The Stuff of Life

The Stuff of Life
For those of us who find nature to be both aesthetically beautiful and life-sustaining.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The Shelves and Your Stomach Will Be Empty if You Fail to Prepare


How much food do you have stocked away right now? How much water or other fluids do you have on hand? How long do you think you and your family could eat and drink on what you have around right now if there was no other option available to you? We live in a society of immediate gratification. If we want something to eat, we drive to the grocery store or the convenience store or a restaurant and purchase something to eat. We have unlimited fast food at our disposal at any given time.

Due to the nature of our fast-food culture, we are no longer accustomed to planning ahead for even tomorrow night's meal let alone next week or next month. We figure it out on the fly. And, if we don't have a plan and we got out of work a little late, well, no big deal, as we swing by and grab some take-out for the family. We go to the grocery store and "if" we are disciplined, we might purchase a week's worth of meals. The problem lies in the fact that we are always banking on absolutely everything being the same tomorrow and the next day just as it is today. And, this simply isn't always going to be true. We live in a volatile world. A lot is going on all around us most of which we have zero control over. What if tomorrow you lost your job? How long would it take you to get another one? Do you have enough savings and food storage to get along until you were re-employed and earning a paycheck? What if you or a loved one is involved in an accident or develops a serious health condition? What if a storm damages your town? These are just a few of the many, many things that can and will erupt your tomorrow and make it nothing that compares to your today. Well, shouldn't you sort of be planning then? I'm glad you asked that.....the answer is YES, but you probably already guessed that.

In addition to the above reasons to plan ahead with your food and water storage, are the plethora of conditions that can impact whether or not there is food available at the grocery stores, super centers, restaurants and fast-food establishments. You may not have considered this or maybe you have but chose to not think about it, but someone has to get the food to these places. And, there are multiple parties and systems reliant upon each other in order for you to be able to fuel your tank or purchase that burger with fries or cart full of groceries.

Here are just a few things that can cause trucking issues and food or fuel supply shortages:
Natural events and mother nature such as mudslides, tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, drought, snow and ice and pests can all cause short-term or long-term delays or shortages in food or deliveries and transportation. Also, Strikes and employee issues within the trucking industry can result in trucking issues that can create delays in shipments. National or international economic issues and relations can cause inflation, fuel price increases, rations of fuel or food. Increases in fuel costs can cause a hyperinflation that creates a situation where it is just too expensive to transport food. Catastrophic events such as pandemics or an EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) can halt all incoming food shipments. In a pandemic, it would likely be too dangerous for truckers and store owners as well as employees to even show up for work. In the event of an EMP, vehicles will no longer run.

What we know from history is that most of the shelves will be empty in three days or less in the event of something catastrophic. People generally live in the here and now. So, when something bad happens, they tend toward panic. From there, they rush out and become one of the masses who are actively emptying the shelves at the stores as fast as possible. Because so many are doing this at once, the outcome is as simple as good old-fashioned supply and demand. No one prepared and something bad happened. Because something bad happened and we are not prepared, we must panic. Because we are in a state of panic, we must go buy up as much food as we can afford. Because everyone else is doing the same thing, the demand went up while the supply was only what was on the shelves and the results are that there is not enough for everyone. The moment of truth is when the shelves are empty and so is your stomach because you thought nothing bad could happen or worse yet, you thought the government would be able to save you. Admit it? You've banked on "others" a time or two in your life when maybe you shouldn't have haven't you? Do not bank on others when it comes to the core necessities of human life....food and water.

Take a look at your current food storage and analyze how long you could make it. Begin to put together a list of items that store well and that you and your family enjoy eating. Every time you purchase groceries, begin to buy one or two extra for your storage and some type of beverage. As you put the items away put the new toward the back and pull the older toward the front just like they do at the grocery store. This enables you to begin stocking up slowly always buying just a little more than what you typically use. You will meet your goal slowly, but surely and you can know that you are doing something toward the safety of your future. You will also know that you are being wise enough to know that it is unwise to assume that nothing bad will ever happen to you. Hopefully it won't, but your worst case scenario in the event that nothing bad ever happens to you is that you have a nice stocked up kitchen of food your family enjoys.

Try to meet a minimum quantity of at least enough food and water for 72 hours/3 days. Once you've met that goal, go for one week's worth. From there, aim for 2 weeks, then one month. Then, stock a month more and a month more, until you have a year's supply of food and beverage for all of your family including items from all of the food groups and multi-vitamins stocked for added nutrition.

Catastrophic events that impact larger regions and populations are not likely to have much government or agency type of assistance, so you will need to have been prepared and practicing being self-reliant. It all begins with having food and water available no matter what happens to you or your family. There are a lot of web sites on long-term food storage, but if you rotate your items and only buy what you enjoy and what you use, you won't have to worry about freeze dried or dehydrated foods if you want to keep it simple. But, if you want to look into long-term storage food items there are many tasty choices out there from all of the food groups to choose from. Good luck and don't let one day pass that you are not doing something toward your tomorrow regardless of what that tomorrow may bring.




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