In the resource pamphlet “All Is Safely Gathered In,” the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints “encourage Church members worldwide to prepare for adversity in life by having a basic supply of food and water and some money in savings.”
As a couple planning for married life or as newlyweds, starting your food storage supply may seem overwhelming. However, the simplest way to begin is just to start somewhere! We’ve gathered ten easy ways to start your food storage journey. Do them all or just pick one.
1. Food Storage Wedding Registry
Start your marriage off on the right foot by adding a few food storage items to your wedding registry. Think of items that would be harder for you to afford on your own, such as a shelving unit, prepared emergency kits, or other equipment such as wheat grinders. You can also plan out a one-month supply of food and place those items on your wedding registry.
2. Learn About Food Storage
If food storage seems overwhelming, become prepared and dispell your fear by learning as much about food storage as you can. The Church has a great section of their website with both spiritual and practical tips about food storage. Learn about rotating food items, how to properly store food, and what different food storage companies are out there.
3. Figure Out Your Favorite Foods
You’ll just be throwing money away if you buy foods you won’t ever eat. Start your food storage plan by making a list of your favorite foods and meals. You can then determine what canned foods or easily stored ingredients to keep in store. Maybe you can eat oatmeal every day until the end of time for breakfast, or maybe you need flour for pancakes. You could love beans, but hate soups or vice versa. One of the goals of food storage is to rotate through it, so you don’t just want to stock up on emergency grains and dried foods.
4. Food Storage Containers
An important aspect of building your food storage supply is storing things correctly. When you first get married, chances are your space for food storage is also limited. Start preparing space for food storage. You can learn how to recycle old bottles to store food, save up to buy an extra freezer, or organize your pantry. It is better to start with a smaller food supply properly stored than to lose money by throwing away food that goes by. You can also buy water storage containers.
5. Buy 1 Extra Thing
A common suggestion about building up your food storage supply is to buy one extra thing when you go to the grocery store. It is both simple and affordable. Whether it is a can of soup, a box of pasta, or canned fruit, get a little extra and store it in your pantry. Before long, you’ll have more stored up than you realize.
6. Learn a Food Storage Skill
There are a lot of skills you can learn that will enhance your experience with food storage. Here are just a few:
- Grind grains and bake with them
- Can fruits and vegetables
- Dehydrate food
- Wax cheese
It can be a fun experience to learn something new with your spouse and you can then go out and help others.
7. Start a Garden
Growing your own food is a great way to be self-sufficient and to create your food storage supply. You can grow an herb garden inside your house, buy a tomato plant, find a community garden, or try your hand a full summer garden.
8. Budget for Food Storage
For new couples, finding the money to pay for food storage can be the most difficult part. One of the best ways to overcome the financial difficulty of it is to budget. Include food storage in your budget. It can be as small as $1 a week for a can of food or as much as trying to buy double of what you’d get in a single month. Talk together about what aspects of food storage are most important for you and your spouse.
9. Use Food Storage
So many people, when they think of food storage, think of barrels of wheat and cans of dried meat. While this is certainly a part of food storage, it is really about stocking up on foods you eat regularly and can rotate through. You should use your food storage and learn how to implement into your daily meals. Make new recipes with your food storage. Learn how to rotate things properly and check expiration dates. Buy what you eat the most of. If you consistently use your food storage, it will become a more normal part of your life and easier to manage.
10. Ask for Help
There’s a good chance there is already someone in your family or church congregation that has started the food storage journey. Ask for help! Post for ideas on social media, see if there are any food storage centers in your area, or ask if there is anyone in your Relief Society or Priesthood quorums who could do an activity night of learning.
Here’s a great website where you can begin purchasing food storage basics designed with Latter-day Saints in mind.