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Old 05-03-2011, 12:06 PM
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Default Long Term Storage of FOOD



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Hi all, been lurking here for awhile and finally set up an account. I'm going full steam ahead trying to get my family to a place where I feel comfortable. I've done numerous searches, but either find partial, conflicting, or non-relevant info when looking for some answers to basic long term food prepping questions that I have. Hope ya'll don't mind, but I'm going to ask my questions directly here.

1) How many pounds of flour fit in a 5 gallon bucket?
2) Which type of flour is best for long term storage, hard white or hard red flour?
3) What type of beans are best for storage in a 5 gallon bucket (with mylar bag)?
4) How many pounds of beans fit in a 5 gallon bucket?
5) Is Jasmine rice considered a white rice when it comes to long term storage (will it last as long as white rice)?
6) What are the top #5 bulk foods for long term storage?
7) Can seeds be stored in the freezer or is a mylar bag w/ oxygen absorber the best technique?
8) What is the best way to store oils and other fatty foods long term? Or is it primarily rotation technique only for these items?
9) What is the best thing to utilize my semi-small free standing freezer with, meat, cheese, seeds, flour, etc. -- what's in your freezer?
10) Any other helpful info you want to share regarding long term storage of food in mylar bags/buckets.
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:12 PM
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Hi PG -

I'm new here too - and I look forward to reading these answers.

Just recently I canned up a bunch of stuff.
I was fitting about 33lbs of flour per 5 gallon bucket.
So - that's 100 lbs per 3 buckets, eh?

The denser the stuff - the more it weighs - like sugar and salt, ya know.
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:17 PM
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I like how rugged cans are and that they have the ability to withstand wind, water and abuse without damage to the contents. Most canned food may be eaten cold, directly from the can is also another advantage. Long shelf life, wide variety and good overall taste helps, too.. Can't put a price on that!
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:20 PM
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I'll answer your questions with my opinion.

1. I store wheat, not flour. About 30 lbs per bucket
2. Both are good
3. Pinto or any other hard bean
4. About 30
5. Yes
6. Wheat, rice, popcorn, beans, and milk
7. I like freezer
8. I can butter
9. Meats, bulk sale items
10. Hair straighteners work great. I like all my buckets to match. I use gamma lids for the buckets I am digging into.
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:27 PM
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Thanks for the info PG! This site is chalk full of information, grateful to have it.

Canned goods are definitely part of my overall food prep. I have a basement that is primarily underground, so temp stays around 50 year round. I've got to get some shelving to make the rotation easier, but have about 50 cans so far. I stocked up on pink salmon today with a printed expiration of 2016, so 5 years +, not bad at all!
Old 05-03-2011, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gypsymoonfarm View Post
I'll answer your questions with my opinion.

1. I store wheat, not flour. About 30 lbs per bucket
2. Both are good
3. Pinto or any other hard bean
4. About 30
5. Yes
6. Wheat, rice, popcorn, beans, and milk
7. I like freezer
8. I can butter
9. Meats, bulk sale items
10. Hair straighteners work great. I like all my buckets to match. I use gamma lids for the buckets I am digging into.
I was wondering about sealing the mylar bags -- the hair straightener makes sense. Thanks for the heads up. Um, please excuse my ignorance, but is your wheat ground? I will be storing either 100% whole ground red or white hard wheat. Maybe flour isn't the best word to describe this? Also, could you please elaborate a little more on your milk storage, is it dehydrated milk, dried buttermilk, or some other type of milk, and is it stored in the freezer or mylar and how often do you rotate it (if at all)?
Old 05-03-2011, 01:05 PM
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I just came across a thread which talked about quinoa. Not sure what the best way to store this is, mylar, freezer, rotation, etc. but came across a good deal, so got 25 pounds of it. It has all 8 essential amino acids and is already a big part of my families diet, so if it doesn't store well, I know it won't go to waste. If anyone has any storage info for this, I'm all ears! =)

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Old 05-03-2011, 01:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrepperGirl View Post
I was wondering about sealing the mylar bags -- the hair straightener makes sense. Thanks for the heads up. Um, please excuse my ignorance, but is your wheat ground? I will be storing either 100% whole ground red or white hard wheat. Maybe flour isn't the best word to describe this? Also, could you please elaborate a little more on your milk storage, is it dehydrated milk, dried buttermilk, or some other type of milk, and is it stored in the freezer or mylar and how often do you rotate it (if at all)?
Whole wheat flour has poor storage capability. The oils go rancid quickly. It's best to store whole grains and grind them yourself. The whole grains last for decades. White flour lasts better than whole wheat flour, but still not as long as whole wheat grains.
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Old 05-03-2011, 01:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrepperGirl View Post
I just came across a thread which talked about quinoa. Not sure what the best way to store this is, mylar, freezer, rotation, etc. but came across a good deal, so got 25 pounds of it. It has all 8 essential amino acids and is already a big part of my families diet, so if it doesn't store well, I know it won't go to waste. If anyone has any storage info for this, I'm all ears! =)

good deal
Quinoa stores well, like most grains. But I don't know the exact figures. I'd say you could count on a minimum of 10-15 years, properly stored. Perhaps far longer. Poke around google a bit for more specifics.

One of the few whole grains that doesn't store well is brown rice. The oils go rancid in short order. Even packed in mylar with an O2 absorber, it's probably about 2 years max for storage. That's why most of us store some version of white rice instead. Personally, I like variety and store short grain, long grain, sushi rice, basmati and jasmine rice, mahagony and black rice, etc. They are all different forms of white rice.
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Old 05-03-2011, 01:19 PM
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Glad I waited on picking up the flour. Any ideas on where to get ahold of whole grain hard wheat that doesn't cost an arm and a leg? I've googled a bit but haven't come up with anything. Amazon has a 35 pound bucket for a reasonable price, but the shipping tips it over the edge (cost wise).

Thanks MikeK for the heads up!
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Old 05-03-2011, 01:20 PM
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I've learned here that it is best to store wheat "berries" and not flour. The berries can store 25-30 years in mylar with oxyegn absorbers due to the protective nature of the kernel. You have to grind the berries into flour. Flour storage in mylar ranges from 2 to 5 or more years (depends on who's telling you). I've read 10 years max from a new study. I think Gypsy covered all your other questions. Good luck!
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:28 PM
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Ding, ding, ding! Berries. That was the keyword.

I was able to find 100 organic pounds for about $115 with shipping.
Old 05-03-2011, 03:01 PM
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Is organic really important to you? - Because you can get Wheat Montana wheat berries at most Walmarts, a 25-pound sack for $12-$13. Not organic, but good.
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Old 05-03-2011, 03:11 PM
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It's important to me, but it doesn't have to be. I'm getting my rice at Walmart, so will keep my eyes out for the wheat berries too. Thanks for the heads up.

To whomever moderates these boards, feel free to move this thread to the appropriate sticky on this board or delete it. I read through the stickies earlier but missed the last one and couldn't get satisfactory answers through the search feature, so started this thread. I've since been redirected to the stickies. Thanks.
Old 05-03-2011, 04:18 PM
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If you have any Asian Markets in your area, check them out for your rice. We buy 50 pound bags of Jasmine Rice and while the price has gone up to $26.00 per 50 pound bag, that's still better than anywhere else. Other types of rice are even cheaper, but we do like the Jasmine rice.

As far as finding wheat berries, check out the grain silos if there are any in your area. You can usually buy your own there in 50 pound sacks but sometimes you can go ahead and load up your own 5 gallon buckets. The price of wheat is really up because of the drought conditions in the wheat belt this year, so stock up now before that harvest tries to come in. Also, sometimes you can buy 50 pound sacks of wheat berries, rolled oats, corn and other grains at feed stores. One thing to remember for grain bought from silos and feed stores, it is NOT cleaned, so you need to go through it to remove small rocks, bugs, parts of animals (yes, it happens) that got mixed in during harvesting, but the price is cheaper than you'll find almost anywhere else.

One thing to check for is the moisture content. If the grain is too moist, it can start to mold on you. You may need to spread the grain out on screens and allow them to dry for a while to lower this moisture to a good level. I haven't tried it, but I would imagine that you could also place the grain in a dehydrator to speed that process.

Any grain should also be frozen for at least 3 days to a week to kill any bug larva or eggs. We put our grain inside clean 2-liter bottles and freeze them. Then, we keep them in the same bottles for storage and stack them in a set of shevles like wine bottles. This works great for us. Empty milk crates also work well to store 2-liter bottles.

BTW, about 4 pounds of sugar, salt or any other grainy thing like that will fit in a 2-liter bottle. We mark the month and year (example right now it is 05/2011) on the bottle or any other food storage item so we know when we bought it or put it up for storage. This helps with proper food rotation so the first in gets used up first.

I hope that helps.

Medic73
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Old 05-03-2011, 05:32 PM
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My top five LTS is Sugar, Salt, white long grain rice, beans, powdered milk. I also have 5gal buckets of baking soda, cornstarch, cream of tartar.

How much will fit in 5 gal bucket
Corn 37.5
White, Rice Long Grain 36.5
Oats, Rolled 20.8
Black Eye Pea 31.5
Great Northern Bean 35.0
Lentils 35.8
Mung Bean 37.5
Pinto Bean 34.0
Navy Bean 37.5


http://foodstoragemadeeasy.net/2011/...can-they-hold/

Hope this helps and welcome to the board.
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Old 05-03-2011, 06:00 PM
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Not all Walmarts have the wheat berries. I wish they did. I have checked mine several times since first hearing that they sell them.

Also, don't sweat freezing the grain. I have yet to see any evidence that it does anything. Afterall, the bugs survive just fine through the winter in some of the coldest states in the country. The O2 absorbers will keep any infestations under control.

If you're extra paranoid like I am, you might invest in some food grade diatomaceous earth. They use it in grain silos to keep bugs out, and the packaged food industry uses it in such things as Bisquick, pancake mixes, and the like, for the same reason. It's totally safe, nontoxic (MUST be food grade) and actually contributes some trace nutrients. Also has about a bazillion uses around the home and farm, so it's a good prep to have on hand just the same.
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Old 05-03-2011, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeK View Post
Not all Walmarts have the wheat berries. I wish they did. I have checked mine several times since first hearing that they sell them.
Check the Walmart site before trekking in to check. You can set it to search the nearest store's inventory. And Mike, search yours! Someone on another thread was talking about the data collection capabilities of Walmart, how they monitor searches. If you search it, they will come - or maybe something like that.
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Old 05-03-2011, 06:13 PM
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Poor MikeK, nobody loves him... "Thanked 21,226 Times in 9,250 Posts".
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allamakee County View Post
Check the Walmart site before trekking in to check. You can set it to search the nearest store's inventory. And Mike, search yours! Someone on another thread was talking about the data collection capabilities of Walmart, how they monitor searches. If you search it, they will come - or maybe something like that.
I've searched mine about a bazillion times. I sometimes find things in the store that isn't listed on the site, so out of desperation, I've gone in a few times.
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