Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Stocking Up

There's a lot of talk about storing food.

I'm not using those words in a survivalist way, although there's nothing wrong with that.

I'm talking to the 90% of us who know bad things can happen, but don't really envision big sudden changes to our society. Those bad things should be prepared for: power outages, unemployment, price changes.

In fact, I'd say one of the top reasons to stock up is to have a steady supply of basic foods ready so that we can wait for lower prices. It's a part of the lifestyle of living with the seasons, not fighting against them.

Anyway, we were low on bread flour and oatmeal so we stocked up on a few things and I thought I'd show you how I store them. Please leave a link if you have a different or special way to store your food.

We have 5 gallon food grade buckets (a few might be 3 gallons).

There are several ways to get them. You can buy them online (pricey). You can ask at local groceries (Walmart bakery for instance) or small food stores (cheese factory, bakery). Many times they will give you the buckets. Sometimes they may charge you a few dollars.

Next the collar. I bought my Gamma Lids at the local Fleet Farm (@$8). You can try at feed stores or order them online.

I emptied out the old flour and oatmeal. Now is a good time to taste the 2 products and compare. For instance, my oats--over a year old--tasted dry and a little sour in comparison to the new oatmeal. So instead of adding the old oats back to the top of the bucket I composted the remains. No more 50lb bags for us. We just don't eat them in time.

And this is our pantry.

50lb bag of red potatoes (local potato farm).
5 gal bucket of bread flour
5 gal bucket of oatmeal
3 gal bucket of AP flour
20lb bag of rice
20lb bag of sugar

The closet is on an outside wall and is 20-30 degrees colder in the winter.

In general I find that stocking EVERYTHING up can be overwhelming. All the dates on the cans. All the organization needed to cycle everything regularly. All the waste when you eat too little of something.

However, a good start is always buying a little more of the basics when the sales are good. Then a little more. A little more. Eventually you get to a comfortable place where your weekly bill is less and the work is not too involved.

It's more about finding what works for you then copying someone else's pantry list.

1 comment:

Sissy said...

My goodness, that's very ambitious! I admire your frugality and your energy!!