What are your thoughts about premade long term food kits?

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Niick

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I've heard of companies that sell premade emergency food kits like "wise company" and "the ready store". It got me wondering whether or not it would be cheaper to go that route or do it all yourself. Anybody know? For one, I'm guessing they probably use food that will last like 25 years. And two, the meals would probably taste better. And they're probably healthier too. But, how does the price compare to doing it yourself?

Is it worth going the premade food kit route? If so, any recommended companies?
 

jontte

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why not have some,but you'd better have a plan to grow and hunt your own fresh food, if you rely only on those,once it's gone what do you eat then??
seeds don't take up much space and if you have your own produce you know what you get and we have here canning godesses and propably a few gods, they'll help you to get started :)
 

jimLE

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i believe that premade long term food kits is a great idea..(BUT) i rather go about it by the way of home canning,and other ways,compared to wise company..and the others for 3 reasons.1st is im not sure about the taste/flavor.2nd is it can be hard on a persons body when they have a sudden change in diet/eating habit..3rd is the cost.i can take what a 6 month supply would cost me.where i not only can buy short/long term foods thats needed at time.but other items as well..if i got into canning like i need to.and did it right.what i can will last longer than 25 years..
 

Danil54grl

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There are a lot of people who buy into those pre-made meals and love them. It is probably wise to get a few to have on hand for a real emergency case. For me, I do not plan on bugging out so I tend to can most of my overages from the garden and also dehydrate my own. When you dry them at home, you can always throw 'meals' together and vacuum seal it. These will last for a couple years. From what I have seen, it is cheaper in the long run to do your own, but they will not last 25 years. Beside, you know exactly what is in it. Some things will hold better for years than others though. Corn, celery, onions, potatos, green peppers, chili peppers, mushrooms & spinach does just fine, carrots and tomatoes not so well after 5 plus years in storage. This is a good link for homemade meals http://www.backpackingchef.com/
 

jontte

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to be honest,I'm not quite sure if I would wanna eat something that's 25 yrs old..still more or less a total newbie about canning,but experimenting alot with my dehydrator..some are great some not and boy am I glad to have a root cellar in this apt.building
 

Brent S

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I've heard of companies that sell premade emergency food kits like "wise company" and "the ready store". It got me wondering whether or not it would be cheaper to go that route or do it all yourself. Anybody know? For one, I'm guessing they probably use food that will last like 25 years. And two, the meals would probably taste better. And they're probably healthier too. But, how does the price compare to doing it yourself?

Is it worth going the premade food kit route? If so, any recommended companies?
I agree with danilgrl that some on hand is good for emergency, but for me sustainability is much more important. I have learned too that most companies care more about making their products taste good over them being good for your health. I can only safely can goods for approx five yrs., but hope to replenish them each year and never having to rely on just them. I have about twenty five chickens, and got 9 eggs yesterday. I also have one male and three female rabbits that give fresh meat, averaging 8 babies at a time every few weeks. I also have fruit trees, two gardens, berries and grapes. I dug out a pond to raise brim, probably starting this spring. The point here is I'm trying to have multiple sources of food. One or the rules for prepping is redundancy, I look at food production the same way. For example, this year I only got a few dozen apples, nature has it's ups and downs and sometimes a crop just dosent produce. By trying to have multiple things going on you increase your odds of not getting really skinny! Another plus, on the years you do really well, you can share with friends and neighbors.
 

psalm 7

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Stock stuff you currently use and rotate it as you use it , Have a stock pile of dry goods like bags of beans /rice and such for long term store and forget until needed , have Wise and other buckets of survival food for long term storage I keep MRE's and packaged cured foods like country ham and jerkey with these . But to me what is important is to be able to grow and replace food like the pioneers did .
 

Niick

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Yeah, I agree - as some of you mentioned sustainability/growing your own food is important too. I just want to get a years supply of food first, for peace of mind, before learning how to produce my own food. Although I have learned some about planting, sprouting, and foraging already, I do need to get some more real world experience.

I think what I'll do right now is get a six month supply premade food kit since they do last about 25 years. Then learn how to store my own food long term - for another six month supply. Then after I have a full years supply I can learn more about the sustainability stuff.

jimLE made some good points about the premade food kits. Don't know what they taste like, and a change of diet could be hard on a person's body. That's why I think I'll get a six month supply instead of a year supply and learn how to store my own food long term as well.

I think a couple of you said it would be less expensive to store your own food. I have no idea if that is true or not, probably would depend on what food you are storing and how you are storing it. Would need to buy storage supplies too. It is definitely a lot more work that way though.

I have thought about buying a few extra groceries every time I grocery shop, and rotating my foods like psalm 7 mentioned. I will do that as well.

But, as far as the premade food kits go, any opinions about which is the best company for that?
 

psalm 7

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I also can vegetables from my garden and dry fruit the old way on sheets ot tin in the summertime . I am going to string beans and peppers next year and make more jelly and fruit presearves . I,m looking at several other food preaserving methods that I have been told about but not seen will mention them when I try them out .
 

Gazrok

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Dehydrated foods (for me) have two main uses.

1) For Go Bags, they are light, easily prepared, and keep for a long time without rotation. All things I want for meals in this role.

2) For grocery items that are harder to come by, and in non-powder form, expire quick. Powdered milk, cheese, eggs, butter, etc. are all good to have this way. Same with dry mixes, sauce mixes, etc.

Otherwise, MUCH cheaper to do home canning, home dehydration for stockpiling foods. Also, store bought cans last anywhere from 2-5 years, depending on contents, so as long as these are rotated, a much cheaper home option than buying VERY expensive prepared long term meals.

Canned meats are typically 2 years, so will have to rotate them more. Typically, not going to do a lot of this, because I like fresh meat, not canned. However, canned tuna, canned chicken, and canned stew are things I uses.

Likewise, you can store dried beans, rice, mashed potato flakes, cereals, dry pasta, etc. properly to last for 15 years. (and again, could rotate).

Finally, doing the above allows for diversity in your meal choice, and the ability to take advantage of local game. For example, pre SHTF, probably not going to have a soup made from pigeon. But, post SHTF, I'm betting a bowl of pigeon soup with some home-canned veggies, stored noodles, and seasonings would really hit the spot.
 

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I do plenty of shopping at Gettington, and about a month ago I saw they had the buckets from Mountain house and a few other places so I looked at what was in them looked at the prices and said crap I can do it myself cheaper then that. For their 5 day emergency bucket it was over $80 well I can make the same bucket for less then $20 and that includes the bucket from home depot and cover. Look into it some of you may find it better to do it yourself, and save money. I guess I just enjoy saving money, however when you live on a budget it is always best to do what you can to save the extra cash.

The good thing about doing it yourself is that you can add what you would normally eat where the emergency buckets from Mountain house and other places may have stuff you would never add in there because you don't like it. One thing that I always do in my own buckets is add a few pieces of hard candy. The kids always need something to keep them happy and adding in those few pieces of candy can go a long ways. Granola bars, and fruit rolls also are added into all of my buckets. The fruit rolls will give you vitamin C something that all of the mountain house and other buckets are missing.
 

Gazrok

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Tang style mix is good for Vitamin C.
 

jimLE

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i've bought the tang in the plastic container.and i saved one container for keeping grease in..and it comes in handy for keeping door hinges greased where they don't squeak..
 

Jay Helton

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Does anyone have a list or link for shelf life of stored goods, especially store bought? Just getting started for about a year now and want to make sure we have rotations correct.
 

Danil54grl

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Does anyone have a list or link for shelf life of stored goods, especially store bought? Just getting started for about a year now and want to make sure we have rotations correct.
All grocery foods have an expiration date on them. I would rotate by that but keep in mind that they do and will last longer than the date. . .
 

Gazrok

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Most canned goods are dated for 2 years. However, they will typically be fine (safe) for 5. Though, different foods may taste differently past about 3 years.

Dry pasta, beans, corn, mashed potato flakes, cereal, etc. will typically last for up to 15 years, as long as they are stored correctly (mylar bags, O2 absorbers, food grade bucket), etc.
 

DrHenley

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The oil in beans will start to turn rancid after a while, but they are still edible, just not as tasty. O2 scrubbers will help prevent rancidity. I store my beans in the deep freeze.
 

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i believe in a system of multiple fall backs.

surviving purely on long term foods is bad.

I have Mountain House sufficient for about 6 days. Canned food for about 2 weeks. I've made plans and stocked up on seeds and known where to fish nearby.

So its not just a singular approach, but multi level and multi contingency.
 

hlrive

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Yeah I have a place down the road where we can go fishing. I even bought us some hooks, and line and put it all away just in case. You never know what could happen. However as long as it takes for the garden to grow, and depending on what time of the year something may happen I try and keep 6 months of food put away.
 

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