Article By: ‘Above Average’ Joe
MRE’s, freeze dried & dehydrated food can last for up to 25 years. There are also many foods that will last for years when stored properly (wheat, beans, pasta, etc.), but this all hinges on the items being kept at “optimum storage conditions.” Most of these items will only have an actual shelf life of about 5-7 years.
If you’re new to food storage, these staples are a great way to start. They are the longest lasting foods in the world. Most of them are relatively cheap & make great bartering items during a crisis. These items are often referred to as “forever foods.” These foods are some of the very few exceptions to the FIFO (1st in 1st out) method of food storage. They are also some of the most relatively inexpensive items you can buy.
Corn Starch: As long as it’s kept dry, corn starch can last indefinitely, so stock up. It’s not only great for cooking, but can also has many medicinal uses such as soothing sunburns & diaper rashes. Be sure to reseal it after each use to keep it from getting contaminated w/moisture.
Corn Syrup: The most common substitute for sugar in America. Corn syrup can be used in place of sugar in just about any recipe. Just be sure to reseal it after each use & keep it in a cool, dry area.
Honey: Honey has been discovered, still edible, in the tombs inside ancient Egyptian pyramids! It crystallizes over time & this is when people typically toss it in the garbage, but all you have to do is warm it & stir it for a bit to get it back to the right consistency.
Sugar: Brown, white & powdered sugar all last indefinitely. While sugar hardens over time, but you can break up the chunks by warming it up & stirring it, just like w/honey. The only way it can go bad is if it becomes infested w/pests.
Vanilla Extract: Not only does it last forever, but as pure vanilla extract is a form of liqueur it actually improves w/time. It’s more expensive than imitation vanilla, but go ahead & spring for it. You will be happy you did after a crisis. Just be sure to reseal it when you’re done.
Salt: It’s a mineral & as such it will never go bad. Regardless of whether it’s sea salt or ordinary table salt it will never go bad. The only salt that can go bad is seasoning salt that has a shelf life of around a year. After a crisis, being able to add a pinch of salt to your meals both helps w/adding flavor to an otherwise bland food as well as adding much needed sodium (an electrolyte that you absolutely need) back into your diet.
Soy Sauce: As long as it’s never opened, soy sauce also lasts indefinitely due to the high salt content.
Hard Liquor: Distilled liquor never goes bad, even after it’s been opened. It has many more uses other than just a temporary escape from reality. It’s important as an antiseptic for disinfecting wounds & it works as a painkiller. For wounds you want to make sure that it is low sugar liquor such as vodka. It can also be used as a fire starter as anything over 40 proof will take a spark easily. Liquor can also be a major bartering chip. Many people after a crisis will be looking for something to relax with.
White Rice: Every type of rice except for brown rice will keep forever if you store it properly. Brown rice has a lot of oil so it becomes rancid after only a few months.
White Vinegar: distilled. Like some other items on this list, in addition to cooking white vinegar can be used for cleaning, polishing, deodorizing & pest control. Just store it in a cool dark spot when it’s not in use
Think about how many of these items you have thrown away, how much money you have wasted tossing out supposedly “bad” pantry items.
All of these items are a must have for both their longevity as well as their bartering value after a crisis. You need to store as many of them as you possibly can before anything happens…BUT, even having all of the above items will not save you (or keep your ass out of the fire!).
The only problem w/this is there is ABSOLUTELY no way to live off of these items alone. Your body needs the nutrients from fresh foods in order to maintain its optimum efficiency & anything less than peak performance will put you 1 step closer to a death sentence.
If you are in a relatively safe area, have shelter taken care of & water is available, the next step that you need to focus on is preparing & storing any perishable foods that you have available. You absolutely have to have a good knowledge base of how to not only preserve the foods that you have currently but how to cook & store foods that you will have to hunt, catch, or grow in any long term crisis. Click here to learn the skills you need to cook & store food outside: http://survivallife.com/csf-editorial.
When I 1st started to prepare, I had a very basic idea of how to do these things but it quickly became apparent that a “basic idea” is not enough & can be deadly when it comes to food safety. Think hard. How sure are you in your ability to store your own food? & if you think that the stockpile of MRE’s & freeze dried food you have is enough to get you through any type of crisis, think again.
Rations are heavy & take up a huge amount of room. They can also be plagued by pests if you happen to have mice or rats that can chew through the Mylar. If your home or storage location becomes insecure your 25 year food storage system instantly becomes your, “however the hell much I can carry right now” food storage system. Are you still completely sure of your planning?
No matter what amount of pre-made rations that you keep, you absolutely must know how to cook & store your own food outside, w/out any modern conveniences. Failure to have this knowledge is inexcusable. If disaster were to strike RIGHT NOW, you would not have the time or ability to learn these skills later.
View full article at: http://survivallife.com/2012/10/18/the-10-pantry-items-worth-more-than-gold/