Lessons passed down by expert preppers on storing up emergency food on a budget...
When it does, we are looking at a famine on a level that this world has never seen before.
What if the day comes where stores never re-open? At the point where your survival food stores become exhausted after several weeks following a collapse, you're either going to have to turn to begging for food, or a very difficult and frustrating life trying to hunt, fish, trap or forage in the adjacent forests -- called living off the land -- but truly, only the adept, the knowledgeable, and the experienced are going to be able to "live off the land" and the ones who do won't be found in any nearby woods or hills.
Because there won't be anything to hunt or forage for in the nearby woods or hills following a major disaster.
Wildlife is very sensitive to the presence of people. So a large number of people fleeing into wilderness regions is going to send much of the wildlife fleeing for remote regions. It's these remote regions that the hunting can be good; but only the most adept are likely to make it that far where there are no roads, where there may be rugged mountains and canyons and rivers to cross; there may be dangerous weather conditions to deal with depending on the season. If you can make it to a remote region, I'm talking really remote, it will be possible to live off the land, but it won't be easy.
Parachuters are landing in residential neighborhoods. Quickly gathering up parachutes. Quickly checking weapons and gear. Firing at people who had been watching it all unfold from front yards and porches.
Who's cargo planes are landing at the local municipal airport with tanks and military vehicles streaming out? Chinese symbols. Russian symbols. What the hell is going on?
You'll need some friends, you'll need some fire power, hopefully God is on your side with all that fire power and he's going to use you in some way to make a difference, for good. The violent hand of God is something we see repeated in Old Testament chapters of the Bible. I expect it's something we're likely to see again some day. There's just too many examples of God going to war through his people, though not all of them of course, just a few at a time. Because if God used too many people, to give the enemies of Christ a beating, they might make the mistake of thinking that they did this by their own power. That's not God's style in the Bible though. That's not the pattern we see in scripture.
Who remembers this phrase? "Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands."
When God favored the Israelites, the Israelites were successful at wiping out enemy nations, success after success after success.
But when God was angry with the Israelites, over rebellion, over disobedience, over wicked acts and atrocities, just the opposite happened. The Israelites were overrun, beaten down, many killed, many more ended up enslaved to other nations.
That first part sounds a lot like America. At one time we were a nation under God. Success after success. Innovation after innovation. Dreams and bigger dreams. America had God's favor and was the gem of the world. People from around the world dreamed of moving here and many did. But today America no longer has God's favor. We have become God's enemy. Not all of us. But a lot of us.
Jesus warned the wheat would be separated from the chaff. If you don't know what he meant by this, you better figure that one out fast. If should be the first thing you do before you do anything else in life.
What the hell did Jesus mean when he said he would seperate the wheat from the chaff? There's nothing difficult with that statement. So why do so many people have a hard time grasping those words?
They just don't care.
Though you may have beans and cereal that, in theory, can last 10 years or more, the way you store them can substantially decrease or increase that amount. In other words, you may have quite a bit of food in your pantry right now that has less than a year until it expires... and that's a tough position to be in if a serious, earth shaking disaster struck today.
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For example, Cheerios and other breakfast cereals you typically buy at the supermarket have a shelf life of 6 to 8 months. Processed cereals have many refined and hydrogenated oils in them, oil goes rancid so, even if you were to use the preservation techniques we're going to talk about in a minute, it still wouldn't be worth it. Thus, step one in storing your food for a really long time is to pick the right food. When we're talking about real long term emergency food storage, opt for storing white rice (not brown), dried beans and whole wheat berries (not breakfast cereals); rice, beans and wheat berries should be the staples of your survival stockpile.
The process is simple. You fill the bag nearly all the way to the top, seal it using an iron or a hair straightener (but not before you add a pack of the oxygen absorber), depending on the size of the bag. Oxygen absorbers are small packs of iron powder and create a nitrogen environment by removing any oxygen present through chemical reactions. So, even if the bag will look like it's got air inside, you don't need to panic because that's just nitrogen.
It's worth mentioning that neither the nitrogen nor the iron powder can affect your food (provided you keep the O2 absorbers inside the original packaging).
As you can see, you don't need to vacuum-seal the bags; the absorbers will do the trick to prevent growth of aerobic pathogens (such as mold) as well as preventing oxidation. These are the two ways oxygen can spoil your food. Besides, your cereals will crumble under the pressure of the bag.
We talked about aerobic bacteria but anaerobes need very little or no oxygen to develop. The most important one is called Clostridium botulinum and is responsible for a disease called botulism (not something you want to suffer from post-collapse). Fortunately, this doesn't really occur when storing grains, beans and rice as long as they're not moist. It's something that mostly shows up in canned food, which we'll tackle in a moment.
The last thing you need to do after you've taken care of oxygen, light and humidity is ensure the proper temperature. Anywhere between 50F and 70F will work, preferably closer to 50.
- White rice can last at least 7-8 years with some sources going as high as 25.
- Hard grains such as wheat and corn can store for at least 10 years.
- Soft grains can last about 8 years (because the outer shell is not as strong as that of hard grains)
Place it in plastic buckets to protect it from light, from crumbling inside and from accidental puncturing of the bag. Speaking of punctures, you may want to consider storing things like spaghetti in 5-mil bags instead of the more common 3.5 mil to avoid any sharp noodles accidentally poking holes in the mylar.
Some people like to freeze pasta before storage to prevent larva eggs from hatching. So, to kill these eggs, noodles should stay frozen for approximately 5 days but this method is not needed as long as you use oxygen absorbers. Ultimately freezing the noodles won't hurt them but it won't really help either. If you do decide to do it, you need to allow the frozen noodles to reach room temperature before you seal these noodles in Mylars. Otherwise condensation will form and allow the growth of mold.
As long as the can has been properly stored and it looks good on the outside (it's not leaking and the lid is not swollen or punctured), it's probably safe to eat. You still have to check for suspicious smells but there have been reports of cans of food that were safe to eat even after 30 or 40 years.
Nevertheless, plenty of people have reported being absolutely fine after eating canned food past the expiration date. Of course, you need to give your cans the same conditions you do to your beans and rice: Keep them in a cool, dry, dark place away from moisture.
Now, there are two types of canned food when it comes to how long they can last: High-acidic and low-acidic. The USDA guidelines tell us that high-acid food (canned fruit and pickles) can last up to 18 months while low acid food (canned meat, beans, corn, potatoes etc.) up to 5 years. The acid in these cans contributes to the deterioration of color, texture and nutrients (over time, of course).
As mentioned earlier, if the can looks, smells and tastes ok, you can ignore the expiration and the "best by" dates (in a post-collapse you might not have a choice anyway).
Peanut butter is jam-packed with calories and can last a long time if properly stored... but there's a catch. It's full of oils and, as previously said, oils go rancid over time. It depends which type of PB you're storing, because natural peanut butter only last a few months while smooth and crunchy can last up to a year.
To improve its shelf life, you need to keep peanut butter tightly sealed and in a cool, dry, dark place. You should also store it in a glass rather than a plastic jar to increase longevity even more.
The alternative to PB is powdered peanut butter, which should store for at least 5 years, closer to 10 actually, and it's good for another year after you open it. That's considerably longer than traditional peanut butter.
The other items with an indefinite shelf life are salt, sugar and molasses but the one thing you should do is keep them away from moisture. It's common for basements to develop mold due to poor ventilation so the two options you have are to either install a fan (if your basement has windows), a dehumidifier (which, unfortunately, will incur electricity costs) or use some of the other recommended options depending on how bad things are.
The most important thing to seed storage is to keep these seeds dry. Moisture is the biggest enemy but, fortunately, one you can easily defeat. Keeping your seeds in a cool, dry place should work and don't forget to add desiccants to the container and seal them afterwards. Another thing you need to do is dry them before storage.
If you don't want to use desiccants you have other options, such as putting them in paper envelopes. Other options include storing them inside the fridge or the freezer but if you're left without power in the next disaster, you're still going to use one of the aforementioned solutions.
The shelf life of various seeds varies. Some people say they can last up to a hundred years. They actually found seeds inside the belly of a frozen mammoth, meaning they lasted thousands of years! It's hard to say but if you do it right, you can expect to get at least 5 years of storage life and a 70% germination rate. The ones that have the longest shelf life are:
Bean (2-3 years)
Radish, muskmelon, cress, collards and cucumber (5 years)
Tomato, squash, turnips, eggplant, sorrel, cauliflower Brussel sprouts and watermelon (4 years each)
...but, again, the life of a seed can increase if you do a good job storing them.
If you're thinking of using oxygen absorbers with dry pet food, it might not work. You might wake up with mold rings around the absorbers which will, in turn, spoil the entire bag as several preppers have cautioned.
The good news about storing pet food, though, is that there's no difference between survival food and what they regularly eat for your pet. The other good news is that pets can eat "human survival food" (for lack of a better term). For example, dogs can eat white rice, which we already know can last a lot longer if properly stored (being one of the most popular survival foods).
As long as you store your pet food in a cool, dry dark place (such as a ventilated basement), you'll surely get a lot more than the 1-2 years it's stated to last.
Famine. Food shortages. Long lines stretching possibly miles for a government handout (until the government closes it's doors as well). Long lines seeking food at churches (that is until churches run out of food) and soup kitchens -- soup kitchens once popular with the homeless but now attracting crowds of hungry and scared citizens and their families looking for food and also looking for a solution; but there won't be one.
What about organizations like the Red Cross and Salvation Army? In some communities, in the first few hours and days, they may also be a source for food, but expect incredibly long lines. When or if food finally gets into your hands unfortunately it may not be something you really find that palatable.
A lot of people, and I'm sure a few readers here, may not believe today in these Biblical warnings I've shared at different times on the site. I'm going to predict though that a lot of you will start believing in the times ahead.
I get that assurance from the Bible -- most people who end up believing in Jesus don't believe until God is dropping the hammer. In other words: People are some hard eggs to crack!
I know it. I've been there. And it's not just the banksters at the top of the food chain preying on the consumers or the super elites at the head of our corporations; no, it's the rest of us also, the people that make up modern day nations caught up in what the Bible describes as carnal, worldly lives -- with a complete disregard for God and his warnings about the coming wrath on the world to deal with it's many evils and atrocities. Atrocities are committed somewhere on our planet on a daily basis.
If we don't get our lives right with God, we are going to be caught up in the midst of it. It may start with a government collapse and famine and food shortages, but really that will only be the beginning. A serious storm is heading to our world and we see it's waves starting to beat against our shores; consider ISIS (or another faction of Radical Islam) as one of those waves; if you look at the ocean during a storm you cannot count the number of waves that hit; but you can see how strong and violent the waves get as the storm approaches.
Matthew 21:29-33 - And he told them a parable: "Look at the fig tree, and all the trees. As soon as they come out in leaf, you see for yourselves and know that the summer is already near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all has taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away."
Matthew 21:34-36 -"But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap. For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man."