If you are just getting started on building a food supply, the idea of stocking enough food for everyone might seem daunting. But don’t let that slow you down, because it really isn’t that difficult. Just follow these five steps. Each of these steps require very little time input. You will only need to visit the process once or twice a month, for just a few minutes each time and soon you will have a world-class food storage.
Decide how much you need
There are three ways to determine your family’s needs. Once you determine what you need for a food supply, then you want to generate your Master List of everything you’d like to have on hand during a time of crisis. Once you start getting your food, this chart will help you decide which storage method will best suit your needs.
You probably already have a lot of things already on hand. Just go through your pantry and freezer and see what you already have. Also take into consideration your garden or fresh produce you may have access to this summer. Deduct what you have on hand or will have from your garden and delete that from your Master list.
Set a monthly budget
Now decide how much you can afford to spend. Acquiring food storage should not jeopardize your family budget. Decide on an amount that you can put aside for preparedness purposes. I might suggest 3-5% of your take-home pay or all your bonus pay. Or you can set a dollar amount, say $20-30 per person per month. Then use this budgeted amount to buy a little each month. Or put it into an envelope or savings account, Then when you’ve saved enough, purchase all your needs in bulk. The advantage of doing it this way is that you may get better prices buying in bulk. But in order for this to work you must keep your budgeted savings separate from your family funds.
Use what you store
Don’t just buy a lot of food, put it into the closet and forget about it. Make it part of your daily menus. It will also help you keep control of food costs.
Keep a running inventory
As you use your food you’ll want to replace it. You can replace some food—like canned tuna or spaghetti sauce—as you use it, the next time you go to the grocery store. But you’ll have to buy some of your bulk food—like wheat and beans—in large quantities in one bulk order. So the trick is to keep a running inventory and set a trigger of when you will buy replacements for that item. Many of the food storage calculators I’ve reviewed can help you monitor and update your inventory.
See? That’s not so hard. You can do this. Really. You can.