There are two schools of thought when it comes to storing food to consider. One is to purchase food that has a very long shelf life that is never intended to be eaten unless there is some kind of major catastrophe that makes it impossible to purchase food from the grocery stores. The disadvantage of this type of strategy is that many people don’t have any idea what the food that they have stored will actually taste like when they have to dip into it and start preparing meals with it.
The other option that many preppers choose is to purchase food that their family is accustomed to eating on a regular basis. Those who subscribe to this second way of thinking are taking into consideration that if they ever need to rely on their food storage supplies to feed their family, they will be able to feed them the types of food that they are accustomed to eating day in and day out.
I happen to think that a combination of the two methods is the best for our family’s needs. I like the idea of having nonperishable food that will last for many years but I also like the idea of being able to open a can of my husband’s favorite type of soup for a quick and easy meal.
What Good Is Food Storage if It’s Spoiled When You Need It Most?
Regardless of which strategy you choose when building up your food storage, none of it will last forever. This means that you really have two options. The first is to never touch your food storage and throw it out when it reaches its expiration date but in my opinion, that’s a very wasteful strategy.
The second option is to set your food storage up so that you can rotate through it and prepare your meals from time to time using some of the staples that you have stored away.
It All Comes down to Proper Organization
In order to be able to rotate through your emergency food supply and eat the items that you have stored before they spoil, you’re going to want to have a good organizational system in place.
Let me give you a good example of what won’t work very well in this scenario. If you purchase the food that you have stockpiled over a long period of time and you organize it so that the newest and freshest food that you have purchased is in front of the older food that is aging, it will be quite a chore to dig through your various food items to get to the oldest items.
A better solution might be to organize your food storage so that the freshest food is at the back of your shelving and the oldest food is at the front. This way, if you would like to prepare a meal using some items from your food storage, you can simply grab the items that you need from the front and make a note to replace them the next time you go shopping.
Always Remember the “Food Storage Cycle”
We’ve adopted a system that we call the food storage cycle and it consists of three simple steps.
- Step one is to purchase the food that you plan on storing.
- Step two is to eat the food that you have in your food storage before it spoils.
- Step three is to replenish the food that you have eaten as soon as possible so that if an emergency does arise, you’ll have the food stored safely away and available to you.
Oh, One More Tip!
One thing that I almost forgot to mention is to always write the expiration date or “use-by date” someplace on the package. Most of the time these dates are printed in very small letters and in places that are easy to rub off. By writing the expiration date on the package in a permanent marker, you’re much more likely to know exactly how long a particular food item will last before you need to rotate through your meal schedule.
Another tip is to avoid writing the expiration date on the lid. The reason for this is that your kids might misplace the original lid that goes with a particular food item. If this happens, you’ll have no idea when the actual expiration date is.
I hope these tips have been helpful to you and if you hadn’t already considered the importance of rotating through your food supply I hope you’ll begin to do so after having read this article. Thanks so much for visiting my website and I hope you return again real soon!