First of all I'm not a survival expert, and don't pretend to be one. I only want to share what I have found out so you can get to self sufficiency faster and avoid the long lines, or worst yet, empty selves at your favorite grocery stores.
Here are the sections I plan to cover:
- Medical supplies
Food | #10 cans | MRE | Pails | Pouches | Retail packaging
Types of Packaging
|#10 Cans||#10 cans are about the size of a 1 gallon paint can (3.8liters), and have been sealed with nitrogen or air absorbing packets. They can have a shelf life of 30 years or more. Once opened they need to be covered, stored in a dry, dark space and used within several months.|
|MREs||MRE (Meals Ready to Eat) are not freeze dried or dehydrated, so they don't require water to rehydrate. They will last 5-10 years, or longer, if stored correctly.|
|Pails||5-6 gallon pails (23 liters) that are usually cheaper than #10 cans, but are not as air tight and are used for beams, grains and rice.|
|Pouches||Pouches have a shorter life span than #10 cans, 7 years.|
|Retail store||I plan to use this method to start out with, concentrating on bulk dry goods, replacing them as I rotate them out for everyday use. Can't think of them in terms of years and decades|
Note: I plan to start by buying bulk dry goods, i.e. beans, rice, flour, powder milk, sugar, honey, etc. Replacing them as I rotate them out for everyday use. Then I'm going to get #10 cans which I will probably use and replace every 2-4 years.
|Mountain House||Mountain House is probably the best know and most widely distributed. You can find references on a lot of survivalist web sites. They have been in business for over 35 years.|
|Thrive||Thrive is a brand name sold by Shelf Reliance. The advantage I found is they are sold through Costco and the prices are very reasonable.|
Note: I have included a spreadsheet that you can use to look at the different suppliers, their foods, and the cost-per-serving. The spreadsheet is divided into 5 sheets, the first includes all the info, and the next 4 are the different suppliers separated out. Since it is a spreadsheet you can add and delete data (columns and rows) and you can sort the data by different criteria.
So what am I going to do? I found out that Costco sells Thrive (ShelfReliance.com) on their web site at pretty good prices, and the prices include shipping. You can buy sample packages with 6 #10 cans, or you can buy 1 year supply for 1 to 4 people. I definitely can't afford the 1 year 4 person package which runs $3,499.99. The 1 year 1 person package is more in my league at $999.00. However, I did added up most of the samplers that give you about 1/2 of the quantity of the 1year 1 person package and it adds up to $680.00.
I'm leaning towards the 1 year 1 person package, add in a couple of 50lb bags of rice, beans, oats, wheat and figure that it will take care of my family of 4 for at least 3-4 of the months. Hopefully this will give me enough time to figure on what I'm going to do next!
Water - Filtration | Purification
I ran across a great site http://www.provident-living-today.com. They suggest having 5 different methods for making sure you have enough clean drinking water. The first method is the primary method and relies on a ceramic filter. They have a good video on how to build the filter here.
With some additional research I found a site that sells an 8 gallon dispenser with the same ceramic filter. The web site http://www.zenwateronline.com isn't to impressive, but the price is right. I also noticed that they have a site on Amazon . I got the unit within 4-5 days of ordering it so I am happy.
Warmth - Wood Stove | Pellet Stove |
I looked around for a wood stove and found there were a number of manufacturers, types and heating capacities.
The types of stovesMore to come...
CapacitiesMore to come...
Bottom line. I chose to buy local at Tractor Supply. They had a great price on the US Stove Co 2000 at $699.00. The reviews were not the best, but most were ok, so I chose to overlook the ash falling out the front problem.
Electricity - generator | Solar
I'm working on a budget and wanted to get the best bang for the buck. Again I found that Tractor Supply had a hidden gem. I read all the reviews and it seems the Champion Power 3500watt is a great value for $299.00.
Medical supplies -
More to come...
Supplies to always have on hand
Good flashlight, extra batteries, good knife possibly a gun, tazer, or bow and arrows, ...