In Food Storage, Attention To The Details May Literally Save Your Life

 

Long term food storage requires great attention to details in order to ensure that your food will have its true intended shelf life, and that it will taste good while being nutritionally satisfying when you do eat it. Don’t always believe the marketing when you see “25 year shelf life,” make sure you actually understand what is in your food and what it takes to make it shelf stable for a long term period.

 

Start With The Individual Ingredients

Food storage meals are only as good as the ingredients that are in them.  With ready-made meals, this can be even more integral, because all the food inside is only as good as its weakest link. Read through your labels, do you see things like hydrogenated oil, do you see soy or soybean oil? How about things like Monosodium glutamate? May of those ingredients, especially the oils, only have a shelf life for 1-2 years. That tells us the food simply cannot be good for 25 years no matter what the slogan is. Make sure when you are looking for food storage realize that many companies are not offering the product they are marketing. Read your labels to make sure you avoid the problem early!

We all know that freeze dried or dehydrated food increases its shelf life, but did you know that it actually comes down to the percentage of water content in your food? The FDA requires content of at least 7%, but to ensure that your food wont need extra preservatives or oils to make it last look for food under 5%. Most companies will skip this step but again ask questions and read labels.

By staying as natural as possible in a process, food will stay just as fresh and stable as food that has been preserved and processed! This means that a single serving meal will actually meet all the caloric, vitamin, and mineral requirements that you need in order to stay healthy in case of an emergency.

 

Finishing Touches

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Of course, the combination of ingredients and their sourcing is only the start of the process.  How our food is packaged makes sure that the quality remains intact. One of the most important elements is how companies remove oxygen from the packaging. Look for companies that go the extra step with nitrogen flushing instead of the oxygen removing packets. This will again ensure that the food you have will be there for you when you need it.

As goods are parceled out into rations, make sure to use industrial grade Mylar bags which are vacuum sealed and approved to have the highest resistance to permeability.  Before these bags are sealed, use a final nitrogen flush, to make sure that any hidden moisture is removed, and that the nutrients are sealed in to your food.  By taking all of these steps, you will know that your family will have a great food source for years to come!

 

About the Author: James Tolboe is an owner at Valleyfoodstorage.com and has a passion in helping others prepare for everything life might throw at them. Visit the site today for any questions and to see if they have products to help you be ready.

 


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7 Comments

  1. Thank you Mr. Tolboe for the informative post.

    I have a large freezer dedicated to freeze dried foods, the rationale being that I’m essentially stopping the expiration date on these foods. Should we loose the power grid long term, then the food should be good for years beyond the published date of expiration.

    PR

  2. Interesting alene, didnt know that! Im currently looking for a bulk buy 5 year supply, well it will be a two person 2 year supply but hoping to get a good discount on a bulk buy and am a patient buyer, any suggestions????

  3. Doomsday-patience is a great virtue to have !!! I will recommend the places we have used that we have been pleased with. We will from now on only purchase non-gmo products for health reasons and for taste.We could not have afforded to do that for our bulk items.
    Emergency Essentials -one of the sponsors of this site -is excellent and fair with shipping.They will mail you a catalog and they are online and usually they offer monthly sales.The ONLY product we didnt like were called Pilot crackers.They also now offer smaller sizes.

    Some of the big discount stores sell this food also .I will share the only company when I think of it !!! I am sure other people on this site have their favorites also. Hoping you find what you need at a fair price. Arlene

  4. Thanks for the info 🙂 i have a 6 month supply from wise, never thought to check the gmo, i should have, ill make note of that, its a constant learning experience being a prepper, i also have a two month supply of mountain house, got to check that as well… Have six cases of MRE’s but i know that cant be healthy! Lol bought it as a mission food, hard to beat it on the go when it counts… Saves time and preperation, if you add the water carried for the freeze dried, its about the same weight, and no compasrison to how fast you can prepare it vs freeze dried. More of a emergency no other choice kind of food though…

  5. Jim,

    Welding supply stores carry nitrogen in black bottles. I purchased a small bottle of nitrogen and appropriately threaded barb adapter at the same store. By slipping a small hose on the barb, I can then direct a nitrogen purge wherever I wish. I use nitrogen in conjunction with oxygen elimination tablets with all food items and even use it in long term ammunition and electronics stored in military ammo boxes. To be sure of a good purge, I leave a small opening at the top of the container and repetitively snap a propane fire starter near the opening. When the flame extinguishes, oxygen has largely been eliminated in the container. This methodology, oxygen elimination tablets (caution do not use nitrogen and the oxygen elimination tablets with stored seeds as they need oxygen), and dessicant are great aids for preservation of all sorts of items.

    One should always be cautious when using nitrogen and never never use it in even a semi confined space. I use a confined space blower (http://www.harborfreight.com/8-inch-portable-ventilator-97762.html) to keep fresh air in the area when I’m using nitrogen and never use it when down in a hole of any kind. Nitrogen presents a serious suffocation hazard!

    PR

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