Here’s an interesting video from Sensible Prepper which gives us some deep insight into “forever foods” – items that you can stock up on that have a long shelf life (if stored correctly). Here’s the list from the video (I am only counting 14, but never mind!)
Salt (not iodized)
Honey (ideally raw, local)
Pure maple syrup
White rice (will not keep ‘forever’ but generally has a longer shelf life than brown. Pack it into mylar bags in sealed containers, in a cool, dark storeroom.)
It’s a good idea to just have some of these stashed and one good thing to note is that Sensible Prepper has kindly chosen supplies that are not only among the most long-lasting but are cheap. If everything goes pear-shaped / SHTF and regular supplies are no longer available, you can survive quite a long time on rice and beans.
A few notes and comments on the items mentioned.
40%+ liquor (straight liquor, not creams or liqueur) is of course not something for everyone to consume, but it’s a forever item; and the important thing to realise here is that it has numerous uses other than drinking – for example cleaning, sterilising and preparation of herbal tinctures!
The preparation of herbal tinctures deserves a special note: It’s one of the most effective ways to create a medicinal formula from herbs. The work is very simple, take a perfectly clean / sterilised jar, add your herbs and then pour your vodka, brandy or other 40%+ proof liquor over the top. Give it a good shake now and then.
On the topic of water: I would not be super keen on keeping a large stash of water in plastic bottles for years. It’s known that some of the compounds i.e. phthalates leach into water from plastic, and the reports on those are really not good. I’d opt for a good water filtration system and then simply collect the water I need and filter as necessary.
Salt is an absolute survival essential. In ancient times it was extremely valuable. Sensible Prepper recommends non-iodised salt. I’d go for either a good sea salt or Himalayan and this can be purchased in bulk. Salt should be kept absolutely dry.
Honey. If possible choose a local raw honey. The honey from your own region contains the pollens from your locality, which has potential benefits for allergy sufferers.
Personally I would not pack sugar but there’s no doubt that it has life-sustaining energy, especially useful if you are stranded in the wilderness. Lake District mountaineers in the UK used to pack the famous Kendal Mint Cake, which is essentially a block of sugar with peppermint essential oil added.
Storage techniques are a critical factor that will determine how long your food keeps.
In general, the rule is cool, dry, dark, pest-proof.
Top 15 Forever Foods For Survival – Graphic © off-grid.info. Images: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M43rO3hXiX0
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