Skip to comments.Foods to Stock Up on -- or Not
Posted on 03/25/2013 1:33:13 PM PDT by Kartographer
Huge sales on food items at the supermarket are so tempting. It's an opportunity to save lots of money and ensure plenty of cheap meals (and "pantry shopping" when you're out of money or time) for days to come. But food isn't cheap if it spoils and you have to dump it, and some foods have a shorter shelf life than you might think.
Here's an overview of foods to stock up on, and those you should buy as needed.
(Excerpt) Read more at shine.yahoo.com ...
might be something going on Kart. Noticed web started acting funny about 20 minutes ago. You seeing anything?
“Copy canning” will get you out to 30 or even 60 days.
Just buy an extra of whatever you’re buying to eat anyway, preferably on sale.
Good advice. We have been doing that for years.
I always stock up on tp and paper towels when there is a really good sale and for TP nothing beats the scott 1000 rolls.
Tp never goes bad and you can always use it, also it is a good barter item in a pinch of the cheeks.
Paper towels can be used to supplement a first aid kit as well as you can put them over the other bandages to mop up blood in severe injuries, plus if you are carefull you can reuse them. Plus a well folded paper towel can be used in leu of a sanitary napkin as well, I have done this before and it better to use than TP which can work but is horrible in that it disintegrates.
Another good item is soap, either liquid or bar hand soap, or laundry soap. Stores really well and if you get enough of it you can also use it for bartering later.
Female Hygene products such as pads are another one you can use for other purposes like first aid plus are great barter items as well.
Any paper item is great to prep as they are fairly versitile and can be stored and rotated better than canned food.
Forogot to add when I stock up on laundry soap I buy the store brand in the plastic buckets, as it can be stored on the bottom of the store room and is immune to flooding. Plus after you use it, you have a free bucket, another barter item.
I read the article, and will make these comments...
Use by dates...if canned goods, these can be generally ignored. Most canned goods will last and remain a healthy food well beyond the ‘expiration’ dates.
Cooking Oils...the only oil any of us should use for cooking is coconut oil. We have expeller pressed, naturally refined coconut oil that does not smell or taste like coconut. Coconut oil is made up almost entirely of medium chain saturated fats that cannot spoil if kept at ambient temperatures...coconut oil will still be edible long after any of us reading this are gone. It is healthy and should be a part of our diets. We are on our way to having several hundred pounds stowed away for when we can’t get it anymore.
Baking Staples...whole wheat flour will eventually turn rancid if it still has the germ in it. It keeps longer refrigerated or in the freezer. Most healthy flour is from sprouted spelt. We have access to organic sprouted spelt flour from an Amish mill. Baking soda will keep a long time if kept air tight, away from moisture. Arm & Hammer Baking Soda is Aluminum free, btw. Baking powder has an age limit that can be extended by keeping it in the freezer. We buy pure Mexican vanilla by the quart at very reasonable prices and have it stored.
Condiments...Grow your own horseradish and grind it as you need it. Turn fresh cabbage into sauerkraut. As the article says, buy whole peppercorns and grind as you need them. We buy RealSalt in 25 lb bags and have it stored.
Vegetables...grow your own as much as possible. A ‘root cellar’ will keep potatoes, carrots, beets, turnips, onions, garlic for months. Remember that sweet onions will not store well. Can your fresh tomatoes from your garden that exceed what you eat.
Meat and Fish...Freezing is a good option. So is canning. Make jerky out of beef or venison. Depending on where you live, remember that venison, rabbit, squirrel, geese etc are available if you hunt. Go fishing.
WE MUST NOT FORGET that if we are going to depending on electricity for water, refrigeration, heating (running the fans on the gas furnace) etc, we must become grid independent. There are various options for this, and is subject for another thread.
In closing, we are in the country, we have a well, and we have gas from a well for which we have mineral rights. This is our holeup place, our ‘bugout’ location. We are not threatened by earthquake or flood, and our location is defensible. We have a garden, and plenty of room for expansion. We have three horses that keep the garden in fertilizer. We have a prolific peach tree. We have cherry, apple and pear trees, and we are setting out raspberry and blueberry bushes. We grow asparagus, and once started, it keeps coming year after year.
There are some things we are stocking, like the coconut oil and a few other things that we will use for barter. Staples can be used for barter, never ammunition (my not so humble opinion).
We recycle all grease and fat from cooking. We make soap out of it. The soap is used for everything - in the shower, in the laundry, etc. Which reminds me, I need to get another hundred pounds of lye (sodium hydroxide).
We use hydrogen peroxide for many things, both health and household uses. We buy 50% food grade by the gallon, and we have this stocked too. We avoid chlorine bleach for health reasons.
Those are even better after they’ve cured a bit.
On second thought. Maybe put them in the dehydrator on low overnight.
Get aluminium foil, people!
Infinitely useful. Never degrades.
Buy an extra roll every time you go to the store. I have 20 rolls in the garage, figure adding at least another 10 or more.
Ditto for toilet paper. If you have room, and less than 6
month’s supply, you are a darn fool.
Unless you like dental pain, fill a 5 gallon bucket with toothbrushes, dental floss and toothpaste; along with several of the filling / crown repair dental epoxy packages and a couple tubes of ambesol.
I have spoken, ignore me at your own peril. /grin
Once had several cases of USN ‘C’rations, that were 30 years old. They tasted fine. Some items were better than others,like the meatballs were terrible but the canned salsbury steak was good....[ the Chesterfeild cigaretes were awful]. However I’ve eaten canned goods from the market that were 2 years old that had turned into bland tasteless goo.
>>Once had several cases of USN Crations, that were 30 years old. They tasted fine. <<
I am sure someone here has the info on the latest generation of MREs...?
Hmm.. less that I thought.
Do they taste good enough to rotate?
Or just go with the canned and dry goods?
Here are my thoughts on prepared meals of any kind from MRE to the #10 cans,
Heres my thoughts on these kits:
I often get asked questions about various 30-60-90 and more food kits, buckets of prepared food that store for years as a quick and easy way to be prepared.
Now Ive not tried the food in very many of these kits and so I cant really say if the food is good or bad, but heres the problem as I see with these prepared meal kits. Say you have a 60 day kit that comes with 10 different dinners six of each dinners A-B-C-D-E-F-G-H-I-J and since you never tasted their food the odds are that there will be 2 to 3 of these meals that you really like 4 or 5 that are ok, 1 or 2 you can choke down if you have too and another 1 or 2 you wouldnt feed your dog!
That means two things; One: You run the good chance that twenty percent or more of your storage you wont eat and Two: After a while what you will have left is mostly stuff you dont like and wont eat unless forced and that will get OLD very fast.
I think that you are better off storing 100% things you know you will eat and in as much a variety as possible. Thats my thoughts.
>>I think that you are better off storing 100% things you know you will eat and in as much a variety as possible.<<
That makes rotating a lot easier (the second part of my question).
I’ve seen recipes before and have been planning to make some, but this is the first recipe with vinegar. Do you know what function the vinegar serves? I always have gallons of white vinegar on hand for various purposes.
Kart, I’ve been more or less prepping for years. I used to buy things that were considered “good” for prep purposes but in reality I just don’t normally eat such foods. Many of them went to the food bank after a while.
Also in dire straits people often lose their appetites, and appetite fatigue can set it in with emotional stress and boring food or food you don’t like. Especailly dangerous for the elderly, pregnant women, children and those with heath problems.
So IMHO it’s best to store ONLY what you know you like and best if you eat it regularly already.
Me I have never brought anything because it is said to be good, with the exception of a few barter goods (Like tobacco)I only store what I know I will eat and with condiments to prepare it as many different ways as possible.
I have some MRE’s that were probably old when I got them 12 years ago ... had one last month and it was ok (as far as MRE’s go)
NOw that’s something that is often mentioned as preparedness food, that I DO NOT STORE! Sardines
Quite a few years ago I bought stuff like jars of spaghetti sauce, for instance. Hub doesn’t like it much but I figured it would be okay occasionally. Well, I bought too much, as his “occasional” tolerance of spaghetti sauce meant twice a year...
So now I only buy what we already eat and especially what he will eat, since he’s more picky than me.
Rancid oil, just bad taste/smell or can it make you ill?
I didn't buy any prepared meals either because they were too expensive when thinking of storing for a year.
However, last year before hurricane season, I bought 12 MRE type meals with the heater included in each box and put them in a rolling bag I will take with me if a hurricane comes. There are two huge oak trees behind my back fence belonging to houses behind me. They are as tall as the Empire State building (they look that tall) and the heaviest part of those trees is facing my townhouse. If one or both come down my townhouse is smashed.
I went through Ike hoping I wouldn't get killed in this house if they came down. I was very worried about that. Next time when one comes, I'm taking the dog, the backpacks and that rolling bag and going across the street to a hotel and staying there until the hurricane passes. That's what the MRE type boxed meals are for.
If the house isn't smashed by the trees, I'm back at the house with my dog.
During Ike, which came through here in the dark of night, trees came down all over town and the countryside. One woman was killed in her bed - those trees I'm worried about would first hit my upstairs bedroom and I don't want to be in there if that happens.
Another death was just awful. A lineman was working up on a power line at one place and a tall tree that had loosened due to the storm, fell, he couldn't get out of the way fast enough and the tree hit him and killed him.
This is also pine tree country and right now their yellow pollen is falling and every car in this area is yellow. I have to use the windshield washer before I can see out the windshield when I go somewhere.
So, we are subject to tall trees falling during a hurricane. If the wind doesn't destroy part of your house like the roof, the trees might.
Sometime after Ike, we went south to Houston and from here all the way there were blue tarps over the roofs of houses and businesses and apartment buildings everywhere you looked and part of that destruction was caused by falling trees.
So, I think boxed MREs with heaters in the box have a place if you have to leave your house fast. I know there are 12 prepared meals in that rolling bag and I picked meals I knew I wouldn't hate.
My understanding is that it will make you ill.
MRE’s keep just fine, in the same manner that conventional canned food will. They must be protected from freezing, and high temperatures. The menu selection in recent years has expanded considerably, though the quality in my opinion, is lacking somewhat. That holds true with “civilian” food as well. For old times sake I sampled a few meals from from the 1980s last year and they were absolutely fine. That is, as “fine” as they ever were, which leads me to my next point. While stockpiling a few dozen cases makes sense, MREs and Freeze-Dried are generally expensive and not all that familiar to most.
Grocery store foods offer a better value and taste, if not convenience. That said don’t let shelf life claims dissuade you from military rations, if stored at reasonable temps there is no problem. They are cheaper than Freeze Dried and have more calories.
During Hurricane Fran a huge tree fell across my back yard but missed the house by about 75 degrees. It would have killed both of us in the back bedroom but went a different way.
“My understanding is that it will make you ill.” (rancid oil)
Rancid oil won’t make you sick at the time you ingest it. Over time, if you kept eatins it, I read it can damage your DNA and set you up for some cancers.
However, if you have ever smelled rancid oil, YOU AREN’T GOING TO USE IT. I had some olive oil in a pretty bottle and it was in there for quite a while. I decided to use some and nearly threw up from the smell.
So, if the oil you use has an off smell, dump it - your future health will thank you. It may be olive oil smells worse than any other oil when it goes rancid. Man, it was really, really, bad.
“It would have killed both of us in the back bedroom but went a different way.”
That’s just it - I have studied those trees and the heaviest and most branches on both trees are toward my house. If they fall, that weight is bringing them down on my house. You got lucky in that your huge tree must have had the most weight in a direction more away from your house.
And don't throw away those empty plastic laundry soap bottles! There is still detergent in them. So fill them with water...slowly to avoid bubbles...and then mark them as "Wash Water". When/if water is scarce you can use them as...well...wash water for laundry by hand or other things that need washing.
for cost reason i did not keep air on all the time. what i found that goes bad quickly in heat is lemon juice yeast parmasean cheese.
also salad dressing not too good shortly after expiration.
the part about pickles surprised me
i have been makibg home made laundry detergent. its awesome. turned about 10-20 people who in turn turned on more. it cost abt 4 cents a load. instructions on you tube.
fels naptha bar of soap, borax and arm and hammer washing soda.
you can buy all three at ace hardware or walmart. stock up.
each batch makes 10 gallons. it good for HE washers. also good for those with sensitive skin. everyone raves about it
Sounds like it could be used against "zombies" as a bio-toxin stand off weapon. Just have to design a proper delivery platform. I wonder if it would keep critters away from the garden or draw them?
But who buys pickles in a can? Surely they would be good for a long time in a vac sealed glass jar.
if the olive oil goes bad use it as lantern oil. OO doesnt smoke up like other oils. i use it with lemon juice as furnture polish.
Part of my problem is I don’t know if I would recognize a rancid oil.
I guess I could compare the smell/taste to a freshly bought one.
Rancid oil, you may not not know it going in, but you will going out.
“...nothing beats the scott 1000 rolls.”
We stock up on TP and paper towels too, but in my opinion Scott’s 1000 TP is not economical. It takes more per use. It is not good TP. Only thing that is sometimes going for it is that it is ‘cheap’...in more ways than one. As long as the good stuff is available, we buy on sale and enjoy. If at some point after the shtf and we run out, it is corncob or catalog time...or maybe it is time to use plantain leaves (the broadleaf weed that grows in your yard), they are healing as well, if soreasses sets in... :)
Paper towels do have many uses, though I think they are a poor choice for drying things, mopping up etc as long as we can launder cloth towels. I find the select-a-size useful as a hankerchief. Sanitary, more effective than facial tissues, and may be used more than once.
As I mentioned in my earlier post, we make our own soap, as grandma did, using fat/grease and lye. There are many good recipes available on the internet. We turn all our fat/grease from cooking into soap. We use coconut oil for many things, including deep frying, and maybe once a month or so we start over with fresh oil and turn the old stuff into soap, along with other accumulated fats. Once you get the hang of it, it is easy. We use bars in the shower (I use it for body and hair) and we grate it for the laundry. We have used it in the dishwasher successfully, though we usually use ‘Cascade’ or equivalent.
Yes, paper items are easily stored, but why be concerned about rotating them? No deteriation likely.