You could be making serious food storage mistakes right now. And you may not even know it.
It’s very possible that you have too much of one food item and not enough of another in your stockpile.
Variety is very important, both for nutrition value and psychologically, especially if an emergency were to go on for days, weeks and even months.
The types of containers you use and where you keep them are also among the many crucial factors in food storage.
Here are my top 10 food storage mistakes. Please check to ensure that you are not making any of them.
- Ignoring the importance of nutrition in the foods that are stored. This happens more often than one might think. Sometimes people are so concerned about the volume of food they store that they forget about vitamin and mineral content.
- Using sacks or other containers that are not airtight. This is wrong for a variety of reasons. Air and moisture will greatly decrease the shelf life of stored food. In addition, containers that are not airtight increase the odds of insects or a critter getting into the food.
- Failing to keep food containers in a cool, dry place. Heat and moisture are two of the chief enemies of stored food.
- Failing to keep food containers out of the light. It’s best to go to the dark side when it comes to storing food. Light can deplete the vitamin content of food.
- Storing too many items that need refrigeration. It’s very likely that a crisis will include the loss of power, which could mean that refrigerated items will spoil quickly.
- Failing to include enough of a variety of different foods. After a couple of days of eating the exact same thing, people want some variety.
- Failing to maintain a good balance in the foods that are stored. Make sure that the various food items provide a variety of different vitamins and minerals.
- Failing to include at least a small percentage of “comfort” foods. In addition to satisfying a sweet tooth, comfort foods will be a big help psychologically for individuals and families in a crisis.
- Failing to check expiration dates and rotate stored foods. In each container, organize food by expiration date. When an item’s expiration date is approaching, eat that food – or donate it to a shelter – and replace it with newer food.
- Storing all of the food in only one location. This is the classic case of putting all of one’s eggs in one basket. If a home is destroyed in a disaster, residents will be glad that they kept food and water at a secondary location.
If you’re not making any of those 10 food storage mistakes, pat yourself on the back. Your food stockpile is probably in good shape. If you’re making all 10 of them, well, I hope you’ve been practicing the discipline of fasting.
But chances are, there could be two or three of these mistakes you might be making. Get those cleared up and you’re good to go.