Everyone needs an extra supply of food in the home. Not only is food storage a good idea for general preparedness, but also for daily needs. We have avoided countless last-minute trips to the store just by keeping a supply of powdered eggs, powdered milk, baking supplies and other everyday commodities on hand. And it’s a great feeling to know that our family is protected from hunger in the event of an emergency.
To maximize the shelf life of stored food, simply follow these three rules:
- Keep it cool. (Store it away from heat sources and direct sunlight.)
- Keep it dry. (Do not set it directly on a concrete floor or touching a masonry wall. Do not store it in a damp area.)
- Keep it dark. (Keep bottles and translucent containers in cupboards or in boxes.)
Keep Pasta Fresh
Buckets of pasta will keep much longer and retain their freshness better if you toss a little coarse salt into the container before sealing. The salt will absorb moisture and keep the pasta from deteriorating.
Prevent Bottle Breakage
Attach a thin strip of wood to the front of each food storage shelf to create at least a half-inch “lip” so that bottles and other containers are less likely to fall off during an earthquake.
“Raise” Yeast Shelf Life
Keep yeast in the freezer to triple its storage life. Unopened bags of SAF yeast should be hard as bricks. If the bag becomes soft the yeast needs to be used soon.
Storing Powdered Eggs
Refrigerate powdered eggs after opening to preserve their yellow color and maintain nutritional value.
Be Careful of Brown Rice
Brown rice has a very short shelf life. Do not store more than a few months’ supply, and freeze or refrigerate it if possible. If the rice begins to smell rancid, throw it out. For long-term storage, choose white rice.
Storing in Less than Ideal Environments
In environments that are moist or warm, it is best to store grains in number 10 cans or SuperPails. SuperPails have a mylar liner and oxygen absorber packets to give extra protection against spoilage and infestation.