Most people have some version of a pantry in their home. It may be a simple cupboard or a couple of shelves that store some dry goods and maybe a few canned items. It may be an elaborate space fully stocked with every preserved and dried item imaginable. Whatever form it takes, its purpose is food storage. The importance of storable foods increases when there is a potential for disaster or disruption. Depending on where you live, you may have to weather the effects of a debilitating hurricane or tornado that cuts off power for days on end. Or perhaps a hazardous substance leaks or spills and contaminates your immediate environment. Situations such as these make having a stock of storable foods ready to go a smart strategy for your family.
Natural and Man-Made Disasters
It seems that there is always somewhere on the planet that is suffering from a lack of resources on the heels of a natural disaster. Floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, winter storms, earthquakes, mudslides, tsunamis, and fires can all wipe out electricity and other utilities, at least temporarily. A toxic spill or leak may also keep you from being able to get food staples when you want them. It is recommended to stock up on enough storable food for three days in the event of an emergency. Food storage should include non-perishable items and plenty of water, or water filtration supplies. When in doubt, refer to this emergency checklist to get a better idea of what types of foods to store.
As the past decade has demonstrated for many, times can get pretty tough pretty quick. Storable foods like freeze dried meats and vegetables may be shelf stable for decades. Putting away a supply of nutritious food may come in handy when things get lean. Food storage can serve as a bit of a safety net. Your family need never go without a healthy, well-prepared meal when there is a supply of good stuff such as dried fruits, whole grains, and legumes laid in.
Control Over Your Family’s Health
Using food storage to keep items in bulk such as winter wheat, quinoa, and legumes means you can exercise greater control over what you and your family eat. Legumes, for example, are high in protein and fiber and low in calories and fat. There are a variety of gluten-free flours available that make it possible to bake for someone with celiac. Scratch cooking with the help of a full pantry ensures that the food you make is tailored to the nutritional needs of your loved ones. Plus, you can enhance your own health by doing things like sprouting your own seeds. You get the powerhouse nutritive value of sprouts along with the security of knowing how they were grown.
Sometimes it is the little things, like being in the middle of making dinner and not having any of some important ingredient. A good supply of storable foods comes in handy whether you need one thing, or whether you need to pull together an entire meal on the spot. There comes a day when you are so busy the grocery store might as well have been on the moon. Perhaps you need to bring something to a potluck at the last minute. A well-stocked larder may just save the day.