How Many Meals Away From Chaos Are We?

population density 3D map of United States
United States 3D population density map (urban regions & clusters) Taking food for granted…

Food. It is becoming a bigger and bigger problem…

Look, many of you know that most of our food supply systems are what they call “JIT”, or just in time. I’ve written about it numerous times here on the blog. However some of you may not realize the extent of risk and dependence on these systems.

The Wuhan flu has exemplified some of this at our grocery stores. Surely most of you have experienced shortages in this regard. Especially toilet paper!

Modern Agriculture works EXACTLY THE SAME WAY, everything is JIT. There is no extra capacity built in to handle problems. Both under-supply and oversupply cause massive disruptions in the supply chain.

Look, JIT was designed to expand profits. Period. Problem is, it’s not exactly forward thinking towards our food security.

Before JIT, the system USED to be extremely fault-tolerant. That’s because AG was regional. Thousands of small farms in each region, so, problems in one region didn’t affect the rest of the country. People lived closer to the food so supply chains were not an issue either.

Interesting thing is that anyone with any sense would tell you that Modern AG is a national security issue, and the old way was vastly superior to a nations health.

However it’s always about the money, right?

How Many Skipped Meals Before Hungry People Get Desperate?

I often hear 6 or 9 meals away from chaos. That might be pretty close. Two to three days without any food and you’ll be pretty incredibly hungry and desperate to eat!

So let that sink in. Food. Think about how many people eat two or three meals a day here in the United States. A population of 330 million. That’s 600 to 900 million meals a day. And that doesn’t count desert! Where does all that food come from?

Did you know that approximately 80% of people in the United States live in urban regions or clusters?

“Rural areas cover 97 percent of the nation’s land area but contain 19.3 percent of the population (about 60 million people),” according to data from the Census Bureau.

You might say that the food for ~ 270 million people living in urban/suburban regions of the United States comes from outside their regions. But it’s worse than that… People living in rural America shop at big chain grocery stores too. And that food is likely coming from regions outside of where they live too.

With that said, I live rural. There are farms around here. Crops. Livestock. It’s not far away – and there are plenty of “farmers markets”. Definitely feel more food secure because of it. Plus I do my own part – growing a chunk of our own food. And now eggs…

Hey Ken, What’s the point?

I know that most of you already know all this. However it’s so very important to think about your food storage and ability to get food. JIT systems break. We came close with Covid-19 (Wuhan flu), which may or may not be over with.

Chaos yet unforeseen could put ~ 80% of the population into a hungry situation. I don’t like the fact that big AG has taken over. Did you know that China owns a bunch of it too? How smart is that? Answer: not smart, but it’s all about the money.

Take your food security into your own hands. I have tons of articles here on the subject. Just start searching.

One quick-and-easy way is to procure a quantity of ready-to-eat meals that are shelf stable for years, even decades. I happen to affiliate for Legacy Foods at this time. You might have a look.

In any event, how many meals away from chaos are we?

[ Read: What Will The Greater Depression Look Like? ]

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66 Comments

  1. I know of the term “nine meals from anarchy” but from my observations, too many have become expectant on the instant gratification of everything and the term “hangry” is now an actual term people use.

    I’m guessing most people are more like 3-4 missed meals from anarchy. Which, by the way, we seem to have been witnessing these last 7-8 days with zero missed meals..

  2. How many meals away from chaos? Less than we think, if the near brush with chaos experienced when just the rumors of shortages sparked panicked rushes on stores, resulted in real shortages (translated: bare spots in the JIT chain). (despite fears, not a butt went unwiped)

    Government assurances that food is on the way will stave off bad behavior of those least likely to cause problems in the first place (translated: morally upright folks, conservatives) early on. Failure to keep those promises will…….well……..as my Daddy used to say…… “Katy, bar the door”……

    Does beg the question though, if you lived in a high population density area such as New York, Chicago, etc, what lengths would you go to feed your family when supplies dry up?

    1. Dennis:

      “Does beg the question though, if you lived in a high population density area such as New York, Chicago, etc, what lengths would you go to feed your family when supplies dry up?”

      — About forty feet east of my kitchen.

    2. Dennis, wasn’t it Kissinger that said “Control the food and and you control the people?” I’m beginning to wonder how much of all this ‘disruption’ is engineered and already planned by TPTB. Well, it’s probably all planned by them. But who is doing the actual execution of it all? Control the people by virus, shortages, fear, riots and mayhem, etc. It is being played out right before our eyes. Oddly tho, I’m not overly worried. If we read their Handbook, we know what comes next, eh? We are not perfectly prepared, but prepared to adapt as best we can. Thoughts?

      1. DJ5280,

        Yep, Kissinger 1970, “control oil, control nations…….control food, control the people”

        Yes, I think planning and preparation has long been taking place for what is happening, waiting for the right time and place to implement the plans. The covid-19 “pandemic” probably wasn’t planned (unless by China?), but I have no doubts that the chaos following George Floyd was. If it hadn’t been George Floyd, some other spark would have had a similar aftermath.

        One can’t imagine how hard it would be to “herd” a population into submission, or into a direction you want it to go. Especially a population of 330 million. The George Floyd incident outraged just about everyone, but probably less than 5% of the population took to the streets in protest. But, combine with those a hardcore, trained, cadre of anarchists to create mayhem, then you instill fear in the remaining population. Fearful people look for protection/safety and stability.

        If, while waiting and hoping for a return to normal, major food shortages were added to the mix, I would imagine that the overwhelming majority of folks would willing submit to whatever power that will ease their hunger pangs and offer them protection.

        But, then, I’m just an old coot living back in the hills. Folks shouldn’t pay much attention to me.

        1. Not very hard to force masses of people into submission. Look at China (~1.4 billion people). The country almost came to a complete standstill overnight. Through strict orders and total fear of the unknown, people stayed home and did not venture out except to get food.information about the virus was hidden from the people. Just that if you got this virus, there was a good chance you could die from it. About all we were told was that it came from bats. No information on how it spread from person-to-person. The result– intense fear of the unknown. In my family with the in-laws. My daughter did not leave the apartment for more than three weeks. I had to leave the apartment every other day to go to the doctor. Other than that, I sheltered in place. FIL was the one to do the shopping fir food which was once every three or four days. When he got back home he would change his clothes removing the outside clothes.

          So YES! It was easy to control a vast numbers of people. Not from the barrel of a gun but fear of the unknown due to suppression of information.

          1. They knew it was stay in place or disappear. Nothing public just “poof”.

        2. I for one am sick of the likes of Soros, The Ford foundation and hollwood “elites” and the likes of internet moguls shipping in agitators to create riots. I know in my area, the agitators would leak red.

          As for starving, us rednecks know how to hunt, fish, and we will eat canned Spam, hams, and Vienna sausage for protein until the venison ages. Right now I draw the line at eating antifa members, but if it comes to that I’m ready.

  3. We have only been out twice since this all started and our nearest grocery store is 70 miles one way, and is a small Walmart. Friends haven’t seemed to noticed, but I have seen the amount of food has greatly diminished. In fact last week when we went I was wondering if they were closing. The amount of vitamins on the shelf would have covered a standard door. There there maybe 10 cartons of eggs on the shelf and this was the day after the supply truck comes in. I heard they are flooding again back along the bread basket but because of all the other news you don’t hear that. And then the cost of everything is definitely going up. I usually spend about $100 or a little over as we don’t go in that often. This time it was $240. After looking at the receipt I still don’t know how that happened. The only thing they had a lot of was booze and snacks. Really sustainable. I believe this winter will tell.

    1. ‘The only thing they had a lot of was booze and snacks’

      You say that like it’s a bad thing. Hehe

  4. Three days without water and most of the population would be in no shape to go looking for food. If those same people have no water, the problem is solved after 72 hours. Which sounds nasty, but it’s the truth.

    I don’t honestly think that “civilization” would last that long, but it also depends on the form of the emergency. If food stopped entirely, if trucks stopped and the shelves were empty and the “sheeple” knew that no more was coming, 24 hours tops. If .gov promised that food was coming, or hid the facts to prevent panic, that makes a huge difference.

    1. My take is that people would try to stretch the food they have left. Instead of continuing to eat hog wild, people would start to limit portions in an attempt to make what’s available last longer.
      But yeah, once the food is completely out, a day or two before people really panic. After a couple of days, they will eat anything and do anything to get food.

  5. A lot of those 600 – 900 millions meals are low cost meals for many families, even during normal times. Seeing the rice and beans and pasta aisles sit bare meant people who relied on low cost staples were in trouble. And there wasn’t much pivot room because when bread and tortillas are gone you naturally think that you’ll get flour instead to make your own, yet that was gone too.

    It seems to me that’s the moment when panic begins to form. You haven’t missed any meals yet, but you also don’t see a way to keep from missing one tomorrow if you can’t get to a Food Bank, or if they run low too because the need is so great.

    1. M’Lynn, when I noticed all the beans and rice missing from shelves, I took it to mean people who have lived through hard times knew what was coming and stocked up. In y mind, the average consumer would choose something more instant or prepared. It is not how we purchase food, but many families we know do eat mostly almost ready meals.

      It is also most likely why places like McBarfs and BuggerKing were not shut down…there would have been a revolt.

  6. I don’t know if any of my thoughts are relevant to the conversation, but after chasing the elusive goal of being self sufficient for 40 years and not succeeding, I do have thoughts on growing food and why the old ways of regional production are pretty much gone for good. The point blank fact is that humans refuse to accept the fact much of our land is not capable of growing food, or at least the food we want it to, but that doesn’t stop us, we figure out how to do it artificially, in great carbohydrate-dense masses. In our situation, we live in a region that is very good for growing cellulose and sugar – fir trees and berries – but not for producing nutrient dense human and livestock food. While there is certainly agriculture that is carried on in the nearby Willamette Valley of Oregon, hard wheat cannot be grown, vegetable processing infrastructure disappeared almost completely decades ago, replaced with grass seed production, because grass is one plant that can tolerate being submerged for large parts of the year. The typical hay produced in the valley is so high in sugar and so low in protein and minerals that it will induce a type of diabetes in horses that consume it. There are no feed corn or grain crops in any appreciable amount. In our area, the landscape is dotted with ancient dairy barns, but dairying in this area largely went away decades ago (there are holdouts that rely on imported feeds). There was enough fertility in this soil to sustain one or two generations of pioneers. Now fields of Christmas trees surround the dilapidated early 20th century barns. Livestock started being “improved” for increased production in the late 1800s when breed registries were formed and showing livestock was the sport of rich men. With increased livestock performance came increased demand on soil fertility. Thus begins more decline. Corn and oats used to be 13% protein crops. They have dwindled to 6% and much of that protein is indigestible. For the homesteader in areas like ours, that means another form of dependence on supply chains – the ones that move feeds from the midwest to retail stores 2000 miles away. Hay is transported by truck over the Cascade Range a minimum of 150 miles to the valley – or to the docks for export to the orient. Heritage seeds will not grow in this climate, so we rely on hybridized seed that will grow in our climate (because we don’t live where the plants grow naturally). Of course you can’t save hybridized seed. Our forest soil doesn’t even have the same biological population as more arable soils. It can be manipulated artificially, but must be sustained with bought-in inputs. There’s no irrigation (which would be grid dependent) to produce the type of grazing that would sustain full-circle grassfed livestock on a year round basis. Every region has its own restrictions as to how much population density it could sustain. Humans have settled reckless into areas that could only sustain sparse populations of nomads for many generations. If the supply chains go down salvation isn’t necessarily going to be found in that redoubt in the woods. I read an article on another site that said that the key to survival was catching a wild horse and taming it. I’d have laughed myself to death if the notion wasn’t so pathetically stupid. I guess my point is, take advantage of the supply chains while you can. This continent was never capable of supporting the kind of population it currently carries, and in my mind, a natural calamity that wipes most of our population out is just a minor adjustment by Nature to rebalance itself. Of course nobody wants to be part of the culling. Only Big Ag and vast supply chains are presently what make life possible.

    1. The focus has to be on regenerative and sustainable. Much of the land that now supports livestock can’t easily support food crops, and yet people think they can increase vegetative crop land by eliminating livestock.

      That land WAS fertile, and can be again if given the opportunity. The practice of constantly removing nutrients without replacing them is what causes this. You’re right–two generations of removing roots, weeds, native grasses, tilling repeatedly which destroys the biome of the soil itself, and the soil is essentially sterile. A forest, savanna or grassland does this automatically. What is removed is replaced almost immediately in the form of manure, grass seed, fallen trees, animal carcasses, etc.

      The process can be reversed, but it would probably take two generations of careful development, which big ag isn’t interested in.

      1. Lauren,
        Much of the Oregon High Desert and other areas of the west stand as evidence that spontaneous regeneration is not automatic although I see your point where such things as natural wildfire, etc are concerned. Central Oregon grasslands were decimated by massive overgrazing in the 1800s and have not, and never will, recover. A short term source of wealth was permanently degraded, partly because of the fragility of the land and water cycle. In place of grass, opportunistic shrubs and western juniper have covered the land, guaranteeing that native grasses will never return without massive interventions. I kind of use this as an example of “agriculture” pushing into areas where it is wholly unsustainable, in my conversation that humans have practiced it relentlessly in areas where the land is ruined as a result…not in disagreement to your post. I have a feeling that we share some mutual background concepts.

        1. Is that what happened? I just thought that it was because of the sterile soil. Hmm Dratted juniper trees prevail and as it turns out I am somewhat allergic to them.

          1. aka, Here’s a good article. You may already know of Oregon history, but Shaniko was a railhead for shipping great numbers of sheep. I’ve read pioneer diary entries that spoke of passing through the Brothers area where the grass “was as high as a horse’s belly”.

        2. Look at Al Bayda (sp?) and the Greening the Desert project as two extreme examples. With effort, reclamation of degraded land IS possible.

          I am currently sitting (living) on the bank of an old riverbed. The river (technically more of a stream) was driven underground into pipes to make room for urban expansion. My parents have pictures of this place before their house was built–nothing but sand and rock. No grass or trees anywhere. Not even weeds. And yet under my feet is a slowly wakening seed bank. Last year we got morels. As the soil improves, plants are popping up that likely lived on the bank of that river. It’s on a very small scale, but I’m working on bringing this little piece back to life.

          1. Lauren, Alan Savory? We had ten acres in the high desert that I wanted to restore to the extent possible. Clearing native brush and juniper, crushing/dividing grass crowns that were dying from the centers outward, planting native grass seed. Some adjacent areas were so truly over-rested that the sage couldn’t even survive, end stage desertification. Others, through obvious owner interventions, looked like fragile alpine meadows. Never, ever meant for large scale grazing. On the home place, we spent years in a remineralization program and rotational grazing. Other circumstances intervened in creating a sustainable ag operation. To this day the pasture looks NOTHING like surrounding properties, where 20 acres would yield 3000 bales of hay 50 years ago and are no longer harvested because the soil is finally exhausted. The “soil is 50 million year old lava, weathered to red clay” and does not have a high enough CEC to ever become truly, richly fertile. It was made to grow trees.

          2. Barb, can we take this over to Open Forum? I would love to hear what you did and how you did it.

        3. Dogpatch- for being a native Oregonian my history knowledge isn’t very good. Think I went through Shaniko a few decades ago though.

      2. A lot of farmers today are using a seed drill to plant. Instead of plowing/discing/cultivating, they are just killing off the winter cover crop and then planting directly. The soil is minimally tampered with assuming that the soil compaction isn’t too great.it saves the farmer time, money (not as many hours in a field and fuel), and soil disturbance (minimizing the number of trips over the same spots). Even with all the savings of time and energy, the farmers job is still never done.
        God made a farmer (Paul Harvey)

    2. Dogpatch, I cannot speak to your area but I know that our land is very hilly, Rocky, and wooded so most farmer don’t want to work the fields with crops or even hay the fields unless given no choice. When we first bought our land, the fields were overgrown with brambles, goldenrod, milkweed, and other “weeds” like pigweed. We put our pigs through the fields a few cycles one area at a time and you could see the improvement within 6 weeks of them moving to another area. When we added goats- even better! They eat the brambles and things the pigs don’t eat. Within two years, our pastures could support larger animals needing good pasture if we choose to do that or we could hay the areas that we don’t need to pasture our other animals. Their poop is the additive we need for our gardens….which are still a bear to clean up because of the rocks that surface every year. We utilize quite a few hugels and get amazing results from the bushes and plants that grow on them. Our largest issue is the need to fence our smaller gardens to protect them from the abundance of wildlife that wants its share of the bounty. That same wildlife is a Possible future food source if needed although easily depleted by others too.

      A simple life of growing our own plant and animal food is possible, but it is hard work every day. Keeps us in shape too so you don’t need that gym membership. Many people would say the winters are horrible, but that is also a plus to us as it keeps out the lazy people who want what you have.

      You could set yourself up where you are, but you probably need to get creative now to figure out what does works for your area to keep things going when it is not possible to bring in the additional supplies…like fencing (which would need to be hand cut and hand dug later). The more workers available, the more food that can be produced to feed them. Won’t be the wide array we have in the stores Today, but it should keep you alive. And for the lean years, have major food storage to keep you going.

    1. Yes! Never heard of a “sillcock key” before, I. am 73,been around construction & maintenance for years. I happened upon a prepper’s article about a necessary go bag item, a sillcock key? Researched the word, got a good education re: sillcock keys, cabinet key, marine key and maintenance key, wow, never knew. I spotted a large tank at the edge of our subdivision, ask my brother to check it out, said it’s a pressurized water tank probably holding 10,000 gallons of city water. I lived here 24 yrs., knew of the tank but not what’s in it. Guess who’ll take a sillcock key & wrenches to a tank of water after the SHTF. Learn something new every day. My brother who did apt maintenance didn’t know the proper name sillcock, he just called it a faucet key. Great advice! Google sillcock keys, what a tool and so simple. Thanks, Hampton

  7. I can’t recall where, maybe here, but I have heard that grocery stores only carry 3 days of food for the immediate surrounding area. 1 ice storm in my childhood taught me not to rely on the store or the government for help.

    On the other hand, there are people who use the grocery store as their fridge, or even rely completely on fast food. It is scary how unprepared some people are.

    1. sunflowerpi –

      My wife works at a large supermarket. 3 days inventory isn’t so much anymore. They get deliveries multiple times per day JIT style. Once the Flu-scare hit, they were cleaned out within an hour or two.

      1. Tmc,
        Totally agree with you. My local grocery store in suburbia takes in goods and stocks shelves all day long. They also have vendors who come in and stock their own sections of some processed foods And items such as beer, water and sodas as well. There is very little in the back room except items that just came in, such as the mornings’ produce arrivals that employees need to log in and get out to the display areas.

        Once the shelves emptied there was nothing to replenish until the next truck arrived. And often the next truck either didn’t make it, or had less than what was ordered. No way do the big stores have 3 days worth of most items. And once panic sets in, those shelves get emptied in minutes or hours, not days.

    2. If this shutdown hasn’t taught those types anything, we can stop caring what they store…or not store.

    3. Yeah, just like where I grew up and the news predicted a major snow storm heading our way. People would be crazy at the stores buying all kinds of food like the store wouldn’t be there tomorrow or ever again. Ohh and it seems like no one has a snow shovel. Good luck finding one. We always bought our in the late winter/spring when they were dirt cheap and you could pick the one you want and not choose between the three crappy ones left. So we were good for the next winter.

      We would go to the grocery store to resupply on a few things like milk, eggs, and bread. Not buy half the store.

    4. Sunflowerpri, this is why prepared folks never speak of their preps, these fools will use you as their grocery store. You have to become the “gray man/woman”. Sadly, you can’t share cause these people will be back for more the next day or two With their family and friends. They never believe you don’t have more, will demand they check out your house themselves, they’ll demand you “share”. This is why you have to be able defend your home and family & will lose the fight, when, depends on the size of the crowd and how hell- bent and armed they are. Sad but true. As a mother and great grand mother, how do you deny a hungry child? GOD help us all.it’ll become me and mine or you and yours, can’t prep enough to feed the neighborhood, then you become just like them, hungry and scrounging, stealing if necessary or worse.

  8. Considering so many many many people are angry at each other. Missing 3 meals probably would be enough to start real trouble. Especially if the people realize that there will be lack of resupply…

    I have to wonder after this wufluu how many people have actually prepared and are now maintaining a deep pantry at least a 2 week supply of food???

    Probably not enough people to keep things civil during shortages.

    Can you imagine Antifa types can’t get their soy milk lattes and a taco bell crunch wrap on demand?

    1. If the Antifa types can’t get their soy latte and Taco Bell, first they are going to go to their ‘safe space’ and cry on their favorite teddy bear. Then, yes, they are going to try to stir up some crap.

  9. A community of like minded people, is the best life insurance if the chaos occurs.. If food shortages occurs, the type of neighbors will be the best or worst single factor for survival..The large metropolitan areas and out lining regions, “will look like the cities in South Africa” with little to no police intervention. A community of like minded, self supporting neighbors will also be the biggest asset in times of little..

    1. It used to be you knew your neighbors, not anymore. I know only two neighbors and that is a causal “ hi, how are you……”. It’s not for lack of trying, people don’t frequent their front yards anymore. You see them drive in & out and that’s it. I think it’s a gender gap issue and the Calif. attitude of city living. I was raised in a small town in the high sierras, we were friendly and polite. Moved to my town while in my mid 30’s, only 70k population. Now my city is 200k, transplants from S.F., LA, San Jose, cheaper real estate (or was) But they also brought their attitudes. Too old to move & start over, so like minded neighbors? Don’t even know who these people are. Sadly, it’s the sign of the times. Calif. hasn’t been the state I was born & raised in for decades. Democrat rot now. Hindsight, should have moved to Idaho where my sister lives, loves it there, Californians not welcome, I am envious.

  10. We have seen people fight over chicken sandwiches even when the stores are stocked. Expect things to get messy no matter what.

  11. A brother and an aunt worked with the sheriff’s and local police in S. California to go door to door and encourage people in their area to stock a couple weeks of food and water for earthquake preparedness. The majority of the people didn’t want to discuss it, (if the stores are out, the authorities will handle it), maybe two out of ten listened and one of those probably came from mid-west farm country and already had two weeks or more put by. I’m afraid that it holds true thru most of the US. If there is a big event that paralyzes the area, or nation, the die off will be huge. I’ll bet the blame will be placed on all us ‘hoarders’ cause we aren’t ‘sharing.’

    1. JE, and many are too thoughtless to consider using other foods that are right in front of them – foods our ancestors used regularly. They won’t eat that apple on the tree because it has brown spots…or that weed In the yard…or that bag of corn or oats in the barn.

  12. Another excellent article, Ken.

    We all got just a little taste of what widespread shortages look like these last few weeks. I’m pushing 60, and I don’t ever remember issues like this with extended shortages (lasting beyond a holiday period or some kind of strike). I don’t ever remember entire aisles of food wiped out and not soon replenished.

    Last week, before leaving suburbia, I made my first Costco run since the virus hit (so about 3 months ago). No paper towels, and a limit of 3 items per family for any combination of fresh beef, pork and poultry (did not count packaged/processed items). Many cuts of meat not available. But, they had seafood and processed items stocked, so people could substitute and still get enough food. But, what if there were no substitutes?

    Other than the run on the stores at the very beginning of the virus (when darn near everything seemed to be gone) I’ve been able to find at least some protein sources (many at high prices) and a decent mix of produce both in suburbia and at the BOL. But, what if all of that had not been replenished?

    If the stores run short due to a 2nd wave if virus, I think people won’t get panicky – they just went through it. But, you get social unrest holding up trucks, or the TV networks whipping people up about a crisis of some sort, and those shelves will empty again real quick. Those without enough food due to poverty, lack of planning, etc… will turn to fast food. When that runs out too, look out. We could see panic in just a couple of days. And if the EBT cards, credit cards and debit cards can’t be used due to power outages… instant pandemonium… within hours, not days.

    And if the cities looking to cut their police forces actually do that, the rule of law will be out the window in a food shortage. Total mayhem, likely within a day or two – depending on the circumstances.

    1. The rule of law will be out the window, period. About 10 minutes after they break up the police force, the looters will be out and the home invasions will start because these people will know there’s nothing to stop them.

      Gang violence will increase and anyone defending themselves will be assumed to be the aggressor.

      1. Lauren,
        That’s true… I completely agree. I just didn’t want to get too far off on a tangent about that within this topic. But you are absolutely right… the rule of law will be out the window.

  13. Ken,
    Here’s a fun fact to throw into the discussion: 4% of the population is employed in agriculture. That means 4% supply for the other 96%. What effect would there be if say a minor reduction in that 4% producing took place ?

  14. Good article, Ken, and thought provoking comments. Where I live, food is plentiful. Much of what the smaller farms produce is shipped all over the country through a large organic producer’s co-op. There are plentiful CSA’s, and lots of small producers, like me, of beef, poultry, eggs and vegetables who just sell locally. If you’re hungry in my area, it’s because you haven’t figured out the hours to the food pantry, which is abundantly stocked.

    That said, what Minerjim brings up is a salient point. Anything that causes vast portions of the population to feel unsafe, or causes upheaval of any kind – civil, economic, physical, etc… – affects those of us growing food for others. How easy would it be to grow food in the middle of a civil war, or social unrest? If I’m unsure of my safety at my location, it’s hard to invest a lot in livestock, seed, fencing, etc…

    I don’t think it would take long for chaos to ensue if the shelves emptied. And I do believe people would do anything to try to find food, including traveling, if possible, to areas they associate with food production. At first, I would expect to see what we’re seeing some of now; local looting and break-ins, including private homes. If travel is still possible, that would spread to outlying areas, and maybe eventually rural areas. How long? My guess is just a few days in the big cities, maybe a couple more in the suburbs, and within a couple weeks in rural country due to the ‘golden horde’.

  15. the main 3 things we have to have is food, water, shelter. I live in the country on 8 acres. I raise a garden, fish, and deer hunt. I’m retired on a fixed income, and I mean just enough to pay bills and buy necessities. If something happened to this nation’s food supply, the cities would be out of food in about a week. Guess where they are headed? Right. To us in the country where the food is. We could probably hold off a few groups of them but eventually, we lose, no matter what. We’d need a group of like minded people as us to somehow congregate to defend our supplies and families. That would be hard to do when we’re so spread out. That’s when I fight to the end! “Til they pry my cold dead hands”!!!!!

  16. I hate to sound like a broken record, but for the short term you can buy about 8 or 10 flats of vegetables, 12 cans to the flat for less than a hundred buck. Canned potatoes, carrots, peas, corn, diced tomatoes, 2 or 3 different types of beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, chili beans, butter beans, black eyed peas, none of which takes much energy to heat. Throw in some pasta, some rice and some dry beans and you still won’t be much over a hundred dollars and it will all store under a queen sized bed and keep for years. I have used a lot that has been 5 or 6 years past the Best By Date with no ill effect. If you don’t ever use it or need it just throw it out, it won’t be no big loss, but if the Schumer Hits the Fan it will sure pull you through for a good period of time. Or you can help Ken out and buy some Legacy Food, and get a longer shelf life at a steeper price. Trekker Out

  17. Ah, the interconnectedness of things. No food, but is there fuel, or water, or power?

    In our county of 75,000 people one-third of them live in the twinned towns 25 miles from me. In town we’ve got four grocery stores, a good sized Walmart, three year-round greengrocers, one y-r farmers’ market, a weekly pre-covid street market, a meat market, several mini-mart type stores and quite a few restaurants and fast food joints, oh and lots of bars – something for everyone. Plus folks selling pigs, chickens, eggs, produce from their homes, fish from their boats, and a wholesale order-type grocery delivery service. Robust 4-H and FFA livestock programs. Rescue Mission and CCS have daily feeding programs, USDA school lunch and senior meals programs at several locations, and a couple of food banks round out local sustenances.

    Nevertheless there were gaps on the food shelves recently: flour, yeast, and sugar, frozen vegetables, pasta, canned soups and meals, frozen pizza and meals. All-day breakfast was discontinued at McDonalds. Most of the sit down restaurant and some burger places are still closed down for the duration. Prices have gone up. Chicks sell out at the feed store within an hour of arrival.

    While it didn’t happen here, we’ve all seen that closed, boarded up retail businesses can’t keep determined folks out. If all deliveries just stopped, grocery and feed stores would be empty in a day and small shops in maybe two. Feeding programs would be out in about a week. Some folks would have a six pack in the fridge and others would be fine for months to more than a year. Most for a few days or weeks. Fishermen would line the rivers and hunters fill up the forests.

    Neighbors at the top of the road would drop trees across it to deter folks from hunting the deer and elk herds here. Half my neighbors have their own therapy ranges on their property.

    But in town? If water was an issue too it would only take a day or so of drinking from the rivers to bring on a variety of diarrheal diseases.

    If power was an issue, we’re surrounded by forest for those that could cut and haul, and there are three large and several small propane dealers. But sickness from poorly cooked food and chilled food left warm too long would take its toll.

    Chaos and crime? Maybe some, depending on what guv proclamations and rumors said. Wouldn’t be chaos all at once as everyone has a different amount available to them. Tragic for those dependent on others.

  18. We ordered some more from Em. Essentials. There is an alert about the shipping time and you have to check the box to Agree you understand it might be 10 weeks or so. I spoke with a sales person and some items are about 6 weeks out. He told me their business was not set up to fill so many orders and they had to get 2 more warehouses to hold the food. This also causes some logistics issues for filling orders.
    GRAIN

  19. This from FoxNews just today:

    https://www.foxnews.com/world/un-warns-food-systems-failing-coronavirus

    United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said Tuesday that nearly 50 million more people are expected to enter “extreme poverty” due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has also impacted global food distribution.

    “There is more than enough food in the world to feed our population of 7.8 billion people, but today, more than 820 million people are hungry,” Guterres said in a policy brief on food security Tuesday. “Our food systems are failing, and the COVID-19 pandemic is making things worse.”

  20. After Coronavirus, it is illogical that people wouldn’t have stocked up at least a few months of food just in case. If Coronavirus thought us anything, other than abuse of power by government in controlling our lives, it is a need to stock up on essentials like food and medical supplies. A bag of 10lb rice at Walmart costs $4.54. It can feed 1 person for 16 days at 1000 calories a day. There is no excuse for people not to have a few bags of rice just in case.

    1. Logic doesn’t have much to do with human behavior. The “Great TP Scare” of 2020 resulted in a great deal of extra TP, paper towels and other sanitary supplies being donated to the Home Healthcare company I work for. Why did those people not hold onto what they had purchased? Was it possibly because…this will never happen again? Because once was a fluke?

  21. Has anyone shopped walmart.com recently? About 60-70% of the canned, dry goods are “out-of-stock”. But they no longer let you filter by stock status. Example “canned food” returns 25 pages. The “next day”, “second day”, “store only” and “out-of-stock” items are all mixed up together.You now have to trawl through all 25 pages to see what is actually available or not. Decent Jasmine rice is now >$1/pound everywhere. A year ago is was 38 cents a pound, in a 50 pound bag; on sale.

    1. Even if it says that your store has it on the shelf they might not as those figures are updated only every 24 hours.

  22. Tmcgyver
    You may have to order via the restaurant supplier online then send the daughter to the store to pick it up for the household.
    No, have not used there online system in a long time. Business stance does not set well with us who believe in the 2A.

    1. AC – I’m with you on Walmart’s 2A stance, and their generally odious business practices. Rest assured, my WMT online orders are structured in such a way that they lose money on every order. They fill much of my bulk stock, with “free” shipping.

      50 pounds of rice and 36 pounds of dog food, all bubble-wrapped nice and tight, in separate over-sized double-wall cartons, delivered to my front door. They never get the gravy orders. Just doing my little passive-aggressive part.

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