After a crisis happens and your family and friends have been accounted for, the next basic human need will focus on the amount of water and food someone has on hand to get them by until they switch from survival mode to daily life again.
The amount of survival foods to stock depends on the amount of time a person wants to be prepared for. At the very minimum, we highly recommend at least 72 hours worth of survival water and food – per person.
The general rule of thumb is at least 1 gallon of water, per person, per day. Water is critical to survival. The human body can survive without food for quite some time, but NOT without water. Make your water stockpile your first priority and then move onto stocking up on survival foods.
Think of your survival food in two categories.
- Survival foods to stock for the Short Term (72 hours)
- And survival foods to stock for the Long Term (Individual choice)
Short Term Survival Foods To Stock:
Pre-packaged meals are great for your immediate needs after a disaster. You can purchase pre-packaged meals that not only have a long shelf life, they can be stashed in your emergency preparedness kit and are more mobile in size and weight. The packaged meals hikers or campers use are both lightweight and filling to the stomach.
A great example of pre-packaged food is:
- Ideal for emergency situations
- Simple to prepare by adding water
- Meals feature a seven-year shelf life
- Meal kit includes three breakfasts, three side vegetables, and six 10-ounce packets of lunch and dinner entrees
What’s great about these types of meal kits is they only require water.
Despite the cozy meal at the table picture on the box, the Mountain House meals can be eaten straight out of their packaging.
For short term survival food, you want to keep it simple, easy, portable and easy to grab (location) in case you need to vacate your home.
Long Term Survival Foods To Stock:
Long term survival is really subjective in terms of weeks, months and even years to be prepared.
For some people, long term survival is a couple of weeks, while for other enthusiastic preppers, a 1 year (or more!) supply is their goal.
Whether you decide to prepare for a couple of weeks or several months, there are certain food items you can acquire that will store well and keep over a long period of time.
The key to long term food storage is a cool, dark (devoid of light) and dry place.
You can store food in sealed 5 gallon buckets or food grade barrels. You’ll want dried or canned food that have a long shelf life and you can also secure the food in vacuum sealed bags.
Foods that store well:
- dry beans
- canned foods
- jerked meats
- cooking oils
- powdered milk
- dehydrated fruits and vegetables
- and much more
Again, the amount you store completely depends on the amount of time you want to be prepared to survive without any outside help or modern conveniences.
One thing we know for certain – no one ever regrets being over prepared, so start small and gradually add to your stockpile every month.
Note: Be sure to check your food storage at least every 6 months to ensure everything is dry and securely sealed to avoid any spoiling.