susIf you are new to preparedness, you may not have much “back stock” of your everyday foods on hand. Readily available foods and cheap gas allow us to make trips to the grocery store as often as needed. Things, however, could change in an instant. In this post I would like to share with you just a few reasons why I hope you will consider building a “home store” of food for yourself and your family.
- Emergencies Happen! You do not have to live in a bunker and wear a hat made out of tin-foil to be preparedness minded. The CDC, Red Cross and Homeland Security (among others) advise having a 3 day supply of emergency stores on hand for each member of your family. While I recommend that you store much more that, 3 days is a good start. There is a great calculator on the LDS website that will estimate how much you should store based upon how many are in your family. This is storage for a year, so in order to break that down simply divide by 12 to get your monthly storage goal.
- Food storage is like having money in the bank! How reliable is your income? Several years ago, my husband and I were both working full-time management jobs. Fast forward to present day. Through a series of uncontrollable events and conscious decisions, we are down to one income that is a fraction of what we were once making. During a financial crisis, you do not want to have to choose between paying the electric bill and feeding your family healthy food!
- Physical Illness. If you are fortunate enough to have never had children so sick that you could not leave the house with them,count yourself blessed! For the rest of us, there are times that you will need to prepare meals without the convenience of “running to the store”. Many times, I have relied on my stored food to pull together a delicious and nutritious (not to mention quick) meal while being housebound.
- Lock in today’s food prices. Unless you have someone doing your grocery shopping for you, you’ve probably noticed the steady rise in price of basic groceries. If you haven’t, I encourage you to save your receipts or use an app like Tiny Scan or Shoeboxed to scan your receipts. In this way, you can track the prices of your most often purchased grocery items. Remember to pay attention to the weight or volume of the items you are purchasing. I will always remember buying a bag of sugar that looked like such a great deal not realizing until I got home that what I took to be a 5 pound bag was only 4 pounds! Sneaky.
- Peace of mind. We all want the best for our families and the truth is that we simply do not know what the future may hold. It is estimated that due to our “just in time” supply model, there is less than 3 days supply of food at your local grocery store. This is 3 days supply during normal shopping patterns. That is not considering the expanded shopping that one might do in the midst of a disaster.
I hope that I have given you reason to consider “stocking up” your pantry. If not for a 30 day supply, then hopefully at least a few extra of your favorites. There are many ways to go about building up your food storage. For beginners, this can be as simple as adding 2 cans of chili to your grocery cart instead of just one.