Rock-Bottom Basic Food Storage

This recently came in on one of the Y2k mailing lists I'm on. The author was gracious enough to allow me to repost it here, but asked that no name be included. The author offers no recommendations by way of amounts, but simple math fixes that.
(# of people x amount per meal x number of days = amount of commodity to store per meal)
Add the resultant values together to achieve a total value for each item.

To check if I was on the right track with my food storage plans, I dragged out some reference books and came up with the following ideas. Numbers in parentheses are reference numbers. References are given below, along with a list of the calories and protein in each major food used. This is for an absolute rock-bottom basic diet, which should keep one alive and kicking! I hope I never have to live on only these items, but I could do it. It involves storing very, very few basic items and the cost is extremely low. Optional extras would make a lot of difference, of course.

OK, taking the RDA for an adult male to be 2700 calories and 56 grams of protein (2), what can we do if we store absolutely basic food? (These numbers both seem high to me, but there they are.)

Specifically, we store canned mashed potato flakes (available in supermarkets in #10 cans), honey, oatmeal, olive oil, non-instant nonfat dry milk, hard red winter wheat (or any wheat, it won't vary much), soybeans, pinto beans, and long grain white rice (brown rice doesn't keep well). Assumptions are (a) no refrigeration available, (b) you can cook either by the thermos method or by a solar oven, that is to say, you have enough fuel and a method to boil water three times each day, and (c) you have a hand grain mill which will crack wheat and crack soy and other beans. The Corona mill with metal plates will do this.

Hopefully, you also store some raisins and other dried fruit, and some dry veggies (but I'm not counting these in the day's calorie or protein total) and seeds for sprouting so as to have fresh green stuff. Again, I'm not counting these in the listed calorie or protein total. Some dried soup mixes (a la Knorr, for instance) would be good to have also, as would some cans of fruit -- peaches, pineapple, whatever you like. Cans of veggies would be a good addition. I'm assuming you also have salt, and some herbs and spices, and multi-vitamins (at LEAST vitamin C, which will not be supplied much at all by the items listed below, except for the sprouts and I don't THINK they will have enough).

Here's the day's meals (all measurements are uncooked):

Breakfast: Oatmeal (1/2 cup) with 2 tablespoons (TBS) honey and 2 TBS dry milk. (This would be way too sweet for me, you could save part of the honey for later, but I'll count it as having been eaten now for simplicity's sake.) Calories: 331. Protein: 11 grams. Optional: raisins or other dried fruit would be nice in the oatmeal.
Lunch: Potato flakes (2/3 cup) made with 1 TBS olive oil and 2 TBS dry milk. Calories: 335. Protein: 9.5 grams. Optional: Hopefully, you have some dried soup (Knorr, Lipton, or what-have-you), then you have soup and mashed potatoes. Also, a can of peaches or pineapple would give you something nice for afters.
Dinner: (Two different dinners) [Note: Further discussion the matter made mention that wheat and rice triple in volume during cooking; thus, 1 cup of raw material gives you 2-3 cups cooked food. That seems to be quite a bit of food to eat at once.]
Optional: herbs and spices. Dried veggies to cook with the grains and beans. Canned veggies. Fresh green stuff from sprouted seeds.

Now, the totals on the wheat day are: calories - 1584 and protein - 58.5 grams. For the rice day, totals are: calories - 1751 and protein - - 58.5 grams. You'll note that the calorie total is low. The optional extras will have to fill in some calories, but the basics are here. Interestingly, although we are including ONLY dried beans and grains, nonfat dry milk, dried mashed potato flakes (and honey and oil, which don't have any protein) the protein total for each day is OVER the RDA. Protein, therefore, doesn't appear to be a problem.

Listed below are the calories and protein for each major item. Again, all quantities are uncooked. Numbers in parentheses are reference numbers, and the references are listed. The wheat, soybeans, and pinto beans are the nutritional powerhouses.


I hope this is useful for some folks' planning!

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