The whole world is currently gripped by the recent global pandemic that seems to have engulfed every person, every city, and every country in its grasp. COVID-19 has become the bane of our lives for a few years, and every individual seems to have gone into survival mode.
Such times call for effective precautionary measures in order to survive and make it through this global outbreak. One important measure includes storing food in a way that your stock lasts for you and your family. However, the key here is to store and not hoard unnecessarily.
Many people struggle with food storage because there are numerous food items that are perishable and tend to go bad if they aren’t consumed in time. Since we are all in the same boat currently, here is an easy guide to storing food and supplies for emergency situations.
List of dry foods to store
The first important thing to know is what kind of foods you can store for starters. Eating from a stockpile tends to get really monotonous for some people, so make sure that you have a variety, such as:
- Powdered milk
- Lentils and beans
- Dried fruits
- Sugar and salt
List of canned foods to store
- Canned turkey, tuna, salmon and chicken
- Canned vegetables such as peas, carrots, beans, corn, and tomatoes.
- Canned pickles
- Peanut butter and jam or jelly
- Canned soup
- Canned chili
- Canned fruit like peaches and pairs.
This list is by no means complete and you can make the required alterations to it by adding a few other things or removing some. However, since you are storing for emergency situations, it is best to stay simple and store only the basic, necessary food items.
The above-mentioned food items can easily be stored for a number of months; however, there are some high-risk foods that you also need to store, but with extra and special care. These foods can go bad and can attract the growth of bacteria, so, ideally, buy them in limited quantities. These include:
- Raw, uncooked meat
- Dairy products
- Raw seafood
- Fruits and vegetables
- Store-bought ready-to-eat foods
Tips for Food Storage
Now that you know the different types of foods there are which you can stock, the next important bit is how to get started. Here are a few useful tips to help you with the food storage process.
Set a Goal
This mainly refers to how much food you need to store and for how many days or months. This usually varies according to your family size and the emergency at hand. Do an inventory of what you have then develop a plan to replenish missing items.
Shelf Life and Expiration Dates
When you are buying boxed or canned goods, make sure to check their shelf life and expiration dates. Since you are aiming to store for emergency situations, you want to ensure that the products don’t expire for at least a few months.
Storing Foods in Freezers
Take extra precaution to make sure frozen items are packed correctly to avoid freezer burn. Make sure to use freezer bags or wrap with plastic wrap then butcher paper, clearly labeled with contents and date. Here are a few items that you probably don’t think about freezing but they work well and make for quick meal preparation.
- Peppers cut into small pieces.
- Onion cut into small pieces.
- Potatoes cut into small chunks or shredded
- Raw spinach, this is more to make a smoothie or put in an omelet.
Emergency situations like the COVID-19 are surely terrifying and depressing; however, one should store only enough food for a few weeks as there is not currently a food shortage and we need to prevent hoarding. The key for homeowners is to make smart decisions and invest in simple yet filling foods that can last you a good number of days and give you peace of mind during this trying time.