Have Food Storage? Eat Out Much?
The following is a short and true story and one of many examples why you should have extra food storage in your home.
During my previous career, one of the VP’s of the company I worked for – came down with the flu. He was getting near retirement age, and this flu kicked his butt.
During that particular period of time, he was living in a nice home and had the means and resources to acquire mostly whatever he wanted in life.
Apparently he and his wife must ‘eat out’ a lot, as do lots of other people who can afford to (and even those who cannot afford it!), and apparently as a consequence they kept little food in the house.
When he was stricken with the flu, at home alone, when he regained some of his hunger he realized that he had no food to eat – but was still too sick to go out and get any.
He had to call a co-worker to go to the store and get him some canned soup and supplies.
Later I heard the story through someone else and was quite surprised to discover that someone with his money had no food in the house. It made me wonder how many others live like that (day to day), and rely on going out to eat most or all of the time.
I know that there are many people like this, particularly those who live in the city, and those with busy careers and lives. It’s easy to drop in on a restaurant or fast food establishment to eat your meals. No grocery shopping to worry about, no mess to clean up, get in and get out, and get on with your business or other aspects of your life.
The problem is (other than the potential longer term health issues with always eating out, processed foods, etc.), what are you going to do when you’re stuck in your home for a time, or should a disruption occur? How many even know how to cook? Don’t get me wrong, I like going out to eat once in awhile as much as the next person. What I’m saying is that this may not be a good idea as a sole-source for one’s food intake!
How many do you know who keep hardly any food in their house?
Sadly I know LOTS of people like this. One of my previous co-workers said he had 5 grocery stores within a couple miles of his house, so he never kept more than a couple days worth of food in the house. I have some family members that are the same way. It is very frustrating. These are supposedly intelligent people!
Unfortunately Ken, I know far too many people that believe in the just-in-time delivery and warehouse model as a religion, because they rarely have anything to eat at home. I am one of those people that tell their friends when they visit to just help themselves if they get hungry. On one particular visit my friend went over to the fridge to get a beer and stood there staring sort of in disbelief. After a minute or so he called over to me and asked why the hell I had so much food, and said he had never seen a fridge that was so well stocked. I reminded him of the frequent hurricanes we have and so forth [I shy away from prepping talk now] and asked him to follow me. We went out and around to the pantry and he was absolutely stunned. He looked around for a minute and said, “I could live for about a year with this stuff”. I replied “Exactly”.
I asked him what he thought would happen if the price of diesel suddenly put 50,000 independent truckers out of business, and he said he didn’t think it would affect him one way or the other. There are quite a lot of folks that do not understand the relationship between food and transportation, nor do they understand the fragility of the just-in-time model. We live in a country that no longer has any food buffer, having sold it all off, so hunger is a very real danger if conditions become rough.
Prepare accordingly folks, because sooner than later, the balloon will go up.
Of course after revealing all your stored foods you had to kill him… right? You will when he and a bunch of his buddies show up to your place in a serious crisis event. NEVER show anyone anything!!!
I too, know a fair few folks like this.
(not us, for sure. — we could survive quite a long while without a trip to the store.)
quite a few yrs back we were invited (note I say invited as we did not “drop in”) to stay a few days, while on a trip. we arrived latish in the evening, so ate before we showed up. Coffee was offered. Next morning for breakfast, coffee again offered. No word of lie, all that appeared to be in the cupboards/fridge, were few packs of instant oatmeal, few condiments in fridge, and a few other “not exactly” food meal items. This person brought home items to cook for supper, and it was “just enough” for one meal. etc.. This person was not poor either. so, we ate out, mostly.
never did figure out, what exactly was up, but since then, I have heard quite a few others talk about folks they knew with similar amounts in cupboards/fridge.
no idea what these folks would do if they were stuck at home due to illness or weather. guess they would fast. hopefully their water would not get turned off, as they would not even have water, then.
never been like that myself.
We eat out a lot, wife likes too go out. I’m an ex restaurant manager (a few of them) and souse chef, so I also like to cook. I’d say it’s 75% out 25 in. But I bought a large amount of canned foods, long term storage foods, mre things etc to have a diverse food source in an emergency. We lived in California but just moved to the (just outside of) Denver area, so instead of fires and quakes we have tornadoes and harder winters. I’m from Missouri initially and my dad always had a food pile to live off of just in case, runs in the Midwestern blood.
Yes sadly I know a couple that can’t afford to eat out but they do go to the grocery store everyday for their next meal. I think the only thing they keep is coffee and cereal as it is too early to get up and go to the store for breakfast items. Then lunch its out to the store, and again at dinner. Not to mention being at the mercy of the prices but the wasted gas of hitting the store twice a day.
I recently asked a similiar question to that to a ” financial ” advisor, I asked him what he would do if he were ” Katrina ” situation or ” Hurricane Sandy ” situation as far as food and money is concerned and he more or less brow beat me and my wife said that I spend too much time reading doom and gloom websites. I grew up on the farm with my parents and grandparents doing a lot of canning and having a large garden. My wife on the hand grew up in a small town with her parents having a large garden and her mother doing a lot of canning. But having grown up on the and having the electricity go out for up to a week at a time during the winter, I pretty much knew what o expect last yr when the electicity went out for 4 to 5 days ( upper mid west, ice storm . Every time I try to do something, my dear wife gets on me, so I don’t say anything any more to an body.So you are right when you say that people have their heads in the sand, that nothing is going to happen.
One year for holiday we flew out and visited our relatives. It had been awhile since we visited, and it was a planned trip that we would be staying there for a week. It wasn’t long after we arrived when we realized they didn’t have much food in the house. We were very surprised because they were well off. Since we were so accustomed to having our pick of foods from our pantry to prepare for meals, it was unsettling to realize that our meals were dependent on running out to the grocery store, eating out, or taking out while we were visiting them. I think lots of people live this way.
those who visit relatives or friends (who know you are coming), and the homes do not have much food in the house, do you suppose it is a not so subtle way of suggesting you not stay long, or they are just weird and at risk?
in our case, I casually asked around of others who had visited the same home, and they also found a similar situation, re cupboard and fridge.
still, was never quite certain.
it’s still really hard for me to believe that smart/well off people would latterly not have any food in the cubboard/fridge. Not even a few cans of things.
This is why when a snowstorm comes the supermarkets empty out of the necessities, restaurants close and people can’t go out to eat so they have to go to the market to make sure they have something to eat for a day or two. Also, no one that I work with knows what a brown bag lunch is, all they do is eat out, and then ask me how I can afford to go on such expensive vacations. Hmmm, brown bag for the week about $10, ordering/going out to lunch all week $50 +
Most people, including family, are surprised to see our pantry. We can hundreds of quarts of veggies, fruits and meats. We also keep lots of other cooking extras on hand. They would choke if they saw the stash in the basement. I have been trying to bring this knowledge to those I love, but they like having their heads in the sand.
sounds like you folks are well organised. We are not as up to snuff as you, but, still pretty darn good. And yes, if relatives or friends saw our “stashes”, such as they are, they’d probably think nasty thoughts…(as in they are crazy). However, we are grateful we are able to have some “stocks and stash”.
re “still-learning”… I do not believe I or anyone here is actually “slamming” those who don’t practice “stocking” etc.. Truly, I am shocked when I see how little reserve many have.
Also, TRULY, with almost all of these folks, it is not a question of money. AND, they see even a modest accrual of goods as some reject from their grandparents era/crazy.
These are the folks who see NO reason to buy say, six packs of toilet paper on sale at sixty per cent off…because you can go to the store weekly and purchase (and pay more)…
These are folks who think it ridiculous to stock up on extra cans/packets of soup in flu season, so they are on hand if one is too sick to shop.
Really, I have tried from time to time, but these sort of folks are not interested / easily enticed to learn/think of stocking a full pantry, let alone a “stash” in the back room or basement. just how it is.
Guilty. I was raised a city girl and never really thought about food or even where it came from or how it made it’s way to my local store. I am not an ignorant human being. It was how I was taught and ultimately lived. Moving to the country three years ago, and an hour long commute to the nearest grocery store taught me a thing or two. I now not only have back-ups, but back-ups to my back-ups. It’s a learning experience. We should care more about sharing these experiences; then slamming those who aren’t practicing them yet.
No, I don’t think anyone is slamming those that don’t have more than a couple days food. I think the comments here are more out of confusion and frustration because we HAVE tried to educate people, especially friends and family members. And their mentality is “it won’t happen here” so they go on about their business and current way of thinking. A large part of our society has shifted to living in the “now”, and even the cost and time savings of keeping a weeks worth of food on hand is not motivation enough for them to want to do it. Which in todays economy I would think any savings, cost or time, would be motivator enough, but it does not seem that that is the case.
Definitely agree with Jailee. Could not wholeheartedly agree more.
Most folks love the head-in-the-sand mentality. But believe you me, these same folks waste no time to knock on your door when they are in need for something in an emergency.
Its very frustrating because when people aren’t willing to help themselves, why should you help them? If there is no effort, one is just hauling dead weight. We’ve been through it before many times through countless hurricanes et al. and its always the same dilemma. There’s an emergency, they knock on your door, and then you’re the ‘bad person’ because you’re the one looking out for your family, and you didn’t prep for them; as if its your responsibility to take care of others. Unfortunately, this mentality is utterly pervasive in our culture.
In any case, it brings me solace knowing so many of the readers on the site are in various forms of preparations. No matter how bad things will get, it is those that are the most prepared that will become a bastion during the storm. Nothing is guaranteed, and although prepping only increases the chances of one making it, we rather bet on us or anyone prepared any day, then rely on others. Self-sustainability is the way to go.
There are more people who live in the city that do not have much of any food reserve in their kitchen than people who live outside the city. The way of life in the city is quite different, which is exactly why they will be in dire straits in a supply chain disaster.
Not this city girl, LOL! We’ve had way too many long term power outages to not wake up and pay attention.
And speaking of being sick and no food: Several years ago dh and I were both sick at the same time with the flu. Thank goodness I had made up and froze a big batch of homemade chicken and noodles. All we had to do was heat it up and serve! I also keep all the winter meds. stocked up too. Nyquil, cold and flu stuff, cloth hankies, extra blankets etc. and of course books!
I knew a farmer that was talking to a lady about the plight of the farming industry in the early 80’s to which the woman replied that she didn’t think much about the farmer’s struggles as she got her food from Winn Dixie. Seems this same tunnel vision is some what prevelant in this day.
I remember the young adult daughter of friends being over and opening our pantry door. Her comment was “Wow, look at all the food”. She didn’t see the food behind the other doors. One thing I feel that folks need to be especially aware of is serving versus calories. That emergency bucket may contain 90 servings which you think is enough for 3 meals a day for 30 days. But it may have only enough calories for 10 days. Don’t be fooled.
My wife and I will usually eat supper at around 1-2 PM and no dinner. If we are in town once a week for any number of reasons we will spend quality time together over a good meal. Usually eat well for under 20 bucks. We only leave the more remote Ranch once a week and myself I can hold out for 3-4 weeks until I need Ranch related supplies. I try to do 5-10 stops in town and be back asap.
Food storage? Well any good prepper has 5-7 years worth of supplies so they do not need to show their face of their spread. Guess this lends itself to asking what kind of long haul prepper you are. Be honest and no excuses.
JaiLee; well said. Thank you for the insight.
Same thing with my family. I go over to my niece’s place and the first thing she does is ask if I want the cans of food FROM THE FOOD BANK that she doesn’t like. Sigh. It’s food for the love of… It’s salty? Rinse it off. It doesn’t ‘taste right/good/the same as my favourite brand’? Mix it in something you do like and spice it up a bit. And the cupboard has maybe 3 days of badly processed glue and cardboard in it.