Read Before You Buy Long Term Packaged Units of Food

Someone I know recently purchased a year’s supply of freeze dried and dehydrated foods. This made a great addition to their preparedness supplies.  However, I am going to throw in a couple of warnings.

First, when they say it is a year’s supply, take a good look at how many calories they allow per day.  I have seen some companies that sell units that have as little as 1000 calories per day.  Now this may be ok, if you want to go on a crash diet, but I don’t.  Look at what they say is a serving.  Try their product.

Now I am not saying don’t buy units of food, I am saying understand what you are buying.  That 1000 calorie a day unit may be just fine if the price is right and you supplement it with rice, beans and other bulk products.

Second, when they say chicken or beef flavored there is no meat in the product, just TVP.  Textured vegetable protein is a soy-based product.  Personally, I prefer real meat.

Third, know your company.  I am seeing all types of new companies appearing on the market.  Many of them are brand new with no track record.  I am sticking to older well-established companies who have been making products for years and have good reputations.   Look for companies that have been making foods for backpackers, they have had to produce good tasting products to survive.

Fourth, know where your food comes from.  A lot of freeze-dried and dehydrated foods are now being imported from China.  That is another reason to stay with a company that has a good track record and not a fast buck artist.


6 thoughts on “Read Before You Buy Long Term Packaged Units of Food”

  1. Matt in Oklahoma

    Almost all of the prepacked stuff I have seen are based on 1k diets. When I was a full time Soldier runnin and gunnin I ate over 2k a meal and 4-5 meals a day. I’m alot slower paced now but still 1K a day? No way! I eat alot while hunting and lose weight from the caloric burn of constant motion and cold, around 8-10lbs the first week. I’m not against TVP and plan on getting some soon to supplement our diet of meat when i am unsuccesful at longhunting methods, fishing or trapping. You have to know what you are getting and IMO thats a good reason to stay away from the “easy out” prepacked stuff.
    Knowledge is Power, Practiced Knowledge is Strength, Tested Knowledge is Confidence

  2. One of the most important aspects for long term food storage for me is taste.

    What good will 1 year of food do you if you have to choke it down every time you want to eat?

    As I am thinking about buying larger quantities of long term food storage I am actually eating a few as they come in. This helps me determine which brands and flavors to focus on as I invest.

    The most surprising thing to me has been how badly most of tastes.

    I have been very displeased with Wise as well as some of the Mountain House offerings.

    It just goes to show that you need to TEST your plans well before you ever put them into full use. Try things now before you realize you can’t eat any of the food you have stored.

    As a result I am focusing more on home dehydrated and canned foods rather than bulk made freeze dried foods. I’m also ensuring that I focus on learning and making recipes using common ingredients in my long term storage pantry.

  3. About the land taste, while I really love good tasting food, I believe that having ample food reserve is a priority over how it tastes.
    Go and read Selco’s memories of the former Yugoslavia and the two years of hell he and others endured on less than starvation rations. After eating in one week what they ate for over two years, I’ll bet that nasty tasting dehydrated/freeze dried stuff will taste like heaven-on-earth to us.
    About the caloric intake though, I agree that 1K isn’t very much, but it’s way better than eating “clover-and-grass-pankakes” Yugo-style…

  4. I agree with you in an emergency you eat what you have, but if you are preparing ahead of time get the best you can afford.

  5. Veteran Who Is Preparing

    We started with a 1200 cal combo for each person from a well known Freeze-Dried distributor and added to that. First with the goal of total 2000 cals and later 2500 cals per person. Before we buy #10 cans of a pre-made entree like from Mountain House, we try it in a pouch. If it passes the taste test then we buy a few cans or cases depending on taste and price.

  6. I am a consultant for a company that sells freeze dried foods,. Although we do market some meal pouches and some tvp, the majority of what we offer is cans of individual veggies, fruits, meats etc. We have a calculator that lets you determine how many calories and then advises what it would take to feed you for whatever period of time you choose with a variety of foods to avoid food fatigue. We even offer a cookbook, and a way to get the foods you want on a monthly budget that doesn’t get into your savings. All foods are american. Adding your own canned goods and what you can grow rounds out a meal to make it tasty and nutritionally sound. Just got chickens legalized in my town, so will have some fresh eggs too. In my mind, takes several different sources to keep us well prepared.

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