Thursday, March 5, 2009

Food & Water Storage

For some time now I have wanted to put together a food and water storage for my family. I’ve taken a few baby steps forward but have a long way to go. This post is probably more for me than many of you. I’ve listed the basic steps to start your storage for water, three-month food supply, year supply, and info on how to use your long-term storage items.


You should have at least a three-day supply of water. It is recommended to have one gallon of water per person per day. The easiest way to do this is to buy a bulk box of water in gallon containers. I bought a box of six gallons at my local grocery store for around $5. You can also fill up containers with tap water. If doing this make sure the plastic containers say “PETE” on the bottom. It is suggested you don’t use milk jugs. If your city water has already been chemically treated you don’t need to do anything to the water. If it hasn’t been treated, you can add a tsp of unscented chlorine bleach per quart of water. For more tips click here or here.

Three-month supply

Your three-month supply should consist of food items part of your normal, every day diet. I’ve been trying to buy several cans of food each week at the grocery store just for short term storage. This way it isn’t a huge investment all at once. I buy things such as green beans, corn, variety of beans such as black, pinto, & refried, canned chicken and tuna, pineapple, mandarin oranges, tomatoes, cereal, etc.

Year Supply of Food

To look at how much food and water your family will need for a year, check out this food & water calculator. Even for our little family, the amount of what we need is overwhelming.

The suggested quantities of food items to have per adult for each month are as follows:

  • 25 lbs of wheat, rice, corn, and other grains
  • 5 lbs of beans

Other good items for long-term food storage:

sugar, nonfat dry milk, salt, baking soda, cooking oil, and bottled fruits and vegetables

Many churches have dry pack canners available for use that you can dry pack your long-term storage items so they will last up to 30 years. If you don’t have access to a dry pack canner you can buy your food items from any of the following sites:

LDS Catalog

Your Food Storage

Shelf Reliance

Emergency Essentials

Food storage recipes

It is important to get your family used to eating the items in your food storage. The best way to do that is to actually use the food you buy. I found this great site called Every Day Food Storage that has lots of recipes that use your food storage.

Additional sites for more detailed information on food storage preparation:,11677,1706-1,00.html


  1. Hey Erika, how long does water last? How often do you need to rotate?

  2. Replace every six months if filling your own bottles and if you buy commercial water use by the suggested date on the bottle.

    It is also good to have water on hand for hand washing, cleaning and other purposes. You don't have to rotate that as long as it is labeled and you know it is not for drinking.