Maybe you haven’t thought about it before. What will you do if the country dives into civil war, North Korea launches a nuclear weapon on North America, or a lethal virus knocks out the vast majority of the earth’s population? Even a natural disaster… If you think it can’t happen, your head is in the sand. And good for you….more food for me. I like food and have a plan to feed myself and my loved ones in an emergency. Do you?
Its not as simple as stockpiling food and water. Those stocks, no matter how much you put away in a bunker or your pantry, will run out sooner or later. Not to mention that your hungry neighbors will likely try to steal those stores from you at the first opportunity.
A friend, a Patriot, recently told me that he would have to barter his skills in security to get food for his family. That’s fair. If you have skills of value to people with food, you might do ok. Particularly in a Zombie Apocalypse or a government take over…. So get your tactical shit together, if that’s your plan.
I’m a food preserver. I like to can, freeze, dehydrate and stock up on high calorie staples. But more than that, I am a farmer and understand the value of sustainability. It’s about building resources into your life that a catastrophe can’t take away. So lets start….
- Water. An adult needs a gallon of water a day to survive. That includes drinking water and cleaning themselves (this does not include a shower) and their food, if careful. So figure out how many people you need to keep hydrated and for how many days. Even if you have space to stockpile a month or 3 of water for you and your family (which I recommend), what happens when that is gone? Think of natural sources of water near you. Maybe a stream or pond, even the ocean. How will you make sure that water is drinkable? Check out this link. Rain water is a great resource, but might be subject to the above purification methods. A medium size house can generate hundreds of gallons of water in a thunderstorm from its roof and gutters, so invest in some rain barrels…and learn how to build a water still, in case of contamination
- Staples. Yeah, its a good idea to stock up on grains (flour, barley, lentils and, if you are particular, risotto and such) as well as rice. They are hard to grow and will make your apocalypse more enjoyable, for sure. Store in an airtight container or ten. But you will have to get used to not having your favorite bagel or pasta dish if the shit his the fan. It will be a luxury item. Sorry. Salt should be stockpiled as much as possible. Not only does it make food taste better, it can be used to to cure meat and fish…. There are some naturally occurring sources of salt.
- Food in general. Yes, you can stock pile MREs and buckets of freeze dried foods. And I suggest you do, but do not rely upon them for long term survival. Lets be real…
- Plant a garden. The bigger the better. But a few pots of veggies will help. Don’t forget herbs. They make stuff taste good.
- Save seeds. Many organic veggies bought at the store have seeds that can be saved. Squash, pumpkins, peppers, even tomatoes. What would the world be like without fresh tomatoes…sigh.
- Learn how to preserve those veggies. Can, dehydrate, freeze dry. God I want a freeze dryer….you can freeze dry just about anything…even ice cream, though I still haven’t figured out how you would rehydrate that into anything but a milkshake.
- Permaculture. Plant berry bushes, perennials and fruit trees in your yard in stead of stupid ornamentals. Flowers are great and some ARE edible, but please….they won’t feed you.
- Meat. A few chickens, ducks, Guinea hens or geese, especially if you have a reproducing flock, will provide much needed protein, sustainably. Most birds subsist on bugs and grubs and only need help in cold weather. Rabbits reproduce quickly and I’m told taste like chicken. Small animals are easy to relocate to a bug out location, if that’s your plan, but if you in a remote area and have some security, a herd of cows or pigs are even better. A dairy cow would be a great source of milk and cheese (I know how to do that, maybe in another post), so eat the bulls first. Remember that your starving neighbors will be ready to do anything to acquire your food. Just FYI, for my peeps, for now my horses are not on the menu. They have other skills…travel, manual labor, such as plowing, dragging and wood acquisition. But who knows what the future holds, right?
- Hunting and Trapping. Of course if the power is out, you will have to learn to smoke and cure meat or only hunt what you can immediately eat…
- Wild meals. Hook up with your local mushroom or wild edibles club. They exist and will give you the knowledge you need to forage for important foods as well as medicinals. Many common weeds are not only edible but have healing properties. Remember, your pharmacy won’t be open….
- Nuts. They are simply the best food. I feed Chia seeds to my horses for Omega 3 fatty acids (good for people too). I have a great source for it in bulk. Whenever I buy a 25 lb box, I add on another box of cashews or almonds or whatever. It doesn’t take long to have a good store of a good source of protein and healthy fat. Easy to store as well. Nut butters are another good investment and store forever. Granola bars and trail mix store well too. Just make sure they are in rodent proof containers. Mice will chew their own arm off for nuts…
- Canned goods. This might be the closest thing to ‘fast-food‘ you will have in the end. Aldi’s and Dollar stores are a great place to get cases of ready to eat meals. Spam, soup, Chef boyardee, mac and cheese. Great comfort food. Of course, canned veggies and fruit are a great addition to your food stores too. Just remember you need to be able to replace these foods once they are gone.
So that’s a starting point. Get your shit together, brothers and sisters. More to come later…