Most people don’t have a clue about how much food they eat in a year. This is easy to understand because who goes out and buys a year’s worth of food at one time? Back in the day, a homesteader might take the wagon to town once a month to buy supplies, but these days most people drop by the grocery store two or three times a week to pick up a few things at a time. That makes hard to get a good idea of how much you’re buying. Add to this the fact that most families eat out several meals a week, and it gets even more confusing.
The truth is that we eat an enormous amount of food in a year’s time. Since I keep pretty close track of the foods I buy, and since I usually eat twenty of my twenty-one weekly meals at home, I thought I had a pretty good idea of how much food I should have stored for a year’s storage. When I started putting the pencil and calculator to it, I couldn’t believe how wrong I was.
Let’s just use three examples of staple foods that should be in any long-term food storage. Let’s talk about wheat, rice, and dried beans. Let’s say that you have 100 pounds of hard red wheat to grind for flour, 100 pounds of dried beans, and 100 pounds of rice. This sounds like a lot of food until you start breaking it down. It turns out that this amount of food would allow one person to eat two meals a day for one year. Each meal would consist of ¾ cup of cooked beans, ¾ cup of rice, and one slice of bread. That’s pretty Spartan rations for someone who is doing hard physical labor, and remember that’s only for one person. A family of four would need 400 pounds of wheat, 400 pounds of rice, and 400 pounds of beans.
Of course this diet is just awful. There’s hardly any fat in it, no fruits or vegetables, and you are missing a lot of necessary vitamins and minerals. If a family of four wanted one serving of canned vegetables and one serving of canned fruits per person, per day; this would require about 1170 cans of fruits and vegetables. Yea, it’s amazing.
I guess what I’m telling you is, don’t just guess at whether you have enough food storage. Figure out what you want to eat, how much per day you will eat, and get the old calculator out. It’s the only way to know for sure that you have enough.