Skip to comments.Could You Really Survive the Apocalypse by Eating Freeze-Dried Food?
Posted on 03/23/2012 4:00:55 PM PDT by DogByte6RER
Could you really survive the apocalypse by eating freeze-dried food?
Is it really a good idea to store freeze dried food for a long-term survival situation? It may be an attractive proposition for the survivalist in you, but you probably didn't bargain on what exactly the process of freeze drying involves and its price.
HOW TO CARRY A TON OF FOOD ON YOUR BACK
The process of freeze drying plays with the properties of water within food. When freeze drying, a cooked portion of food is flash frozen under a vacuum. At low pressure, all but 2-5% of the water in the food sublimes, moving quickly from a solid to gas form. The evaporation of water in this process allows the food to maintain its shape and decrease the weight by up to 90% -a big plus for those who need to "bug out" in a hurry due to a disaster.
You can even freeze dry ice cream.
SHELF LIFE OF FREEZE DRIED FOOD
Freeze dried foods last a little bit longer than dehydrated ones. Most freeze dried foods that you buy are sealed under nitrogen in resilient packaging, allowing for anywhere from a two to twenty-five year shelf life. Freeze dried fruits are on the lower end of the shelf life spectrum, lasting a little over two years.
Once the seal on a package of freeze dried food is broken, the shelf life clock is ticking, with most palatable for six months. There's a rapid falloff in shelf life if it's stored in a humid area.
POST-APOCALYPTIC EATING IS EXPENSIVE
Freeze dried foods are rather expensive - $1 to $2 per serving of a side dish like macaroni and cheese and $3 for a serving of ground beef. These are bulk prices - individually packed entrees cost $6 to $8 a piece.
One is easily looking at $10 to $15 dollars a day per person to sustain a diet of freeze dried food. Remember, this is food you might end up eating for hundreds of meals if a breakdown of society never comes.
Dehydrating food yourself is a slightly cheaper alternative, but requires a large amount of work and is far more susceptible to contamination.
THE WATER PROBLEM
In addition to price, another problem rears its head with freeze-dried foods. Freeze dried food must be reconstituted in order to be eaten, necessitating a large (and clean) water supply in order to dine and that's on top of the clean water you need for drinking.
Clean water will likely be in short supply in a post-apocalyptic survival scenario. Water can be boiled or stored in advance, while bleach and iodine are useful in killing pathogens like Giardia lamblia in fresh water. But that's a lot of work to decontaminate your water, and you might want to use that water for drinking rather than reconstituting up your freeze-dried ice cream.
Making matters worse is the fact that eating freeze dried food without reconstitution could hypothetically cause you to dehydrate.
THE VERDICT: THE POST-APOCALYPSE WILL NOT BE FREEZE-DRIED
Surviving a long-term disruption in the food supply with freeze dried food would take enormous planning, a considerable amount of money, and one variable - a good, steady water supply. So it's probably not a good long-term solution after civilization falls.
If, however, you are concerned about preparing yourself for a small disruption in the food supply due to a hurricane or other natural distaster, storing some freeze dried food in the house might be a good idea. 72-hour food kits are sold on Amazon and in some big box stores.
In the meantime, don't forget about the canned food lying in your pantry. Canned goods are hefty, but they are safe for several years and, in the case of vegetables like corn and green beans, also contain a water supply. It might not taste good, but in a pinch, asparagus water could keep you alive.
...not saying Ive ever eaten sand from a dirty cat box.
Fess up; you’re among friends.
well our dod loves it , but then he goes around with those brown bits between his teeth ,not to mention his breath
400’ up a 2” pipe?
Here’s a tip for those of us with a goodly supply of canned goods in the pantry - use colored labels to denote storage date. Bright red for 2012, yellow for 2013, etc. Makes it easy to rotate your stock into the normal eating stream, plus even kids can figure it out.
Another great idea for people low on space is alternate your cabinets - fill one up, put new stock into the next cabinet and only eat out of the one you previously filled. Switch back and forth and you’ll probably have a good solid week’s worth of food always on hand.
As for those who think they’ve got a great water supply nearby (pond or other body of water), you have to assume that water is going to become heavily contaminated in a very short period of time. Bodies of water are on maps, and people think nothing of just pulling up near a water supply and camping it out, without the slightest thought towards hygiene or protecting that water supply from contamination. Only consider underground water sources as being likely to survive roaming people.
Oh, sure....blame the dog. (I used to have a dog that would fart and then get up and move about ten feet and just sit down and act as surprised as everyone else when the smell spread.)
My hand pump is located at 170 feet with a static water level of about 80 feet. Is yours deeper than 300 feet?
Also, is there a concern that the soups may be too salty? It might be best to buy very low salt soups and plan on adding salt as needed.
Can’t be any worse for you than a heart attack Mac.
I’ve approached the problem in a variety of ways, from dried, freeze dried, canned, with lots of flour and corn meal. We also have several gardens, and live in an area where water is easily accessible through the well or though the river, and elk are always near by. We are planning on building some self cleaning chicken pens (yeah sure) and raising enough chickens to supply fresh eggs. My wife knows a lot of people on the neighboring reservation, and they are always giving her bulk foods from the government give away programs. We have plenty of dried eggs, and milk, pretty much whatever is left over that people don’t want.
If the starving hoards don’t come, and shoot us right away, we might survive.
Not reliable for killing Giardia. Found out the hard way the iodine doesn't always work. Boiling best.
Well, to be honest, any kind of processed packaged food, unless you have a warehouse, is temporary short to mid range to a year. This gives you time to find more canned goods, but it gives you time to start planting sustainable sources. Also finding sustainable sources (ie an apple tree nearby).
As for water Big Berkey filters will last a long long time. Prefiltering out stuff before putting that water into a filter will make it last longer.
In the end there really isn’t any great options for survival long term unless real constitutional government like we had in the beginning of this country, are put in place again. It unfortunately may not work as well as back then almost everyone was Christian and could be counted on controlling (self-governing) themselves.
Your well head has a pipe of just 2 inches?
Then I don’t know.
My well has a 6 inch pipe that you can run a hollow tube through and bring up water with a pulley system
Im sorry I dont know
Not sure I see the point, actually.
‘exactly the process of freeze drying involves’
‘When freeze drying, a cooked portion of food is flash frozen under a vacuum. At low pressure, all but 2-5% of the water in the food sublimes, moving quickly from a solid to gas form.’————
‘Freeze dried foods are rather expensive - $1 to $2 per serving of a side dish like macaroni and cheese and $3 for a serving of ground beef. These are bulk prices - individually packed entrees cost $6 to $8 a piece.
One is easily looking at $10 to $15 dollars a day per person to sustain a diet of freeze dried food. Remember, this is food you might end up eating for hundreds of meals if a breakdown of society never comes.’——
Well that may be the price currently, but compared to the price of food since the ‘age of Obama’, I say it’s a great deal to buy food that lasts 25 years and doesn’t need refrigeration, at today’s price, because the raping that’s been done of our treasury and citizenry by Obama, tax cheat Geithner, Barney Frank, Maxine Waters, Chuck Schumer, Ben Bernanke and the black caucus will be felt for generations to come.
I love freeze dried foods. So easy,ready in minutes, tastier than dehydrated, in some instances, such as the banana’s, and has a long shelf life.
Best be buying now, before Obama ends food production all together or turns off the water in more places than California, or deems it necessary for prices to skyrocket or deems it that the citizenry are not allowed to eat meat. Congress is working on doing just that.
You mean you’re supposed to add water?
Dang, I’ve had some freeze dried stuff when I was a kid...it was kind of crunchy...as I recall, it actually looked more appetizing than MRE’s. I think I’m glad we didn’t add water.
At this point you ain't going to work, might as well hunt.
In other words if you have a Grab-it, (and you should) then the place for freeze dried foods is there.
It is of little or no value for your shelter in place or your off site location.
This is one area where you (IMHO) should not invest. Canned food will do you better and the cans are useful even after they are empty.
Regarding sanitizing water, everyone would be well advised to research the use of calcium hypochlorite for that purpose. Boiling is best, but may become impractical and dangerous.
But, most important of all is MINDSET. Don't plan to "hole up"...plan on taking and keeping geographical areas. If not, when you finally do emerge from your spider hole you're going to find yourself in "Somalia".
Well I said "Kill" not "shoot", but I catch your drift. : )
Good points on the rest.