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So you've decided to begin building up your long term food storage? Bravo! You probably have some questions like, how much food do I need? How much should I spend? What types of food should I get? All these questions and more are answered here in The Daily Prep's Long Term Food Storage Guide!

Yes

No

Do you know how much food storage you will need?

Do you know how
much food storage
you will need?

No
Do you know how much it is going to cost?

Do you know how
much it is going
to cost?

No
Have you maximized the space in your house for food storage?

Have you maximized the
space in your house for
food storage?

No
Do you know which foods you should store?

Do you know
which foods you
should store?

No
Does your food storage incorporate a balanced diet?

Does your food
storage incorporate a
balanced diet?

No
Do you know the pros and cons of storing different food types?

Do you know the pros and
cons of storing different
food types?

No
Do you know which foods go bad the soonest?

Do you know
which foods go
bad the soonest?

No
Do you have a plan to build up to a year of food storage?

Do you have a plan to
build up to a year of
food storage?

No
Do you know how to incorporate food storage into your shopping trips?

Do you know how to
incorporate food storage
into your shopping trips?

No
Do you use coupons to maximize your food storage ROI?

Do you use coupons
to maximize your
food storage ROI?

No
Do you have a system for dating, rotation, and organization?

Do you have a system
for dating, rotation,
and organization?

No
Do you know how to cook with your food storage?

Do you know how
to cook with your
food storage?

No
Do you know how to cook without traditional power?

Do you know how to
cook without
traditional power?

No
Are you being smart about when to eat your food storage?

Are you being smart
about when to eat
your food storage?

No
Do you know how to preserve food on your own?

Do you know
how to preserve food
on your own?

No

Think you’re all done with
food storage?

Impossible!

Rotate and keep improving
your food storage systems!

Check out these other calculators, worksheets, and mobile apps:

Preparing Your Long Term Food Storage

Establishing your long term food storage is incredibly rewarding, but can be a little overwhelming sometimes too. With every aspect of food storage, there are a million different opinions, and different ways of doing things. Essentially however, there are 3 major components to your emergency food supply: Planning, Building and Using.

Food Storage Nuts

How to Plan Out Your Emergency Food Storage

Planning out your emergency food need not be an overly complicated process. The simplest way to do it is to make a giant shopping list, and then do a little multiplication. If the food from a typical shopping trip typically lasts you 2 weeks, than doubling it should put you at roughly a month, quadrupling at 2 months, etc.

Obviously, you’ll have to take into consideration that you won’t likely have the same produce and perishables that you do now. Planning your food storage in this way, ensures that you won’t be tossing the dice on purchasing food that you might not like or know how to cook with. Everything that you buy will be items that you purchase normally.

Another major part of planning out your storage is to figure out where you can realistically store your food. In a large part, this will determine how much food you can actually store. The good news is, that if you’re willing to be a little creative, there are a lot of ways that you can increase the space you have available to you.

The final piece of the “planning” puzzle is to incorporate your emergency food into your budget. There are several ways to do this, but most preppers agree that setting aside some kind of regularly-occurring budget for food storage makes if feel less like that money is being taken from somewhere else, every time they go to purchase long term food.

Building Out Your Emergency Food Supply

With your food storage plan squarely in place, it’s time to start pulling some triggers! As you begin to acquire the items on your list, you may notice that stores are offering discounts or bulk deals on selected brands and quantities.

This is exactly why many preppers try to incorporate some version of couponing into their shopping trips. It makes sense that if your ultimate plan is to have 10 cases of beans, you might as well get them while they’re on sale. A quick Google search will reveal that there are some great tools and helps available for those wanting to dip a toe into the world of couponing.

When you return from the store after your food storage shopping trips, it’s a good idea to take a few minutes and date your food with a black permanent marker before putting it way. This will ensure that you keep track of which foods should be eaten first.

Breakfast

Using Your Food Storage

As weird as it may seem, USING your food storage may actually be the most neglected and forgotten piece of the equation. It’s important to remember however, that once you have several months of food storage built up, you have made a significant financial investment that you’ll want to protect.

If you have followed our advice, and purchased foods that would be on your normal shopping list, you shouldn’t have any trouble knowing how to cook with them. But to simulate an emergency, it’s a good idea to learn how to prepare foods without traditional power, or in some cases, even raw.

When cooking up your food storage, always use the oldest food you have first, so that the remaining food always has as much shelf life as possible. If you’ve dated your food when you purchased it, and/or organized it on the shelves with the newest food in the back, this should be a cinch!

Above all, be realistic about how you approach your long term food storage. If you go overboard or try to initiate a bunch of drastic and uncomfortable changes all at once, the odds are you won’t stick with it. Pace yourself and have some fun with it!