Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Food, glorious food! A survivalist staple

Oliver knew the score...

Food, glorious food!
Don't care what it looks like:
Burned, underdone, crude --
Don't care what the cook's like.
Just thinking of growing fat --
Our senses go reeling.
One moment of knowing that
Full-up feeling!

If you don't want to end up singing this kind of refrain when the shit hits the fan (TSHTF) or things are otherwise generally tough, some forward planning insofar as your personal food storage is concerned is mandatory.

Don't go crazy buying kilos of rice because everyone else is doing it, if you can't stand the stuff. Adhere to that favourite survivalist maxim 'Eat what you store and store what you eat!'

Keep a food diary for a fortnight and record every meal and normal shopping purpose, then sit down and work out what foods make yup your normal intake.

Now compare this to lists at one of these websites:



And then have a tinker with these food calculators:




Now go shopping! Be sure to reach for produce at the very back of shelves (the longer life/more recently manufactured foods are - just like they should be in your own kitchen - often stored here.

If you're a cereal lover, it's not a bad idea to buy bulk. Cereal is a great filler and I know many lazy folk who, when they can't be bothered, will often dine on cereal for dinner! Combined with long-life milk which can be stored on shelves until opened, this is a great addition to your stores.

Large tins of fruit are also good buys, as are jars of Tang (vitamin C), Milo, coffee, tea, chai, cheap 'tea' biscuits (check packaging is intact), crackers etc.

When shopping, avoid crowds - shop late at night, or in off-peak times (ie not on pension/dole/pay days). Try not to draw too much attention to yourself. Shop at different supermarkets, chase bargains and - most importantly - ensure you can store food in a safe way free of weevils and mice/rats.

Go easy on frozen foods - if the power goes, so does several hundred dollars worth of meat and other produce. A good idea to prolong the life of your freezer for a day or so is to line it with bottles of water which will freeze, and defrost, very slowly.

For the cupboard, Bay leaves can deter moths, but freezing flour etc overnight ensures any eggs will be killed, then your produce can be safely stored.

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