Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Article: UK always 'a few days away' from serious food shortages, warn MPs (and the U.S. is in the same boat)

Another reminder -- this time from the mainstream media -- that shortages of food and other necessities are very real. If you don't stock up now, will you be able to when it's too late? Regardless of how you feel about government intervention/intrusion in telling people what they should do with the resources they have (the story below is out of Great Britain), shortages do occur, and if you don't stock up while you can, you're waiting too long.

Businesses should be penalised for wasting food and consumers should buy meat only as an occasional treat to protect future food supplies and keep prices down, a committee of MPs has recommended.

The International Development Committee warned that the UK is "never more than a few days away" from a significant food shortage and called on ministers to act to improve food security.

MPs urged the Government to redouble its efforts to cut the huge amount of discarded produce - estimated to be around 30% globally.

In its Global Food Security report, the committee also called on the UK to investigate whether nations should use domestic stockpiles of food to protect themselves from price spikes in the future.

Although the practice is costly, the increasing volatility of food prices means "there may be a case for judicious use of stocks to relieve the tightness of markets", it said.

Sir Malcolm Bruce, chairman of the International Development Committee, said: "There is no room for complacency about food security over the coming decades if UK consumers are to enjoy stable supplies and reasonable food prices.

"We have seen two notable 'shocks' or 'spikes' in global food prices over recent years, with price peaks in June 2008 and February 2011. These crises - driven by rising demand for food and by the impact of biofuels produced through agriculture - hurt many parts of the UK food industry and strongly undermined the global fight against hunger."

He called for ministers to set producers and retailers targets for food waste reduction, with sanctions imposed if they are not met.

He said the Government should also push ahead with previous proposals to persuade households to cut the amount they throw out and promote schemes that redistribute unwanted food.

Increases in global meat consumption are unsustainable and, longer term, the focus should be on pasture-fed, rather than on grain-fed, livestock with meat promoted as a occasional product rather than an everyday staple, the committee said.

The moves should be part of a wider strategy to improve food security, including help through the Department for International Development (DfID) with the creation of farmer organisations, such as cooperatives, in developing countries and aid targeted at increasing smallholder production in such nations.

MPs also suggest that some biofuels, which can be produced by the fermentation of some crops or by using fats, are having a significant impact on food security by driving higher and more volatile food prices and, in some cases, may be even more damaging to the environment than fossil fuels.

The committee calls for EU targets requiring 10% of transport energy to be drawn from renewable sources by 2020 to exclude agriculturally-produced forms to the fuel.

It also warned that the rising world population, expected to increase from 7.1 billion today to 9.3 billion by 2050, will continue to heap pressure on food security. Wider schemes by DfID have made significant efforts to improve women's reproductive rights but there is still a "great unmet need for contraception", the report said.

It comes as the UK plans to host an event, Nutrition for Growth: Beating Hunger Through Nutrition And Science, under the umbrella of its G8 presidency.

MPs also calls for an expansion of nutrition programmes in developing countries, with a particular focus on nutrition during pregnancy and early years.

Ivan Lewis, shadow international development secretary, said: "The IDC's report rightly highlights the importance of supporting smallholder farmers and nutrition interventions to tackle hunger and food security.

"The scale of hunger and malnutrition is devastating. Over one billion people in the world still go hungry and every year 2.3 million children die from the effects of malnutrition.

"With the G8's 'Nutrition for Growth' event this weekend, the Government has an opportunity to show global leadership on this issue and turn its rhetoric into substantive commitments to increasing DfID's funding to support nutrition interventions."

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Food banks running low on food -- stock up at home while you still can!

Given that this blog is still getting several hundred visitors a month despite my not having posted anything since May, I just saw this post on Zerohedge.com that I think deserves to be reposted here. Food banks across the country are running low on food, a problem that is being compounded by the drought that much of the U.S. suffered this year. If you're waiting to stock up, you might not be able to find affordable food later -- and food banks might not be able to help you. Here's a little food for thought:


Have a wonderful and thanks-filled Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Keep stocking up, little by little, and don't stop!

It's been said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting different results. The flip side of this coin could be that the definition of genius is doing the same effective things over and over and expecting the same beneficial results. Stocking up on food and other necessities consistently for a long period of time will pay off. I'd rather have a huge pantry and never need to deplete it than to not have it but desperately need it.

This is my first post on here in more than four months, and really, I think I've said just about everything that needs to be said about why food storage is a very wise thing to do--even to the point of having months or even years worth of food in your pantry. None of us knows what the future will bring--some of you may recall this post from last year about how my family's deep pantry paid off after I lost my job, and what was true then is true now--stocking up on food and other items while you can will sustain you later when you need it, and believe me, each one of us will need it at some point.

I don't know if or when I'll make another post on this blog, because I've already told you just about everything I know about the wisdom of food storage and why everyone should do it, so if you don't see any new posts, don't worry--just browse through the old posts, glean any helpful tidbits from them and pass them along to others. We're living in some very interesting times, and being prepared to feed yourself and your family during periods of uncertainty is always the smart thing to do and to prepare for.

In lieu of any further posts on this site, I encourage you to check out the blog links down the right side of my pages and keep checking those links for wise and prudent advice. May the Lord bless you and use you to bless others in the days ahead.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Metal shelves to maximize food storage space

I recently bought a few metal shelving units from Menards to give me more vertical space for an ever-increasing batch of canned goods, and let me tell you, having sturdy shelves is making a huge difference. The combined weight of myriad cases of canned goods was becoming a worry for my original storage shelves, but these metal units are up to the task and are a huge help for my pantry organization.

The first photo below is of some of the shelves I'd already had set up, and as you can see I've arranged them at right angles to each other to get the maximum amount of shelf space relative to the floor area available for the shelves. As an example, eight shelf units that are four feet long and one foot deep can be set up at right angles in a long row of connected units so that you could fit those eight units in a 5-by-16-foot area--bolt four shelves together side by side (which would span 16 feet in length) and then bolt each of the remaining shelves perpendicular to the left end of the shelves that are parallel to the wall. (The shelves that are parallel to the wall are a foot deep and the shelves that are perpendicular to those shelves are four feet wide, for a total depth of five feet, and the four 4-foot-long shelves are 16 feet long when bolted together.)

In the second photo, hopefully you can see the depth of the storage area to give you an idea of how much you can potentially stock up in what may look like a small area. Shelves are one of your best friends when it comes to creating space for food storage.

I hope this helps you expand your pantry no matter how small it looks!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Black Friday pandemonium--just wait until people fight over IMPORTANT stuff!

Working 70-hours a week (praise the Lord that I have a job!) has continued to hamper my efforts to write an article recently, but I thought that a recent column by Kellene Bishop on PreparednessPro.com was spot-on and deserves to be read. I'm not sure if she allows her posts to be copied on other sites, but here's a link to her article:


This sort of uncivil behavior by desperate crowds should be incentive enough for anyone to stock up on food and other necessary items yesterday, if not sooner. If...or maybe when...the desperation comes to your town, if you have what you need at home, you won't have to put yourself or your family at risk by going out in the chaos to get what you need--if it's still there when you get there. A word to the wise...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Stocking up now keeps you out of the chaos later

I could wax political on the Occupy Wall Street chaos that seems to be popping up in a lot of places, but the only point I'll make, for the sake of keeping this blog apolitical, is this: If the economy keeps getting worse--and quite frankly, I can't see it getting better, given our federal government's trillion-dollar deficits as far as the eye can see--the last place you want to be is in the midst of angry and/or hungry mobs. Stocking up on as much food as possible now while there's plenty on the shelves and no angry mobs fighting over the last can of whatever means you won't be putting your own safety and sustenance at risk down the road. I have enough food to feed my family for several months, and worst-case scenario, if there was nothing left on the store shelves tomorrow, all we'd really have to do without is fresh dairy products. You don't want to be in stores when people start fighting over stuff...unless you want to put yourself at risk, which I really wouldn't advise. I think Proverbs 27:12 applies very well here:

The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.

What are you waiting for? Stock up while you can still do so safely.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Why stock up now? Because prices are going up

I just saw this article that illustrates why it makes sense to stock up now while food is readily available at relatively low prices:

Gas, food and clothing prices are on the rise

And I don't think it's a stretch to say that as prices start to rise rapidly, people will increase the pace at which they buy food, thus depleting the supply of available food and causing prices to rise even further--it's simply the law of supply and demand.

I bought a case of coffee several months ago for $3.38 a package. The coffee I usually buy is now $3.88 a package. But since I bought it at $3.38, I won't have to pay more for what I've already bought. I locked in low prices by buying the coffee before prices went up. And since, according to the above article (and hundreds of others), prices on food and other necessities are rising, some rapidly, what's your excuse for not buying what you need now while you can still get it for less?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Stocking up by starting small and being persistent

In lieu of new posts that I'm struggling to find time to write at the moment (knock on wood that I've gone from losing my job in April to now having two jobs), I hope that a repost below of my "5 percent rule" might offer encouragement to those of you who are having trouble getting started stocking up.

As I stated in my first post on this blog, if you set aside just 5 percent of your take-home pay and use that money to build up your food storage pantry, you can build up a pretty good surplus in a relatively short amount of time.

Let's say that 5 percent of your take-home pay is $25. Last fall I did a little research on how much could be bought for $25 at that time among the items I stock up on as part of my storage pantry:

25 lbs. of frozen carrots at Walmart (which I dehydrate and store in mason jars)


17 lbs. of frozen spinach at Walmart (which I also dehydrate and store in mason jars)


50 lbs. of rice at Sam’s Club (with about $9 leftover)


30 lbs. of dry beans at Sam’s Club


18 cans of canned mackerel at Walmart


4 6-gallon cases of bottled water (because without water, you'll die)


7 cans of Cafe Bustelo coffee at Walmart (coffee is my daily treat to myself and also helps keep my asthma from flaring up--see the letter at the bottom of the page at this link)


a 400-count bottle of naproxen at Sam’s Club (with about $8 leftover)


10 paperback NIV New Testaments (because man doesn’t live by bread alone--Luke 4:4)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

YouTube videos on food storage to help you get started

I'm gratefully busy enough now that I have a second job that I probably won't have time to write much for a few weeks, but I thought this link to food storage videos on YouTube might help some of you with your food storage efforts, or hopefully encourage you to get started ASAP:


Sunday, June 12, 2011

It's hard to put food on the table or in the deep pantry if you don't want to work

I guess if there's one gripe I have about my new job, it's not the long hours--it's that so many people there seem willing to not work. It's a factory job, and there's no guarantee from one day to the next that there will be enough work for all employees on any given shift. Last Monday, 15 minutes after the 100+ employees on our shift clocked in, the supervisor came around and said that she only needed about 20 people and asked for volunteers to leave. More than 70 people volunteered right then to go home. I don't know about you, but I can't afford to not work, and I don't know how anyone else can, either. Especially when it comes to long-term planning with food storage and any other such preparedness efforts, diligence in working or looking for work is imperative. Without such diligence, you're going to get really hungry very soon.

End of rant. My alarm is going off in less than six hours, so I need to get some sleep. I have a lot of work to do tomorrow. ;)