Creating a Survival Food Supply: Planning Ahead for Disasters
Has creating a survival food supply in case of emergency or natural disaster been on your mind, or even your to-do list?
Early planning and preparedness are the best defenses in the event of emergencies. The unpredictability of weather and natural disasters creates a need for always having survival staples at hand. It is important to not only have food and water available for every member of the household (including pets), but to know which kinds are the best at sustaining health during a crisis.
Water: Top Priority for Survival
Water is the most essential foodstuff, and having enough for everyone is important. A general rule of thumb is to have a gallon of distilled water per person, per day; although the more clean water you have on hand the better. Water is not only used for drinking, but for bathing and cleaning wounds. Individual bottles or canteens of water are also helpful for mobilization. In the case of a lack of clean water, a portable hot plate and pot are helpful for boiling rain or ground water.
Survival Foods: Canned Goods
Having an ample food supply is also crucial for disaster preparedness. Metal-canned foods are a good option for their shelf longevity and durable containers. A well-stocked canned food supply will include vegetables (such as carrots, peas, corn, beets, and boiled potatoes), legumes (such as kidney, garbanzo, and black beans), soups, fruits (such as pineapple, peaches, and pears – all of which should be in fruit juice, as opposed to heavy syrup), and tinned meats (such as tuna and chicken). Utensils and a can opener (or two, for good measure) are obviously also required for opening and eating canned foods.
Freeze-Dried Food: Ideal for Long-Term Survival Food Supply
Another, even more excellent option for durable food supplies include freeze-dried food. Long used in military kits, freeze-dried food packets were also popularized by being used in outer space missions by NASA. Freeze-dried food packets are made edible by adding water to rehydrate the food. For families, large #10 cans with entrees are an excellent choice. Other dehydrated options include dried fruits, such as apples, mangoes, and pineapple rings which would not need to be re-hydrated to be consumed.
Important food items to have on hand include raw nuts (such as almonds and walnuts), granola, raisins, nutritional yeast, protein powder, and vitamin supplements (such as iron, B12, and vitamin C drink mix packets). Overly salty and sweet foods should be avoided because of their thirst-inducing properties.
Most often, these supplies are kept in a basement or cellar of a home where they can stay cool. It is also wise to keep a smaller food and water kit in the car or truck, due to the possibility of commuting or traveling when a disaster strikes.