Stockpiling food is a highly recommended method of avoiding food shortages should terrorist attacks (destroying transportation routes), riots, civil wars, panic buying (thus leaving the supermarkets’ shelves empty within a day or two) and hyperinflation (as a result of an economic collapse) occur. If you happen to live on an island, remember that importing food from the mainland to restore the food supply will probably take a while.
When accounting for potential hazardous scenarios, it is fairly easy to assume that the prices of food items will most definitely skyrocket, as this is a tested and sure way for the merchants to gain more profit. The reasoning behind this matter is rather simple: we all need to eat in order to sustain life. Unless we harvest crops of our own and make bread from scratch, then we must buy food, no matter how expensive.
Therefore, stockpiling food comes in handy in times of emergencies that can last for short periods (tornadoes, hurricanes, typhoons, etc.), when you are incapable of leaving your house due to the high risks involved, but it can also help you better manage your money on the long term, during the tough period of time following a job dismissal, illness or car accident, for example.
Even if you do have a well-paying job at the moment, you are still able to overcome food shortages, whilst on a limited budget. You just have to make sure to use discounts, coupons or purchase food that is on sale. You will buy a lot more for a lot less. An average middle-class American spends a total of approximately $250 to stockpile food for a whole year.
When you prepare to stockpile food, take into account the fact that food will be your ally for an unknown period of time. Therefore, choose the non-perishable food items that meet your nutritional needs and are high in proteins and/or contain vitamins:
- Unsalted nuts – in their natural state, or as peanut butter – are yet another excellent type of non-perishable food to store in your pantry, as they have it all: proteins, essential fatty acids, minerals and vitamins. You can choose between a large range of nuts, such as pecan, sunflower seeds, peanuts, almonds, macadamia nuts and many others. Only a handful of nuts (or a couple of tablespoons of peanut butter) will keep you satiated for a few hours.
- If you have the chance, buy dried or canned beans (kidney beans, adzuki beans, pinto beans, lentils, garbanzo beans, mung beans, etc.). However, be aware that if your location is not safe and you need to move out, carrying canned beans will a difficult task. Moreover, dried beans have a longer shelf life and are rather inexpensive.
- Brown rice is high in minerals and vitamins and it is fairly easy to prepare. You can boil and eat it after one hour, or you can keep it soaked overnight, and prepare it the next day. It’s up to you.
- Stockpiling onions and garlic may not seem very appealing, but when disaster hits the fan and you realise you have not had the chance to buy medicines, using these root vegetables – containing quercetin – as natural antihistamines (fighting against allergies and inflammation) will prevent you from getting ill. Drinking tea will also do the trick.
- You can store chocolate or energy bars, which are excellent providers of energy. Enjoy while you can, as experts say that when disasters strikes, chocolate might be among the first products to disappear off the market.
- If you prefer natural sweets in detriment of the chocolate, then store up some honey or canned or dried fruits.
- In the event you are forced to hide in a bunker, you will be lacking natural sunshine light and vitamin D; therefore, you will be prone to developing rackets. In effect, you might want to consider storing vitamin D or any other supplements.
- If you have a freezer, then consider stockpiling meat, which is an excellent source of proteins and which you can consume within a few months. However, you have to take into account the electricity blackouts, which should not worry you if you have a back-up generator. If you don’t, it is best to learn how to prepare meat for long term storage though a smoking and/or salting process.
- Soft grains, such as oat, rye, and quinoa are high in fibres and will last around 7 years at 21 Celsius degrees, if properly sealed.
- The same as chocolate, coffee is another excellent source of energy that should be considered while stockpiling. Besides its notable energy intake, coffee grounds can also be used as an ant repellent.
- Other food items to consider stockpiling are: tomato sauce, powdered milk, sugar, spices, candies and soda. There is no reason why you shouldn’t continue enjoying food.
Do you have a stockpile ready? What does it consist of? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.