With Joe Biden announcing recently that there will definitely be food shortages in the United States and people like me warning that it was coming for a while, it’s clear that the need for personal food security has never been greater in the United States. There has always been hunger and even starvation, but it appears that food shortages are going to affect the majority middle class in America as well.
When I started recording this podcast, I did so thinking I could get through the entire list of items I’d like people to stock up on immediately. Unfortunately, I barely made it through the food items before reaching my time limit, so in the beginning you’ll hear that I was going to go through the whole thing. We’ll cover the non-food items tomorrow.
Here are the nine food items you need to stock up on now before they become scarce. Prices are already going up. For transparency, some of the links below go to our sponsor, My Patriot Supply, but I assure you I did not take their products into consideration when making the list. In fact, I made the list, did the show, and then thought as I was writing this article that I should probably include links to any of the products they happen to sell that I’ve tried and that I’d honestly recommend whether they were a sponsor or not.
Beans and Rice
This is the obvious one. Well, two. I consider them to be one because the combination of amino acids found in each form complete proteins, an important necessity for survival.
Beans and rice make for the perfect survival combo for two important reasons. They give you lots of calories necessary for survival at relatively low prices; excellent bang for the buck. They also can be stored with mylar bags and oxygen absorbers for a very long period of time.
Pasta and Sauces
Pasta is easy to store long-term. Sauce is a little trickier, but since we’re talking about immediate needs, the shelf-life of 2-5 years for most sauces fits this list.
We have to consider food fatigue when getting ready for food shortages. If someone wanted to survive off beans and rice with vitamin supplements for years, they probably could, but who wants to live like that? Pasta is a great change of pace.
Canned and Otherwise Preserved Meats
I’m not a fan of canned meat. Cans of chicken or beef are often disgusting to me, with the odd exception of canned corned beef which I love. Canned fish is fine. I load my freezer with nothing but meat, but my worst nightmare for that is a grid collapse in which my backup electrical supply won’t be able to keep the freezer going.
I’m a carnivore within a family of carnivores, so having enough meat on hand is important. We’ll obviously have to make sacrifices if things keep going south, so I’ll have to bust out with the canned meat in such a circumstance. Thankfully, it’s not terribly expensive as of right now.
What I like better than canned meat is freeze dried meat. It’s expensive and growing scarce, but I have a few #10 cans of it that will last a long time and act as great additions to emergency meals.
This may not be a viable option by the time you read and/or listen to the podcast. The prices on MREs are skyrocketing. Ones that I bought on Amazon just a couple of months ago are up 50% or more today.
There’s a reason for this. Meals Ready to Eat are complete and therefore perfect for people who want to stock up for their immediate needs. Most of them are acceptable, but a few of them are actually quite tasty. Complete MREs come with everything from coffee and gum to a flameless heating sources to warm up your food.
If I recall, I said during the podcast that MREs through My Patriot Supply were about $12 each when sold in a 12-pack (Sponsored). This is great compared to the $20-$30 you’ll pay for one on Amazon. Since then, the price at My Patriot Supply has gone up a little bit. It’s still cheaper than Amazon, but it’s a sign of the times that they’re going up. Everything is.
For those who do not need the full package with all the goodies, I like shelf-stable foods. My favorite is KJ Poultry. They last 3-5 years without refrigeration and I’ve enjoyed all the flavors I’ve tried. They don’t look anything like they look on the box, but they taste good and they’re loaded with calories.
Flour or Wheat Berries
There is conflicting data about flour if you listen to the various prepper channels. Some say even in mylar bags you only get a couple of years out of it. Others claim up to 10 years with oxygen absorbers. I’m hoping for the latter because we have a lot of flour. Just as my family is made up of carnivores, we also love our bread and my wife bakes the best in the world.
Wheat berries are a good alternative that everyone agrees can be stored for the long-haul. But they require milling which means either electricity or expending calories with a hand mill. We do keep some, but know that it’s an additional inconvenience compared to just keeping flour.
We like Bob’s Red Mill; it’s a little more expensive than others but if you can order it in bulk it’s not too bad. One trick we learned that may or may not still be valid is to NOT order it through bulk packages. When we tried to order a 25-lb box, checkout wouldn’t give us free shipping because you can’t get free shipping on bulk. Instead, we ordered five individual 5-lb bags. Even though it was more expensive than the bulk version, the final price was actually less because of the free shipping.
Vitamin C Drink Mix
Vitamin C isn’t the easiest thing to get in a crap-hits-the-fan situation. It’s ubiquitous today but can be very challenging to get during the apocalypse.
We like orange drink mix AS LONG AS IT HAS A LOT OF VITAMIN C. You may be surprised how many citrus drinks do not have much Vitamin C in them. I get the #10 cans from My Patriot Supply (Sponsor) because they’re one of the few that also gives some Vitamins A and D. Plus, it’s delicious.
Fats and Oils
Fats and oils are the long-term storage killer. Even in the refrigerator they go bad quickly. Olive oil can last a couple of years unopened, so in the immediate scenario it’s one of the best. Here’s a list of expected shelf-lives for oils.
For longer term, I’m a fan of butter powder. In fact, I’m a fan of sprinkling a little butter powder on popcorn today. It lasts a long time if properly stored and in the apocalypse, it can provide the much-needed fats when regular oils have expired.
I like Anthony’s but I’d recommend repackaging it if you want to store it long-term.
I’ve said it multiple times in this article and podcast but I’ll say it again: Proteins are essential. Egg powder is extremely versatile and can be added to almost anything. It’s also decent as a standalone egg alternative, though nothing can improve on the God-made perfection of a fresh egg cracked open and fried for breakfast.
This is the ONLY product I’d recommend from ReadyWise. I know a lot of preppers recommend them, possibly because of sponsorship or because they’re relatively cheap compared to other survival food companies, but as someone who has tried them I can tell you that they’re not going to make you happy. I even had to tell one of my buddies who had sworn off freeze dried foods that if he tried some of the other brands, he might change his mind. He did.
With that said, their eggs are pretty decent.
Dehydrated or Freeze Dried Fruits and Vegetables
Today, it’s easy and inexpensive to get fruits and vegetables. That may not be the case soon, especially with fertilizer prices going through the roof. You’ll need fruits and vegetables to enhance your diet with the necessary vitamins.
Canned vegetables can work for the short term. For long-term, I recommend freeze dried. Dehydrated is fine and much less expensive, but here’s the thing. Freeze dried tastes much better, retains nutrients better, and lasts longer than dehydrated fruits and vegetables. If all you can get is dehydrated, so be it. If you can afford freeze dried fruits and vegetables, go that route.
Please don’t wait. I’ve said it many times in the past but I need to reiterate that I have never been a “Chicken Little” alarmist about this stuff. I’m ringing the alarm bells now because it’s a real threat. Food shortages are coming to America. The more food you can store away now, the easier it will be to survive without becoming a dependent of the government. Self-sufficiency is one of the keys to preserving our freedoms, and I’ll always fight for that.
The other thing I’ll always fight for is the faith. No matter how much food, water, and ammunition you have stored, it’s all meaningless on Judgment Day. Making sure that you’re spiritually prepared is infinitely more important than insuring your survival in this life.