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#1 Storage Environment

The ideal storage temperature is above forty and below sixty degrees Fahrenheit. Food may be stored in a higher temperature range but this higher temperatures will decrease the shelf life. Three temperatures are critical to the storage of food. First, some foods will be damaged if they are frozen. Second, above 48 Fahrenheit most insects become active. Third critical temperature is the temperature at which fats will melt about 95 Fahrenheit.

In general, the lowest temp short of freezing should be used in storing most foods. The goal should be about 40 to 60 Fahrenheit and not higher than 70 F should be allowed.

If your storage is kept in a garage or other area where rodents can enter, sprinkle rock sulfur around the cracks, nooks and crannies. This will keep rodents away. If the floor or your storage area is concrete or plain dirt, place slats of lumber between the cement or dirt and the cans to prevent the cans from sweating or rusting. Always keep in mind the three elements that will destroy your food supply are: Moisture, Air, and Heat. Any combination of the above three elements can do serious damage to your food storage program.

 #2 Storage

Many different storage containers are available that can keep your food storage safe from air and moisture. However, here are a few helpful hints.

The most important thing you should remember is that you must have a non-porous storage containers. You should use plastic bags made by Glad or bags that will not emit harmful fumes into your foods. If using large plastic garbage cans, make certain a very wide tape is used to tape the lid to the can.

You can also store some items like root crops right in your garden.

Spread several inches of straw as bedding and stack produce in a cone shape. Cover produce with bedding and 4” of soil. Let bedding extend through the soil for air. Make a small drainage ditch around your cone shape mound and place wood or metal cover over the top of the cone for rain runoff. You should also cover large stacks with a tarp and add provide additional ventilation at the top.

If you live in an area where fall and winter temps remain near freezing and fluctuate very little, you can store root vegetables, apples, and pears in a wide variety of insulated structures and containers. These can range from simple mounds as explained above or a full-fledged root cellar and keeping in mind a high moisture content of the air prevents shriveling due to loss of water by evaporation.

An old-fashioned, unheated basement is ideal for a root cellar.

Different vegetables can be stored together in a single container, but fruits should never be stored with vegetables nor should different fruits be stored together.

The simple table gives the best methods that we considered the most successful in preserving.

Wheat, Grains, Oats, ext is best stored in containers.

Apples: Live storage, canning, jams and jellies, or drying.

Apricots, Cherries, Peaches, Pears, and Plums: Canning, drying, and jams or jellies.

Figs: Drying, or jam

Bananas, and grapes: Drying

Asparagus: Canning

Beans (green) Canning, salt curing

Beans (Lima) Canning, or drying

Beets, cabbage, carrots, corn, peas, potatoes, pumpkin, squash, and turnips: Live storage or canning

Radishes, sweet potatoes, onions, parsnips, and celery: Live storage

Cauliflower, and cucumbers: Salt curing

Tomatoes, and spinach: Canning

 

 #3 Shelving

Remember to rotate your perishables.

Now, shelving can simply be made with 1” x 12” lumber, spacing the shelves wide enough apart to stack your food. Divide your storage shelves into allotted space for each type of food, allowing one extra row for rotation for each variety.

Note: It stands to reason that if your food is properly canned, fumigated, rotated, and if the storage temperature is as constant as you can provide, you will achieve the maximum shelf life for your storage area.

 

 

 

LONG-LIFER FOODS

 


Below is By: John (the) Christian

In the book, “Keeping Food Fresh,” by Janet Bailey, the preservation times the author gives are definitely not meant for great-tribulation survivors, but more for the queen’s kitchen. For example, she says that a cut green pepper should not be kept in the refrigerator more than two days, or that plums will only keep 3 to 5 days there. Don’t let books like these fool you; the given upper limits define the maintenance of foods at their peak. In the tribulation, several degrees of deterioration from the perfect condition is not the main concern.

Janet says that pecans in the shell will keep only six months in the refrigerator, but our down-to-earth experts, Mike and Nancy, give them one year. Janet means that pecans will begin to deteriorate after 6 months in a cold place, while Mike and Nancy mean that the deterioration after one year’s storage is minimal and acceptable for modern standards. That means trib’ survivors who have pecan trees may continue to eat their nuts for a lot longer than one year, although, of course, there should be an annual harvest to depend on.

Janet says that we shouldn’t keep white flour for more than a year in a refrigerator. She also says whole wheat kernels should not be stored in the refrigerator for more than 4 or 5 months, while Mike and Nancy give whole wheat 3 to 4 years, and others even longer. Ignore writers like Janet, and try to buy enough white flour and whole wheat kernels at the outset of the great tribulation to last that entire span of time. That is my advice, and if you want an expert opinion, it would be easy for you to get one.

Remember that Joseph of ancient Egypt was able to keep wheat edible for the full seven-year famine. There’s a lesson in this: wheat kept away from air will last a long time. Or, plan on using large bins to store flour and similar dried foods, but keep them in a cool place– i.e. your root cellar. Properly stored, wheat kernels will last up to 15 years. But a word of importance to those who think there’s no harm in buying/storing too early: the nutritional value of stored foods decreases with time as chemical changes occur. So, while after 15 years you may still have wheat in an edible condition, it might be more nutritious to eat fresh grass.

On the other hand, if all Christians decide to buy their foods at the last minute, which is what I prescribe and fear all at once, there will likely be food shortages so that you may not be able to get large enough supplies to last for even a few months–perhaps none at all!! Furthermore, there is indication already that the governments won’t allow you to store foods for long periods, which they might call, “hoarding,” in order to make “storage” appear evil. These are very good reasons to plan a garden and greenhouse in combination with efforts outlined in this chapter for making purchases. There. Now you have been warned.

Try, but don’t depend on, buying your entire tribulation stock of foods! To avoid hoarding laws, buy long-lasters early in the final Week while national supplies are not yet short. This is why I have shared several details of prophecies within the first half of the final Week, in hopes that you might have the knowledge needed to begin/continue preparing at that time with all determination, skill, and wisdom. Remember, it is not “hoarding” if you buy slowly over months when the supplies are not threatened.

Unfortunately, however, I have heard that governments are secretly making laws to disallow the people from storing foods at all; other than what is needed immediately, within about a month! All the more reason to plan on growing your own food, and to keep messages like this one from going all-out public. But, of course, God is bigger than anti-Christian governments. And, if messages like this don’t go out at all, won’t that be worse? The last thing we need, though, is someone who thinks he can make some big money on this “novel” subject by publishing an “exciting” best-seller with all sorts of beans spilled before our foes that should be kept in the bag. God is also bigger than that horny goat, by the way, wherever he may be.

You can grow your own wheat and grind it to a flour, though common advice tells us to grind small amounts at a time, to prevent deterioration and nutrient loss. Grinders sell for under $100, but it would make sense to buy the more expensive models (see the URL at the end of this chapter). Depending on the model, it takes between 5 and 15 minutes to grind enough flour to make one loaf of bread. A bushel of wheat kernels weighs about 60 pounds, and it will net about 50 pounds of whole wheat flour, enough to provide about 70 loaves of bread. So, if you’re going to grow your own wheat, you’ll need about 5 bushels per year for every loaf per day.

The yield per acre depends on the soil conditions and the amount of rainfall. Wheat can grow in areas having as little as 15 inches of precipitation annually, or as much as 70 inches. It will even grow as far north as the Arctic circle. In dry or infertile areas where the yield is 10 bushels per acre, you’ll need almost an acre to provide one loaf of bread per day. An acre is about 43,000 square feet, or just larger than a 200 x 200 foot patch. In ideal growing conditions, however, using mechanical equipment, the yield can be higher than 75 bushels per acre, and when irrigation is applied, some farmers obtain 125 bushels.

Seed can be thrown by hand onto the field, but the growth of the wheat will be patchy. But even if we assume the tribulation yield to be as low as 20 bushels per acre, then for one loaf per day, only 1/4 of an acre is required, which translates into a patch of ground 100-feet square. This is quite manageable. If your grow an entire acre, you can produce wheat-based food in an amount equivalent to four loaves per day, which is more like what you should be aiming for since your family will want to eat more than bread. How about some pastas, pizzas, and wheat cereals? If you don’t have an acre for wheat, take greater care and make your quarter-acre achieve the 80-bushel-per-acre yield.

Store-bought white flour consists of one wheat-kernel part only: the endosperm. This part has the least fat and, therefore, lasts the longest. The other two parts, the bran and germ, have been removed precisely because they are higher in fat and therefore spoil sooner. Therefore, avoid the purchase of bran and germ flours for long-term storage, as they may go too rancid.

Rye, barley, buckwheat and oat flours are all high in fat and do not last as long as white flour. White-rice flour lasts much longer than brown-rice flour for the same “fat” reason. Gluten flour, a hard-wheat, high-protein product, has long-lasting features, but triticale, a product with similar features, does not last as long. Semolina flour, used for making pastas, is a hard durum wheat product and, like white flour, is made only with the wheat’s endosperm so that it, too, outlasts whole grain flours. Potato flour is long-lasting, as is degerminated cornmeal flour, but bran and soy flours are relatively high in fat. Soy and barley flours, as well as others, because they have no gluten or starch of their own, must be mixed with white flour in most bread recipes (to get the flour to rise).

The point here is not to confuse or overwhelm you, but to show that all flours are not the same, and that what might at first appear to be a simple matter is filled with complications that, unless dealt with wisely, could lead to complications in your trib’ life. Before you buy big for the tribulation, look into the preservation limits of all flours, and their special uses, but don’t take as the final word anything claimed by those who sell or market the products, as they are prone to give misleading advice for the sake of making sales.

And do buy big because flour is cheap, nutritious, and can be used in a variety of ways. Wheat products are so nutritious, one can live for a long period on them alone. Just don’t fail to purchase “enriched” white flour because, to make up for the removal of nutrients when the bran and germ are sacrificed, it is re-packed with the same (riboflavin, niacin, thiamine, vitamin A and iron).

Aside from flours/kernels, you should buy large supplies of ready-to-eat wheat products like pasta and cereal. Corn Flakes and Cheerios will outlast whole grain products! Like white flour, these cereals have had their fat-containing bran and germ removed. Janet says that the ready-to-eat cereals will last one full year in unopened boxes in cool, dry places. As Janet is much too conservative in her upper limits for trib’ survival purposes, I would venture to guess that these cereals would keep well for the entire tribulation period, especially if we stored them in large bins.

If you must avoid high sugar intake, you can get ready-to-eat products that have as little as 5%. Try to buy the more dense cereals to make good use of storage space; some cereals are almost all air. However, some of the more dense cereals, like Harvest Crunch, are not enriched with vitamins and nutrients like most other cereals. Still, my choice could very well end up being Harvest-Crunch like cereals to conserve shelf space, with a daily vitamin tablet (for about 42 months, that’s 1300 tablets).

Whole-grain cereals include barley, buckwheat, hominy (cracked corn), millet, oats, rye, rice and wheat. Among these, pearl barley and hominy keep best, but, I suspect, corn is not the most nutritious of these various food sources.

Pasta, if factory dried, lasts a long time. Buy large amounts of this very inexpensive food, because along with being very good for you, it is filling. Some pastas are enriched with nutrients. Like cereals, pasta comes in many shapes, some offering lots of air per package that not only takes up more room, but slightly alters the chemical state. Flat, straight spaghetti would seem to me to be the most densely-packed pasta. Home-made pasta is easy to make, but even when dried, it does not last as long as factory-made products. But then, who needs it to? You can grind it as you need it. You can even use your homemade whole-wheat flour, or the store bought white-flour, instead of the ideal semolina flour. Just roll your dough as thin as you can, cut it up, and/or manipulate it into any shape you want. Put your artwork or strips into a pot of hot water, and you’ll have linguini or gnochi just like that. Curl the flattened dough and stuff the inners with meat or whatever your heart desires, and you’ll have ravioli and cantonelle too!

If having a full tribulation store of flour, cereal and pasta isn’t enough variety along with your fresh and dried vegetables and fruits, you can also add white rice to your menu, which, because it lasts as indefinitely as pasta, could be purchased in large amounts (highly recommended). The difference between white and brown rice is that the white has had its bran removed. Again, in order to make up for it, vitamins and minerals are sometimes added to it. Wild rice, which is not a true rice, but a seed of a grass plant which grows in the northern United States, lasts as long as white rice.

Sugar and salt last forever. Both can be used to preserve foods. Both taste great in foods so preserved. Buy big! Your fruits will last longer if kept in a simple syrup made of water and 20-65% sugar (amount depends on your taste buds and on the acidity of the fruit). Molasses, honey, and maple syrup will last the entire tribulation. Sugar substitutes never spoil. Sugary foods may be considered luxuries, but there is a good argument to be made for including “comfort foods” in days of affliction. Salt will be useful in preserving fish and other meats, as well as butter (use 2.5% salt) and cheeses.

Herbs and spices, because they are dried, are long-lifers. You can enjoy growing them yourself and then use fresh in your cooking. Some are useful in preserving foods. Some will make your garden experiences more joyful. Mint in your tea sounds very nice.

Janet suggests that coffee, ground or instant, will last one full year if the jar is not opened, but she only gives freeze-dried 6 months. She gives tea 6-12 months. But as these are dried foods too, they should last as long as water/humidity doesn’t get to them.

She gives canned fruit juices a year in a cool place. As canned drinks are mostly water, I wouldn’t buy them for tribulation survival, however, as they take up too much room. Ascorbic acid is a preservative as well as a vitamin (C), and it would probably be a good idea to buy dried juices (powders) enriched with it. Dried milk powder is also a long-laster, but not a necessity. Contrary to popular belief, we can survive without milk. The dairy industry has spent millions convincing us that calcium from their products is vital. There are other foods high in calcium–even calcium tablets. Some waters are high in calcium too.

Cheeses can be made on your site. If packed in bricks or cakes one over top the other, they will last much longer. Hard cheeses, as you might expect, last the longest. Firm Cheddars (Colby, Cheshire, Derby), Edam, Gouda, and mozzarella are durable, but feta, provolone, and Asiago are longer-lasting, while hard Parmesan and Port du Salut do still better. But without refrigeration, you’ll get mold much quicker, even in a root cellar, because cheese is not without significant water content. The mozzarella in my fridge is 45% water and 28% milk fat.

You’ll have to weigh the high expense of cheese with the benefits if you’re going to purchase. Cheese is a dense product packed with fat that can substitute for meatless periods. And it goes well with many dishes. But if you plan on having goats, you can have free milk and curds (cottage cheese or ricotta) as well as the meat. You can preserve cheese longer by storing it in salty water (i.e. brine), but nothing stores it better than keeping it in your animals until it’s needed.

 

 

Jonathan Deleon posted in Survival Texas.
created a doc "Taking Your Food Storage for a Test Drive ".
Jonathan Deleon created a doc “Taking Your Food Storage for a Test Drive “.

Taking Your Food Storage for a Test Drive

Jan 3rd, 2011 | By Samara | Category: Food, Storage | Print This Article

You have been packing away food religiously for a couple of months. Your pantry is getting full. You even have some tomato sauce put up from last year’s garden in the basement! But you still have some nagging worry that you will not be able to feed your family in the event of a crisis.

Well – you might be right! Anyone who has had to eat the same meal several days in a row will tell you that quantity alone does not a well-balanced diet create. I even remember one especially crazy family move as a child when we ate pizza every night for a week in order to have enough time to pack. Even pizza got old after about the third night!

The only way to be sure that any plan will work is to test it, and the same is true with your food supplies. So how do you try out your food storage success without a true emergency? Take it for a test-drive in these easy steps:

1) Stop buying food for one month.

This may very well be the hardest step. For those of us who are used to shopping sales, stocking up, and spending a lot of time thinking about buying food, it will be a big mental shift. But that is all part of the exercise. Make sure not to dip into your food budget for other things, however. Set what you’re not spending aside to buy extra the next month to replace what you have used up. If not buying any more food is just too much, then at least leave whatever new things you buy in the bags and put it out of sight in a totally different part of the house from your current food stores. Definitely don’t buy any perishable items. If possible, even have another member of the household do the shopping. The point is to realistically assess what you have and what you don’t, which won’t work if you are still in the mindset of almost limitless food readily available at the store down the street.

2) Eat only what you have.

Now that you have mentally come to grips with the fact that what you see is what you’ve got (for the next month anyway), eat only that. Do not cheat by ordering a pizza, swinging through the drive-thru for take-out, or eating out a restaurant. Remember that, in a worst case scenario, the same things that would restrict your food supply would also force these places to close their doors. Eating at a friend’s house is marginally acceptable if invited (you don’t want to lose friends over this!), but do consider the impact of TEOTWAWKI on both your friendship and the possibility of transporting yourself to them.

3) Write it down.

Making a menu is always a good way to prevent food spoilage, save money, rotate food stores, and make the most out of a little. If you are not doing this yet, now is a great time to start. You can start small if you need to just by making a menu at the beginning of the day of what you will eat for breakfast lunch and dinner, but making a week-long menu at the beginning of the week is much more effective. Ultimately, a month-long menu is a great solution for most people. If you are extra-organized or ambitious, you may even want to make a three-month rotating menu that takes into consideration the growing season and what fresh foods will be available when.

Obviously, make sure to eat your fresh/perishable foods first.

In addition to your menu, keep some kind of a journal, even if it is just a running “store” list. Keep track of everything that you use up, and also those things you miss. We often do not realize how much we rely on a steady supply of fresh food for things like dairy, eggs, and even fruits and vegetables. The first time I did this I realized that I had beans, wheat, and canned tomatoes (from a great sale when I really stocked up) to last for a long, long time. I also had a decent surplus of a couple of other grains, oil, and a few spices too. But I ran out of all dairy, fruits, and vegetables within a week or so. I just hadn’t adequately calculated how many fresh fruits and vegetables we eat, or the quantity of canned goods would be required to replace those items.

Invariably you will run out of something faster than you think you will, and it might surprise you what that thing is. The key here is to not forget steps one and two! Do not cave and go buy more food (unless it is a health issue for you or someone else in the family). You need to have the experience of making do, substituting, being creative, and yes, even going without. This is what will take your preparedness skills to a whole new level and make this whole thing “real” to you. Don’t give up yet!

Oh, and that meal you had at the friend’s house? Make sure you write that down too. What did you eat? How would you have replaced that meal at home?

4) Take stock.

So you actually made it to the end of the month without giving in to your fast food demon, or buying “just one gallon of milk.” Congratulations! Now it is time to process what you have learned. Sit down and review your notes. If appropriate do this with the whole family. What does your partner have to contribute to the discussion? What did your kids really miss eating? Review your notes and see what you ran out of when, and what you were able to replace it with. What would have made things easier? Often it is the little things (butter, baking powder, sugar) that, added to the staples, are able to turn something bland into something enjoyable.

Finally, now that you are equipped with more information and a new set of eyes, look through your food stores again. How long do you really think you could live comfortably with this food? How long could you survive?

5) Adjust your food storage according to what you find.

Finally, you get to apply all this newly-gained knowledge, won through experience, to start improving your planning. Start getting more of those items you ran out of. Think about other ways to incorporate milk and the items you usually get out of the fridge. Maybe you will discover that you want or need to start storing faster, so you’ll need to save money in order to increase your food storage budget.

Maybe you need skills more than additional food. This can come as a surprise to otherwise good cooks who rely on a some standard favorites. Start trying new recipes, new ingredients, and new styles of cooking. Find a good cookbook with a complete list of substitutions, or start writing down your own (e.g. cake flour can be made with ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons of regular flour mixed with 2 tablespoons of corn starch).

So what are you waiting for? Test drive your food storage starting today. And if you are tempted to wait so you can prepare first, remember that a true emergency will not give you that luxury.

 

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