Real Food Storage: Are the Instant Food Storage Packages a Good Deal?By
I’ve been getting reader questions about the ready-made food storage supplies that cost $400 or more per 90 day supply. The lure of this option is that everything is already done for them.
The ready-made supplies are often deficient in calories, loaded with soy and GMOs and more. I do not recommend them. They normally don’t contain enough food to sustain an adult for 90 days if you check the calorie counts. They normally don’t even have half of the calories you would need per day if you were doing manual labor. They are normally void of meat, rely on soy, are very bland, have MSG, artificial colors and flavors and contain nothing but artificial vitamins. The only thing they have going for them is convenience.
Worse yet are the new kits that contain 90 days worth of supplements for $400 or more being billed as food storage. You still need to purchase your basic foodstuffs on top of this ‘superfoods’ kit.
So I decided to put together a very basic 90-day plan for a family of four which averages to about $120 per person per month (or considerably less if you can eat wheat) to show you that you can do it yourself and not have to spend a ton of money. The grains listed below will cover a little more than 90 days. If you’d like to see a fully laid out food storage plan with over 200 recipes, check out our book, Real Food Storage.
The prices listed are local to me at the health food store. Your prices may vary. If they are linked, the prices came from the linked website.
You’ll notice some of these items aren’t priced in bulk. If you purchase in bulk, you can save considerably off of these prices. For example, buying beef in bulk by purchasing a half or a quarter of a cow from a local farmer could result in a lower price per pound. I personally average $4-5 per pound for all cuts of beef, from steaks to ground beef with my local farmer. If you have local sources of bulk purchases or a salvage, you can reduce your cost even further. My local salvage has been known to carry rapadura for $35 for a 50-pound bag.
The beauty is that you are buying foods you normally consume and will be putting them into rotation. They won’t be tucked away, going bad. You use them and replace them. Always tailor your food storage plan to only contain foods you normally consume so there is no waste and nothing to go bad.
Of course, if you are on a grain-free or allergen-free diet, your situation will look different. And if you can use wheat, you can store wheat instead of the gluten-free grains for a considerable savings. You can purchase 25 pounds of wheat berries for less than $15 right now. If you can consume dairy, you can store milk or cheese in the freezer instead of the calcium supplement.
Produce obtained in bulk at the Farmer’s Market for a total of $186.20:
- 40 pounds sweet potatoes in the basement $14
- 25 pounds of white potatoes in the basement $18
- 12 heads broccoli in the freezer $20
- 50 pounds of carrots $20
- 50 pounds of onions in the basement $16
- 7 butternut squash in the basement $21
- 25 pounds apples in the basement $20
- 1 bushel of oranges (48 pounds) $17
- 50 pounds of cabbage $12
- 12 twenty-eight ounce cans of Bionaturae tomatoes (considerably cheaper if you can them yourself in the summer) $28.20
Meat for a total of $304:
- 12 pounds ground beef $96
- 24 whole chickens (not organic but not fed arsenic, either) $54
- 4 pounds of bacon $24
- 20 pounds of various beef cuts $100
- 4 pounds of beef liver $24
- 2 pounds of chicken liver $6
Pantry for a total of $631.50, grains are the 25-pound bags from Bob’s Red Mill unless noted:
- 50 pounds of rice from a local store $34.50
- 25 pounds of GF-certified steel-cut oats $34
- 50 pounds of sorghum $85
- 50 pounds of buckwheat $56
- 25 pounds of quinoa $74
- 1.5 pounds of cornmeal $3
- 25 pounds of millet $21
- 25 pounds of amaranth $54
- 2.5 pounds of organic popcorn $5
- 6.5 pounds of masa harina $14
- 70 pounds of a variety of dry beans $87.50
- 9 pounds of Real Salt $23
- 30 pounds of rapadura $54
- 1 quart of honey $15
- 1 quart blackstrap molasses $7
- 6 jars of natural peanut butter $24
- 1 pound of chia seeds $9
- 1 container stevia $14
- 1 quart maple syrup $14
- 1 pound baking powder $4
- 1 pound baking soda $2
- 1 package xanthan gum $10
- An assortment of garlic powder, onion powder, cinnamon, rosemary, thyme, sage, bay leaves, etc… from your local health food store in the per-ounce bins $15
Fats for a total of $65.50:
Supplements for a total of $245:
- Vitamin D Drops $10
- Fermented Cod Liver Oil (2ml per person per day) $134
- Calcium (if you don’t own your own cow) $101
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KerryAnn Foster runs Intentionally Domestic, formerly Cooking Traditional Foods. Founded in 2005, we help you feed your family nourishing foods they will love. KerryAnn has thirteen years of real food experience. Read about KerryAnn’s journey to health through multiple miscarriages, celiac disease, PCOS, food allergies and intolerances, obesity, adrenal fatigue and heavy metals. She is also an It Works! Triple Diamond Independent Distributor and she loves that crazy wrap thing!