Our Food Prepper Leader @Renell advised me to add the following:
- Baking Soda, an all-purpose kitchen and home chemical
- The LDS food calculator: https://providentliving.com/preparedness/food-storage/foodcalc/
- Big Berkey Water Filters https://www.bigberkeywaterfilters.com/
CORONA FOOD SECURITY 2020-2021
Worldwide citizens and experts at Azazel News and Doomsday Preppers & Survivalist on the Telegram app have been observing the world pandemic since early January. We have seen what has gone wrong in other countries’ policy decisions and are well steeped in predicting outcomes in many countries. This is our 7th article. We have been banned from Medium for telling the truth when others have lied to you repeatedly from a position of authority. They were wrong, we were right. Your safety is our concern, their concern is making money and dictating your lives. See our dispatches at https//t.me/azaelnews and https://t.me/joinchat/G52HaReO2GcnjHBD8tbxMw. Our documentaries can be found at http://coronaunmasked.com the world’s first crowdsourced film documentaries, the only comprehensive first person video footage about coronavirus from around the world.
Our current grave concern is the food supply chain. You can ask us in our Doomsday group for details but we see particular issues in the USA regarding meat production, dairy production, fruit and vegetable production. Eggs and cereal staple grains seem to be okay for now but this is fluid. However, we recommend the following.
- Stock Shelf Stable Essentials for 1 Year
- CSA Food Shares - Veg, Fruit, Dairy, Egg, Meat
- Plant Gardens
SHORTEN YOUR SUPPLY CHAIN
Typical supply chain disruption. It’s the same for meat products, drinks, etc. Any energy source, materials, or labor needed that is not available can disrupt a processed food product. Anything in packaging may be disrupted and scarce.
We have other examples of supply chain disruptions such as migrant workers refusing work, lower ethanol production impacting wine and meat production, already empty warehouses, empty shipping ports, and so on. Take this seriously. We have been carefully assessing the situation globally since mid January. We have contacts in the supply chain at all levels.
So what’s the lesson here?
SHORTEN YOUR SUPPLY CHAIN
400 pounds/person of grains
40 pounds beans
16 pounds powdered milk
60 pounds sugar or honey
8 pounds of salt
10 quarts of cooking oil
Pest Resistant Storage rack
The above photo is a barebones SHTF doomsdayer’s flexing shot. Probably not your cup of tea, but a good benchmark no doubt. What we are going to do is tell you what you can grab now, live comfortably, and you can compare your results to the pro prepper if you want to. We’ll do it economically and walk you through the quantities.
RICE, PASTA, WHEAT, CORN
Some people prefer one or two over another. They are all carbs to keep you going as a baseline for calories. Wheat is cheapest, probably followed by corn or rice, and pasta last. (It is the most processed.)
1 pound of rice is about 5 dry cups, each cup will be a big serving, maybe even two if you eat light. So if you were to get 100 pounds of rice, that’s 500 sizeable meals, or 250 days of survival if you eat twice a day. So 2 sacks of 50 pounds will get you through 8-9 months, more if you eat light, up to 16 months if you eat light, which is amazing, it’s the most bang for your buck, and inventory space. It could be $100 bucks or so. You just have to add whatever condiment, stored veggie, or protein, and you are kinda set. The actual doomsday recommendation is 400 pounds of rice per person per year however. In the end, by as much as you can carry home. You’ll ideally want oxygen free storage containers for max shelf life, but that’s costly and time consuming.
Pro-tip: Don’t buy brown rice now because that only lasts a year. White rice lasts 25 years, it’s a “lifetime” food, very unusual for a grain or any food.
2nd Pro-tip: You might want to double wrap your bags on racks, contractor bags, rodent proof boxes to keep out pests like bugs, mice, if not the hermetic containers.
3rd Pro-tip,: Although white rice is a forever food, cooked rice should be eaten quickly. Never leave it out overnight. Standing cooked rice can form botulism and then you are definitely going to the hospital for the worst experience of your life. It should be eaten within a day even if refrigerated. This is probably why Asian always wash rice from experience, even though modern rice cookers have made this step obsolete. The spores can be on the rice, survive cooking, and then if left alone, bloom into bacterium. So I’d suggest washing rice unless you eat it right away.
Now pasta to me it only yields about 3-4 meals per 1 pound bag or box. Spaghetti, Angel Hair are going to be the most compact, obviously. So let’s say you grab 100 bags of spaghetti. That’s 300-400 meals, if you ate twice a day, 150-200 days, or 5-7 months. And yes, one jar of pasta sauce covers one pound of pasta. But don’t just get tomato sauce, you will be bored. Get pesto, get clam sauce, and get a lot of cans of tuna, sardines and the on the shelf bottled dry parmesan, plus olive oil they should be all close to each other in the store. Pasta, like rice, is very flexible, more actually. You can mix, sautee, toss, saltbae anything in there and it will probably be good. You can buy 99 cent pasta, so $100 total, but the sauces will take this well over $100. Probably more like $500. Dried pasta lasts about only about 2 years surprisingly. The major factor, like all grains, is oxygen, temperature, humidity, sunlight, and pests. So airtight, cooler, dry, and dark, and safe from pests.
The bread mafiosos among you will never go without. Flour is dense, so it doesn’t take too much space. You can make all kinds of things, even your own fresh pasta, besides bread. You can get 200 pounds of flour per person, you can get 400 pounds, it’s up to you. One good loaf of the famous “no knead bread” recipe is about 1 pound of flour and will feed 2-4 people easily per meal. Many people freeze bread, some cut into quarters of a loaf and freeze, some fully slice, up to you. How many loaves of bread do you eat a year, is the question. That is how many pounds of flour you need.
Unlike rice or dried pasta, wheat can have challenges in storing. It’s more fragile than rice. First whole wheat flour doesn’t last very long, 3 to 6 months. Like brown rice, the oils in the hulls go bad faster. White flour is best, but beware, the entire bag can go bad because weevils, bugs, can be inside the wheat berry before processing and lay eggs in the bag you bought. So buying 1 huge bag is a gamble, buy smaller bags. Individually store in airtight bags, and then proper flour containers. It’s a big deal but people love bread. You can kill weevils by freezing the flour for a few days, sifting, and then putting in airtight containers. Label with an expiration date of two years. It will smell sour if bad. Nut, seed, hemp flours last a year, preferably in a freezer.
We actually recommend whole wheat berries that you grind yourself. It will be more work but the berries last longer. We’ve seen bread made from 10 year old wheat berries, which is pretty amazing considering it’s not rice.
If you are going this route with flour and wheat berries, we highly recommend oxygen absorbers, which must be placed in an airtight container within 10-15 minutes of activating them. Do not just buy a bag of flour and leave it on a shelf or in a cabinet, it will be a disaster.
At the time of this writing, April 8th, 2020, baking yeast is sold out in most stores across America, the media has called this “stress baking” or something silly. But you can make your own yeast in a variety of ways, from dried fruits, to self made sourdough, to even old bread. Please research this on the internet and find your preferred way.
Corn is rather complex with many forms and varieties plus processings . It’s not just a carbohydrate, it has a sizable germ with oils and other nutrients in it. The endosperm is sugary in the case of sweet corn. Nonetheless whole dried corn lasts quite a long time, 10 years or more, but it won’t be sweet corn, it will be dent corn, which is used for livestock. It makes a fine cornmeal when ground, and can be used in Latin American cuisines, even though it hasn’t been slaked with lime like masa/harina.
Cornmeal (ground dried corn) is supposed to last only 1-2 years but it depends whether it’s been de-germed, if organic, if preservatives, etc. (Sort of like whole wheat vs white refined or brown rice vs hulled and de-germed white rice but more complex.) However, given the proper oxygen free, low temperature, dark and dry conditions, it can last for many years. Preppers always go for the mylar bags and oxygen absorbers.
Corn Masa or Harina is not the same as cornmeal, it lasts beyond a year maybe 3. You should just smell it. Surprisingly corn tortillas made with masa can last 2 months in a fridge and 8 months in a freezer. Probably the alkaline processing is somewhat antifungal. Finally Polenta can be made from masa or corn meal but usually corn meal. Hominy is big corn kernels that are slaked with lime or something alkaline. Grits is simply the ground up version of that, like masa, but more coarsely ground. These dried variants can last half a year or more, depending on conditions.
Corn is so complicated but the long and short is that dent corn dried is best. Like any grain beware of weevils, bugs, infestations and adhere to the general storage guidelines. Lastly, popcorn does last forever effectively. Popcorn is rather nice as THE corn option, since it’s cheap, bountiful, forever, and plus it can be ground into cornmeal for what shape and size meal you would want from polenta to tacos.
The rice/pasta/wheat corn set will take probably 2-4 trips to gather up, you might just make a day of it and hit 4 stores. Depends on the rationing at the store. Always take care to regularly inspect your grains for bugs and infestation.
The drinking water situation is probably one 4 to 5 gallon container a month for one person. Everyone says you need a gallon a day but it depends, are you washing, bathing, or cooking with it too? One liter a day, a half a liter a day, you’ll live. Tap water will be running, so if you drink that don’t worry.
UPDATE: I’ve been advised to up this to 10 gallons a month. You may need to target 2-4 months of storage first, then get filtering systems in place, or just replenish. But basically store as much as you can. This is more of the prepper mindset.
Real preppers have everything from water filtration and sanitation systems to containers expressly built for water. It wouldn’t hurt to get small camping versions of these tools. Filters vary in size and shapes, sanitizers can be pills, bleach, UV-C lights and so on.
VEGETABLES & FRUIT & LEGUMES
Fruit & Vegetable Stocking
The real problem in the long term is fresh veggies. Aside from canned or desiccated, which are extremely durable methods, you can get Korean banchan, or side dishes. They are tasty but salty and kimchi, which is probiotic, is in the family of Korean banchans, although in a class of its own. These types of semi-preserved veggies last maybe 4-6 months tops. Of course, we have pickles in general. You may want to add some vitamins to the mix if you are concerned about not eating enough vegetables.
Canned fruits and vegetables are definitely worth stocking as well as jams, and nut butters.
Dried fruits and nuts are very good to have around and are easy to stock. Ethnic markets excel typically.
CSA FOOD SHARES - Fresh Fruits & Vegetables
Many areas, even urban areas, have something called CSA food shares. Community Supported Agriculture Food Shares are essentially Instacart for real food before tech came about. You pay in advance, right about NOW is good, to a local farm, and you get 20 weeks of fresh produce in season every week in a box that you pick up. What you don’t use, you can give to neighbors or learn how to preserve it for winter. We highly highly recommend this. Do an internet search on DuckDuckGo right now for a local CSA food share in your area and buy in right now! This is shortening your supply chain without doing all the labor of growing your own food.
We have set up a Telegram Food Growing, Preservation and other food related info for you. Our legion of volunteers will answer every question you ever had about gardening. They are wonderful, warm, and knowledgeable people from all over the country and world.
We recommend gardening because it is the shortest supply chain you can have. It is quite the endeavor and the risk of losing crops is always there, even human theft is possible, besides animals or pests. So that’s why we have a support team for you.
Beans, Seeds & Sprouting
Beans are listed at 40 pounds in the essentials list at the top. However, they are also seeds and many of them can be sprouted as microgreens. There are also indoor growing kits you can buy or you can just fashion one out of stuff you already have to sprout grasses, like alfalfa, cruciferous veggies like broccoli seeds and so on. Sprouts are actually more nutritious than the beans or seeds themselves sometimes, and you can do it year round indoors, with little effort except changing water daily.
Canned beans actually last longer than dried beans. Canned anything generally lasts for a very very long time, but at the expense of space and weight.
DAIRY & EGGS
We have seen entire warehouses of eggs go to waste, it’s terrible. So the natural tendency is to go buy tons of eggs, but they last, well, 2-3 months realistically. You can crack them and freeze the yolks and whites separately in ice trays but that’s a lot of work for a year of longevity. The answer to if my egg is bad is to just smell it. That’s always the answer to any food spoilage question. That and looking for mold growths.
So yes, there is such a thing as powdered eggs. You can buy that. However we encourage you to look into local farms, and possibly get a CSA food share style contract for that and eggs. Basically you want to be best buddies with your local farmers, because maybe you will grow your first garden this year, but tending chickens is next level stuff.
Dairy is similar, we have seen thousands of gallons of milk being poured out, mostly because they can’t sell it. It’s likely that milk will be around, especially since alternative milks are causing less demand, and closed restaurants have cratered the demand all together. Here’s the thing: The shock of dramatically less demand may push big milk producers to simply fold it up and sell off cattle for meat.
So again, you are forced to shorten your supply chain, and go local. So support your local cheese and dairy and egg producers! They are worth it and the lesson we have all learned is that global food supply chains are just as fragile if not more that local. Local food is healthier, definitely fresher, but not as cheap. Tradeoffs, there’s never a simple good or bad answer to problems. Scale is important, but diversity of scale is important too.
Government policy should be looking at supporting local farming in areas that can afford locally grown food, while simultaneously helping low-income areas to achieve financial sustainability to afford such foods, instead of endlessly funding the largest agribusinesses to have people trapped forever to a life of cheap less vital food.
Some of you ask what about cheese? The longest life cheese is probably American. It’s so stable that it often dries out before it turns bad. Next obviously hard cheeses last longer, but any cheese encased in wax, like 1-2 year old cheddars, will last. Finally, grab some Kraft Parmesan cheese in the clear plastic containers in the pasta aisle. If you are lucky enough to get a milk share, consider making your own mozzarella cheese, it’s quite easy and would be a great pizza day with your homemade no knead bread recipe for crust and homemade sauce.
MEATS & FISH
As shown in the intro, meat is at risk currently. Meat is particularly at risk because something like 80% of all meat in the USA is processed at something like 7 meatpacking facilities. If two or more went down, that would be a disaster for those who rely on meat to sustain. There would be rationing immediately.
There are local meat shares from some butchers, it’s a newer phenomenon born out of the recent foodievoire culture that has been fashionable since the advent of Yelp in the mid 2000’s. Vegetable CSA’s have been around for many decades. However meat shares are going to be harder to find. You can always ask your farmer if he or she knows of something, search food internet boards, and so on.
Of course, preserved meat is one of the most time honored traditions of civilization, and you already know what’s available. How we got hot dogs out of all of this, I really don’t understand.
Fish shares are also a thing! I am friends with a couple that cultivates oysters and clams, surprisingly. Fish shares obviously happen closer to the coasts. Very few fishermen are willing to deal with fishmongers directly or set up a website, but some do. So you might want to hit up the best fishmonger in your area and ask them for clues, or even strike a contract with them, as a fall back.
Canned Tuna or Sardines is definitely worth “hoarding”.
The freezer is for fish and meats, and bread. you can freeze eggs, sorta, but it’s complicated not worth it, look it up to see what I mean.
The fridge is for long term winter veggies like carrots, potatoes, hardy apples, gourds and bitter melons, long life cheeses, and butter. Maybe bacon, sausages, charcuterie stuff. Rice cake, korean or japanese, lasts a long time too.
Remember to buy enough laundry soap, dish soap, body soap and shampoo, toothpaste and brushes, dental floss or picks, bathroom and toilet cleaner, kitchen cleaner, drain cleaner, feminine products and yes toilet paper. Buy sponges, don’t buy paper towels, just use dish cloths or rags and wash them. Buy trash bags, food zip lock baggies. Get a little first aid, hydrogen peroxide, bandages, gauze, an ankle wrap, and Tylenol, but mostly, don’t do anything stupid in your house.
Anything else like snacks, proteins, instant or real coffee and tea, dried or canned beans, canned or frozen veggies and fruits, are kinda extra in my book at this time. Do those last. Ok coffee is life so do that first. I am surprised to learn a couple of things about instant coffee. First, it’s way better than Dunkin Donuts coffee, not gonna lie shots fired. It’s different but not really better or worse than Starbucks. However I’ve noticed some brands have not grit, but silt. I’ve tried filtering out, but the particles are so small that they clog coffee filters and nothing drains out. I have not tried filtering in my N95 mask yet. Kidding.
BULK PANTRY ITEMS
You can add oats, dried and canned beans, other bulk food items if you like to make work for yourself, up to you. This isn’t really cooking or stocking the pantry, it’s surviving for a year to 18 months in isolation.
Olive oil, cooking oil, ghee, vinegar, salt, sugar, spices, honey, soy sauce, mustard, mayo, condiments. You probably have some already. I’d say olive oil is the biggest extra, you will cook some things in it. Salt and vinegar I wouldn’t go without myself. Or if you take this seriously, you might inventory all that you have, and simply quadruple the amount, to be sure. It’s not like the stuff goes bad quickly.
Honey gets a special mention because it’s an ancient food product that can be used in non-food ways to heal even. It’s still magical to humans. Buy local if you can.
HERBS & SPICES
Most early pharmaceutical drugs were simply roughly modeled after molecular compounds found in nature, so it really is true, “food is medicine”. But is the reverse, “Medicine is food”, also true? Let’s just say a lifetime of healthy eating beats a month on hydroxychloroquine. (Which is based on the bark of a tree that eventually made its way into the drink Gin and Tonic.)
Some herbs you’d want to keep in store, which are generally good for a year, are cayenne pepper, ginger, bay leaf (bugs hate it), garlic, turmeric, the list goes on and on, there are so many articles on this from professional researchers to preppers to organic lifestyle proponents.
Booze at your discretion. Please buy me a beer. This is my 7th coronavirus article.
Ah, pet owners are so crazy they probably shopped for them before anything else.
HOW TO SHOP WITHOUT INFECTION
Don’t even take off your mask, eyewear, and gloves for a second, not in the car even. Spray down surfaces you touch and your hands as you shop. Spray down your car door handle, trunk lid, steering wheel, gear shifter and turn signal, and your gloved hands. I keep my credit card in an envelope cut in half so it’s easier to sanitize than a whole wallet or cell phone. I throw away the half envelope after I shop and clean the card. (Don’t bring your cell phone into the stores, just don’t.) When you get home change into new shoes, spray down the ones you wore. Spray down shopping bags with alcohol as you load into the house. Careful, it’s highly flammable. Throw your clothes in the washing machine and take a shower. Put away groceries from bags, throw bags away, and wash your hands after. Spritz around alcohol for the spiritual healing benefits. Maybe try that new trick sanitizing your N95 in the oven at 160 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes. Relax! You made it. Now buy me a beer!
BONUS: MICROORGANISMS, FOOD SPOILAGE
When dealing with short term storage, whether it be bread, or cooked meals and so on, you don’t want to throw it out because of mold, bacteria, yeast, etc. So you know the basics like don’t cross contaminate with utensils and so on. You should know that microorganisms are literally floating in the air all around you all the time. They are unavoidable. However in times like these you may want to take extra precautions, like putting serving utensils in boiling water before using, quickly opening and closing food containers, and being heavy on the cleaning. Maybe even buying a HEPA air filter for the kitchen isn’t such a crazy thing. (Buying one to prevent COVID-19 for the whole house is a little extreme, in my view.)
Remember to compost your food! Even if it’s only for the little pots of flowers you have.
I leave you with a pretty good guide to contrast my own guide with from the site happypreppers. https://www.happypreppers.com/37-food-storage.html. As you can see it’s more of a grab and go from big box stores, but as the big boxes clear out, we’ve adjusted and refined our food security strategies significantly. This is actually our 3rd article on food security for coronavirus!
Happy growing, eating, storing, and living!
-TUIT and the gang at Azazel News, Doomsday, Doomsday Food, and Doomsday Ham Radio