Saturday, August 9, 2008

Survival Food

"You may be able to survive a few weeks or even a month without food, but why would you want to? Without food, you will become weak, susceptible to illnesses, dizzy and unable to perform survival-related tasks. Sure, water may be more critical to short-term survival, but it's much easier for even the unskilled survivalist to find water in the wild (the safety and purity of the water is another story...)." -
Recall that the fourth Rule of Three says you can survive three weeks without food. But as the quote above aptly states - who would want to be that hungry? Ideally we should know how to catch food in the wild. Personally I have little luck at fishing, no experience at hunting, and no training in what plants might be safe to eat.

Knowing my limits in the wild, I'll have to survive on what I carry in my Go-Kit: Energy bars, dry mixes, MREs, peanut butter, etc. It is a good idea to have at least a mini-Go-Kit every time you travel be it car, boat, train or plane. You never know when an accident may leave you stranded for hours or even days. Even something as simple and common as a flat tire can be made less stressful knowing you have some bottled water in the trunk and some food bars or hard candy for the children.

For your home FEMA and the Red Cross now recommend that you store one week of food and drink for the entire family and pets. The recommendation used to be 3 days (72 hours) but it was raised after Hurricane Katrina. Personally I feel this is not enough. Consider these reasons for a longer food store (1 month+) from the
  • Store shelves are often cleared out right before a blizzard or hurricane is set to hit. One grocery chain reported that when storm warnings went out, they sold more rolls of toilet paper than there were people in the city. Batteries, bottled water, milk, candles and food staples are also going to be in short supply. Do you want to battle the grocery store crowd for a roll of toilet paper?
  • Store shelves may be slowly replenished. A hurricane can destroy bridges and roads making it impossible for supplies to be delivered. 30 inches of snow in the winter storm of 1995-96 shut down Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia for more than a week. Trucks carrying supplies were stranded on the interstate highways.
  • You may be asked to feed friends or neighbors. What if friends were visiting for the weekend and unable to return home because of the inclement weather, earthquake or other emergency?
  • Food rarely goes down in price. What you buy now will be an investment in the future and you'll be protected from any price gouging after the emergency. You can also save money buying goods on sale or at warehouse club prices.
Bottom Line
Create at least two food stores:
  1. 3 days of food in Go-Kits that you keep in your car
  2. 1 month of food that you keep at home

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