,
take into account those risks specific to the area where you happen to be. Weather patterns for example. Hurricanes in coastal regions, tornados on the plains and thunderstorms or blizzards in the mountains are all hazards to be anticipat- ed and prepped for. Also, consider geologic perils. Earth- quakes, volcanoes and rapidly moving lahars are hazards to be aware of and plan for, even if you are merely passing through.
Therefore, if you are inclined to take a proactive approach in preparing for what economists might refer to as ‗outlier occurrences‘, then it behooves you to prioritize your risks and review appropriate responses to them in a rational fashion. The scenarios resulting in your death most quickly should command your immediate attention. When you have sufficiently addressed those, by all means move down your list. We all believe in the Boy Scout motto of ―Be Pre- pared‖. However oftentimes it‘s the obvious peril that gets overlooked.

Author TomOfTheNorth is a Volunteer Firefighter with a small rural FD in northeastern MN, where he is also Vice President of the Department and President of the Depart- ment‘s meager pension association.

© 2010, thesurvivalmom. All rights reserved.

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A High-Mobility 72 Hour

Kit

By Ward Dorrity


“You can ignore reality, but you cannot ignore the conse-
quences of ignoring reality.” – Ayn Rand
The history of much of the last century was written in the blood of the victims of war, genocide, political upheaval and social unrest. One of the lessons of modern history
– lost on most Americans, unfortunately – is that our cir- cumstances can change literally overnight. Consider Beirut, Sarajevo, the Islamic mass murders at the Twin Towers and the Pentagon, and lately - the riots in Greece, Spain, Italy and London. These events were all harbingers of an abrupt, irrevocable and often brutal change in peoples’ lives.

It Can’t Happen Here? Think again. More unarmed citizens guilty of nothing more than being who they were have been killed by their own governments in modern times than all of the casualties of all of the wars ever fought throughout recorded history. If you regard this as hyperbole or exaggeration, then please visit Professor R.

J. Rummel’s Wikipedia entry at http://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/R._J._Rummel , the contents of which are correct, and as the evidence emerges, are understated. His website at http://www.hawaii.edu/powerkills/welcome.html deliv- ers these horrendous statistics in irrefutable detail. Rum- mel coined the term democide for murder by government. Loosely rendered, Prof. Rummel’s research shows that six times as many people died of democide during the 20th century than in all that century’s wars combined.

Mass murder, atrocity and cruelty against civilian popula- tions and on a scale that beggars the imagination was the one of the main recurrent themes of the last century; it has continued virtually unabated in the 21st century, largely unreported and, one might suspect, deliberately covered up. Daniel Jonah Goldhagen, in his landmark Worse Than War: Genocide, Eliminationism, and the Ongoing Assault on Humanity, delivers a grisly panorama of recent history that should put to rest any illusions that you may have con- cerning the madness that haunts our modern world. We are all at risk, no matter how sunny or benign your day to day world might seem.
Consider a Jewish tailor living in Prague in the late 1930’s. He could scarcely have understood what was happening to him when he and his family were rounded up by the Na- tional Socialists and packed into a cattle car – they were told that they were being ‘relocated for their own safety’. “But, that was World War 2,” you say. So let’s move for- ward: in the early 1970s, and in the span of 72 hours, the Khmer Rouge emptied every major city in Cambodia and before they were done, they had slaughtered over a third of the country – more than a million people - over the next few years. “But, that was during the Vietnam War years and in Asia,” you say. “Surely,” you say, “that’s over”. But nothing could be further from the truth – as Goldhagen points out, the slaughter, the ‘re-education’ camps, the slave labor prisons never stopped; it only diminished in intensity. Most of us have forgotten Sarajevo, host of the
1984 Winter Olympics and formerly known as “the jewel of the Adriatic.” Sarajevo fell into a flame-shot hell of bar- barism with a rapidity that stunned its inhabitants. The so- called ‘siege of Sarajevo’ earned the dubious distinction of being the longest such siege in modern times – it lasted almost 4 years. Modern high-rise buildings became death traps as services failed and snipers picked off anyone who tried to leave in search of food, water or something to burn for warmth. World War 2, again? No – the siege of Sarajevo took place from 1992 through 1996. “But, but - those were Serbs and Croats – we’re not like that,” you say. But if you thought that we here in America have some special immu- nity to circumstances like those, you would be wrong.
Here in America, the Watts and Rodney King riots, and hur- ricane Katrina serve as examples of just how quickly our own civil order can vanish. The recent ‘ flash mob’ robbery/ assault phenomenon - where groups of blacks make use of cell phone texting and social networks such as Twitter to organize and to swarm retail establishments in order to overwhelm them and to loot them - are becoming increas- ingly bolder and more violent here in the good old USA. Lately, and in a more ominous turn of events, those same flash mobs have begun to target individual people for ra- cially motivated robbery and assault. You can even see this
on YouTube, where many of these incidents are published for ‘bragging rights’! Even though the flash rob-mob phe- nomenon has largely fallen off the media radar (and some might say that it is being deliberately suppressed), it hasn’t stopped. It just hasn’t been reported by a compliant media with an agenda. And with few exceptions, nobody’s going to jail for it.
The recent ‘Occupy’ movement with its shadowy organiza- tional origins and even more ambiguous sources of fund- ing are another harbinger of social unrest to come. Merely another situation under-reported and misrepresented by a media strangely uninterested in the whole story, but the sentiment of those participating is easy enough to discern: “Capitalism has taught us that no one is ever going to give us anything,” said OSC spokesperson Mark Paschal. “You have to take it.’’ His comments and many, many others like it have an old familiar ring:

“We are socialists, we are enemies of today’s capitalistic economic system for the exploitation of the economically weak, with its unfair salaries, with its unseemly evaluation of a human being according to wealth and property instead of responsibility and performance, and we are all deter- mined to destroy this system under all conditions.”

This is almost word-for-word what is coming from the mouths of the OWS crowd, and you would find few among them who would disagree with it. In fact, you would find few among our intelligentsia, our artists, our journalists, even our preachers and pastors who would find fault with it. But it’s old news, as the quote comes from a speech made in May 1, 1927 by one of the true nemeses and mon- sters of the last century, one Adolf Hitler. “It can’t happen here,” you say? Don’t bet on it. It already has. The “low level ethnic conflict,” of the flash mobs, the increasingly violent theater of the Occupy movement, and the system- atic abrogation of the rule of law and the disregard for the Constitution and the Bill of Rights by the Obama regime are merely sign posts along the way to something far, far worse.
Who am I to say these things? Well, I’m just the guy on the block who sees his neighbor’s house on fire and tries to do something about it, rather than wait for the fire depart- ment to show up.
But in this case, what’s burning is our own civilization. Those who want to “burn the old world to reveal the new,” will get nothing but ashes and their own extinction. That’s the lesson of history that so many of us have failed to learn. As Will Durant put it in The Story of Civilization, “...civiliza- tion is a precious good, whose delicate complex order and

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freedom can at any moment be overthrown by barbarians invading from without and multiplying from within.”
It’s become increasingly obvious that those barbarians of which Durant spoke are already well inside our gates. They occupy offices in the House and Senate, they enjoy posi- tions of power and influence in the arts, media and our ed- ucational institutions. They preach from our pulpits. Their goal? Power. Power over thee and me. Their outlook? That human beings are nothing more than things, animals or machines to be ruled, managed and yes, slaughtered.

“We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inver- sion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force.”

— Ayn Rand

Erosion of Trust and Social Cohesion and the

One Hour Meltdown.

We like to think of ourselves as fairly civilized. But the bonds
that have held us together as a society, as a people, and as Americans have been systematically – and again, some might say deliberately - eroded over the past few genera- tions. If you consider social capital as composed of mutual trust and respect for the rule of law, then our account is seriously overdrawn. The Obama regime is already operat- ing well outside the constraints of the Constitution and the rule of law and continues to do so with impunity. When such behavior becomes the norm for a state, bad things – very bad things – usually happen.

The “Bank Holiday” Scenario.

Consider the following scenario: abruptly, and in the mid-
dle of a workday, a “bank holiday” is declared by the cur-
rent regime. In today’s context, a bank holiday declaration
will most likely be the leading edge of a far broader and deep economic collapse - things are not likely to improve any time soon from that point on. For those who consid- er this unlikely or impossible, think again: it’s been done. Here, during the beginning of the Great Depression. Also understand that at the beginning of the Great Depression of 1929, Americans had a great deal more social cohesion and were possessed of substantially more self-restraint back then. Read Amity Shlaes’ The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression for an accurate account of those times. For all the hard times, the Great Depression era was relatively orderly. Now – not so much. And that has consequences.
You will do well to pay close attention to news feeds from now on – because, when you hear a declaration of a ‘bank

170

holiday’ (or martial law, for that matter), you’ll have about an hour, perhaps less. An hour for what, you might ask. The answer is: you’ll have about an hour – perhaps less - before ordinary, everyday people around you flip right out and go crazy, some of them homicidally so. Here’s one way that it might go down, and it will all happen in parallel. I’ve bor- rowed and expanded upon some of these concepts that another writer/blogger outlined in his essay, The One Hour Meltdown. The following ‘bank holiday’ scenario will have a grave and immediate impact on you and everyone else that you know.

1. Retail Businesses:

This is the area that will likely have the most immediate ef-
fect on you. A declaration of a ‘bank holiday’ will effectively
halt all electronic transfers of money. Since businesses will be unable to process even simple debit card- or check- based transactions, many retail establishments will have no choice but to shut down. They will attempt to lock their doors to prevent anyone else from entering. If possible, they will complete any transactions for customers already inside the building, but on a cash-only basis. Any customers wishing to pay by check or with a credit/debit card will be told that the system is down and that, sorry, their transac- tion can’t be honored. Now – picture this happening in an establishment like Target, Wal-Mart or your local grocery store. Imagine the scene at the checkout lines: people with shopping carts full of stuff they want are suddenly told that, no - they can’t have their stuff. To put it mildly, this will not be taken well. Let’s face it – some of the frustrated clientele will NOT leave empty-handed and in an orderly fashion. Thus, the establishment can and will move from order to disorder in a matter of minutes. Once the first item is simply taken without paying for it, once the first window is broken, once the first punch is thrown, all hell will break loose. The looting and the violence will start and spread like wildfire.
Even if the retail establishment has prepared for this even- tuality – and rest assured that most of them have not – they will have little or no control over the ensuing chaos. For chaos there will be. It will take 5 or 10 minutes - perhaps even less - for the implications of the retail shutdown to sink into the consciousness of everyone in the store. Again, cases where the frustrated clientele will leave in an orderly fashion will be few and far between. Your best option, if you are paying attention to what’s happening around you, is to vacate the premises as quickly as you possibly can. Leave your shopping cart behind – it doesn’t matter now, as it’s far less important than your life. Speed, mobility and decisive action will be your only friends. Take your purse or wallet and immediately slip out of the checkout line and head for the exits. If you’re in the middle of the store, then hit the nearest exit, alarms be damned. Should those doors already be locked, head out through the back and

exit through the loading dock area. You’ll have a small win- dow of time in which to act. Trust me - this is the last place you’ll want to be. Don’t count on store employees, store security or local law enforcement to maintain order. The first two aren’t paid enough to risk their lives, nor are they well-trained enough to deal with what’s coming at them. Local law enforcement are going to have their hands full elsewhere and everywhere. Because whatever’s happen- ing in your location will be happening all over the place. In spades.
It won’t take long for the mob mentality to take over. And some of these mobs will begin seeking vengeance on any- one or any establishment they feel has wronged them. Banks, and government buildings, courthouses or any per- ceived seat of authority will be the most obvious targets of opportunity. Anyone still inside those buildings will be in serious danger. Consider the recent events in Greece, where four Athens bank employees – one of them a preg- nant woman – were beaten and then burned alive in their bank building. Why? Because there were riots in all major Greek cities over a proposed ‘austerity program.’ Imagine that. But you don’t have to imagine it, because it’s true. So what about banks? If you think that they’ve got lots of cash, and that you can get some or all of yours, you would be wrong. And here’s why:

2. Banks:

Banks today don’t have anywhere nearly enough currency
on hand to sustain a bank run, much less the outcomes of a declaration of a ‘bank holiday’. Unlike retail stores, most major financial institutions have contingency plans to shut down the instant they are told to do so – and yes, they will be told to do so in no uncertain terms by the 0bama regime. Within minutes, and all across America, ATM ma- chines will be offline, credit card and debit card terminals will become unresponsive. Banks and credit unions will close their vaults, lock their doors, and their personnel will be hastily dismissed from the premises, except perhaps for some special security guards. Telephone inquiries to any of the financial institutions will be automatically answered by a computer with a pre-recorded message similar to the fol- lowing: “Our system is currently experiencing an extremely high call volume and therefore we are unable to answer your call at this time. Please try again later when our call volume returns to normal.” Bank web sites will become un- responsive and otherwise unavailable. Bottom line: you will NOT have access to your money or to the contents of your safety deposit boxes. Period. Neither will anyone else. Now is the time to ponder the implications of that last state- ment and to prepare accordingly. To put it bluntly, if you’re one of those people who live off their credit/debit cards, you are screwed. Again, if you happen to be on bank prem- ises when the deal goes down, leave immediately and head
home or to your pre-arranged rendezvous point. Because it’ll get ugly even more quickly inside the bank. It’ll take only 15-30 minutes before an angry mob begins to gather outside the bank. And that’s no place for you.

3. Gas stations:

Most people today don’t remember the Mid-East oil cri-
sis of the 1970s (thanks for the memories, Jimmy Carter),
or the long lines that developed when gasoline and other fuels ran short. For the most part, though, we behaved our- selves. That will not be the case today. Most gas stations will close in fairly short order, and there will be a run on fuel. The stations that remain open will immediately shift to a cash-only, high-dollar basis, and you can just imagine how that’ll affect those who live on their plastic cards. Thus, the scenes in the lines waiting to get to the now-closed pumps will quickly devolve into something… unpleasant. This why you must never, never let your gas tank go below half-full, and why you must always carry at least $100 in cash. That
$100 may only buy you five gallons or perhaps even just one in those circumstances, but that’s more than you’d have otherwise. It’s best not to be in that position in the first place. You need to be able to pass those gas stations by if you can.

4. Government offices:

The vast majority of our government leaders all over the
world are relatively intelligent individuals – despite all evi- dence to the contrary. Perhaps it’s more accurate to say that they are cunning individuals, which is not the same thing as intelligence. If nothing else, they are possessed of a keen sense of self-interest and self-preservation. In any case, they completely understand the ramifications of a “bank holiday” in our electronically-based financial economy and what it might mean for their continued safety. They also hold ordinary people like you and me in complete and total contempt. Therefore, government offices will also be im- mediately shut down, and those in charge will empty their buildings and lock their doors. Any transaction in progress, including any trials or other legal proceedings, will halt and will be ’postponed until some future date’. High-level gov- ernment officials, including judges and especially tax offi- cials, will immediately begin to make their way to imagined places of safety. In any case, government offices will go into a ‘lockdown’ mode. If you happen to be in or near one of these places, get out as quickly as you can. They will soon become targets for retribution and retaliation along with anyone unfortunate enough to be there.

5. Criminals:

Anyone and everyone who has criminal tendencies will see
civil disorder as a golden opportunity to improve their situ-
ation. More than likely, some of these criminals have al-

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ready made detailed plans that include exactly which busi- nesses they are going to hit first, second, third, and so on. We don’t think that way – but they do. Any business with a reasonable level of cash-on-hand will be very high on ev- ery criminal’s list. Every jewelry store and pawn shop that has any type of silver or gold coins or jewelry, or precious stones (diamonds, rubies, emeralds, etc.) will be very high on everyone’s list, along with stores that sell firearms and ammunition. The warfare that breaks out at these estab- lishments between competing criminals and/or gangs will be vicious and brutal beyond belief. You don’t want to be anywhere near these places.

6. Normal People:

The ethical and moral constraints binding regular folks
will fall away fairly quickly – desperation and lack of un- derstanding does odd things to people. Especially the un- prepared ones who suddenly realize that they are well and truly screwed. It won’t take long before some average peo- ple panic and begin to loot and to engage in the most des- perate sort of mayhem. Grocery stores will be completely emptied from wall-to-wall, including the rear storage area within a few hours or less. Stores that sell firearms, ammu- nition, appliances, clothing, shoes, or anything else the av- erage citizen thinks they need will be stripped in less than an hour. As targets of looting opportunity diminish, it won’t take long for fighting to begin over the few remaining re- sources. Many who have lost their jobs, their vehicles, their homes, and their life savings will now have nothing more to lose by seeking some form of retribution against the society that they believe has taken everything away from them. Everyone who felt they got a raw deal from a traffic cop will be in a very unpleasant mood. Everyone who has had their property taxes increased at the same time their income AND the value of their home decreased will not be in a good mood. Everyone who has had their credit card in- terest rate increased at the same time their employer was reducing the number of hours they worked each week will not be in a good mood. Everyone who has been reduced from a two-family income down to a one-family income or less will not be in a good mood. Everyone who lost their job because their employer went bankrupt will not be in a good mood. This will not be a good time to engage any of these folks in a conversation.

7. The Entitled Classes:

There is no lack of people who have been just barely sur-
viving in a situation where they were living hand-to-mouth
on government welfare or the charity of the local commu- nity (unemployment checks, welfare checks, food stamps, food banks, etc.). You probably know some of these folks yourself. Most of them have made absolutely NO prepara- tion for a calamity of the type that we have been discuss- ing. They will not have any extended stores of provisions,

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fuel, water, etc. The instant it dawns on them that there will be no more government welfare or charity, then these individuals will have no hope for survival unless they are able to immediately acquire the food and other resourc- es they need before it is all gone. This will be particular- ly true for what we have come to know as the inner-city
‘entitled classes.’ Anyone who tries to stand in their way, or who tries to reason with them will find that their own life will become nasty, brutish and short. And once they’ve reduced their cities into wastelands and slaughterhouses, they’ll come boiling out of those urban areas and into the countryside looking for fresh ‘opportunities’ - that being you and yours and your carefully managed preparations. There will be only one way to deal with them. Best to have your neighborhood ‘un-welcoming committee’ on 24/7 watch. But that’s an entirely different subject.

8. Revolutionary Wanna-bes:

This lot can be dangerous. Most of them are ignorant
sheep, but there’s an edgy, violent side to some of them. The events that follow the One Hour Meltdown will pres- ent an opportunity for the more megalomaniac and messi- anic of the bunch to act out their savage revolutionary fan- tasies. Think Occupy [where-ever] on meth. Come to think of it, many of them will be. Who will be among their targets of choice? You will. Because you drive a decent car. Or wear decent clothes. Or have nice shoes. Or have an iPod or an iPad. Or are seen coming out of a building housing one of their hated businesses. Or just because it’s Tuesday. After a while, the excuses and the justifications fall by the wayside and savagery rules the day. Very, very bad for you unless you’re either already gone or are prepared to deal with them in the only way they can - and should - be dealt with.

The upshot is: The only resources that you’ll be able to count on when things become… unpleasant are the ones you’ll have with you. It’s your choice to be prepared and to have a chance to live through this – or not, and have no chance at all.

Now what?

Time to think the unthinkable.

If you have not previously thought about the above sce-
narios, or if you are not intellectually and emotionally pre-
pared to deal with it, then the chances are not very good

for your long-term survival. Let me say that again: If you have not previously thought about the above scenario, or if you are not intellectually and emotionally prepared to deal with it, then the chances are not very good for your long- term survival. In other words, you and anyone depending on you are going to wind up dead - or worse (yes, there’s


worse than dead) - and in fairly short order unless you are phenomenally lucky. Many of the above events will hap- pen simultaneously during the first hour of the crisis. After that first hour has passed, then things will begin to get re- ally nasty. It will begin to dawn on folks that there are not enough law enforcement personnel to protect everyone and everything. In fact, a sizeable percentage of law en- forcement personnel will think of family first and the rest of us as a very distant second priority – if they even bother to think of us at all. Remember – most police hold us ‘civil- ians’ in contempt. Although the military will probably be ordered to protect specific high priority/high value estab- lishments and resources, there will simply not be enough military personnel to protect individual civilians, neighbor- hoods or businesses. In any case, you simply don’t want to be anywhere near these places and situations. You’ll have to be mentally, emotionally and physically prepared to get away from them and fast. Plan in advance to have a safe place to go (preferably more than one) or a rendezvous with others for mutual support. And have more than one plan.
The Best Defense. Your best defense against catastrophe is to PAY ATTENTION! Take those iPod plugs out of your ears, you fool! Self-absorption in trivialities will get you killed at a time when immediate and decisive action is called for. No one has a crystal ball, but keeping a ”weather eye” out for trouble is just pure common sense. Now, if all of this seems like too much trouble, then ask yourself a simple question: what’s your life worth? Or the lives of your loved ones? If you choose not to consider this question and its implications out of fear, or out of scorn for what you be- lieve is unthinkable, or if it all seems like too much work, or if you’re simply in denial about the events happening around you, then you’ve sold your life and theirs cheap. And believe me, there will be many, many who will do just that. If you’re reading this, then you’ve taken the first step towards not being ‘that guy’. Don’t be ‘that guy’. Do you want to live? Decide now.

Get Out of Dodge!

So here’s your picture: Everyone – and I mean everyone should have within reach a kit that will help them to leave wherever they are and proceed to a place of relative safe- ty. DO NOT stick around to see what happens once things start to get dodgy. There will be no neutral spectators in this game. In fact, if you’re watchful and prudent, you won’t even show them your taillights before the party gets started. If you have planned well (and you do have a plan, don’t you?), then you will have a fighting chance to make your way home or to your rally point. To accomplish that in relative comfort and safety, you’ll need something more than a bag of Doritos and your car keys. You’ll need a Get
Out Of Dodge kit. This is at its most fundamental, a bag of food, water and gear that’ll sustain you for three days
‘in the field.’ Most of the gear used to build these kits is off-the-shelf and relatively cheap. You’ll be out about $300
- $600 for a complete kit, minus weapons and ammunition. Cheap insurance, any way you look at it. Check out Cabe- la’s, CheaperThanDirt.com and SportsMansGuide.com for
the best deals.

So ask yourself: what are you going to do when and if

Civil unrest / breakdown occurs.
Communications go down. The recent flash mob phenom- enon just about guarantees that cell phone services will be shut down by the authorities.
Law and order becomes sporadic or non-existent. Remem- ber: even in the best of times, when seconds count, the police are only minutes away.
You have to fight to preserve your own life or protect oth-
ers’ lives in order to get where you’re going.
You have to abandon your vehicle in the face of mobs or roadblocks.
You have to walk to a prearranged safe place or rendez-
vous/rally point.
You need to move quickly and not ‘camp out’. Rest, yes. Camp, no.
The weather may not be your friend – hot, cold, wet, snowy. Prepare accordingly.

What’s your plan?

As I’ve said, you’re going to have to get the hell out of Dodge, and quickly, too. That’s what you’re going to have to do. And to do that, you’re going to have to be prepared with the means to sustain yourself for at least three days
‘in the field’. Now, if you’re lucky, AND you’ve been paying attention, then you’ll be able to quietly get up from your workplace, excuse yourself and drive home without inci- dent. But don’t plan on it.

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Why Do it This Way?

This is a layered approach, with duplication of key items at every layer where practical. Strategy for this assumes that you may lose your backpack and/or your sling bag. Or that you may not have time to suit up, and that you can only grab your sling bag and/or backpack and weapons. Yes, I said weapons. How do you plan to deter thugs or other riff-raff who are intent on robbing and killing you? Or worse (yes, there’s worse). Harsh language? The voice of sweet reason? Get real. Don’t kid yourself.

Some key points follow:

Be Good to Your Feet

When it comes to your feet, you must treat them as royalty. So

think: can I run, climb, fight and walk long distances with what I have on my feet right now? If the answer is no to any of these questions, you may be – no, you WILL BE in for a world of hurt. In fact, under

the scenario outlined above, you will probably be dead sooner rather than later. You’ve got to be able to move away from trouble as quickly as you can. Your every-day footwear should be a pair of decent hiking shoes or durable shoes in case you can’t put your boots on in time. Boots with puncture-proof soles could save your life. You do have good, broken-in boots or durable footwear for the current season, don’t you? If not, get some NOW and break ‘em in.

A Word for Womenfolk

Yeah, I know – the shoe thing. But here’s the cold, hard, immutable truth: in a bad situation, those flip flops, Jimmy Choos or Manolo Blahniks will get you killed. Why? Because you will not be able to do the things that you absolutely must be able to do when things get ugly: specifically, run, climb, fight and walk long distances in those cute, but now worse-than-useless shoes. Without question, you will be a liability to yourself and to anyone you’re with if you don’t have sturdy, well broken-in footwear. The term ‘fashion victim’ takes on a whole new meaning here, doesn’t it? Don’t be one.

Figure 1 - Men's Bates infantry boots - about $80

Figure 2 - Women's Bates side-zip duty boots - about $80

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Protect Your Eyes.

If you’re near an outbreak of civil disorder, the air will soon become filled with debris and other unpleasant things. As I mentioned earlier, gunfire will shatter glass and send it flying, and impact with masonry will spall shards and splinters of material everywhere. Get hit in your eyes with anything like that, and you’ll be blind, perhaps permanently. If you can’t see, you can’t fight, flee or do much of anything that you’ll need to do in order to stay alive. Ordinary glasses, if you wear them, offer better-than-nothing protection for your eyes, but not much else. So don’t rely on them. It will be worth your while and your eyes – and perhaps your life – to acquire an inexpensive set of eye protection. It’s a common industrial item, readily available. Better still, get a set of protective goggles like the ones used by our troops in Iraq - they are also less than $20, and will accommodate most eyeglass wearers. See to live – and live to see.

Figure 3 - GI Issue Sun, Wind and Dust Goggles –

about $20

Be Good to Your Hands

Most people don’t think of this. You need good gloves in order to

protect your hands. Here’s why:

One of the by-products of civil unrest is rubble, broken glass and large quantities of other debris. All of which can turn your hands into hamburger in fairly short order when you come into contact with it. And you WILL come into contact with it. Why? Think about it – you’re almost certainly to have to make your way through areas that have taken the brunt of destruction from a variety of sources. This means that you’re going to have to climb, crawl, and go prone or otherwise come into contact with your environment. If you’re in an urban area experiencing civil unrest, storefronts, office buildings and vehicle windshields will generate an astonishing amount of broken glass, jagged metal shards and other debris in fairly short order. Gunfire will spall sharp hand-shredding, foot-puncturing, eye-blinding shards of concrete, masonry and other debris everywhere. If heavy weapons come into play, this destruction and its accompanying rubble will be even greater, deadlier and even more widespread.

The point of this is that good, durable gloves that allow you both dexterity and protection are absolutely essential, no matter what the season. Cost – about $30-$40 for a good set of Kevlar-constructed gloves. The ones shown in figure 4 are a bit more, as they also incorporate hardened knuckle protection.

Cold weather calls for a warmer glove, but leaves you with the problem of weapons handling. Experiment until you find a glove that keeps your fingers warm but allows you enough freedom of movement and sensitivity to hand le tools and weapons.

Knees and elbows next.

Figure 4 - BlackHawk Fury Comando HD Gloves –

about $60

These are warm weather gloves. Use a variant with Thinsulate Insulation for colder weather. Make sure that you can handle all of your gear, especially weapons, with gloves on.

Figure 5 - Frabill® Performance Task Gloves about

$36

A less expensive, but still highly functional pair of gloves. DPoang’et 9 of 32 compromise by going cheaper.

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Be Good to Your Knees and Elbows.

Most of us never think of having to protect these indispensable parts of our anatomy. If you ever have to kneel, crawl or go prone in gravel, broken glass or riot debris, you’ll be very sorry indeed if you don’t have some sort of protection for your knees and elbows. The first time you spend some time firing a rifle in the prone position out in the field, you’ll immediately understand the issue. Knee and elbow protectors are pretty inexpensive, and you should find those that will match the clothing you’re wearing. And get them on immediately as part of your dress-out/load-out routine. You may not get a chance later. You’ll

have a huge edge where others won’t. And in some circumstances,

you could even make broken glass and other debris work in your favor to discourage unwanted company from following you. Be creative.

Figure 6 - Tru-Spec Tactical Elbow

Pads Nylon Polymer – about $15

First layer – Combat Uniform or Inconspicuous

Durable Clothing

You may or may not wish to put on BDUs (Battle Dress Uniform) depending upon the circumstances. If you’re going to remain in an urban area (very bad idea, BTW), or wish to escape from one (a very good idea), dark or gray inconspicuous clothing may be best. Even the latest digital Army camo can stand out if no one else is wearing it.

You want to be as inconspicuous as you can be in whatever environment you find yourself. The important thing is to have comfortable, durable clothing that can take some abuse and that you can wear for days.

For example, Carhartt makes very sturdy double-fronted work jeans that wear very, very well, and come in colors that will blend a variety of environments. Usually about $40. Irregulars can be had on sale for about $10-$15 less.

Filson makes expensive but incredibly tough outdoor clothing. Filson’s what you buy if you only want to buy it once. “Might as well have the best,” is their motto and it also should be yours.

Figure 7- Carhartt double front loggers jeans

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For another example, the Outback Trading Company Long Unlined Drover (or duster) is tough and durable with an oilskin shell. Wearable in all but the hottest weather and with a wool liner for colder weather, this will keep you dry, cut the wind and offer

concealment for short rifles, shotguns and other weapons. The length will tend to keep your legs from getting soaked in windy, rainy weather. Available from Cabela’s, it’s gotten great reviews. Check it out. About $130. Not cheap, but it is definitely worth the money.

Filson offers first-rate outdoor clothing. As I mentioned before, their motto is, “Might as well have the best.” And they’re not kidding. Not cheap, either

Their Shelter Cloth Duster shown below can be configured with a hood and various weights of zip-in liners. It’s the last outdoor coat you’ll ever buy. www.filson.com

In general, dark(er) clothing will serve you well in an urban

environment. But don’t go for dead black. Black stands out more

than you might believe, ninja stories notwithstanding. Flat grays, olive drabs and tan/khaki work pretty well. In fact, grayish clothing may be one of the best choices for an urban environment. Bright colors or otherwise shiny fabrics are right out – unless you want to look like a target.

Some tactical clothing manufacturers make inconspicuous pants with inserts for kneepads – well worth checking out. If you ever have to kneel or crawl on gravel, debris or broken glass – and you almost certainly will at some point in a civil unrest scenario - you’ll be very glad you had this particular fashion accessory. Same goes for your elbows. Get protection for these important parts of your body.

Figure 8 - Outback Unlined drover coat.

About $130.

Filson Tin Cloth Packer coat – extra- long - about $320

I own this one - tough as nails and supremely comfortable.

Filson Shelter Cloth Duster coat – about $350

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For full-up combat dress, I prefer 80’s era Swiss Alpenflage. This is what works for my area. Cheap and readily available (or used to be), works great for the inland Pacific NW environment. The important thing is to rig for your area and circumstances.

Again, I strongly recommend good, well broken-in boots with puncture-proof steel shank soles (for reasons we’ve already discussed) and a PASGT helmet with appropriate cover. A good helmet will save your life – without one you stand an excellent chance of becoming another piece of bio-degradable scenery. You can somewhat conceal the fact that you’re wearing one by flipping the hood of your coat or poncho over it. There’s plenty of PASGT gear on eBay if you don’t have a local source. Avoid the stuff with bullet holes in it, though. Probably bad luck. So think it through

and wear what will work for your environment and will help to reduce your profile.

Figure 12 - PASGT helmet without cover - around $70-$90 on eBay

Figure 9 - Alpenflage combat blouse

Figure 10 - Alpenflage combat pants

Figure 11 - Swiss Alpenflage. 80s era camo gear.

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First Layer - combat uniform pocket contents

Assume that you may not be able to reach your bug-out bags. Assume that you may lose one or both of them for one reason or another. Then, whatever you have in your pockets is what you’ll have.

1. Strike-anywhere matches. Best to put them in a waterproof case. UCO Stormproof Matches are the best matches available for harsh conditions. Each match burns for about 15 seconds even if it is windy, rainy, or cold. The matches even burn underwater. Extra strikers are included.

Figure 13 – Strike anywhere matches

2. Fire Starter. BlastMatch with tinder of some sort. Yes, it’s redundant, but you can’t have too many ways to make a fire. WetFire Tinder is one of the best fire- starting materials available to help you get a blaze going even in a downpour! They extinguish instantly leaving no residue, odor, or smoke. 8 Cubes burn for

12 minutes each.

Figure 15 - WetFire tinder

Figure 14 - Blastmatch fire starter



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3. Maps. Topo maps or even Jeppesen charts (standard aviation charts) are very useful. Create a custom Google or Bing map of your E&E routes. If you do, then laminate them for durability and to make them waterproof. You DO have more than one escape route worked out, don’t you?

4. Compass. In a worst case scenario, you may not be able to rely upon a GPS device. Learn how to follow a compass bearing. With this knowledge, you can guide yourself through thickly forested areas, featureless winter landscapes, foggy and/or overgrown areas, etc. An orienteering class or two will put this knowledge in practical focus.

Figure 16 - Standard military compass

5. LED Flashlight and extra batteries. Use what works best for you. Carry at least two. Most run on 3 AAA batteries. You should also consider the use of a headlamp. There are times when having both hands free AND having a light source directed at your work can literally be a life-saver.

I like the Streamlight Trident® Headlamp. It has 3 different beam options including a powerful 300 mA Xenon bi-pin bulb for 18 lumens, 2 standard white

LEDs and 1 safety green LED for low light work. This is

the gold standard of headlamps and it’s a lifesaver. About $25 at www.sportsmansguide.com

 300 mA xenon bi-pin bulb (18 lumens), plus 2 100,000-hour life LEDs (24 lumens) and 1 safety green LED

 3-position lighting: xenon bulb, 1 safety green LED, 2 white

LEDs

 Spot to flood focus

 Adjustable elastic head strap and rubber hard hat strap

 90 degrees tilting head

 Durable compact ABS body

 Powered by 3 AAA alkaline batteries run up to 150 hrs

(single LED)

Figure 17 – Life Gear LED flashlights – 80 lumens – about $25 for 2 from Costco. Sold in 2, 3, and 4 pack units. Good quality.

Figure 18 – Streamlight Trident® Headlamp

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6. Energy bars. Easy to consume on the go. Always have something like this in your pockets. Forget the low-fat stuff. You’re going to need the calories, and this is no time to diet. Stuff 2-4 of these in your pockets. Wrap them in a zip-lock or two to protect them. The zip- locks themselves are useful items.

A reviewer at Amazon.com had the following to say about the Pemmican bar shown here in Figure 19a:

“This product will keep you alive. Significant calorie

count. Fairly high carb/protein ratio for energy.

Oddly nice, mild taste; reminiscent of fruit cake. 10g

(40% daily) of fiber! It will power through your digestive system with the inexorable force of a fruit-

n'-nut-flavored glacier. You know that saying about

the bear doing something in the woods? That'll be

you. Not a bad thing, just keep it in mind.”

I happen to like these, and I can tell you from direct and personal experience that they’ll keep for a very long time.

Figure 19 - Millennium Energy Bars - 400 calories each

Figure 19a - Pemmican energy bars - 12 pack about $21.00/12 at Amazon.com

7. Extra Clothing Layer. Refer to the Outback duster mentioned previously. Failing that, or if local weather conditions make such gear impractical, consider a poncho and/or a parka. You could even use a Mylar emergency blanket or even a 3 mil contractor’s bag in a pinch. Naturally, this is all area / climate /

season specific. A light poncho will fold up into one of your pockets. So will an extra pair of socks in a waterproof bag, and those could be a lifesaver because they may save your feet at some point. Remember – even at the height of summer, it can still get coolish-cold at night, even in the desert and especially in the northern tier of states and/or latitudes. If you stop to rest, you’ve got to keep warm, even if it’s not wise to make a fire at the time.


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8. Gloves. Save your hands. You need to be able to use your hands. This means protecting them from the elements and from hard use. Make sure your winter gloves will do what they are supposed to do AND allow you enough dexterity to use your weapons effectively. Lightweight gloves for summer, warm ones for winter.

Give serious thought to investing a bit extra to get gloves with plastic knuckle protectors. .

Figure 20 – Frabill® Performance Task Gloves –

warm weather only.

9. Knee and elbow pads. Save your knees and elbows.

Cuts, abrasions and other light injuries can quickly become infected. You don’t want that.

Figure 22 - Elbow pads

Figure 21 - Knee pads

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10. Sunglasses / goggles. Save your eyes. Look for shatter- proof lenses. Prescription if you need them. Some combat style goggles allow for glasses or other eyewear, but I assure you that it is not comfortable.

Figure 23 - Wiley sunglasses

Figure 24 - US military issue combat eye protection

11.Individual First Aid Kit (IFAK). Carry basic first aid supplies such as sterile gauze and pads, Band-Aids, moleskin (always, always protect your feet), quickclot bandage, etc. Be sure to include some sort of eyewash like Visine. A small kit of the basics will fit in one of

your pockets. You get the picture. Be smart and take a

first aid course or two at your local community college

– the knowledge you gain can literally be a life saver for you and others. The one shown here will fit in a cargo pants pocket. A typical IFAK might contain:

 EMT shears (very important – should be in the top of the kit, as you’ll need them to cut away clothing to get to a wound)

 Tweezers (again, top of the kit)

 Eye Patch Dressing

 4” Israeli Battle Dressing – HIGHLY recommended

 Quickclot powder

 Water Purification Tablets

 SuperGlue (refresh often – great for closing cuts)

 Disinfectant – betadyne or hydrogen peroxide

 Lip Balm

 Muslin for bandage, wrap or sling (2)

 Tampons – great for gunshot wounds

 Moleskin – lots of moleskin

Assorted Adhesive Bandages (10)

Figure 25 - Individual First Aid Kit (IFAK)














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12. Knife / multi-tool. Preferably one of each. An extra knife on a lanyard around your neck or clipped to an inner pocket is good insurance. You can’t have too many knives. Carry at least one knife heavy enough for fighting and light shelter construction.

Figure 26 - CRKT folder with clip

Figure 27 - Remington 1911 Multi Tool Black

13. A pair of heavy lineman’s pliers/wire-cutters. This tool will handle situations that are beyond the capabilities of your multi-tool. Very useful for getting through obstacles like small chain link or wire fence. Can also be used to make obstacles and traps out of heavy gauge wire. Be creative and think out of the box.

Figure 28 - Irwin 7" lineman's pliers/wire cutters



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14. Water. Do not allow yourself to get dehydrated!

Adopt/adapt your water carrier for your

circumstances. You should have a pouch or space for a Camelback-style water bladder. Best thing to do is to keep a gallon jug of fresh water in your kit so that you can fill your water bladder(s) or bottle(s) on the spot before you depart. You don’t want to keep water in your canteen / water bladder for an extended length

of time. So you can keep your main water supply fresh by dumping the jug once a week and refilling it with fresh.

Water purification. Clean water is a must! But you won’t always be able to count on having it handy and clean. One of the best products I’ve encountered is the Polar Pure water disinfectant system. Compact, effective and inexpensive. One unit will treat 2000 quarts of water. Available on Amazon.com. Get several. You won’t be good for much if you’re blowing your guts out of both ends. Caveat: the Polar Pure iodine-based system and others like it are of limited value against protozoa cysts. Cryptosporidium in particular is resistant to halogen treatments. You may need to pre-filter your water before you treat it – depends on your operating area.

Figure 29 -100 oz water bladder

15. Ammunition. At least one full rifle mag and one pistol mag. Dedicate a secure pocket for one of each of these. One is better than none. Most pistol rigs will have places for an extra magazine or two.


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NOTE: There’s a small emergency kit that works very well and can be modified for your own use. About $60, it is waterproof and fits nicely in cargo pants or BDU pockets. This kit measures 6-1/2" x 3-7/8" x 1-5/8" and comes with the following items:

BlastMatch fire starter WetFire tinder StarFlash signal mirror JetScream whistle SaberCut saw

HardCache carrying case

I would be inclined to lose the mirror and the whistle, as you’re not going to be interested in advertising your whereabouts in the sort of situations we’re contemplating here. Substitute water purification tablets and/or more tinder or small first aid items for the mirror and the whistle. Add a Smith’s PP1 pocket sharpener for less than $10.

My version of this kit has the following items packed in the

HardCache carrying case:

BlastMatch fire starter

WetFire tinder

Trioxane bar (burns nicely with little or no smoke)

Small Gerber clip knife

Small LED flashlight (single AA battery)

SaberCut saw

Mylar emergency blanket

20 lb fishing line – good for repairs or traps

A word about the SabreCut saw: It sells for about $25 and is essentially a chain saw in your pocket. Check out Amazon.com for user reviews. It’s truly amazing how well this works.

Nice package for a single cargo pocket. If you can afford it, add one to your sling bag, too.

You can get it here:

http://www.cheaperthandirt.com/CAMP224-1.html

Figure 30 - Compact emergency survival kit

Figure 31 – Smiths PP1 pocket sharpener

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Extras if you’ve got the pockets or the inclination:

1. Small radio w/extra batteries. Why carry a radio?

Because your cell phone may become unusable in fairly short order. Or worse, your cell phone may serve as a means for people who are not your friends to locate you. Look for a 22+ mile range GMRS/NOAA weather combo. If you’ve made arrangements with others to meet up, that type of radio can be invaluable. Be secure about using one, though. Learn its use and its useable range in advance. Practice.

2. 25-50 ft of parachute cord. Whatever and wherever it fits. Very, very useful. That cord, some branches and your poncho or a couple of 3 mil contractors’ bags can construct a decent impromptu shelter. Which could be a life-saver for you or someone else.

Figure 31 - Midland GMRS radio set - about $60

I’ve left off fishing kit - but not fishing line - and items like that because you’re probably not going to have the time for fishing and in any case, you have room for that sort of thing in either your sling bag or your small backpack if you really must have it.

Practice and test. Finally, when you’ve got that all together, field test it. See how fast you can get it all on, boots and helmet included. Speed counts, and in a tense situation, your training here will definitely pay off. Do it again and again. Then do it at least once a week. Walk, trot, run and see what rattles. Quiet the rattles. Then roll down an embankment, throw yourself down flat, tumble if you’re capable and see what you’ve got left. Fix what you have to. Walk, trot, run. Still quiet? Still have everything? Good.

Break in Your Boots! I’ll say this again - you’ve got to be kind to your feet. The time you are obliged to take a 40 mile trek home is NOT the time to break in your boots, or to find out where the problem areas are. Break them in with all the gear you’re going to carry. And carry moleskin for blisters. Lots of moleskin.

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Second Layer – Sling Bag

The sling bags / messenger bags offered by places like Cheaper Than Dirt and Sportsman’s Guide are great. They’re light, easily snatched up, relatively inconspicuous and the contents will afford you an extra day or two of operation in the field. Plenty of MOLLE webbing attachments for your customization pleasure, but don’t overload it or bulk it out.

The premise is that even if you don’t have time to suit up, you can still grab your weapons and sling bag and make a decent go of it. Yet you want stuff handy if you must fight. I wear mine on the left, since I’m a right- hander. The one I use also has a waist strap to keep it from flapping in the breeze – I consider that essential.

To a certain extent, I replicate the items listed for in the bag and the list below reflects that. But it differs in some details and sports a few additions. Ammo, for instance. I hang a 3 mag pouch hanging on the exterior front strap for my AR carbine, and there’s more ammo and an extra full rifle and pistol magazine in the bag. Again, you’re not looking to camp out – you want to keep moving towards your destination. Rest, but don’t set up housekeeping. Even if this is all you can grab, then you have greatly improved your odds.

Some survival advocates are big on chest rigs. And for good reason. Once you’ve ‘gone to ground,’ then a full-on combat rig is a very good idea, for all the reasons that the military like them. I have one myself. But not for a bug-out situation where you’d like to be as unremarkable as is practical. A loaded chest rig says that you’re ready for a fight. An individual with a full load-out chest rig is going to attract unwanted attention, and our goal here is to remain as inconspicuous as possible. A guy in a long coat with a sling bag and a small backpack won’t look as

immediately threatening as a guy in full-up combat gear. If you’re smart, you’ll keep your carbine or shotgun slung under your coat, but in such a manner that you can be ‘at the ready’ when circumstances call for it. Looking like just another scared refugee can work to your advantage.

No point in giving the game away if you don’t have to.

Figure 32 - Messenger bag with MOLLE

attachment base


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Second Layer - Sling Bag Contents

Try your best to leave with at least the contents of your pockets as discussed above and your sling bag. If you’ve gotten your co-workers used to seeing you with it, then you’re far more likely to have it at your side when it comes time to beat feet.

1. Strike-anywhere matches in a waterproof case.

2. Fire Starter. BlastMatch with tinder of some sort.

3. Maps. Same as above

4. Compass. Yep, another one.

5. LED Flashlight and extra batteries. Where practical, your radio, flashlight and any other electronic device you might carry will all use the same batteries. Still, you’re probably going to wind up with a combination of AAA and AA batteries.

6. MRE of your choice. A good hot meal (some familiar with MREs may dispute even the possibility) can make a big difference to your outlook. Even the (ugh) omelet ones. Make sure that your MRE comes with a heater. Not all of them do.

7. Energy bar(s). Something to eat on the go. Forget diet stuff – you’re eating to live, and you’re going

to be burning a lot of calories while on the move.

8. Extra Clothing Layer. Same as above. Don’t forget those socks!

9. Extra pair of season-appropriate, durable gloves. If you need them, you’ll be very sorry if you don’t

have them.

10. Contractor’s bag(s). Throw in a couple of these 3 mil bags if you have room and they don’t take much.

Makes a great emergency shelter and/or an impromptu poncho. Use one to catch rainwater. Lots of other uses.

11. Sunglasses AND regular glasses. For those of us who need glasses, the investment in an extra pair of each could be a life-saver. The messenger bag version of the sling bag accommodates glasses in hard cases nicely. In any case, make sure that you have some sort of eye protection.

12. Binoculars. No need to explain why you might want this. Compact, decent quality and easy to get to.

Hang ‘em in their case on your sling bag strap.

13. First Aid Kit. Carry additional first aid items as mentioned above. Another compact IFAK will do nicely.

14. Knife / multi-tool. Preferably one of each. Again. You can’t have too many knives.

15. Fishing line. Small spool of 20 # test line. Useful for making alerts or making repairs.

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16. Empty Water container. You can fill it later. It’ll add to the one on/in your backpack or on your belt.

17. Water purification system. Now, you’re up to two of them. Lose one, you’ve still got one.

18. Rifle / pistol mag. Full, and one of each. They’ll be inside the pack along with as much extra ammo on strippers as you deem fit or have room. Don’t overload it, though.

19. Rifle ammo on strippers. .223 / 5.56 mm doesn’t take up that much room and you can probably carry an extra 2 or 3 magazines worth. Remember to include a couple of extra stripper guides. Wear one around your neck; keep the other in a zipper compartment in the bag.

20. Rifle mag pouch. Hang this in an easy-to-get-to place on the outside of the bag. Most will hold three AR-style mags. The fundamental thought here is that you should carry as much ammo as you comfortably can. You’ll burn through it quickly in a firefight.

Again, practice and test. Same as above. Still have everything? Still quiet? Good.

Third Layer – Small Backpack

Cheaper Than Dirt and Sportsman’s Guide offer some nice compact backpacks. I like the Level III assault pack. It’s big enough to hold more of what you need for an extra two or three days in the field, expands your available food and ammo, provides for a change of socks, underwear and t-shirt, insect repellent, a small folding shovel, a mess kit and a hydration pack. I include a small camping stove like the foldable pocket cooker shown here - $13 from http://www.sportsmansguide.com/:

Figure 33 - Level III Assault Pack

Figure 34 - folding pocket cooker

Very compact, burns any fuel, although trioxane bars or military fuel

tabs don’t give off smoke. Combined with a small mess kit and a tin

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cup, you can produce hot food and drink very quickly. Well worth the carry weight.

Personal hygiene stuff. Depending upon what you feel like stuffing in there, you can add a waterproof bag with a small towel and some baby wipes. Yes, baby wipes. Ask any of our troops who have been in the field overseas and they’ll tell you that they’re indispensable for staying clean in tough environments. Getting clean is a real morale booster – don’t overlook it. A small traveler’s toothbrush with a small tube of toothpaste and a disposable razor and a small bar of soap are all items that can do wonders for your outlook. But don’t go for a big fat backpack that’ll hold everything including the kitchen sink. You want to stay light on your feet and to be able to move fast. Can’t do that with a big monkey on your back.

Again, practice and test. Same as above. Still have everything? Still quiet?

Weaponry

When things get dicey, don’t assume that you’re going to just drive off or stroll home without incident. The longer you remain in troubled areas, the harder it’s going to be to avoid a fight. A rifle, a pistol and a good fighting knife (that is, a knife that you actually know how to fight with) are essentials. The sane among us know that the last thing you want to do is to get into a firefight – or any kind of fight for that matter. But if you do, you want to have a chance to prevail. Again, carry ONLY what you know how to use. Otherwise it’s likely to be taken away and used against you. You don’t want that.

This will be no time for on-the-job training. If you don’t have the skills AND the mind set to kill your opponents without hesitation, take a practical martial arts class of some sort (NOT tai chi, dammit – try Krav Maga or Kung Fu San Soo) and get thee to an Appleseed event taco pronto to learn how to shoot like a rifleman. www.appleseedinfo.org. Follow that with a practical self-defense pistol course.

Here’s the thing: none of this is worth a damn if you aren’t prepared to use it. And it’s not just a matter of skill. It’s your willingness to incapacitate and kill your opponent as quickly as you can. Short, brutal and nasty. Do you want to live? Decide now. If the answer is ‘yes,’ then you’ve got a chance. If the answer is ‘no,’ then you won’t be going home.

As for weapons, everyone’s got an opinion – so I’ll just tell you what I pack and why.

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1. Rifle. M4 carbine or equivalent. Decent ones are round $750 in ‘plain Jane’ configurations. Light, compact, accurate within reason and you can carry lots of 5.56mm ammo. I carry many loaded magazines – one in the rifle with another taped to it, three in a quick-access pouch on the sling bag, one inside it and two more in the backpack. Plus more ammo on strippers for a total load-out of

420 rounds. My rifle’s in a soft padded case with a sling, so I can carry it in a slightly more inconspicuous fashion during the initial part of my journey out of my semi-industrial work area. You can customize this kind of rifle to your heart’s content. My recommendation: keep it simple. It’s more important to learn to shoot like a rifleman over iron sights and to maintain the skills than

to play with accessories or to drop big bucks on fancy optics that will either approximate or exceed

the value of the rifle.

The Appleseed program (www.appleseedinfo.org ) will be the best weekend you and your rifle will ever spend. And it can - no, it will - save your life.

Figure 35- my AR15 carbine with sling


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2. Pistol. Glock mod 20 (10mm) with one 15 round mag in the pistol, two in the carry rig, one in the sling bag and two more in the backpack. This is a full-sized hard-hitting pistol, a real fight-stopper. I won’t debate my

choice of caliber here - it’s been done to death in too many other places. What you should do is to carry the biggest, hardest-hitting caliber you can handle with skill. Here’s a hint: any caliber starting with at least ‘4’ is usually a good bet. Here’s the deal: you’re not going to be firing warning shots; you are going to your absolute very best to KILL the son of a bitch who’s trying to harm you and yours. Anyway,

if you’re down to your pistol, then you’ve got

other things to worry about besides calibers. But don’t discount the value of a good pistol in a fight. Lots of good pistols out there. Find one. Learn it. Love it. Master it.

Figure 36 - 1911 45 auto and Glock model 20 10mm

3. Tomahawk OR Stanley FUBAR forcible entry tool. One ‘hawk MOLLE’d to my backpack. Personally, I like tomahawks. Very nasty weapon for a close-quarters fight. If you’re facing more than one opponent, the sudden and terrible damage you can visit on the first opponent is instantly instructional to the

others and may end the fight right there. Learn it, love it, and kill with it if you have to. Or use

it to make a nice temporary shelter. Works either way.

The tomahawk shown here has the advantage of being very light and fast, qualities that go a long way towards making it a superior fighting tool. Just as with a knife, you will seldom achieve an instant kill with one of these, especially in a straight-up fight, but you can deliver sufficiently painful and serious wounds to your opponent that will buy you valuable time to finish the job.

Figure 38 – SOG Fusion Tomahawk – about $35

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If you’re not skilled with the tomahawk, there are very useful alternatives. We’re talking here about the Stanley FUBAR forcible entry tool. The Stanley FUBAR Forcible Entry tool is, like the tomahawk, a dual-purpose tool. They’re about $70-$80 bucks and are extremely versatile – and very nasty as a weapon in practiced hands. Look it up and get one if

you’re not a ‘hawk aficionado. It’s not too hard

to think of situations where a good demo tool could be a life-saver. For example, if you’re strong and determined, you can in short order use the 18” the Stanley FUBAR to smash through sheetrock, wrench 2x4 studs apart and out of the way – and presto – you’ve just made yourself an impromptu exit or entrance. A wall is only a wall until it has a hole in it.

Figure 39 - Stanley FUBAR Forcible Entry Tool – about $80

4. Fighting knife. A Cold Steel Tanto Recon

MOLLE’d to my sling bag. I’ve had mine for over

35 years, and it is well-used and well loved. When it comes to fighting knives, I favor single- edged designs like the Cold Steel Tanto or the Becker TAC Tool. This allows you to hold the knife edge-out against your forearm for a very nasty blocking move, from which you can transition to close-quarters smash and slash. Sounds ugly, doesn’t it? It is.

Here’s the thing about knife fighting – knife wounds are seldom instantly fatal. That’s a key qualification. And you are likely to take damage. If you’re close enough to stab or cut your opponent, then they’re close enough to do the same thing to you. I’ve been taught to

use a knife to deliver a quick and surprise strike that inflicts great pain or otherwise interferes with my opponent’s vision. This distraction simply buys time for me to either get away or arrange something rather more permanent for my enemy. Don’t like to think that way? Better start now and get used to it. If you want to live,

Figure 40 - Cold Steel Tanto Recon – about $70

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Tools For Your Vehicle

If you’re lucky enough to be able to drive away in advance of whatever unpleasantness begins to develop, there are some items that you might want to keep in your vehicle. Just in case. What we’re talking about here are basic pio- neering tools – pick, shovel, 6’ pry bar – and a few other things that will smooth your path and get you past most common barricades. Be creative in the use of your tools, but also be sensible. Always use the right tool for the job at hand.
Here’s the deal – ordinarily, you wouldn’t carry all of this around in your vehicle. Although, if you live in a rural area and/or snow country, none of this will come as a surprise. You’ll already have most, if not all of it aboard as a matter of course. But if you’ve got your nose to the wind, you’ll get the sense that trouble’s on the horizon – and that calls for a higher level of preparedness and anticipation of trouble. Trust your gut on this. You may already have snow chains, a basic mechanic’s tool set and a highway safety kit in your car, but we’re talking about going well beyond that for special circumstances. Make use of wooden boxes or heavy-duty plastic cases to contain and organize your tools, chains and spare batteries. Cover items with heavy contractor’s bags to keep them dry. Lightly oil exposed metal shovel blades, etc. Inspect everything regularly. Take care of your tools and they’ll take care of you. More impor- tantly, it’s a good habit of mind that generalizes to other areas. An old saying goes something like this: “90% of life is maintenance.”
Note that a lot of what’s in the following list can be had for pennies on the dollar at garage sales or swap meets

1. Pick.

Nothing fancy here. Just a good old-fashioned digging in-
strument. Gets through stuff shovels won’t.

2. Shovel.

Again, nothing fancy. Also carry an aluminum grain scoop
in the winter time if you’re in a snowy area. Makes a great snow shovel.

3. 5’ pry bar / breaker bar, 17 - 18 lbs.

Tamp on one end, wedge on the other. Great for prying
things open or other sundry demolition tasks. One good whack with the wedge end will blast open most small locks. Also a nasty weapon if you’re strong enough to wield it. When it comes to locks securing gates or fences, think ahead – if you come to a chained gate and you must remove the lock, carry a spare lock or two to re-secure the gate after you’re through. Hang the re-secured lock
and chain just the way you found it. Be sure to remove the opened lock from the scene. This may buy you some ad- ditional time and discourage pursuit.

4. Sledge hammer.

Too many uses to detail here. Be creative. Even a small
three pound short sledge can be a very useful companion tool.

5. Chisel.

Throw in one of these while you’re at it. Put that three
pound short sledge behind a good chisel and very little will stand in your way.

6. Sawzall.

The king of demolition tools. This should be an 18v-24v
battery-powered Sawzall reciprocating saw with at least one spare battery pack. Make sure that you have an assort- ment of spare blades suitable for differing materials in the case that it comes in. If you have to pick one blade, go for the metal cutter. It’ll work on wood, too, just not as well as once designed for wood. Practice with it on different ma- terials to get a feel for how it works. There are very few problems that can’t be solved with a Sawzall and the right blade.

7. Medium drill / rotohammer.

More powerful than a regular drill. Obvious uses. Indispen-
sible if and when you need one. Battery powered - should
also be an 18v-24v unit, preferably with an extra battery of the same type used by your Sawzall.

8. Chainsaw.

If you’ve got room for one and/or if you live in a rural area.
Make sure you have at least a chain guard for it, if not a complete case. Carry a small container with bar oil, prefer- ably one with a nozzle or spout. Same for fuel for the saw. Got a tree across the road? Here’s your answer. Make sure that you’ve dealt with whoever might be waiting behind it first if there aren’t too many of them. Always size up an obstacle like that first before you tackle it.

9. Chains.

One pair each of a 6’ set and a 12’ set with heavy duty
hooks on each end. Learn how to quickly ’set a chain’ in a choker loop if you don’t know how. Allows you to use your vehicle as a force-multiplier for all sorts of interesting and useful things.

10. Pins and shackles.

A few of these can be a real problem solver when used with
your chains.

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11. Come along.

Have at least one. Use this with your chains to secure an
item or to apply pressure. If you’ve used one, you know what I’m talking about. If you haven’t then a new world will
open up to you.

12. 2’ x 4’ roll of chain link fence.

A couple of these can be lifesavers. If you get stuck in sand,
snow or mud, one or two of these can give your wheels enough purchase to get out. I know, because I’ve used them for just that purpose.

Your Vehicle


As a final thought, consider what you’re driving. Can it take a beating? Are you willing to let it take a beating if it means your life or your loved ones’ lives? You people who drive these little eco-fart mobiles will live – if only for a few min- utes - to regret it. A sturdy, well-maintained 4WD vehicle is far more likely to get you out of trouble than one of those underpowered Smart Car cheese boxes. Fuel economy and eco-consciousness should always take a back seat to surviv- ability – and that’s what we’re talking about there. Don’t hesitate to think of your vehicle as a tool – a tool for remov- ing obstacles. Or as a tool for dealing with people with bad intent. Some considerations:
1. High ground clearance – for obvious reasons.
2. Sturdy mud and snow-rated tires in good condition – for-
get the fancy wheels.
3. Cargo capacity – for the kit we just outlined above. Pref-
erably covered and lockable.
4. 4 wheel drive with a really deep 4-low. Pay the extra for one with a limited-slip differential.
5. Sizeable gas tank.
6. Cattle guard bumper extensions

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Also: you’re a fool if you think your vehicle can provide pro- tection from gunfire. Everyday vehicles offer you none. Let me repeat that: NONE! Hand gun projectiles and especially rifle projectiles will basically zip right through a car door or body – and you, too if you’re unfortunate enough to be in- side at the time. Worse still, projectiles that strike any part of your vehicle before they strike you will almost certainly begin to tumble, turning them into nasty little buzz saws of death. Your engine block will afford you some protection, but your opponents won’t be aiming for the engine – they’ll be aiming at whoever’s behind that windshield and that’ll be you and/or anyone with you. Vehicle ambushes are bad news for those reasons and others. Be vigilant. A barricade is almost always a set-up for just that sort of thing. Watch for them and turn the hell around as soon you or your pas- senger/lookout spots one. Remember – aside from getting to your home or rally point, avoidance of conflict is your primary goal. Only fight if you absolutely must. There’s no glory in it – only survival.
What’s a good bug-out vehicle? A lot of this is personal taste. Jeep, Subaru, most pickups, Hummers, etc. What do I drive? A well-maintained Chevy Avalanche 1500 with a Z71 off-road package. A lot of folks love these vehicles for a variety of good reasons.

Final Thoughts

None of this gear, no amount of preparedness is a guaran-
tee. Fate can be a fickle mistress indeed. If your number
is up, then I hope that you can meet your Creator with a good conscience. But there can be an awful lot of time and opportunity between now and then. Within the time your Creator has granted you, there is a lot that you can do to affect your destiny. Why not do as much as you can? You’ll be saving your own life, and by extension, you’ll be able to use that life to save others like your family and friends.

As to the cost? The money you’ll spend on the items I’ve outlined here is money better spent by far than on triviali- ties and junk.


G.O.O.D. Bag -PERSONAL HYGIENE & SANITATION

Check

Item

Quantity

Comment

Baby Wipes

1 Box

More if you have small children

Brush & Comb

One

Camp Toilet, Honey Bucket, Lugable Loo

One

Choose the most appropriate style for your family situation

Chemical Toilet Disinfectant

One Pack

See "Reliance Bio-Blue"

Chewable multi-vitamin

One bttle

Collapsible Basin

Small cloth/plastic foldable "bowl" for personal cleaning

Dental Floss

One

Oral hygiene and 100’s of other uses

Denture Supplies

as needed

Deodarant

One for each

Diapers (or pull-ups)

Two week’s supply for each infant

Dish Soap

One small Bottle

To keep your cookware clean

Elastic Hair Bands

To help the ladies keep their hair up and clean

Eye Drops

One

Eye Glasses

as needed

Spare pair of Eye Glasses, especially if you wear contact lens

Female Urination Device

One for each Female

See "Gogirl or P-Mate"

Feminine Sanitary Supplies

Two week’s supply for each

(Tampons, sanitary napkins, Ect)

Foot Powder

See "Army Foot Powder" you may be doing A LOT of walking.

Hand Lotion

One Bottle

Hand sanitizer

A couple small bottles

Do NOT underestimate the importance of HYGENE in an

emergency.

Kleenex

one pack each

Small pack that fits in your shirt pocket

Laytex Gloves

One Pair each

For when you have to touch things you really don't want to

Lip Balm

One for each

See "Chapstick"

Mosquito & Chigger repellant

Full bottle

Adjust quantity as needed for your location.

Mouthwash or Breath Strips

One small Bottle or pack

Your family will appreciate it!

Nail Clipper & File

One

Perri Bottle

One for each Female

For when the toilet paper runs out.

Q-Tips

Small Pack

Razor

One for each Adult

One pack of spare blades

Saline Solution / Spare Contact Lenses

as needed

Make up a small case with everything in it.

Scissors

One

One small pair

Scouring Pad

One

To keep your cookware clean

Shampoo

Shaving Cream

one

Soap

One

1 bar of "Anti-Bacterial" soap

Solar Shower

One per Family

A nice luxury if water is plentiful

Sunscreen Lotion (SPF 30+)

One for each

Prepare to be outdoors a lot!

Toilet Paper

2 rolls each

Some camping toilet paper is vacuum packed to reduce size

Toilet Waste Bags

One Pack

See "Reliance Double Doodie"

Toothbrush and tooth paste

1 for each

Towel (Military Field Towel)

2 each

Sealed, pre soaped/pre-wetted, See "Hoo-Aahs"

Towel, Microfiber

1 each

Ultra-Compact, see "Outgo"

Towels, Paper

1 Roll

Washcloth

One

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THE SUPPLY TABLE (The Master Preparedness List)

This list is based on a family of two/three adults and two/three childrent that want to take their preparedness beyond the simple 96 hour kits and become more fully prepared for whatever may come. The items within each category are listed by “Purchase Priority”. The quantities listed are for a 30 day to one-year crisis. Because some items are impossible to store indefinitely or it would not be cost-effective to store the quantities necessary to maintain our current lifestyle, it is assumed that alternate sources or substitutes will be found or changes in lifestyle will occur if the crisis lasts over one year. Quantities could be adjusted for other estimated lengths of crisis.
There are 3 major groupings that are based on the duration of the “Crisis”, 30 Days, 90 Days and 1 Year. (I know the list looks daunting at first glance, but just focus in on one group at a time). Within each of these three durations, items are prioritized. It should be your goal to Obtain all of the “30 Day” items in sequence from Priority 1 to 3, by April 1st. Then move onto your “90 Day” items in the same manner obtaining them by July 1st, and finally onto your “1 Year” items by October 1st. This will allow you to build up your preparedness in stages, 30 Days first (as these items would be needed in EVERY scenario) 90 Days second (as they build on the 30 day list), and finally your 1 Year equipment that rounds out your preperations.
The purchase priority is not how important the item is. I believe everything on this list is important. The purchase prior- ity is how soon the item should be purchased to avoid shortages should other people decide to start “stocking up” on the same items. I firmly believe that there will be a wake up call for a lot of people. A priority “1” item should be purchased ASAP. A priority “2” item should be purchased before most people figure out what is going on. Priority “3” items should be available until later. These are common household items which should be manufactured and shipped right up until
the last minute. The purchase date is my guideline of when to make purchases. Items with a “Last minute” listing are perishable and you want as long a shelf life as possible. Signs of shortages or panic should be watched closely to avoid missing out on these items. The final three columns indicate whether I think the item would be necessary for a 1 month, three month, one year to indefinite crisis.

Clothing

Keep in mind that a crises will likely be during the winter and adjust this list for your climate. Warm, Waterproof, Wind-

proof clothing. Think Wool, Gore-Tex, Polarfleece, Polypro, Thinsulate. Avoid Cotton!

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Bandanas

24 each

3

(inexpensive shield face, head cover, wash cloth, bandage, sanitary pad)

Blaclava

1/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Boots

2/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Boots, (insulated)

1/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Bra athletic

2/female

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Clothes line

100 ft

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Clothes pins

250

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Clothes Wringer (hand crank)

1

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Coats

1/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Hats

1/person

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Iron-on patches.

2 packages

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Laundry detergent

5 (5gal)

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Long sleeve shirt/high collar

5/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Long underwear

3/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Needles

Assortment

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Non-electric washing machine

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Jean Pants

6/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Rain Parka/Rain Pants

2/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Safety pins

Assortment

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Sewing patterns

Assortment

3

10-1-12

1 Year

204

Sewing supplies

Assortment

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Shirts

6/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Shoelaces

20

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Snow Jacket

1/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Socks heavy

12/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Stove iron

1

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Sweats/nightclothes

2/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tennis Shoes

2pair/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Thread

Assortment

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Underwear

12/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Wash board

2

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Wash tub

2

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Winter gloves

1/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Work Gloves

3

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Zippers and buttons

Assortment

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Communications

The phone/address books are of friends and family so that you can look them up after the worst has passed. If phones
are not working you may have to travel to their home to check on them.
*Keep these items in waterproof containers. Many survival and camping stores sell flat, water tight pouches. If you have a food vacuum sealer, this is another great use for it!

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Addresses of friends/family

1 set

CB Radio

1

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Cell phone

Frequency lists/books 1 2 7-1-12 90 Day

Map of your local area

2

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Phone numbersof friends/family

1 set

Pre-addressed, stamped postcards

1 set

Radio (hand cranked)

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Road Flares

8

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Short-wave Radio

1

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Signal Flares

12

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Signal Mirror

1/person

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Signal Whistle

2/person

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Documents

bank account numbers,

Now

30 & 90 & Year

birth, death, marriage certificates and divorce decrees,

Now

30 & 90 & Year

charge card account numbers, “lost or stolen” notification numbers

Now

30 & 90 & Year

deeds and contracts,

Now

30 & 90 & Year

house and life insurance policies,

Now

30 & 90 & Year

inventory of valuable household items,

Now

30 & 90 & Year

medical records including immunizations

Now

30 & 90 & Year

passports, where pertinent for each family member

Now

30 & 90 & Year

social security numbers

Now

30 & 90 & Year

stocks and bonds

Now

30 & 90 & Year

Vaccination records

Now

30 & 90 & Year

wills

Now

30 & 90 & Year

205

Entertainment & Education

Disasters may provide excellent opportunities to share Christ with others so extra scriptures would be a good thing to

have.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Bible & scriptures

1/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bibles & BOM

6

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Board Games

1 set

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Books for pleasure reading

Many

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Book on Edible plants

1

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Card game book

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Cards

4 sets

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Crayons

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Domino game book

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Dominoes

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Erasers

10

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Home School Curriculum

1/child

2

10-1-12

1 Year

How to books Many 1 7-1-12 90 Day

Hoyle game rule book

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Magnifying Glass

1 each

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Non-electric pencil sharpener

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Paper

100 pads

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Paper Clips, assorted sizes

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Pencils

100

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Pencil Sharpner

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Pens

50

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Reference books

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Rubber Bands, assorted sizes

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Safety Pins, assorted sizes

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Toys

3

4-1-12

30 Day

First Aid Supplies

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Ace bandage

5

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Band aids

6 large assort

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Band aids Finger tip

1 large box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Band aids Knuckle

1 large box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bandages (Ace) elastic, 4”

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bandages, gauze, 2”, 3”, 4”

4 boxes

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bandages, gauze, 18” x 36”

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bandages, burns (Second Skin)

1 box

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Bandages Triangular

3

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Birth supply kit

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Burn Dressings

Assorted

2

4-1-12

30 Day

(Burn Free)

Butterfly closures/Leukostrips

1 large box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Cold/heat Pack, instant

5 each

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Cold/heat Pack, reusable

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Cotton Balls

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Cotton Swabs

1 large box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Eyedropper

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Eye pads

1 large box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

206

First aid manual

1

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Gauze 2”

5 rolls

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Gauze 3”

5 rolls

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Latex gloves

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

SAM splint

1

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Scalpel

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Scissors, Surgical pointed

1

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Shears

2

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Snake bite kit

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Space Blankets

4

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sterile pads 4” x 4”

1 large box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sterile pads 5” x 9”

1 large box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Surgical tape

10 rolls

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Thermometer

4

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tongue Depressors

6

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tweezers

4

3

4-1-12

30 Day

First Aid, Perishables

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Alcohol

6

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Alcohol Moist Towelettes

100

3

Last minute

30 Day

Analgesic Cream

1 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Camphophenique)

Antacid

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Mylanta, Tums, Pepto-Bismal)

Antibiotic

1 set

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Amoxicillin /Erythromycin/Tetracycline for general infections)

Anti-Diarrheal

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Imodium, Diasorb, Lomotil)

Anti-fungal

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Desenex, Micatin, Tinactin, Lotrimin)

Antihistamine

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Benadryl, Claratyne)

Antiseptic Ointment

3 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Neosporin)

Aspirin

6 (100)

3

Last minute

90 Day

Bee sting ointment

6 tubes

3

Last minute

30 Day

Bicarbonate of Soda

1 box

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Bronco Dialator

1

2

Last Minute

30 Day

(Primatine Mist)

Burn Ointment

1 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Hydrocortisone, Derm-Aid)

Cold/Flu Tablets (Nyquil)

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

Constipation

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Ex-Lax, Dulcolax, Durolax)

Cough Syrup

1 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Robitussen, Dimetap)

Epsom Salts

1 box

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Eye Drops (Visine)

1 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

Eye Wash

1 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

Hemorrhoid Relief

1 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Preparation H, Anusol)

Hydrogen peroxide

6 bottles

3

7-1-12

90 Day

207

Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

Itching, Insect/Rash

1 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Caladril, Calamine)

Itching (Dibucaine, Lanacane)

1 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

Lice

1 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Nix or RID Lice Shampoo)

Lip Balm (ChapStick, Blistex)

1 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

Lubricant, Water Soluble

1 tube

2

Last minute

90 Day

(K-Y Jelly)

Meat Tenderizer bites & stings

1 bottle

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Nasal Decongestant

1 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Actifed, Sudafed Sinex)

Nausea, Motion Sickness

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Kwells, Dramamine, Meclizine)

Non-Aspirin Pain Reliever

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Tylenol)

Pain, Fever Reducer

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Panadeine, Mobigesic)

Pain Reliever with Codeine

1 box

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Tylenol 3)

Prescriptions

(as needed)

1

Last minute

30 Day

Petroleum Jelly (Vaseline)

1 jar

2

Last minute

30 Day

Poison Ivy/Oak (Neoxyn)

6 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

Poison Absorber

1 bottle

2

Last minute

90 Day

(Activated Charcoal)

Soap, liquid, antibacterial

1 bottle

3

Last minute

30 Day

Sunburn Relief (Solarcaine)

1 can

2

Last minute

30 Day

Sunscreen (SPF 15 at least)

1 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

Vomit Inducer (Ipecac)

1 bottle

2

Last minute

30 Day

Yeast Infection Treatment

1 tube

2

Last minute

30 Day

(Gyne-Lotrimin, Monistat)

Food Preparation

The fire place insert would ideally be designed to cook on. The fire grate is for cooking outside over an open fire. Crisco
shortening is listed because it can be stored for a long time.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

1 roll Plastic Wrap

Aluminum foil, Heavy

6 large rolls

3

4-1-12

30 Day

BBQ grill (charcoal/propane)

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Boning Knife

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bread Loaf Pan

4

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Butcher Knife

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Butter churn

1

2

10-1-12

1 year

Camp Stove

1

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Can opener (hand cranked)

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Can Opener, heavy duty

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Canning books

1 set

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Cast iron cook set - (Complete!)

1 set

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Cheesecloth

1 roll

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Cheese press

1

2

10-1-12

1 Year

Coffee filters

100

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Coffe maker, metal

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Coleman metal dinner plates

1 set

2

4-1-12

30 Day

208

Coleman Cooler

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Corkscrew

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Crock pot, Large

1

1

10-1-12

1 Year

Cultures

1 set

3

Last Minute

90 Day

Dish Cloths

6

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Dishwashing liquid

5 gal

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Dutch Oven, small with lid

1

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Dutch Oven, large with lid,

1

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Fire grate

1

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Fireplace insert

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Grain mill (hand cranked)

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Grater

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Hot Pad

1 set

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Kettle, huge, for boiling water

1

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Latex disposable gloves

1 box

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Mixing Bowl, Large

1 each

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Mixing Bowl, Small

1 each

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Molds

1 set

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Napkins

10

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Pancake Turners, metal

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Paper cups

100

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Paring Knife

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Plastic knives, forks, spoons

200

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Pressure cooker

1

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Rennet

1

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Rubber dish gloves

4 Sets

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sauce Pan, large with lid,

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sauce Pan, small with lid,

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Scrub pads

50

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Skillet, large with lid,

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Spoons, large metal

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Spoons, Wooden

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Strainer

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Thermos

1/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Yeast

1 box

3

Last minute

30 Day

Yogurt culture,

1 box

3

Last Minute

90 Day

Ziploc Bags - Sandwich

100

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Ziploc Bags - Storage

50

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Ziploc Freezer Bags, gallon

2 boxes

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Ziploc Freezer Bags, quart

2 boxes

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Food Storage

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

1 gal. plastic bags

300

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Baskets/crates

24

1

10-1-12

1 year

Boiling canner

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Bucket opener

2

1

10-1-12

1 year

Canning book

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Canning jars

100

1

10-1-12

1 year

Canning lids

500

1

10-1-12

1 year

Canning salt

20lb

1

10-1-12

1 year

Canning supplies (Misc)

Assortment

1

10-1-12

1 year

Canning Utensils

Assortment

1

10-1-12

1 year

209

Colander

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Desiccants

60 (66gm)

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Food storage buckets

30 (5 gal)

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Jar lifter

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Jars

Assortment

1

10-1-12

1 year

Lids

Assortment

1

10-1-12

1 year

Mesh bags

24

1

10-1-12

1 year

Oxygen absorbers

50 (500ml)

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Parafin Wax

5lb

1

10-1-12

1 Year

Pressure canner

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Saucepan

2

1

10-1-12

1 year

Saucepot

3

1

10-1-12

1 year

Scale

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Storage/garden books

Assortment

2

10-1-12

1 year

Timer

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Tongs to remove jars

2

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Water storage

10 (5 gal)

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Water storage

2 (55 gal)

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Wax for canning

Fuel & Power

The amount of firewood will depend on your climate and the efficiency of your stove or fireplace. The kerosene is for the
lamps under “General Household”. Sta-bil is an additive which allows gasoline to be stored longer than normal. The bar-
rel is to transport gasoline in if it can be purchased.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Item

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Barrel (55 gal)

1

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Charcoal

500 lb.

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Fire starters

2

1

7-1-12

90 Day

(jelly, ribbon, tablets, impregnated peat bricks, wax-coated pine cones, magnesium block, flint)

Fire wood

10 cords

2

4-1-12

90 Day

Fuel filter for generator

1

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Fuel pump

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Gasoline

500 gal

2

10-1-12

1 Year

Gas cans (5 gal)

6

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Kerosene

50 gal

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Kerosene storage barrel

1 (55gal)

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Lighter Fluid

5 cans

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Matches

20 (250)

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Propane

500 gal

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Spark plug for generator

1

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Sta-bil

8 qt

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Starter fluid

5 gal

1

4-1-12

30 Day

White Gas Coleman (for campstove)

10 (1 gal)

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Gardening

Non-hybrid seeds will reproduce true to the parent plant. Hybrid seeds may reproduce with a recessive gene. The poly-
ethylene is for covering young plants to maintain warmth and moisture. The styrofoam cups are for coverings seedlings
during late winter frosts.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Black polyethylene

1

2

10-1-12

1 year

Bleach

5 gal

2

10-1-12

1 year

Clear polyethylene

210

1

2

10-1-12

1 year

Garden hoses

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Herb Seeds

Assorment

2

10-1-12

1 year

Hoe

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Misters for seedlings

2

2

10-1-12

1 year

Miracle Gro

2

10-1-12

1 year

Non-hybrid seeds

Assortment

1

10-1-12

1 year

Organic fertilizers

Assortment

2

10-1-12

1 year

Perennial flowerseeds

Assortment

3

10-1-12

1 year

Pull wagon

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Rototiller

1

2

10-1-12

1 year

Seed starting containers

Assortment

2

10-1-12

1 year

Seed starting medium

Assortment

2

10-1-12

1 year

Thermometers

2

2

10-1-12

1 year

Soil testing equipment.

1

1

10-1-12

1 year

Sprayer/Pumper - 2 gallon size

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Styrofoam cups

1000

2

10-1-12

1 year

Watering can

1

2

10-1-12

1 year

Wheel barrel

2

2

10-1-12

1 year

Bug spray. Malathion, Sevin, Dursban and Diazanon. Dursban and Diazanon can have severe side effects in humans, for use outside of house, not necessarily on the garden. Fine for flower gardens. Sevin is safer to use on the vegetables.

Hardware & Building supplies

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

A few cases of silicone caulk. (If you are like me and your carpentry isn’t perfect.)

Bolts

Assortment

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Bricks, rocks

Assortment

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Cable

100 ft

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Cable clamps

8

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Cement

10 bags

3

10-1-12

1 year

Chains and padlocks.

several

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Chicken wire, barbed wire, etc.

2 rolls

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Duct tape

10 rolls

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Extra axe handles

2

3

10-1-12

1 year

Long polls

10

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Fencing material.

Assortment

3

10-1-12

1 year

Lumber

Assorted

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Mouse traps

5

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Nails

100 lbs.

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Nuts and bolts

Assorted

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Pipe

Assorted

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Plumbing repair supplies

Assorted

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Polyethylene Black

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Polyethylene Clear

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Pulleys

4

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Rigging book

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Rope

Assorted

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Screws

Assorted

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Spare keys to all of your locks.

1 set

2

4-1-12

30 Day

(Better yet, have them all set up to take the same key).

Spare parts for your wheelbarrow

1 set

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Spare toilet parts

1 set

3

7-1-12

90 Day

211

Tarps

4

3

4-1-12

30 Day

WD-40

1 gal

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Wire

Assorted

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Household Items

The water filter is assuming you have a stream or other reliable source of water. The ni-cad batteries are rechargeable for
the radio. Other batteries should be sized according to your needs.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Backpack with Frame (for Hauling)

1/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Batteries AA

100

1

Last minute

30 Day

Batteries AA, Ni-Cad

8

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Batteries C

20

1

Last minute

30 Day

Batteries C, Ni-Cad

8

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Batteries D

100

1

Last minute

30 Day

Batteries D, Ni-Cad

8

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Battery Charger, SOLAR

2

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Blankets

10

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Camera

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Camera batteries

1 set

3

Last minute

90 Day

Candles 10 hour

50

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Candles 36 hour

25

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Candles 100 hour (liquid parafin)

25

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Candle holders

1 set

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Candle wax/wick

10lbs

2

7-1-12

90 Day

carpet sweeper hand operated

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Clocks wind up

3

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Fanny pack for short excursions

1/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Fire extinguishers

4

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Flashlights

5

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Flashlight bulbs

2/light

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Handwarmer, lighter fuled

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Kerosene Heater

2

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Kerosene lamps

4

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Kerosene lamp wicks

10

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Lighters (disposable)

50

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Light sticks (12 hour)

18

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Matches stick

20 boxes of 250

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Matches, water/windproof

5 boxes of 20

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Mosquito Netting

1 roll

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Paper towels

100

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Pet Food

as needed

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Permanent Ink Makrer

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Propane Heater

2

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Sleeping bags

1/person

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Sleeping Bag Mattress Pads

1/person

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Tents (2 person)

2

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Trash bags

10 boxes

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Treadle Sowing Machine

1

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Walkie talkies

1 pair

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Watches

5

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Wool Blankets, heavy

2/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

212

Infant Supplies

Baby Food

????

2

Last Minute

30 Day

Baby Clothes

3 sets

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Baby Powder

2 bottles

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Baby Wash

2 bottles

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Blankets

2 each

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Bottles

3 each

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Diaper Cover

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Diapers, disposable (24 count)

26 boxes

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Diaper Rash Ointment

1 bottle

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Formula

? cans

1

Last Minute

30 Day

Lotion

2 bottles

1

4-1-12

30 Day

nursing bras

1 each

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Nursing pads

4 each

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Teething Ring

1 each

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Towelettes, Pre-moistened

2 boxes

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Toys

As needed

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Miscellaneous

The maps should be very detailing showing back roads in case major highways are closed or clogged. I always wanted a
night vision scope, so I threw it in for good measure. A burn barrel is for disposing of household garbage and a spark ar-
restor is a grated top to prevent accidental fires.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

5 gallon emergency toilet

1

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Ant spray concentrate

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Binoculars

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Book on using compass

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Burn barrel

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Compass

2

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Fishing tackle

Assortment

3

10-1-12

1 year

Knives

Assortment

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Metal bucket - for charcoals/ashes

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Night vision scope

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

O.D. parachute cord

200ft

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Safe

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Spark arrestor

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sponges

10

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Toilet seat

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Trash bags - 13 gallon size

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Trash bags - 33 gallon size

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Water buckets 5 gal

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Glue of various types

several

3

7-1-12

90 Day

(wood glue, super glue, weather stripping adhesive, etc.)

Paint

10 gal

3

10-1-12

1 year

Rolls of 10 mil “Visqueen”

3

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tape

assortment

3

4-1-12

30 Day

(especially duct tape, masking tape, packing tape, etc.)

Window screen.

2 Rolls

3

10-1-12

90 Day

213

Money

$1000. in cash and change (during times of disaster charge cards and checks will not be honored*

*Money is always hard to tuck away and pretend it isn’t there, but in this instance, it is a necessity. One can’t assume to

put expenditures on credit cards during a crisis. Think about it. Whenever you make a purchase, it is always verified by

a telephoned authorization number. If phone lines are down and these numbers are not obtainable, chances are your

purchase won’t be allowed.

Item Quantity Purchase Purchase Planned

Required Priority by Date Duration

Cash $1000/person 1 4-1-12 30 Day
Gold 10oz/person 1 10-1-12 1 Year
Silver 100oz/person 1 7-1-12 90 Day

Personal Toiletries

Solar showers use the sun to heat water for bathing. Lime is used to keep down odors from human waste. Quantities are
not given for feminine or baby needs because I am not familiar with them.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

Baby wipes

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bar soap

100

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Barber scissors

2 pair

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Birth Control

3 boxes

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Brushes

3/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Camping Potty

1

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Chapstick

24

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Combs

3/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Contact cleaning supplies

1 set

3

last minute

30 Day

Cotton swabs

4 (500)

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Dental floss

12

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Deodorant (men’s)

12

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Deodorant (women’s)

12

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Fingernail clippers

1/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Fingernail file metal

1/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Fluoride Rinse

2 bottles

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Glasses

2 pair

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Insect Repellent

4 cans

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Kleenex

50 boxes

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Lime

100 lbs.

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Liquid Hair Shampoo (Adult)

2 bottles

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Liquid Hair Shampoo (Child)

2 bottles

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Liquid Hand Soap (antibacterial)

5 bottles

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Lotion

12

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Mouthwash

2 bottles

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Panty Liners

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Razor blades (men’s)

30

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Razor blades (women’s)

30

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sanitary Pads

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Shampoo

24

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Shaving Cream

2 cans

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Solar Shower

2

1

7-1-12

90 Day

Sunglasses

2/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tampons

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Toenail clippers

3

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Toilet paper

100 rolls

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Toothbrushes

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

214

Toothpaste

5 tubes

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Towelettes, Pre-moistened

2 boxes

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Towels

15

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tweezers, pointed

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Wash Cloths & Towel

4/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Security Supplies

Guns are like tools, it’s difficult to have to many. The quanity and types of guns required will vary tremendously from
one person to another. No amount of supplies will do you any good if someone else takes them from you by force. Self
defense is an important consideration and, if wild game is in the area, hunting can provide fresh meat. The safe is for storing records, documents, cash, and gold or silver. Common Caliber Ammunition. I’ve always felt that common caliber ammunition is the best all-around barter item. Top choices are: .22 long rifle, .223 Remington (5.56 mm NATO), .308 Win- chester (7.62 mm NATO), .30-06, 12 gauge ( #00 Buckshot), .45 ACP, and 9mm Parabellum

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Item

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

.22 shells

1000

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Gun safe

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Guns/Ammo

Assortment

1

4-1-12

30 Day

military rifle bore cleaner 10 1 oz. bottles 2 7-1-12 90 Day

Ammo reloader

1

2

10-1-12

1 Year

Ammo Cans

5

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Gun accessories

1 set/weapon

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Gun cleaning equipment

1 set/weapon

2

4-1-12

30 day

Military web gear

2/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

(lots of folks may *suddenly* need pistol belts, magazine pouches, et cetera.)

Perimeter alarm of some sort

1 set

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Solar powered perimieter Lights

5

3

4-1-12

30 day

Waterproof dufflebags (“dry bags”)

1/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Tools

The generator is for emergencies and occasional use like pumping water from a well. I do not think it is feasible to store

enough fuel to run a generator full time to maintain our current lifestyle. A cant hook is a tool for rolling logs so that you

can move them in to position to cut them for firewood. This assumes a source of timber to be cut for firewood. A list of

hand tools could be as long as the rest of the list. At a minimum it should include pliers, wrenches, screwdrivers, and a

hammer. The funnels are for transferring fuel and other liquids from bulk storage containers to daily use containers. A

come-a-long is a portable cable winch. It could be used for moving heavy objects like dead cars or fallen trees.

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

1 gallon gas can for mixed gas

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

10” Wire Cutters

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

2 cycle oil

6

3

7-1-12

90 Day

24” or 30” Bolt Cutters

1

2

7-1-12

90 Day

Axe

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bar oil

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Blades

Assortment

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bow saw

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bow saw blades

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bungee Straps (variety of lengths)

6

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bush or Tree Saw

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Caulking gun

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Chain

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Chainsaw

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Chainsaw extra chain

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Chimney cleaning brush

1

3

10-1-12

1 year

215

Chisel/Wedge

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

CO Detector, battery powered

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Come-a-long

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Crowbar

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Drill, Hand-operated

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Dust Mask

1box

3

4-1-12

30 day

Duct/100 MPH Tape

1 box

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Extra air filter

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Extra spark plug

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Funnels

Assortment

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Garden fork

2

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Generator

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Hacksaw

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Hammer

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Hand tools

Assortment

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Hatchet

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Ladder

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Maul

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Oil for generator

12 qt

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Paint brushes

2

3

10-1-12

1 year

Pick

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Pins

1 box

3

4-1-12

30 day

Pliers, needle nose

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Pliers, regular

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Post Hole Digger, auger type

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Rope, Nylon

100 feet

3

4-1-12

30 day

Saw horses

2

3

4-1-12

30 day

Scissors

2

3

4-1-12

30 day

Screwdriver, Flat Head

2

3

4-1-12

30 day

Screwdriver, Phillips

2

3

4-1-12

30 day

Sharpening files

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sharpening instruments

1 set

3

7-1-12

90 day

Sharpening stone

Assortment

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Shovel, round

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Shovel, sharpshooter

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Shovel, Snow

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Shovel, square

2

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Sledgehammer

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Smoke Detector, bettery powered

2

3

4-1-12

30 day

Staple Gun and Staples

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Swiss Army Knife

1/person

3

4-1-12

30 day

Tin snips

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Tow Chain/Straps

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Twine or Heavy String

100feet

3

4-1-12

30 day

Two man tree saw

1

3

10-1-12

1 year

Vice Grips

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Wedge

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

welding outfit

1

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Wench and Cable (come along)

1

3

7-1-12

90 day

Wire Cutters

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Wood Saw

2

3

7-1-12

90 day

Wood Screws

Assorted

3

4-1-12

30 day

Wrenches

Assorted

3

4-1-12

30 day

216

Transportation

Vehicle maintenance shouldn’t be a problem in the short run or the long run if fuel supplies dry up. A “mid-length” crisis

could call for some basic maintenance though. Bicycles should come in hand for short trips and to avoid drawing atten-

tion to yourself when most people are walking. An old rebuilt car. No electronic ignition. .

Item

Quantity

Purchase

Purchase

Planned

Required

Priority

by Date

Duration

12 volt air compressor

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Antifreeze

2 gals

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bicycle

1/person

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bicyle chain repair kit

1/bike

3

4-1-12

30 Day

bicycle tire repair kit

1/bike

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Bicycle tube hand air pump

1/bike

3

4-1-12

30 day

Fan belts

1set/auto

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Fuses

1 set

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Handlebar Basket

1/bike

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Hi-Lift Jack

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Hoses

1set/auto

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Jacks and stands

1 set

3

4-1-12

30 day

Jumper Cables

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Manuals

1 set/auto

3

7-1-12

90 day

Oil filter

4

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Oil

24 quarts

3

7-1-12

90 Day

Ramps

1 set

3

7-1-12

90 day

Snow Chains

1set/auto

3

4-1-12

30 day

Spare bicycle tires

2/bike

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Spare bicycle tubes

2/bike

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Spare replacement parts for the car

1 set

3

4-1-12

30 day

Tire pressure gauge

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Tires and blocks

1/auto

3

4-1-12

30 day

Tire sealer/inflator (can)

2/auto

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tire wrench

1/auto

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tools that your particular car needs

1 set

2

4-1-12

30 day

Torx screwdrivers

1 set

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tow chain

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tow strap

1

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Tube repair kits

1/bike

3

4-1-12

30 Day

Water

55 gallon water drums

2/person

2

4-1-12

30 day

Bleach - 1 gallon (5.25%)

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Bung Wrench

Hand pumps for drum

2

2

4-1-12

30 day

Pool tarp - 12 x 16 ft.

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Pool water testing kit

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Water bag (collapsible) - 5 gallon

1

3

4-1-12

30 day

Water can - 5 gallon

2

3

4-1-12

30 day

Water chlorinating granules (pool) 1 box 3 7-1-12 90 day

Water Distiller

1

3

10-1-12

1 Year

Water filter

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Water filter, replacement cartridge

1

1

4-1-12

30 Day

Water funnels

2

3

4-1-12

30 day

Water jug bottles, 2qt

2/person

2

4-1-12

30 Day

Water pump

1

1

7-1-12

90 Day

217

The 3rd Wave, Evacuation From A Disaster Location


though many more will still refuse to accept what events seem to be leading up to (footnote: Some argue we are already in this stage). This wave will be characterized by a much wider swath of people taking their leave of the af- fected area(s). Not just preppers but “average” (non-prep- pers) too will be getting nervous and start leaving. Early signs of panic may be setting in too.

The subject of evacuation from a disaster location, or evac- uation in advance of a potential disaster (such as a storm), has been written about here and on other sites ad nause- um. But the timing of an evacuation isn’t usually discussed in detail. That is the topic of this article.
In general, during an SHTF event there is likely going to be
3 waves of evacuations.

1st Wave

These are mostly going to be the people who already live
their lives on a hair-pin trigger just waiting for any small sign that a disaster is brewing. “Neurotic” is certainly an ac- curate if not flattering description. It also includes a small number of people, either by gifted insight or blind luck, connect the dots early and come to the conclusion that a major SHTF event is approaching.
The number of people evacuating probably will be very low. Most people will either refuse to believe anything bad is going to happen (“normalcy bias”) or fail to see the early warning signs and connect the dots.
Supplies like food, water, fuel etc will be at normal levels of availability and you should make every effort to top-off with fresh supplies before leaving. Similarly, currency will still be readily available and accepted. Retailers should have little problem resupplying at normal schedules (if you choose to risk waiting a bit longer for additional supplies).
Traffic will be light to normal with little or no additional law enforcement/government control issues. People in surrounding communities will likely not even notice you as you pass through, perhaps pausing for more supplies, refueling etc.

2nd Wave

By this stage the danger (or at least the signs of the dan-
ger) is becoming far more apparent and harder to ignore,

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Supplies, especially of food, water, and fuel will start be- coming noticeably harder to find (and likely more expen- sive) with less products on the shelves, even some emp- ty shelves, and longer lines. Resupply to retailers will be slower. ATMs will start running out of cash. Bank branches themselves will run low or out of cash as branches only keep a small amount of actual currency on hand every day (for security and liquidity reasons).
Services too may become harder to obtain as “the [pick a color] flu” mysteriously falls upon employees in all manner of government and private business (i.e. people choose not to come into work to either stay home with their families or evacuate – a topic for another article soon).
A much larger number of people will be on the roads and other transportation methods. Traffic will be much greater and nerves tenser (more road rage). Also, the availability of other means of transport (train tickets, bus tickets etc) will be in greater demand and less available. There may be an increased law enforcement presence on the roads es- pecially at bridges and tunnels, probably more for traffic control.
Surrounding communities and even further out from the affected area will see a rapidly growing influx of out of area people. Initially there may be some welcome as they bring a fast economic boost to the community, buying supplies etc. But that will likely switch over to resentment and possi- bly forceful rejection as smaller community supplies dwin- dle and people just keep coming and demanding more.

3rd Wave

In this wave all your neighbors, preppers or not, have
reached the same conclusion: Time to get out of Dodge!
At this point the danger is upon you. The SHTF event has happened or is on the cusp of happening. It is acknowl- edged (perhaps begrudgingly but still acknowledged) by all but the most intransigent people who still refuse to ac- cept the reality of the situation and cling to hopeless ideas everything will be fine and/or someone (i.e. government) will do something to make it all better. At this point these people are likely never going to be convinced and, cruel as

it may sound, don’t waste any more time trying to. They may already be beyond helping.
Supplies will be very hard if not impossible to get. Store shelves will be wiped clean. Fuel may be unavailable as re- tailers have drained their tanks and resupply unlikely. There may even be fuel rationing as whatever local supplies are ordered saved for “official use only”. Bank branches will likely be closed and ATMs long since emptied of cash.
The roads will likely be packed and tempers will be high. Fear and panic will set otherwise calm people off at any little provocation. Some level of civil unrest may ensue es- pecially if it is perceived there is an official policy to slow or prevent people from leaving (such as some kind of check point or vehicle searches).
The masses of evacuees will spread throughout the sur- rounding geography and likely overrun smaller surrounding communities thereby overwhelming their own stocks of re- tail supplies and services. Tempers will be high, violence likely. Don’t be surprised if small communities even try to block the main roads into their areas.
By the time the 3rd wave of evacuees comes if you still haven’t left most likely it’s too late to even try. For all the reasons above and more it will be impossible, or at the very least highly risky, to even attempt to leave. You are prob- ably better off digging in and trying to wait out the event (depending what the event is).
I believe the key to success in this is to determine your “trigger event”. Determine clearly and precisely what ac- tions or events prior to an SHTF event will prompt you to implement your evacuation plan. You have to be reason- able and specific. Life is full of daily unexpected events and you can’t be “bugging out” every time there’s a news flash.
Above all, I believe it comes down to trusting your gut in- stincts. Don’t be ruled by what others are doing, or more likely not doing. Don’t be afraid to make the decision to leave. You may get ribbed for it later if nothing bad hap- pens. But I assure you deep down a lot of those people jabbing you wish they had thought to leave too and had the strength of character to actually do it themselves.
Copyright 2012 by ST
http://suburbansurvivalblog.com/

Bug Out Trigger Criteria

This is a guest post by a new contributing Author Mr-Jones. Mr-Jones and I know each other primarily from Facebook, and some of the same forums, and have become fast friends, online. I have asked him to contribute when he can, and I greatly appreciate it. Please welcome him…

What exactly would it take to trigger a bug out?

Just like you have, I have read a ton on bug out bags, bug
out routes, and bug out destinations, but I seldom receive a satisfactory answer to the question: If it came down to it, what exactly would trigger you to pack up and leave your primary residence? I ask this for a reason. In my mind, any exit strategy has to have a trigger. In a business, it’s usually a monetary trigger. But it could be an milestone event in the cycle of decline, such as, when your distributors freeze your credit lines. What would have to happen to trigger your bug out contingency plan? If you plan to leave before the hordes of sheeple exit your city then you have you to beat them to it, right? If you plan to bug out before the roadblocks go up, you need to leave before that … or do you have a contingency plan for that? What if, in this age of information, you don’t beat them? This could happen because of geography or it could happen because some of the sheeple are not packing anything or it could hap- pen because you were either too lazy or too uninformed to identify possible triggers and waited too long. I want to focus on that last bit.
I had some events that caused me to rethink my position- ing. At the time, I owned a business located in a couple suites of a strip mall in the Phoenix-Metro area. One of the events was a power outage … the power turned off, (this is not an abnormal occurrance, all of us have prob- ably been through power outages) but the power usually turned back on in a few seconds or a few minutes. Seconds turned into minutes and minutes turned into hours. And I realized … “Hey, dummy, the backup batteries for my busi- ness alarm systems should be running out about now.” So I found myself in a prison of my own making. I had envi- sioned myself bugging in at home, or bugging out to one of a few destinations. Instead, I went down and guarded my livelyhood until the power came on … not unlike the Ko- rean shop owners in the LA riots. Since then, I eventually repositioned, accepting lower pay, but bettering my foot- ing in an emergency. Now I live in a rural community that, in all likelyhood, (and unlike Phoenix) won’t have riots, and will have water post-SHTF event. I’m not saying that no one will be able to survive in Phoenix. I’m just saying I traded something good for something better. I’ve already

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“bugged in” outside of major metro areas, and severed my ties to my business, so that frees me up and decreases the chance I will have to bug out in the first place. But it’s al- ways a possibility.

Do you do drills?

If so, do you time yourself? Have you triggered a bug
out before? I have done some “surprise” drills. I say that tongue-in-cheek because, how can you surprise yourself? One Friday, I just say, OK, “Go!” I look at the clock and see how it turns out. How fast can you even go on a camping trip? Can you do it without stopping at the store or stop for gas? If not, that gives you a pretty good idea of where you need to focus your preparations. Stop for gas will sure- ly turn into wait in line for gas, and then you’re too late. What is a reasonable goal for you to shoot for? It’s prob- ably going to be slightly diferent for a single fellow than for a couple, and different still for a family. Do you know where you’re headed? I think it’s healthy to focus on the basics and to have repetition in skill training. Some num- bers on that … the first time you train or are trained on a given topic, retention is something like 13% on average … second time, it goes up to say 21% … but the third time, it goes up into the high 60′s percentile-wise. Just a tidbit on skill training to help you train smart. Another thing that might help is to have a followup mechanism. For me, it’s a small Rite-In-The-Rain journal. I volunteer with my Com- munity Emergency Response Team and the Amateur Radio Emergency Service. Every time I practice bugging out, go on an outing, do a major training excercise with CERT or ARES, or I’m deployed, I sit down afterward and make a journal entry. I include the date, how long it was, what the weather was like, a short review of my performance, how my gear performed, and anything I could subtract from my gear or that I need for my gear. Eventually, making your gear lightweight will be as important as buying new gear
… age will eventually catch up to you. Or, if you’re a new prepper, you’ll very quickly find that you can’t carry all your gear with you. That very quickly turns into “you can’t carry everything you’d like” with you. By now you have probably noticed that I’m a gear junky and I need to improve on that.

What goes into identifying my triggers?

My background is in business, so how I do it, its how I would
develop a trigger for an exit strategy. I Identify qualitative and quantitative triggers … or triggers that are both. For qualatative triggers, think about the “qualities” or condi- tions such as “mobs in the street.” For quantitative triggers, think: ”a mob is 5 or more people.” For both, think: mobs (5 or more people) within 10 blocks of my apartment. Then, I make my trigger a conditional (If/Then) action statement: If I have reliable reports of mobs (of 5 or more) within 10 blocks of my apartment, then I will implement bug out strategy Alpha. That’s just how I do it. I’d love to hear ideas

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to improve my method. I will steal them and never give you any credit for them. That’s what I learned in self-defense classes … when lives are on the line, it’s OK to lie, steal, and cheat to win.

I think the actual triggers vary greatly based on your

geographical location and the threats you face.

Do you live in a seizmically active area? I do. My house
could be rendered unsafe by an earthquake and I could have to bug out. In this case, it might not even be that far. Often one house is destroyed and the one next to it is fine. It could be a fire … that could affect most of us. It could be an NBC event. I’m not really in a fallout zone (given normal wind patterns) for any high value targets, but my little city does have a meat packing plant that stores ammonia. Do you know where you live in relation to targets and wind- patterns? How much radiation would cause you to bug out? Can you measure it? That reminds me that it’s time to have my instruments re-calibrated. Could it be drought? Famine? If so, what would the trigger be? How long would the power have to be off? Would you EVER have to bug out because of a power outage? Perhaps a localized EMP from a solar flare for you people with your own micro-hydro plant, solar panels and wind generators. How about an in- flux of refugees? How soon would you leave, or would you, in a government ordered evacuation? How about a pan- demic? Could your home be rendered unsafe by a tornado or a micro-burst? How about a weather event with a warn- ing like a hurricane? How big would it have to be or is that a consideration? Could it be flooded? Could your water sup- ply become contaminated? Yes, the list is endless, but what is in the top 10 for your local?

In summary

what if the unthinkable does happen? What are those trig-
gers we talked about? Is there just one? Is it different for
different contigencies? I’m going to leave you with these questions, because I haven’t been able to come up with any one answer that is right for everyone in every situa- tion. But I hopefully have given you some ideas of how to identify some triggers and I challenge you to think about your top 10, write some trigger statements and respond. If you do it in the form of a qualitative and quantitative action statement, browine points for you. If you do it in your own way, good for you, you’re still better off than before you identified your bug out triggers.
Copyright 2011, by Mr-Jones

http://suburbansurvivalblog.com/

Understanding Everyone In the City Will Be a

Refugee Post SHTF



Not often spoken of, I think in the survivalist or prepper circle, is how to avoid becoming a refugee post SHTF. We talk a lot about prepping, we talk a lot about bugging out or bugging in, but we never really talk about the situation where we do find ourselves shut off from our gear and are in a situation where our preps don’t help us much. For in- stance, what if you are in NYC or on Long Island and there is some emergency and the tunnels and bridges are shut down for an undetermined amount of time. You’re stuck on one of the islands maybe without anywhere to go. Al- most immediately you are a trapped refugee.
I should also preface this with some of your decisions as a refugee may or may not be the most ethical decisions based on you need to survive.
I should probably also define SHTF. SHTF does not have to be an invasion by a foreign power, earthquake, hurricane, etc. It could be something as simple as losing your job and being forced out of your home. For the purposes of this post, however, feel free to apply whatever situation you might think you would most likely put you in a situation where you might actually be a refugee. Let’s also assume you are in a highly populated area like the suburbs of a major city or the major city itself.
Apply your situation, and you find yourself homeless with little cash. Communications systems are up and down, and there is still law enforcement and security of some sort. Assume you have your EDC on you, and a backpack with minimal supplies. Where would you go? What would you do? Would you live on the street? Enter a shelter? Find an abandon building?
First, let me tell you what will happen if you enter a shelter. Chances are you will be searched upon entering, no weap- ons, knives, food, multi-tools, etc. Nada. How do I know this? Remember my friend who was in the shelter, and that kit I made him? Well, they confiscated half the stuff out of the kit. Including the multi-tool and the ER Bar that I had in the kit. You will have to cache many of your supplies and hope they are there the next day when you return for them. Try doing that in the city, and feel good about it. Sec- ond, should you choose to live on the street during a SHTF in the city, you better be good at urban evasion tactics, and I am not just talking about from authorities. I am talking other refugees, existing homeless, gangs, etc.
To that end, if the bridges and tunnels to NYC are shut down, chances are it is going to be a while before any fresh medical supplies, bottled water (because no one from the

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city drinks from the tap), food (as the public knows it), etc. makes its way into the city and properly distributed. And properly distributed during a SHTF is clearly govern- ment distribution and rationed supplies. Now, if food and supplies can come in, then they will clearly be evacuating those out of the city to wherever they set up camp. That’s a lot additional refugees and locusts that will be filling in the suburbs. I hope some or many are prepared for that. What to do when the locusts evacuate the city into the suburbs will be another post altogether.
Not to mention there will be a mass exodus to try to get out of the city. Everyone with a country home in NY State, PA, or elsewhere will be trying to get out of the city. Those that have family outside the city will be trying to get outside the city. There will be refugees floating around everywhere. And when they find out they cannot get off the island of Manhattan, they are going to get angry. Those that have completely adapted to the urban lifestyle will have very few resources in their apartment. They will run out of food and water quickly. Then comes desperate measure.

If they keep the bridges and tunnels open, good luck get- ting over or through them at any speed. People will be walking, biking, running, in their car, etc. Think of the sto- ries about how hard it was to evacuate before Hurricane Katrina. The roads were packed going about two MPH for miles and miles. By the time anyone gets from one side of the tunnel or bridge walking or going so slowly it takes hours, there are going to be a lot of angry people. If you are going into NJ and you are walking, to get as far as the Meadowlands you have to go over at least one more bridge

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over a river. Assuming the NJ State police do not have these roads blocked off, you may be able to make it to your desti- nation. If it six hours to go six miles it might take a lot longer than that if you try to get to your destination.
If you get stuck in the city (any city) it is likely you will also be deprived of the basic necessity of sleep, since you will be on a heightened state of alert most of the time. Some of the things you might encounter would be yelling, scream- ing, sirens, megaphones talking as they are driving down the road, people crying, localized riots and civil unrest. Along with your sleep deprivation will be your diminished decision making capacity that follows it.
99% of the people in a city or the suburbs are not going to be prepared for any emergency. Most people aren’t going to get 10 miles. They are going to get hungry, tired, angry, or worse hostile towards other refugees around them.
The truth is, I am not even sure I would make it. There are a lot of variables, and I am constantly trying to prep and prepare for the uncertain.
So, with all those thoughts, (because that is what they re- ally were, a collection of what if thoughts) if any SHTF oc- curs, what will you do about it? How will you handle it? What will your level of preparation be?
Copyright 2011 by suburban

http://suburbansurvivalblog.com/

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LDS Emergency Communications

by

Dennis Bartholomew


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has long en- couraged its members to assemble and maintain a 72 hour kit that can be utilized in an emergency. In addition, mem- bers have been encouraged to acquire a long-term supply of food, water and other necessities for emergencies. In any emergency, communications are also essential. This paper will address alternate forms of communication that can be used if such an event warrants it.
In most emergencies, normal forms of communication are still available, namely telephone, cell service and the internet. However, there may be limited service. For ex- ample, voice cell service may be spotty, but texting is more reliable. On land lines, incoming calls may be possible, but outgoing calls will be limited or impossible.
In the case of a widespread emergency or disaster, all forms of regular communication are simply nonexistent. Katrina is one such example. Communication is essential in everyday life, and especially so in any type of disaster. The question is raised, “What type of communication will work all the time and can be independent of the power grid and other conventional infrastructure, and still operate ef- ficiently?”
The answer to this question is ham radio, also called am-
ateur radio. Ham radio has been in existence since the
1920’s. It is extremely reliable. All ham radios operate on
12 volts DC, and therefore, can operate for days, weeks or longer on battery power from automobiles. It is relatively inexpensive to get started in ham radio. For many, ham ra- dio is a hobby. But it is already recognized by the ham radio community as an emergency mode of communication.
Since the 1970’s, the Church has had an informal group of member ham radio operators organized throughout the United States and some parts of Canada. This organiza- tion is known as ERC, or Emergency Response Communica-
tions. They routinely conduct meetings on the air (called nets), which have allowed them to practice their craft on a weekly basis in being prepared to communicate in any situ- ation. This is the ‘big picture’ view of the program. Let’s talk about the local concept of this form of communication.
When disaster strikes, the bishop will want to obtain in- formation about his ward members. He will want to know who, and how many were affected, what the status of Church owned buildings are, and he will also want to know the status of the full-time missionaries. If this information cannot be provided through normal means of communica- tions, members of the ward who are ham radio operators, would collect this information and pass it to the bishop via ham radio. (This process would be outlined in advance in the Ward Emergency Plan.) This information would then need to be forwarded to the stake president. The informa- tion may need to be passed further up the Priesthood chain
– possibly to Headquarters in Salt Lake City – depending on the severity of the disaster and the needs of the members.
When organized well, this form of communication can function quite efficiently and satisfy the needs that Church leaders have to obtain this vital information in such an event.
What is the process of being a ham radio operator? There are some simple, but needed requirements to oper- ate a ham radio. First, in the United States, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) governs the use of ham radio frequencies. Similar agencies direct communi- cations in most countries in the world. The FCC requires that a ham radio operator possess a ham radio license. This license is acquired by successfully passing a 35 ques- tion multiple choice test. Books are available to study for this test, which teach the essentials of ham radio and are good reference books for after-the-test use. After the test has been passed, the individual will be issued a ham radio license by the FCC. The license will show the call sign that was issued, which is used in all transmissions on a ham ra- dio.
For study books, locations of testing sites and other re-
sources, see ‘Resources’ at the end of this article.
After obtaining the license, you will want to invest in a ham radio. There is a large variety of ham radios that are available from many sources. The key in owning your first ham radio is to find equipment that is reliable, but isn’t ex- tremely expensive. The author recommends a handheld-

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type of radio as your first investment. Also called an HT, or handheld transceiver, HT’s are very portable and easy to use. They will provide you with years of service – even after you purchase additional, more expensive equipment, if you so desire. An HT typically costs about $130. An HT may be the only radio you will ever require to provide the needed communication for your situation.
As mentioned, additional equipment may be desired, de- pending on your need to communicate in a wider area. Typically, a person can invest in additional equipment that enhances the use of the HT. For example, adding a discrete antenna to the roof of your house can greatly extend the range of the HT. An HT usually transmits between 1 and 5 watts of power. Other radios are available that transmit between 50 and 75 watts. These radios are called mobile radios. As the name implies, they are often permanently mounted in a vehicle. They are also used as a ‘base station’ in homes or other stationary locations. A mobile radio will need a 12 volt power supply if used as a base station. This can be accomplished by using a sealed 12 volt battery that is being charged by a trickle charger or battery maintainer. This method allows the use of the base station without the need for power from the grid. A mobile radio is a good in- vestment, because it can easily be moved into any vehicle and used as a mobile, in the literal sense. As in all cases, an antenna is required. When using a mobile radio in a tem- porary vehicle installation, the use of a magnetic mounted antenna would work quite well.
As you can see, the list of equipment can grow quickly. As a review, the above mentioned items include a handheld ra- dio, a mobile radio, a house mounted antenna and a mag- netic mounted antenna. Do not let this list overwhelm you. As mentioned, an HT may be all that is necessary for your needs. If you wish to increase your capabilities with ad- ditional equipment, you can do so incrementally and over a period of time.
During the process of learning about ham radio, you will want to locate ham radio operators in your community. They are a valuable source of information to you, and most are quite willing to help you. You can locate clubs that are established in your area, through the ARRL. (See ‘Resourc- es’ below)
Let’s talk about the range of ham radios. The range will vary tremendously, depending on terrain, how much power you are transmitting and how high your antenna is. Typically, a handheld’s range will be 1 to 2 miles. With a roof mounted antenna, the range will increase approximately ten-fold, in most cases. The transmit range of a mobile radio is more than that of an HT, because it is capable of transmitting

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more power. Range can be increased even further, through the use of what is called a repeater.
A repeater is a ham radio with some unique properties. It is typically installed at a high location – usually a moun- tain or high building. As an operator, you transmit to the repeater. The repeater, then, receives your signal and re- transmits it in all directions and with a much greater range than what is typical for your own radio. This allows other operators to hear your signal and for you to hear theirs, over a much larger area than is possible with a base radio by itself. Repeaters are usually owned by a person or ham radio club. If you wish to transmit using a repeater, it is recommended that you ask the repeater owner or trustee for permission to do so. This can be done simply by finding out the name of the repeater owner and making a verbal request via the repeater. After that, you are most likely go- ing to be welcome to transmit on the repeater.
When using a ham radio, bear in mind that whenever you transmit, anyone can hear what you are saying if they are on the same frequency as you are. It is a ‘party line’ and should be treated as such.
Let’s talk now about bands. The definition of a band is a group of consecutive frequencies that are grouped for a specific purpose. For example, your car radio has two bands – the FM band and the AM band. The range of fre- quencies of the FM band is from 87.5 to 107.9. These num- bers are expressed in megahertz, or MHz. Interestingly, immediately following the FM band is the aviation band, which starts at 108.0 and ends at 135.0 MHz. All aircraft communications take place within that range of frequen- cies. There are hundreds of bands that are used for dozens of purposes like commercial radio and television, ham ra- dio, government, cell phone, garage door openers, model airplanes, and many other purposes.
One of the more popular ham radio bands is called the ‘2 meter’ band. Its frequency range is from 144.0 to 148.0
MHz. You will notice that it is not far from the FM band in your vehicle. It is called the 2 meter band because the antenna has a theoretical length of 2 meters, or just over
6 feet. This is not the actual length of the antennas used. There are many ways to make an antenna a convenient length, but is electrically compatible with the band.
Many other bands are available for ham radio – about
15 in all. Each band has its own advantages, which allow communications of various types. Some bands offer high quality sound, but with a short range. Other bands allow a lower quality sound, but with extreme distance capabilities
– 12,000 miles or more.

There are many ‘modes’ – or forms of communication via ham radio. The most common is voice. When you trans- mit, someone hears you. Examples of other forms are data, ATV and IRLP. The mode called data, allows a ham to transmit and receive information. Instead of transmitting or receiving a voice, you transmit or receive computer files
– a spreadsheet or a Word® document, for example. ATV, or Amateur Television is also possible. This allows hams to transmit and receive video signals using ham frequencies. IRLP, or Internet Radio Linking Project, is part of the voice mode, except it joins ham radio with the internet