For most preppers, safety and food security is of paramount importance. Having your own food supply during an emergency or crisis situation will keep you and your family self-sufficient even during the toughest times. How do you build your own stockpile for survival?
Here are 5 things you should know about buying food to stockpile.
- What Is Your Goal?
Before buying food to stockpile, you will need to set your goal. How much stock do you intend to buy? How long do you want the supplies to last? Ideally, your food and water supply should sustain you for at least 72 hours but for peace of mind during an emergency, go beyond the bare minimum.
Start by writing a list of foodstuff that can sustain you and your family for three days. Once you have achieved that goal, keep building until you have enough supplies to last a few months.
- Decide On A Stockpile Budget
When buying food to stockpile, it is important to have a budget from the beginning. Determine how much you can afford and how much money you can spare from your weekly shopping to buy food to stockpile.
Make your budget conservative and reasonable. Avoid getting into debt. Know when to stop. There are times when you will have to pass up a great deal to avoid wasting money. Remember to go over your budget before you start shopping. You can always take advantage of store sales and product rebate offers.
- Invest In Nutritionally Dense Foods
Sometimes, consuming food from a stockpile can get tiring and boring. This is why you will need to invest in a stock that includes nutritionally dense and tasty foods. Consider your family’s taste and make a list of ingredients they will enjoy. Some of the foods to buy include; multivitamins, dried fruits, cereal, canned meat and chicken, nuts and peanut butter.
Don’t buy food items that your family doesn’t eat. Don’t buy food that will go bad before you eat it. Check all the expiry dates and preservatives used to ensure that your food is safe for consumption for the entire period you will need it.
- Prioritize On Water
Water is life. Without it, our bodies cannot survive for more than three days. Buy enough water. You should stockpile and safely store at least two weeks supply of water for every individual in your house.
Commercially bottled water is the best choice since it is safe and does not require sanitizing or disinfecting any further. However, it is advisable to consume or replace the water every six months.
- Prepare Space For Your Stockpile
Stockpiling on food and water will take up a lot of space in your pantry. Before you head out shopping, ensure that you clean and prepare the space. If you intend to store the food in the basement, ensure that your basement is cool and dry.
Remember, seepage, mice or mold can make your entire stock of food unsafe. You can invest in additional storage shelving or identical boxes that take up minimum space.
Weather can change dramatically and often quite suddenly too, causing severe destruction, injuries, and even fatalities. In the last few years especially, we have been witnessing increasingly violent weather phenomena. Fortunately, today’s improved weather services are often able to warn us of impending natural disasters well before they occur. This advance warning allows people to prepare themselves and their homes so that they can come out alive and safe.
In some cases, the best means of defense is to evacuate the area. This is often done when the scale of the disaster seems too tremendous to cope with. However, at other times people may not be able to evacuate, or during lesser emergencies, they may choose to stay at home and wait it out. In the latter situation, being properly prepared is essential. This means that at least some stages of preparation should be done well in advance, even before there is any warning about a natural disaster.
A key part of disaster safety is having a sufficient amount of supplies, as well as an emergency kit. A basic version is usually built to sustain each member of the household for a minimum of three days. The purpose of this is that people can very easily be trapped within a building without any signs of help for quite some time. A disaster kit typically includes a bountiful supply of water for drinking and cleaning, along with non-perishable canned or packaged foods, a can opener, a first aid kit, flashlights and batteries, cell phones and chargers, emergency phone numbers, and a radio. Other useful items to have are prescription medications, supplies for infants and pets, cash, matches, and personal hygiene items.
By creating this kit and packing it ahead of time, emergency preparation becomes much easier and quicker when a natural disaster is announced. It is equally important to have a predetermined action plan so that each person in the house knows exactly what to do when a disaster strikes. Without a proper action plan, people often tend to first panic, and then act illogically, which may put them directly in the path of danger. Examples of emergency plans include fire drills or deciding on an emergency meeting spot. At least two people in the household should be trained in CPR and know how to deliver first aid in case of medical emergencies. Learn more about home preparedness during natural disasters with some of these helpful resources.
- A Full Guide to Flood Preparedness
- Flood Preparation and Insurance Concerns
- How to Cope During a Flood
- Recovery Steps After a Flood
- Post-Flood Food Safety and Preparation Tips
- Ways to Prevent Flood Damage Indoors
- A Series of Flood Recovery Checklists
- Safety Before, During and After a Hurricane
- Planning Before a Hurricane Strikes
- Tips for Surviving a Hurricane
- Preparing Your Home for Hurricane Season
- All About Hurricanes and Home Preparedness
- Minimizing Property Damage During Hurricanes
- Hurricane Safety Tips and Evacuation Kit Checklist
- A Guidebook on Tornado Preparedness at Home
- Tornado Preparation and Survival
- Advice on Watching and Preparing for Tornadoes
- Surviving a Tornado
- Tornado Safety Rules and Guidelines
- General Safety Precautions for Tornado Season
- Home Safety and Family Arrangements Before a Tornado
- Pre-Earthquake Safety Preparation Steps
- Precautions Before, During and After an Earthquake
- How to Manage When an Earthquake Strikes
- Key Earthquake Safety and Preparation Tips
- Earthquake Safety for Homeowners
- Safety Procedures for Earthquakes
- A Video on Earthquake Preparation and Survival
- Extreme Heat Preparation and Coping Techniques
- Safety Rules for Surviving a Heat Wave
- Best Ways to Endure a Heat Wave
- Avoiding Heat Illness During Extreme Hot Weather
- Ways to Prepare for a Heat Wave
- What to Do Before and During Heat Emergencies
- Information for Parents on Eliminating Home Fire Hazards
- A Video on Home Fire Safety
- Assessing Wildfire Property Damage and More
- How to Protect Your Home from Wildfires
- Landscaping as a Home Protection Method from Wildfires
- Safety Advice for Severe Thunderstorms
- Severe Thunderstorm Emergency Tips and Procedures
- Ways to Prepare for a Severe Thunderstorm
- A Thunderstorm Safety and Preparation Checklist
- Food Safety During Severe Storms
Winter Storms & Blizzards
- Preparedness for Winter Storms, Power Failure, and Evacuation
- Home and Food Safety During a Winter Storm
- Dealing with Power Outages in Winter Storms
- How to Get Ready for Winter Storms
- Winter Storm Preparedness and Supply Checklist
- Using a Generator Indoors During Winter Storms
- Tips for Coping with Frozen Indoor Pipes
General Disaster Preparedness
- Dangerous Weather Survival Kit for Kids
- FEMA Disaster Preparedness Resources
- Earthquake Safety Lessons and Activities for Students
- How to Build a 72 Hour Emergency Survival Kit
- Be a Sun Safe Kid
- Fire Safety Games and Activities for Kids
- Emergency and Natural Disaster Organizations
- Emergency Preparedness Guide for Landlords
- Survival List – For Disaster and Emergency Preparedness
Seven Primitive Survival Shelters That Could Save Your Life
In its simplest form, a shelter is nothing more than a shell that traps a pocket of dead air warmed solely by body heat. In tree belts, such shelters are constructed of decomposing leaf litter and other organic debris; in barren, polar regions, they are made of snow. Knowing how to build even the simplest shelter could save your life in an emergency.
This forerunner of the tepee remains the quintessential primitive shelter -“sturdy enough to blunt prevailing winds, weatherproof, quickly built for nomadic hunters, but comfortable enough to serve as a long-term home. It can be partially enclosed or fully enclosed and vented to permit an inside fire.
Step One Tilt three poles together in tripod form and bind them together near the top. If you can find one or more poles with a Y at one end, tilt the others against the crotch, eliminating the need for cordage.
Step Two Tilt other poles against the wedges formed by the tripod in a circular form and thatch, leaving a front opening and a vent at the top for smoke.
A complex version of the wickiup, this is built with long, limber poles bent into a dome-shaped framework to maximize interior space.
Step One Inscribe a circle and dig holes at 2-foot intervals to accommodate the framing poles.
Step Two Drive the butt ends of the poles into the holes and bend the smaller ends over the top. Lash or weave the tops together, forming a dome-shaped framework.
Step Three Lace thin green poles horizontally around the framework for rigidity.
Step Four Thatch the framework, leaving entrance and vent holes.
Salish Subterranean Shelter
Used by Pacific tribes from Alaska to present-day California, pit shelters are impractical unless you have a digging implement, but they offer better protection from extreme heat and cold than above ground shelters.
Step One Dig a pit the circumference of the intended shelter to a depth of 3 feet.
Step Two Build a supporting tripod of poles, strengthening the framework with horizontally laced limbs.
Step Three Thatch the shelter, leaving a hole at the center to serve as both a laddered entrance and a smoke vent. Use earth removed from the pit to sod and insulate the shelter walls.
The pitched roof of the A-frame bough shelter offers more protection against the wind than a lean-to and can still be heated by fire at the entrance. One drawback is that the occupant can’t lie down parallel to the fire for even warmth.
Step One Lift one end of a log and either lash it or wedge it into the crotch of a tree. Tilt poles on either side to form an A-frame roof.
Step Two Strengthen and thatch the roof as you would a bough lean-to.
Pole and Bough Lean-to
One of the most ancient shelters, the single wall of a lean-to serves triple duty as windbreak, fire reflector, and overhead shelter.
Step One Wedge a ridgepole into the crotches of closely growing trees (one end can rest on the ground if necessary), or support each end of the ridgepole with a tripod of upright poles lashed together near the top.
Step Two Tilt poles against the ridgepole to make a framework. To strengthen this, lace limber boughs through the poles at right angles.
Step Three Thatch the lean-to with slabs of bark or leafy or pine-needle branches, weaving them into the framework. Chink with sod, moss, or snow to further insulate.
Properly constructed, this poor man’s igloo can be body-heated to above freezing on a 20-below day, higher if you light a candle.
Step One Build up snow to a depth of at least 8 inches and pack it down to make a floor.
Step Two Heap loose snow onto the floor. Piling the snow over a backpack or mound of branches will let you create a hollow, which hastens the excavation process, but it isn’t necessary. Let the snow consolidate for an hour or more, until it is set up hard enough to form snowballs.
Step Three Tunnel through the mound at opposite ends to dig out the center efficiently, fill in the unused entrance, and crawl inside to shape the interior. Ideally, the quintze should be narrow at the foot end, with a bed long enough to lie down on, and just tall enough at the head end for you to sit up. The walls and roof need to be at least a foot thick (check this with a stick).
Step Four Poke out an air vent overhead and dig a well at the entrance for the cold air to settle into. Cut a snow block for a door. Glaze interior walls with a candle to prevent dripping.
Heap up a big mound of duff and detritus from the forest floor, then excavate a pocket that is large enough to crawl into. After getting inside, partially block the doorway to minimize air circulation. If it isn’t cramped and dirty, you’ve made the air space too big for your body to heat it sufficiently.
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