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  • Freeze-Dried Food as a Mainstream Meal Option

    Last week stank. One daughter had her tonsils removed Monday. All of the rest of my family – including me – were suffering through nasty colds. And my husband’s been out of town. I could barely leave the house.

    To feed my family, I relied on food storage, especially products like freeze-dried beef stew and freeze-dried vegetables that were fast and easy to cook.

    This TV news story, from a Houston ABC affiliate, said freeze-dried food isn’t just for natural disasters or astronauts anymore.  It’s also showing up in everyday cooking, as people discover that freeze-dried foods are convenient and save money.

    Preparing a freeze-dried meal takes less time than going out to a restaurant or ordering something in. It also costs less than a restaurant meal – even a fast-food one.

    beef-stroganoff Mainstream Beef Stroganoff

    It’s fast. Add boiling water to a freeze-dried meal pouch, stir a couple of times, and 10 minutes later, dinner’s ready. As more people have discovered freeze-dried foods, the variety of food available has increased too.

    "Basically, anything that you would normally cook can be freeze dried," Alissa Rumsey, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, told ABC 13.

    Or, if you’re Misty Marsh from the ABC 13 news story, combine ingredients from separate cans of freeze-dried meat and vegetables to make a quick soup.

    Freeze-dried ingredients are already washed and cut, so you don’t have to do it yourself. I’ve tossed reconstituted freeze-dried hash browns into a recipe that called for potatoes. I’ve done the same for freeze-dried corn.

    Like other prepared foods, freeze-dried food is more expensive than canned or fresh food. However, it can still reduce your food budget, not just your dining-out budget.

    American families throw away about a quarter of the food and drinks they buy, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council. That costs a family of four an estimated $1,365 to $2,275 annually.

    The NRDC attributes much of this loss to factors like poor planning, spoiling and waste from past sell-buy dates.

    Freeze-dried food can help with all these issues.

    chicken-teriyaki Mainstream Chicken Teriyaki

    You should be rotating food storage anyway. So, plan meals using food storage items, then replace them as they get used up. This will help reduce the hit to the wallet from food waste. It will also allow you to spread out food storage shopping throughout the year, so you can buy items when they’re on sale, instead of when you run out.

    Have you ever lost a zucchini or bunch of spinach in the refrigerator? And discovered it three weeks later, a soggy, mildewed blob?

    Freeze-dried vegetables and fruit last longer, so they’re less likely to spoil than fresh ones. If you’re keeping more of the food you buy, because it doesn’t spoil, you’re saving money.

    Freeze-dried food has a much longer shelf life than canned or frozen food – 25 years and more, if left unopened. I recently cleaned out my food storage and removed some really out-of-date cans. (2013, anyone?) What a waste of food and money. I could have bought freeze-dried food that would still be good.

    Freeze-dried foods take some practice. The first time I tried tossing reconstituted freeze-dried hash browns into a casserole, they came out soggy. I learned if I fry them just a bit before I toss them in, they hold together more like fresh potatoes. Also, different brands have slightly different flavors. So experiment. In the long run, you’ll save time and money.

     

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  • People are Stockpiling Food (and Not Just Because of the Elections)

    stockpiling for elections

    During election years, it’s common for people to amp up their preparedness, and the 2016 presidential election has been no different. People from around the country began stockpiling food before Election Day even rolled around. According to NBC News, sales were up 300% for one preparedness company. This was most likely due to fears of a Clinton victory on November 8, according to the vice president at Blue Chip Group Inc.

    But a Trump win didn’t relinquish the need to prepare. On the contrary, we saw a spike in sales of year supplies the very day after the election. Combos, kits, and water storage are also selling With a new president taking office in January, the future is again uncertain. Fortunately, being prepared is a practical way to counter those feelings of uncertainty.

    Many people saw the ugly politicking of the 2016 presidential election and decided it was about time they started building up their emergency prep. But one man from Cincinnati was well ahead of the game. Dan O’Hara has been stocking up on food, water, and gear for years, and even has an underground storage room where he keeps it all. He has freeze-dried food, garden seeds, and even his own freeze dryer. The reason? To help sustain his family for an extended period of time in case of emergency.

    And a new president is only one of the many reasons to prepare.

    Natural disasters, economic crisis, job loss, civil unrest, and even injury can make it difficult to acquire the necessary food and gear to see you through the hard times. O’Hara is even prepared for a nuclear disaster. But is he just a crazy prepper?

    Prepper, yes; crazy, no.

    variety-year-supply stockpiling An example of our Variety Year Supply.

    O’Hara says he and other everyday people prepare so that when something bad does happen, they won’t have to rely on others for help. Self-sufficiency is an important aspect of preparing. With preparedness comes a sense of hope and comfort, both during times of crisis and times of calm. During an emergency, waiting for help could potentially take days or even weeks. Having the food, water, and gear necessary to get through anything – not just the apocalypse – is a big boon for anyone.

    While the recent elections have sown the seed of fear and uncertainty throughout the nation, this is the perfect time to start preparing with emergency food. If you’ve already started, then use this moment in history to build it up to last you even longer. You never know what crisis may enter your life, so the more prep you have, the better off you’ll be.

    But don’t just work on your prep because of the elections. Work on your prep because it is insurance for a safe and comfortable future, regardless of emergency that strikes the nation, your community, or even your personal life.

     

    election_buy_supply_blog1 stockpiling

  • Prepping for the Presidency: How to be Ready for What the Election Brings

    voting place election 2016

    The 2016 U.S. Presidential Election is right around the corner. We generally shy away from political posts, but this time of year (every four years, of course) is always pertinent to preppers. After all, the future of the country is being voted on. Will the majority choose the best candidate for the job? Or will the country fall apart either way? These are just a few thoughts going through the minds of many.

    Election years are notoriously uncertain, and this one seems to be especially so.

    donald trump election 2016

    Headlines from news agencies promote woe and gloom, accusing each candidate of some form of atrocity or another. Whether it’s about a “big, dirty secret” on one candidate’s tax returns, or the other candidate’s ongoing email scandal, there is certainly reason to worry for the future, no matter who you favor. These headlines aren’t exactly the most comforting thing to see, especially this close to Election Day. So what’s a person to do when, as the headlines hint, both candidates are going to usher in World War III?

    hillary clinton election 2016

    Basically, you do the same thing you’ve always done: prepare, prepare, prepare!

    But how does one prepare for a new president, you ask? Just as you would for a tornado, earthquake, economic crisis, job loss, power outage, and any other disaster.

    First, stock up on the basics.

    That includes food, water, medical supplies, and necessary gear for warmth, cooking, and other necessities. Ready.gov suggests having enough food, water, and other supplies to last you 72 hours. Having supplies for three days is a fantastic start, but some emergencies may last longer.

    Once you have the basics, start adding to it. This includes investing in outdoor gear like sleeping bags, tents, cooking stoves, and other things that will make your life easier should the need arise. This also includes stocking up with more emergency food.

    If the stock market crashes, food prices may spike, and could remain high for months or even years. Having a well-stocked supply of food is an investment that will pay off during events like this, among other crises. For long-term preparation, we recommend having a year supply of food. Whether you get it all at once or in stages is up to you. But if you’re planning for a disaster without an end in sight, a year supply is the way to go.

    No matter the election result – whether your candidate wins, your opponent comes out on top, or it’s a lose-lose and nobody is the victor in your books – you will always be on the winning side when you’re prepared.

    Now it's time for us to give our endorsement. Of course, there could only be one winner, and that winner is...

    #Preparedness2016

     

    election_buy_supply_blog1 election day

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