As we enter the month of June with its long sunny days, our food storage focus will be grains and bread making. How much of these items you store is your choice. You have your agency. If your budget and space is tight, you may want to focus on a 1 to 3 month supply. But, I focus on storing a year’s supply of grains because I have a large basement. You don’t have to. However, I don’t buy a year’s supply all at once either. I buy a few cases of #10 cans each year and gradually build up and replenish our supply. That way our items don’t expire at the same time.
Look at the following list for food storage suggestions for one adult. Multiply amounts for other family members. Then realistically decide if you can store that much. If you can’t, divide your amount in half. You don’t have to store a 3-month supply. Think, then think some more.
Some of you store grains in buckets lined with Mylar bags. I prefer small cans as they are easier for me to find places to store. Do what works best for your home situation. If you don’t know how to store grains, contact a service missionary at an LDS Home Storage Center.
Remember, if you are following the LDS 4-Step Approach to Home Storage, long-term grains are to be gathered after the first three steps: a 3-month food storage supply of food, drinking water, and a financial reserve, which can be gathered simultaneously. However, if you want to start building a small supply of grains to be part of your 3-month supply, and can afford it, and have your emergency water stored (got to have that!), go for it.
All grains do not have a long-term shelf life of 20 – 30 years. So, I’ve put together a chart to help you see the shelf life of some grains. Caution: I’m not an expert!
SHELF LIFE OF GRAINS (stored at 75 degrees or less):
30 Years – Wheat, Hard red or white
30 Years – Rice, white
30 Years – Oats, quick or regular
15 Years – Buckwheat
8 – 12 Years – Corn, Sweet
8 – 12 Years – Flax
8 – 12 Years – Millet
8 Years – Barley, Pearl
8 Years – Quinoa
8 Years – Rye
As you think about grains, you may want to read “The Word of Wisdom,” the scripture containing the law of health for Mormons. It contains which foods are good for us, and which are not. And the promises of protection to those who obey it.
Check out the monthly food storage list link at the top of this post for a complete list of suggestions of what to gather this month. And watch for my weekly posts.