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Discussion Starter #1
So, I'm pretty new to long-term prepping. We've done a few things around the house to help with some basics. Now I'm looking at long-term food storage, and would really like some help. And when I say long-term food storage, I'm referring to storing food that will last about 20 years when it's sealed and stored properly.

I recently purchased a few 5-gallon buckets and gamma seal lids. I also bought mylar bags, oxygen absorbers, and a tool to seal the mylar bags. Now, I just need to know *what* to put in the bags.

From the research I've done, beans and rice seem to be the most popular items for long-term storage. And, it's suggested that one person would need about 5 lbs of beans per month, plus about 20 cups of rice per month.

I'm just wondering what some of you folks have stored, aside from rice and beans? Spaghetti, flour, sugar? If so, how much is recommended?

I was also wondering if any of you have stored other things that may not be so bland, like soup mixes, salt, spices, etc.

Are there any special instructions that I should consider if I'm going to store these things?

I'd really appreciate any help! Thanks!
 

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Welcome to SB.

First, read through this thread compilation from TxHills, It should answer most of your questions. http://www.survivalistboards.com/showthread.php?t=209648

Any questions after that, we would be happy to answer. Don't be afraid to ask, we are here to help people prepare, for 'whatever'.
 

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What, me worry?
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Coming here and asking questions is a good start. Welcome.

I have some questions for you.

What do you like to eat?

Do you know how to prepare the food you are storing?

Have you considered storing food, like canned food which will last for years, then rotating through that?

I suggest storing what you eat and eating what you store. (You will see that statement here quite often.) Storing food you do not care for is a waste of time, money and space.

When selecting food to store, do not just think about what stores well, but rather consider a variety in type, flavor and texture. And, of course, you need to have a balanced diet. Starches, protean, fruit and citrus, vegetables, grains, etc.
 
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I'd suggest spending some time browsing the threads here. These are the very things we discuss constantly. I'm sure you'll find more useful info than you could read in a week.
 

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Yeah, spend some time browsing.

Most of the questions you could possibly have, and more, are answered in the thread compilations.

First and foremost: Store what you Eat and Eat what you Store.

THE BIGGEST RULE on food storage.
 

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The way I store food is on me.
I've started eatting like a pig to gain as much weight as possible.
I'm trying to enlarge my gut 10 times normal size.
I figure thats the best way to store food as fat on myself.
 
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What, me worry?
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The way I store food is on me.
I've started eatting like a pig to gain as much weight as possible.
I'm trying to enlarge my gut 10 times normal size.
I figure thats the best way to store food as fat on myself.
Well, that is a plan I have not seen on here before.
 
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I'm just wondering what some of you folks have stored, aside from rice and beans? Spaghetti, flour, sugar? If so, how much is recommended?

I was also wondering if any of you have stored other things that may not be so bland, like soup mixes, salt, spices, etc.
One of my favorite websites for step-by-step food storage is http://www.foodstoragemadeeasy.com I highly recommend signing up for the baby step emails.

I store rice, beans, grains, sucanat (an unrefined sugar), coconut oil (not for 20 year long term storage -- it gets rotated through), some pasta, salt, etc.

I don't use soup mixes so I don't store them. I buy spices in bulk so I have plenty; I don't know if storing them for 20 years they would be any good anymore. When oregano is $4 for a pound, it's not a big deal for me to throw out 8 oz after a few years.
 

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I'm just wondering what some of you folks have stored, aside from rice and beans? Spaghetti, flour, sugar? If so, how much is recommended?
Yes. Rice & beans. Also barley, corn meal, salt, rolled oats, wheat berries, grits, instant potatoes, lentils, egg noodles, and various forms of smaller compacting pasta (Orzo, Macaroni, Ziti, Rotini, small shells, etc.).

Interestingly enough, most of the above (except salt) will work out to roughly 1600 calories per dry uncooked pound. A handy planning factor.

You need to plan for 2500 calories / ~1.5-2 lbs of dry weight food, per adult, per day..and just doing moderate physical labor. In theory, a combined pound of dry beans and a pound of dry rice will deliver about 3000 calories per day. One adult's requirements for a day of chores and outdoor camp living.

Knowing the above, you can see that 5 lbs of dry beans & 20 cups of dry rice (~8.5 lbs) is going to provide one adult about 8.5 days worth of food. 13.5 lbs x 1600 calories = 21,600 calories divided by 2500 calories per day = 8.64 days

BTW: Neither sugar nor salt require any special storage means, other than to keep them dry in sealed food containers. They will be good 20 years from now without benefit of O2 absorbers, Mylar, etc. They may eventually become rock hard blocks, but can easily be physically broken back down into granules or usable lumps. 35 lbs of sugar can be placed into a clean plastic bucket with a lid snapped on. Done. Salt is a mineral. Kept dry, it will store (as is) for a million years.
 

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Always Loaded
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Cocoa powder, pancake mix, powdered milk, beef and chicken bullion, dehyrated onion flakes, oatmeal, instant mashed potatoes, rice, beans and a few other things go into mylar. Sugar and salt just go into waterproof containers. Buy a couple 40 lb bags of water softener salt, they cost about $3.50 each. Can't have to much in a survival situation. Dehydrated fruit would be great, though I haven't taken that step yet myself. I rely on cases of canned fruit. If you haven't already, get into canning. It's really rewarding and a great asset. You can add meat to your preps for a lot less money and it's actually enjoyable to eat compared to store bought canned meat. Good luck with your preps, and keep reading this forum. It's a goldmine of info.
 

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Always Loaded
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Don't forget lots of jars of spaghetti sauce. This stuff will turn about anything into an decent tasting meal. Be sure it's in jars, not cans. The acid in tomatoes will eat through the cans in time.
 

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I'd really appreciate any help! Thanks!
I recommend doing as MikeK suggested and browse a bit more. The amount in this board alone is staggering and many times redundant. You don't need to read more than a few to get the general idea because so many go over the same ground.

And if you read a bunch and still hit a wall then post up your pointed question in a new thread. Lots of folks here that really know all you could ever want to know.
 
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Discussion Starter #16
What do you like to eat?
Hot wings with blue cheese dip, I'm just not sure if it would keep good in mylar :) Seriously though, Most anything

Do you know how to prepare the food you are storing?
I'm trying to accumulate foods that can be cooked simply by boiling water, as I feel confident that I'll have a source of water, and cook-top surface heat, via wood stove. That's why beans, rice, and pasta seem to jump out as the most obvious answers for me.

Have you considered storing food, like canned food which will last for years, then rotating through that?
Yes, we do have a pretty good amount (probably a few of months worth) of canned/dried foods that we rotate through, and replenish it a few times throughout the year. And one of our goals for this year is to increase the amount of shorter-term (2-3years) provisions.

I suggest storing what you eat and eating what you store. (You will see that statement here quite often.) Storing food you do not care for is a waste of time, money and space.
Absolutely!!! While I definitely agree with the philosophy, and practice it in my short-term storage, I'm certain that I would learn to be happy eating the same things over and over again if my other option was to not eat. I say that in all seriousness, not sarcastically. Hopefully it doesn't come across negatively.
Thanks for your help!!
 

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Don't forget lots of jars of spaghetti sauce. This stuff will turn about anything into an decent tasting meal. Be sure it's in jars, not cans. The acid in tomatoes will eat through the cans in time.
Thanks for the tip on jars. We do like the canned spaghetti sauce just as well as jarred, and we find it to be about 20% cheaper. But I'll keep the jars suggestion in mind for longer-term foods. Thanks!!
 

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Thanks for the tip on jars. We do like the canned spaghetti sauce just as well as jarred, and we find it to be about 20% cheaper. But I'll keep the jars suggestion in mind for longer-term foods. Thanks!!
Stock up on cans and wait for a sale on the jarred stuff. Then, eat through the cans rather than waiting for the tomato to eat through them first :)
 

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As others have noted, rice and beans are great. Billions (literally) of people in this world would be eating much better than they are right now if all they had was rice and beans. Beans provide 5 essential amino acids (proteins), and rice provides the other 4 that are necessary for humans. You can live a LONG time eating nothing but these two foods. Both can be used in a myriad of other dishes, especially rice.

Here's my Bubba impression:
rice pudding, sticky rice, rice with apricots, rice with peaches, rice with apple pie filling, rice with pears (very tasty), rice with peaches, rice with pineapple, rice balls, fried rice (with soy sauce, yuuuummm), shrimp and rice, fish and rice, pork and rice, beef and rice, chicken and rice, rice with butter (canned butter keeps at least 10 years by the way), rice with baked beans (Bush's baked beans have a practically indefinite shelf life), and much more....
 

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My own approach is to keep a pantry. Newly bought food goes to the back, and when I need something I take it from the front. That way the canned food does not get old.

I also have 2 buckets of rice packed for long-termed storage, but no dried beans. The entire family does not like dried beans and so I have not bought any. The family *DOES* like chinese food and spanish rice or canned meat over rice, and so I did buy some storage buckets of rice.

I would also like to pack away spagetti noodles for storage, but I have too much to do at this time. The pantry can be restocked when I do the weekly shopping and so that takes no time at all, but to pack away spagetti means that I would need to get buckets and oxygen absorbers and such, and I am too busy to mess with that at this time. Perhaps in a couple of months. Then perhaps some more rice.
 
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