News of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Pittsburgh area, counsel from its leaders, and reflections from its members.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Reid's One-month Storage Plan

My friend Reid Reading (single adult, counselor in the Pittsburgh 7th Ward bishopric) wrote me the following musings on storing food for a month. I endorse his approach:

". . . create a system . . . as a cushion against hard times and allow families to continue to be nourished pretty much as they have been accustomed. The family would simply buy 1) an additional item of a nonperishable grocery good at each market visit, 2) keep track of the kind and amount of perishable items consumed in a month, and make sure to have a month's supply of these substitutes."

Reid notes the need for water. The goal is a supply for two weeks, at one gallon per person per day, that is, 14 gallons per person.

"In my case, I think I could survive for a month with a huge supply of mild salsa, Tums (even so), water, juices that don't expire for a month from when I might need to start using them, several boxes of Raisin Bran (they seem to be on sale frequently–too much supply?) or other dry cereal, powdered milk and eggs, a pinch of salt and other condiments, canned vegetables (except spinach–can anyone bear this??) many cans of BLACK beans specifically, some olive oil–not sure for what, Costco-sized containers of dry-roasted unsalted peanuts, pecans, and other nuts (except walnuts, which give me canker sores), big containers of dried fruits, natural peanut butter (Smuckers is good), and huge numbers of Hersheys' five-ounce dark chocolate bars. (These, by the way, are already on hand.) Although most of these things last for some time, proper attention must be given to rotating in and out.

"I checked the basic food groups, and think I have them covered, and now would have to consider quantities. But please, what am I missing? At any rate, insofar as this is any good at all, it has been helpful to me."

Way to go, Brother Reading. Each family should identify and store what they actually enjoy eating, paying attention to nutritional requirements, and rotate so that the supply stays fresh.

Friday, June 6, 2008

1 Month of Food Storage - R.S. Helps

Engage the Relief Society to promote food storage. The Brethren have counseled us to begin with one week of storage and build to a month. What does one month of food storage look like?

The R.S. presidency in the Pittsburgh North Stake answered that question. They created menus for a month of meals, translated the menus into a shopping list, and then wrote recipes for the meals they suggested. See their one-month overview, menu plan, recipes, blank menu plan, blank shopping plan, and blank weekly shopping list.

Your family may like different meals. Fine. But by making a month of menus and translating those meals into a shopping list you can make sure you will have food your family will enjoy eating as you rotate your home storage.

Your Relief Society may choose to modify the Pittsburgh North Stake's materials. No problem. But consider following their example and engaging your Relief Society to help families change the vague concept of a month's worth of food into a specific set of commodities that they are going to buy and put aside.