Your Family’s Go Bag for National Preparedness MonthPosted on September 11, 2013 by Darla • 3 CommentsHey, are you new here? The thing about disasters is that they can span the gamut from a dead car battery to a meteor hitting your neighborhood.
I started with a list like this from the Red Cross site, showing everything that is in their bag, and then added a few things. You can also purchase a ready-made bag, but since I already had a perfectly good backpack and many of the supplies, I assembled this myself. And, quite coincidentally, just yesterday, I picked up this Ryobi home generator for just $549. Surviving The Stores™Restaurant Coupons, Grocery Store Coupons, Retail Coupons, Coupon Matchups, Printable Coupons, Hot Deals, and More! Blue Rhino Coupon, Gift Card, and Rebate = Amazing Deals on Propane Exchanges and Purchase!
PHI Management Solutions announced that all of their emergency survival products, including popular Zombie Apocalypse Survival Kit, will be 5 to 10 percent off through Father's Day. Ralph Huber, President of PHI Management Solutions announced that all of their emergency management products and emergency survival kits would be on sale through Father’s Day. Huber opened the meeting with a moment of silence for the Oklahoma tornado victims and used the opportunity to remind all of the executives that the quality of their emergency kits is paramount.
James Moody, the Vice President of the Emergency Division, reviewed the latest products and several recent upgrades. Reach out to the author: contact and available social following information is listed in the top-right of all news releases. In a disaster power and communication infrastructure is often damaged which means there is no way to communicate.
Every Chrysalis administrator receives a portable HAM radio and is a federally licensed HAM radio operator.
Each house is equipped with an emergency 72 hour kit as well as additional emergency food storage that will feed both the individuals being served as well as the staff. Every Chrysalis employee is trained in CPR and First Aid and each house contains an emergency first aid kit to treat minor wounds caused by the disaster. Following Hurricane Katrina and the California wild fires the National Council on Disability issued a report stating that most government plans fail to consider the most vulnerable Americans in their emergency plans.
Emergency planners and government officials are generally unfamiliar and unaware of the unique needs of individuals with developmental disabilities.
At Chrysalis we feel that the responsibility of preparedness starts with the person and with Chrysalis.
Now, I know the hard core preppers will say, “In an emergency, it’s all about maximum calories.
Maybe societal end times will come and I’ll be proven wrong, but I’m more interested in being prepared for financial instability from job loss, earthquakes and the sweet bliss of not having to run to the grocery store every other day than from hoards of roving zombies.
You should not separate them, but preppers fall into this trap all the time, putting away #10 cans of oat groats for a family that regularly eats drive-thru. I believe in being prepared for the likely hiccups of life, but I take a different approach to food storage to many preppers, one I learned in professional restaurant kitchens.
Older purchases move to the front of the pantry and the newer purchases get tucked behind, which naturally rotates our food stores for maximum storage – that’s FIFO. Treating food storage this way is how our grandmothers or great-grandmothers managed their larder. Thinking of building a larder instead of hoarding beans, bullets and band-aids is more versatile, too.
This isn’t to say I don’t also store flour and grains and oatmeal and rice and beans – I do. That may sound a bit crazy, but just think about canning jam, or tomatoes: I try to put by enough strawberry jam or canned tomatoes in season to last us a year, typically. I figured out approximately what we eat per week, then extrapolated that out to get a rough inventory of our annual consumption of larder items.
So you can adjust your par levels for ingredients up or down based on your concerns and comfort levels. Some people aren’t going to sleep at night until they have a thousand pounds of wheat berries buried in the woods around their bug-out shelter, and that’s cool, if you want to take preparedness to that degree. This list doesn’t include the massive quantities of veggies I grow and can, or the meat I buy in bulk and keep frozen.
This list further assumes that the prepper looking at it has a garden, or access to fresh fruits and vegetables.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (The Mormons) are the reigning champions of food storage info. For those that are worried about beans getting hard, there are a few things I’ve found. I strongly recommend re-packaging *all* grains and legumes, and grain or legume containing items, purchased for storage longer than a month, into glass or heavy plastic containers with good seals. Food grade diamataceous earth is what commercial granaries use to control insect pests, but I don’t know what the recommended amounts would be for home storage. Freezing bulk grain purchases for a few days before storing should kill the eggs and help prevent infestations in the future. Thanks for a great post and some excellent tips, your posts lately have been so practical and awesome. I spent a summer in France with an elderly woman who survived WWII by taking in washing–from both sides. Food canned in glass jars stays good for much longer that food canned in metal, so the shelf life of home-canned food is way better than commercially prepared. You need to soak the beans before hand (either a quick soak or an overnight, just like most people normally do before cooking beans to eat immediately) and then they need to be heated to boiling before adding to hot jars and being processed in the pressure canner.

If you wish to pressure can I really cannot strongly recommend enough that you get a good canning book with tested recipes (as MQ suggested, Ball books are great, as is any publication from an extension office) and following the instructions to the letter. I think a mental list is fine if you know that when you are down to three cans of tomatoes you go buy more or whatever, and your pantry is organized so that you can see that at a glance.
This little radio from LLBean is tiny, has a weather channel, and a flashlight AND it hand cranks, so it never needs batteries.
I need to add that back into my kit, but usually we just store some water in advance of a storm.
It runs up to 8 hours on just one gallon of gas, and will be just enough to keep my sump pump running so my basement doesn’t flood should we lose power. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. Most important he said was the introduction of kits with enhanced water purification capabilities.
History has shown that we can't expect emergency services to support our individuals in the beginning.
Ignoring for a minute that food prices have clearly gone up since this list was put together (5 pounds of honey for $5? Unless you have the means to buy $3000 worth of freeze-dried bug out food (in which case, hey, do whatever you want for food storage – stockpile caviar and melba toast for all I care) food storage only makes sense within the context of regular food usage.
Store what you eat and eat what you store. Stockpiling 1000 pounds of wheat berries if you swell up like a Zeppelin when you eat gluten is a terrible idea.
In a commercial kitchen, items are purchased in large quantities, in bulk, but you don’t keep a bunch of food you won’t use on hand just-in-case.
Applying these concepts to my home has allowed me to build up a deep, secure food store while filling my pantry with food we actually eat. This isn’t prepping the way most people think of it, but over time it has turned my pantry into something I could really use to feed my family for months, using staples to which they are already accustomed. Those farm mama’s didn’t go out and buy bunch of nutrient-devoid processed food then throw a bottle of multi-vitamins in the cart to ward of scurvy. Now just apply that idea to everything you routinely use in your kitchen and you have your own personal “Par” list to start building towards.
My “Par” level for most items is 50% of that level – so at the point when I’m down to six months of stored staple food, I try to purchase, order, grow or make more as soon as is reasonable. If I run out of jarred tomatoes in February, it will be late August before I can make more. And before I watch my freezer full of perfectly good meat and fish thaw and spoil, I will preserve it in more traditional ways: salting, curing, picking or pressure canning (if gas is still available to us). My method of incidental preparedness through larder building works for me and puts my family in a very good position to weather the bumps of life I think are most likely to impact us.
The LDS church promotes food storage as a duty for members and provides a ton of info to help folks in and out of the church get their food stores in order. We actually make lots of our stuff from scratch, so would modify your list dramatically, tap our own trees, raise our own honey, grind our own WWF, roast our own coffee beans, make all our own condiments, jams, tomato products, brew our own mead, etc. I have no idea how I managed to delete that column before uploading, but NO, I certainly didn’t mean to leave that out.
I believe rice can go rancid so I don’t think you can use it (make rice bags to use for heat packs or ice packs) . I actually have an LDS pantry nearby and many years ago stored up on beans and wheat berries. I would recommend buying an inverter for your vehicle to help keep your freezers going during a long power outage. After a thorough cleaning and re-packaging and seven months of rigorously re-packaging everything pasta or legume that comes into the house, I’m still finding these cussed bugs. Some bugs will get into sealed cardboard and plastic bags without any trouble, so the containers must be tightly sealed.
There are people who regularly eat up to a tablespoon of DE a day and say it makes their hair and nails beautiful…check it out??
After living for years and years in London, in 500 square foot flats, then selling everything to move back to Canada… to move into an apartment only a bit bigger! At the tender young age of 15 she drilled it into my head to never not have dried beans to feed my kids and cocoa powder to barter for everything else. We are coffee junkies and do keep several pounds of unground beans on hand, and if our income were to plummet suddenly, if would be comforting to still be able to make a batch of cookies for the kids. If you buy it in dribs and drabs, little bits flow through your front door to your cupboards to your plate and you don’t realize how much you use. I have a recipe for making Baked Beans that requires soaking overnight, cooking for hours with the additional ingredients (tomato products, bacon, onions, etc), then putting them in jars and pressure canning them. While I know there are people on the internets that can beans directly from dry I have never seen a tested recipe that used that method.
Part of this is because our storage space is so small (we live in a TinyHouse so can’t expand that) that I have more of a mental inventory list.
While my chest freezer will maintain temps (as long as I don’t open it) for about 72 hours, 10 days was never going to work. Hurricanes, wildfires, and floods have been more common in recent years than any of us really want to think about. I put mine together a few years ago, but since my kids have gotten older, I needed to make some changes.
I never, ever want to hear these duck beaks again, but they are just fine in this kit that I hope we never need. Nah, they managed a rotating (seasonal) inventory of staple foods and used those and garden produce to fill hungry bellies. My goal is to have enough food that, if I had to, I could feed my family for six months to a year just from the food in my larder.

Having a year’s supply of strawberry jam sounds crazy, until you realize that might only be six half-pint jars. A case of salt is a fraction of the cost of a big generator, and doesn’t require me to keep a ton of gasoline on hand in my home – something that, with two kids and in a tightly-packed suburban environment, makes me uncomfortable. But it’s a start, and if everything else fell apart, the food in my pantry would keep us going for months. It’s way more expensive, coming in at about $20 a week, and not everything on the list is organic. I rely on my pantry (dry goods) and my freezer (meats) for calories, but I rely on my garden and my relationships with local producers for nutrition. If they get too hard, a pressure canner, or pressure cooker will solve that problem for you. It’s funny to watch all the coffee addicts going crazy during extended power outages. We had a bad green bean crop, so we were able to eat all of them off the plant, so to speak, and the wax beans grew better but not awesome. I am fairly confident that I could soak overnight, cook for hours, don’t put the additional ingredients in (except maybe salt) and pressure can for the same amount of time, and that would be safe. It doesn’t take much time to bring beans to a boil in a big pot and soak them for an hour, drain them and then go on with your recipe. Any reliable canning book will have instructions including processing times for plain beans, as well as guides for necessary altitude adjustments.
However, my curiosity is aroused–I am going to try a pint of dry beans with water just to see what happens. Being the one who does the majority of canning and preserving (not to mention grocery shopping) in the family, I disagree with that line of thinking, because I know that every item has a shelf life, so you damn well better be prepared to eat it on a regular basis if you stick it on my shelf. One of my goals for this spring is to get a spreadsheet going for food inventory in preparation for summer preservation season, so this will be a wonderful tool as I brainstorm what works for us.
I’ve got way more of this stored away in the house if we need to shelter in place, but this is for the GO bag, remember. Best of all, I’ll never again have to be worried about not being able to recharge my cell phone during a power outage. And if you are a paleo prepper and eschew all beans and grains, well – start making jerky now and buy a good local foraging book.
As long as you’re talking about foods you’d eat anyway, food storage through larder building starts to really make sense and can, over time, save you money.
But it assumes that the person looking at this list for inspiration is attempting to juggle the same tricky balls I am: financial reality, accessibility of specialty items, overall wholesomeness and healthfulness of food, food storage optimization and food palatability for multiple family members.
Not only for having taken the time to work out these numbers and the generosity of sharing them with us, but also for corroborating some of my same thoughts exactly!
Putting bay leaves into the containers may help, but isn’t going to prevent an infestation if you get a buggy batch of something.
We did some guesstimates, but the best way was keeping track of what we bought (or made) and seeing how much was left after X amount of time.
But in a earthquake-prone city like Vancouver, we need to have at least some food and water set aside. The lines for coffee places like dunkin donuts is usually just as long as for the gas stations. What I don’t know is if it is ok to start with dry beans first, not soak them, and pressure can them.
I buy a tub when I only have two tubs left (two tubs is “Par” for coconut oil around here) on the shelf. I spent just over a $100 on it so much cheaper than a generator and as long as your vehicles have fuel your good to go. It takes practice, but eventually has totally led to a change in how we eat, shop and plan our gardens. It might sound cruel, but it gets the point across in a funny way that we need to be storing REAL FOOD we actually eat on a DAILY BASIS, or stuff will spoil or be wasted. Moody also stressed that the same standards of excellence apply to all of PHI's kits to include their popular line of Zombie themed Survival Kits. Similarly, I don’t wait to buy another case of tuna or 10 pound bag of sugar when I’m down to my last can or last cup. Except for the little fact of you being in the Pacific Northwest and me being in the South, I consider you the kind of neighbor I’d gladly share a beer or a cup of sugar with and I can totally imagine us involved in cooperative canning marathons. The bottom line he said is that every kit we produce has what a person needs in the event of a catastrophe. Backstock of these items is purchased when 6 cans or a lonely bag of sugar is still on the shelf. Remember, botulism spores are killed by either an acid environment or being heated to 248 degrees for an adequate amount of time. So, since boiling water can only reach 212 degrees, all low acid food, meats, veggies, fish, etc need to be pressure canned. It goes on the nozzle where the steam escapes to exhaust the canner before it is brought up to pressure. The gauges come in either ten or fifteen pound sizes–if your elevation is below 1,000 ft. If your county extension office offers a Master Food Preserver class, it is well worth your time to take it.

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