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“Stock food, water, medications and other supplies to last at least one month.”

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has made recommendations for a year’s supply of food based on studies from the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. One recommendation was made in 1978 and a second one in 2002. The second recommends more grains and less milk to help avoid costly waste of powdered milk but is not recommended for children or nursing/pregnant women. The recommendations are as follows and provide 2300 to 2400 calories per day:

300 pounds grains 400 pounds
60 pounds legumes 60 pounds
20 pounds fats and oils 10 quarts
60 pounds sugars 60 pounds
75 pounds powdered milk 16 pounds
5 pounds salt 8 pounds
  garden seeds and/or vitamins  

    Using the 1978 recommendations, a month’s supply for one person could consist of the following:

5 pounds flour
5 pounds rice
2 42-ounce boxes oatmeal
5 pounds pasta
5 pounds dry beans
32 ounces vegetable oil
4 pounds sugar
6 pounds dry milk
2 4-ounce canisters salt
Plus 5 pounds total of one or more of the following:
     Buckwheat (kasha)
     Cracked wheat

If the 2002 recommendations are followed, 1 more canister of salt would be needed as well as 8 more pounds of grain or grain products. Milk could be reduced to an 8 quart box.

    When these basic foods are in storage, fruits and vegetables should be added to provide vitamins A and C which are lacking in the recommended foods. Those foods higher in these vitamins include tomatoes and tomato products, spinach and other greens, sweet potatoes, carrots (A), apricots (A), pumpkin (A), peaches (A), orange juice (C), Mandarin oranges (C), corn (C), and pineapple juice (C).

    A few additional foods make cooking and eating the basics easier and add variety. A few of these are:

   Dry yeast
   Baking powder
   Baking soda
Dried fruit
Peanut butter
Canned soups

    Because children are still growing, they need more food in proportion to their size than do adults. When calculating adequate food storage amounts for children according to the following chart, add one year to the child’s current age. Infants who are nursing share in their mother’s portion.


Percentage of
Adult Portion

3 and under
4 to 6
7 to 10
11 and up

Basic Principles of Food Storage
    Use these basic principles to guide you in selecting and storing items for your family’s food storage:
    1. Store what your family will eat and learn to eat what will store well. Be sure to consider special diet needs.
    2. Store foods from all six of the recommended food storage groups to ensure a balanced diet.
    3. Check for expiration dates to determine the freshness and quality of the food items you purchase. Buy the freshest for the longest shelf life.
    4. Make adjustments for food quantities based on the age and activity levels of individuals in your family.
    5. Basic storage foods should be low in moisture (10 percent or less). These foods will retain their quality and nutritional value longer and will be more pest resistant when stored properly.
    6. Incorporate stored food items into your regular meals to avoid waste. Replace them as they are used to ensure a constant fresh supply of food. Doing so will also help avoid the incorporation of costly or hard to find food items in your stored food plan.
    7. Label each food container with the date of purchase so that the oldest items can be used first.
    8. Food should be stored cool, dry, dark and airtight. Avoid storing in hot attics and garages. Keep food above concrete floors and away from heat and light sources. Containers should be as airtight as possible.
    9. Inventory your food supply regularly. Check for items that need to be used, replaced, or added to your supply. Check for insect and rodent infestations and damaged containers.

Food Storage Containers
    The best food storage containers are opaque, pest resistant, airtight and can withstand the climate they are used in, although others can be used under the right storage conditions. A variety of options are available. Four and 5 gallon plastic buckets can be used if they are of food grade plastic and have a rubber gasket in the lid. Metal cans with “paint lip” lids provide a good airtight seal. Glass canning jars with rings and new lids can be used where they can be stored away from light and where they won’t be broken easily. Plastic PETE bottles (most juice and soda bottles) can be recycled and used for food storage when washed thoroughly, dried, filled with dry food, and the lid taped down. They should also be stored away from light. Commercially available kitchen storage containers may also be used if they have good tight seals and they are stored away from light.

Where to Store
    Finding room to store extra food is not always easy. It means thinking and being creative. If the kitchen is not large enough to accommodate the increased amount of food then start looking in coat closets, bedrooms and bedroom closets and even the living room or family room. Extra space underneath hanging clothes, in the back of closets or above hanging clothes can be used. Most beds sit high enough to slide containers of food underneath. Consider adding shelves in a closet above the existing one or along one side. Store between the couch and the wall, underneath cloth covered tables or in living room cabinets. A free standing cabinet or armoire can also be purchased for added storage space.

Water -Water Storage

Medications - Supplies and Medications for Isolation or Quarantine due to Respiratory or Gastrointestinal Diseases

Alternate methods for cooking, heat, light
    Fuel Facts and Figures
    Cooking Without Power
    No Cook Recipes for Emergencies



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Copyright © 2004 - 2013 Cheryl Driggs
Last modified: 07/15/2013