Let’s begin this section of food storage by talking about grain. Grain includes wheat, barley, rice, corn, oats and pastas. Of these, it is suggested you store 400 pounds per person per year. When you consider children, it is best if you go ahead and count them as adults, because how old will they be when something happens and you need to be able to feed them. Also if they are still young then this will just give you more food that you could share with someone else. This 400 pounds is a total of all of the different types of grains per person, not of each grain. If you do not like wheat then you need to add more pounds to the other grains that you do like. Or if you are allergic to rice then you need to add to the other grains to make up the 400 pounds without rice. Wheat is the way that you store flour for long term usage. You can store some flour; it just does not last as long as whole wheat does. Researchers have actually taken wheat from the pyramids and have sprouted it and it grew. That is how long it will last. Also you can not store cornmeal very long either, so you store whole corn. Oats are also stored whole and you can roll those to make oatmeal. I have stored oatmeal for over 10 years in cans and pop bottles with no spoilage, but if you need to store for longer than that store it as whole oats. The added advantage to storing whole grains is that you can use some of it to grow more. Also, whole grains can be made more nutritious by sprouting as discussed earlier. Pastas last for years but you can make pasta also. There is a non electric machine that will make pastas pretty easily. And there is a roller for the oats to make oatmeal, or wheat meal too. You can also make rice flour and barley flour. You can also store other grains that are more of a specialty item such as buckwheat, spelt, rye, Amaranth, quinoa and flax. There are some others but you get the picture. This is all you choice as to what type of grains you want to store and how much you want to pay for it.
Along with this grain you will also need a grain grinder. Grinders come in many sizes and electric or not electric. And yes, if you have no power you will need a non electric grinder, however, if you will be using the grain now [which you should be] before anything happens an electric one sure would be nice. For smaller amounts you can also use your blender but wheat and especially corn is tough on a blender and if you are using the blender on a daily basis it may not last very long. You can purchase blenders pretty inexpensively at garage sales but then you have to find them first. I have also used coffee grinders, they work pretty well because coffee beans are tough also and the coffee grinders are made for daily grinding of the beans. But grinders do work the best and most are not that expensive. I have seen non electric grinders for as little as $21.70 through Amazon and as much as $200-$300 for an electric. And they are all good; it is just what type of grinder you will be using and how much you want to pay. Some of the manual grinders can also be turned into electric with an extra few parts.
Also along with the grain you will need yeast, baking powder, baking soda and spices. I have said in another blog that yeast does not last a real long time. You will need to go to unleavened bread aka tortillas or sourdough bread. Shelf life is 18 month for baking powder and 2 years for baking soda according to ‘the book’. How long you store is up to you. The amount you put up of these items will depend on how much you will bake bread and cakes.
Spices are another matter. Spices will really help make plain food taste different. Depending on the different type of food that you have in your storage spices will change it us and help make it more palatable. Also spices can be used as trade goods. If you have any questions about how much people will pay for spices, research the spice trade.