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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Food Storage Tuesday (and I need some advice!)

Every Tuesday, we post specific items you should gather in order to supplement your 72-hour kit, your 3-month supply, and your longer-term storage. If you are new to our blog, don't worry! You won't be left behind. Just start up where we are and follow along. You will eventually have everything completed! Once the 72-hour kit is complete, we'll be putting together emergency car kits again (week by week). Once those are done, we'll gather the 72-hour kits again. So don't worry, just jump on in and join us where we are today!


This week for your 72-hour kits, add personal documents.  This could include copies of your birth certificates, passports, ss cards, wills, etc.  You may also want to include copies of your Patriarchal Blessings. Of course, if you are not comfortable keeping these sorts of copies in your 72-hour kits while they sit in your home, you should still make copies and put a folder in a safe place... just remember to grab it when you leave your home in an emergency!  You may also want to put other important papers in your file, like maps, instructions, etc.

How is your three-month supply coming along?  I know I say this every couple of weeks, but DON'T FORGET to store WATER!  I can't even stress enough that water is more important than food.  It is vital that everyone in your home has access to clean water for drinking.  Check out this article about emergency water - even if you haven't stored water there is still some water in your home that could be used in a pinch.  However, it is best to actively store water in your home.  Click on the link to read about water storage.



This month for our longer-term storage we are gathering rice.  And speaking of rice, I have a question!  Just this evening for dinner, I opened up the plastic lid off one of my #10 cans of rice (it's only about 1/3 full since we've been eating it) and I went to dump out some rice into the rice cooker and there were hundreds of BUGS in the bottom of the can!  If I had just scooped out a cup or two I never would have seen them, but since I was dumping it out I noticed them at the bottom.  So, the question is... did those bugs get in there since I opened it up and put the plastic lid on, or do you think they were in there originally when the can was sealed?? YUCK!  I know that people say you are supposed to put your rice (and wheat/flour, etc) in the freezer for a day or something to kill any eggs that may be in your food so they don't hatch (they aren't harmful), but who does that? Do YOU do that? I guess I should start......  I don't know who canned this one up, probably my mother-in-law. I wonder if any of my other cans are bad?  I guess I'll just have to start pouring out the rice before I start eating out of each can to make sure it's ok to eat!  Blech. 


Anyone else have any food storage horror stories? :)

17 comments:

molly said...

Rice goes into my freezer for 3 days before I store it, no bugs yet, might be worth thinking about?

molly said...

Rice goes into my freezer for 3 days before I store it, no bugs yet, might be worth thinking about?

Amy McPherson Sirk said...

I haven't put rice in the freezer, I'm glad to know that I should. I always put flour and cornmeal in the freezer for a few days.

Shane and Brandi said...

I have never heard of this. Do you put it in the freezer before you can it? Can you put it in after it has been canned?

molly said...

I put everything I buy for storage that comes in paper/plastic packaging into my freezer, decades later I still have seen not one pest running around the pantry

Sharron said...

The freezing has been a life saver for me. I do have one of the sealers for foil pouches at my home an keep a supply of the pouches and Oxygen packets as well. Both from the cannery.

Years ago, I unknowingly brought some thing home from the store with the eggs of some kind of a moth. Weeks later when I opened it I about died! I had never seen what the larvae (weevils)grew into before. The battle ensued and it was a nightmare! I had to freeze everything as soon as I brought it home and tape all cardboard containers so that there was no where for those flat little pest to enter into new food. One box of oatmeal that had been pushed back and forgotten was completely full of the moths and webbing type stuff and had never been opened.

I am also now really good at sealing cracks and crevices in all of my cupboards with caulking.

I have just found a couple of moths again after a couple of years, so I am going through the process again to see what I must have brought home this time.

I live in HOT country and have just a swamp cooler so I think the warmer house encourages them.

Sharron said...

Check EVERYTHING else in your kitchen right away and keep doing it weekly for a while to make sure that they didn't get into anything else! That was my mistake!!

vlschenk said...

I freeze everything first before it goes into storage. Even pasta! I live in TX and it seems those little bugs can attach anything!

CheerfulHeart2 said...

My mother is faithful about this one. Everything that is a dried grain type product goes in the freezer for 24 hours before putting it in the cupboard. I am less diligent. Thank you all for the reminders of why I need to be diligent in this!

megan said...

Yikes! That's really freaky! I didn't know you should freeze stored foods so I'll definitely do that! Thanks for the tip!

ithappenedinthekitchen said...

One thing that most people in America don't know about rice is it should be washed before it is cooked. I know it sounds strange, but if you have bugs in your rice, when you wash it, they will float to the top and you can pour then down the drain. Ditto with any other whole grain. Freezing it will kill the bugs but if you are thrifty enough to want to save the grain, wash it before use. I haven't tried it with oatmeal, but it could be possible.

diane said...

I have found that rice from American stores is generally a lot older then rice imported and sold in Asian/Oriental stores. The reason is that imported rice is bought and sold at a higher turnover rate vs. regular grocery stores. Therefore, the rice that you buy in the US, be it from a food storage provider or store has been sitting on the shelf far longer then the imported bags. Also, bugs can get into cardboard quite easily. Asian bulk rice is usually sold in doubled lined bags and stamped with the crop date. I live in the south and have never had a problem with bugs in my rice. Trying buying imported Asian rice and see if that makes any difference.

Val said...

No comment--question, and I'm new to doing this blog thing. where do I go to post a question re water storage that has already been completed but improperly?

Hannah said...

Hi Val-

If you have a question about a particular post, you can just post it in the comments. We get emails when someone posts a comment so we will see your question.

Or you can email us at safelygatheredin (at) gmail.com

Thanks!

Dixie said...

Yep, definitely put grain items in the freezer first. From what I've read, 2-3 days in the deep freezer because it runs closer to 0° than fridge freezer. If you don't have a deep freezer, I'd just extend the time to maybe a week or two.

Anonymous said...

Grains grow outside, in the dirt and weather. Tiny moths live out there and lay miniscule eggs in the grain heads where they can lay dormant for sometimes years waiting for the right conditions to hatch.
They live there. They belong there. Always! Your object is to keep them from hatching! There is NO way to refine them out. (sorry, it's just a fact of life)
A nice long freeze (I recommend 10 days), heating, or packing oxygen-free is your answer. You are not packaging to keep bugs OUT of your grain, you are packaging to keep them from HATCHING.

Anonymous said...

Shane-- I presume you mean dry pack canning. Yes, all grain needs to be frozen for a spell to kill weevil eggs, or packed oxygen-free, or both. In most cases, just dry canned with an O2 absorber is good until it is opened.