Cracking Open a Ten-Year-Old Bucket of Food

Commander Zero
By Commander Zero March 6, 2017 13:25

Cracking Open a Ten-Year-Old Bucket of Food

This article was gladly contributed by Commander Zero.

School starts up again this week, so I need to start doing breakfast. Since I’m incredibly lazy, I want something easy and fast. Cold pizza is my #1 choice, but who can afford that? I figured I’d just have instant oatmeal. Turns out, my pantry was devoid of the stuff. Must have used it all up last semester. Hmm. Well, let’s rotate some out of storage.

Sometime around 2006 I ran into a really nice sale on instant oatmeal. As I recall it was a package of ten for a buck. Hey, for brand-name instant oatmeal, why not? So I picked up a bunch.

As I’m sure you are familiar with, instant oatmeal is usually packaged in paper pouches – not the best sort of thing for long-term storage. As always, I turned to my trusty vacuum sealer. Sealed up ten pouches to a bag, sealed ’em up in a bucket, and tucked ’em away. Until today. Let’s see what we got.10 year old instant oatmeal

Inspection tag says this was last inspected in 2011. I need to be a tad more diligent about this sort of thing. Every other year should be good. Surface of the bucket is a bit dusty, but that’s to be expected.inside the ten yeard old bucket of oatmeal 1

Spin off the Gamma Seal lid and the contents are clean and dry…as expected.inside the ten yeard old bucket of oatmeal 2

A dozen sealed ‘bricks’ of packages of instant oatmeal. Awaiting the day a hot breakfast is needed before a full day of hanging looters, manning barricades, killing zombies, and rescuing desperate-but-grateful coeds from cannibals.inside the ten yeard old bucket of oatmeal 3

The individual pouches kept their vacuum and everything appears good. No food smells, no insects, no nothin’.inside the ten yeard old bucket of oatmeal 4

Everything seems good to go. Contents of pouches aren’t caked together from moisture or anything else. Chalk up another win to the vacuum sealer.

Add some boiling water and…tastes just fine.

Without a laboratory I can’t tell what nutritional value (if any) might be, but I can tell you that calorically it’s all there. Some canned/dehydrated fruit, powdered orange drink, instant hash browns, powdered scrambled eggs, maybe a freeze-dried pork chop and you’ve got a pretty decent breakfast after the apocalypse.

This vacuum-seal and bucket combo is also how I store 4# bags of sugar and salt. Sugar, especially, works well in this. The vacuum sealing keeps all the moisture out so your bag of salt or sugar doesn’t become a somewhat useless hard brick…and it keeps the bugs out as well.

I’m always gratified when I get to put food-storage theory to the test…empirical data for the win.

This article was gladly contributed by Commander Zero and first appeared on Notes From The Bunker.

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Commander Zero
By Commander Zero March 6, 2017 13:25
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  1. Fullclip March 6, 15:02

    Nice job, and nicely written post. I am into a similar time warp experiment with Ramen noodles. The only added step I took was to place the packages in my deep freeze for 72 prior to vacuum packing. This kills any insect eggs that may be present any doesn’t cost anything. So far, I am into it for 6 years and they smell and taste just fine. Since I need a 20 year shelf life for my food storage plans, I’ll check them again in 5 or 6 years and post the result – if we are all still here.

    Reply to this comment
    • Lu March 6, 15:21

      The only problem with Ramen noodles is if you also use the seasoning packet. The high salt content is not what you need for survival. Yes we will need salt, but we shouldn’t be consuming 3 or 4-days worth at one siting. I used to take two packages of Ramen noodles prepare per instructions, then drain the noodles including and then add scrambled eggs (6-8 eggs) – makes a great meal for a family of four – and most of that unneeded salt will be drained off.

      Reply to this comment
      • Softballumpire March 6, 15:50

        I was curious as you said you drained the noodles, yet nothing mentioned about the next step for the water. In a survival situation, saving that water would appear to be a must. My tendency is to put it into a jar for soup base or the start of a pressure cooker full of chili. Pressure cooked chili made without added salt until the jar filling stage uses the discarded salt as well. Reducing the added salt before canning works well.

        Reply to this comment
      • PUNISHER March 6, 20:54


        Reply to this comment
      • RJ March 12, 23:54

        Why not just part of the seasoning packet? Just because there’s a whole packet doesn’t mean you have to use it all. Save what’s left and use it the next time.

        Reply to this comment
    • Della September 11, 15:30

      Herein lies the problem. Underground Land Shelves beneath the USA were solid, but recently have been buckling from continual activity. Firing of rockets from North Korea’s perhaps temporary Leader, can cause electric storms & earthquakes. Mountain countries, national forests & Islands have also registered tremors. We may not be in a bunker with heavy buckets, we may be doing the backstroke or clinging to debris in the middle of the ocean, if we live thru it, I suggest we carry belts and/or vests with pockets in sealed light weight plastic for sealed packs of chewable capsules or ampules of food & drink if none is available.

      Reply to this comment
    • Farmer January 15, 21:40

      Ramen Noodles … the mainstay of the college and recently impoverished by divorce crowd. I’ve got many 5 gallon buckets full …. just in case I have to feed the zombies. If you want a thrill, check out the video made by the pill sized M2A camera … a diet of Ramen may cause some gastro discomfort….

      Reply to this comment
  2. chris March 6, 15:23

    I recently opened a can of Yoders bacon I had in the pantry for over 10yrs. some friends were over one night we wanted to have breakfast and I had no bacon so I remembered the can we had more than enough for 6 adults and had some leftover for BLT’s later good stuff my friends could not believe it was that old and came from a can.

    Reply to this comment
    • PUNISHER March 6, 20:57


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      • left coast chuck March 7, 04:56

        I bought a can of bacon based on the glowing reports I had read of how delicious it was. I wanted to try it out before I popped for a case. I thought it was the greasiest stuff I had seen other than the wheel bearings on my boat trailer and the taste was indescribable. By that I mean I had never tasted anything quite like it. It definitely wasn’t a bacon taste in my opinion. I realize that tastes vary. I’m not really wild about stewed okra although some are crazy about it. I am not fond of Japanese natto which is fermented soy beans although for many Japanese it is soul food, so maybe others would find the canned bacon acceptable. As for me, I did not spring for the case of canned bacon. In a SHTF situation I will just have to shoot one of the feral hogs that are rapidly infesting Kallyforniya due to poor game management by the wildlife folks and property owners who think they are going to get rich charging exorbitant fees for pest elimination.

        Reply to this comment
        • Old prepper March 31, 05:16

          left coast chuck; FUNNY. SOUNDS MORE LIKE ,SPAM, THEN BACON. COULD IT BE?
          I have family in SANTA Rosa. Are you near that?

          Reply to this comment
          • left coast chuck August 16, 02:48

            Old Prepper: No, not near Santa Rosa. I have been going there the last 20 years for the Kendal Jackson Tomato Festival, but I don’t think I will make it this year.

            I live (if you can call it that) in the LA area. Scouting other states that are located in the United States so I can kiss the PDRK goodby.

            Reply to this comment
  3. 12AngryWomen March 6, 17:28

    “Awaiting the day a hot breakfast is needed before a full day of hanging looters, manning barricades, killing zombies, and rescuing desperate-but-grateful coeds from cannibals.”

    My favorite line!

    Also loving the sealed brinks in buckets concept which I will immediately incorporate into my bucket menu. Thanks!

    Reply to this comment
  4. Dar March 6, 18:29

    after you fill and seal your buckets, can you then store them in an old barn or shed? I have no room in this house to store any thig much.

    Reply to this comment
    • life long learner March 7, 17:57

      light, oxygen, temperature, humidity. These all play a part in the ‘life’ of food. With a barn or shed the temperature would be a factor. If it could be kept cool – shade tree, high roof-that would help. Light DOES permeate through the white buckets. You could use mylar bags with CO absorbers but place them in the white buckets also or the mice will get to them.

      Reply to this comment
      • Dar March 8, 00:36

        Thank you so much I thought you might say this but wanted to be sure.

        Reply to this comment
      • Prepping Mom March 10, 14:10

        I was wondering if you could vacuum seal powdered/dried milk the same way. I am just starting to prep and milk/sugar/salt are commodities that will be needed.

        Reply to this comment
        • life long learner March 19, 23:16

          I have HEARD that it’s not good to use a vacuum sealer on powdered items as some of the powder gets sucked up into the motor. Maybe some sealers have a filter you can clean?? On some powdered things that I have sealed in glass jars, I placed a coffee filter over the end of the tube before attaching it to the sealer-worked fine. Your best bet for milk is probably mylar bags with CO packets.

          Reply to this comment
          • thesouthernnationalist April 26, 20:02

            When I seal up powders such as dry milk, flour, ect.. I put them in a plastic bag first, then put that bag into the bag that I’m sealing so no powder gets into my electric sealing machine.

            Reply to this comment
            • Jesusfreak December 2, 15:05

              You need to be careful of the type of plastic bag you use in your storage. Some plastic bags leak chemicals that are part of the bag

              Reply to this comment
          • Red Ant klan December 17, 15:17

            Say life long leaner. Put you powder products in a zip lock bag. Put stuff in first bag then seal it then put a hole by the top. Then put in vacuum bag. Make sure hole is at the bottom and then vac it down. All so same with rough products. Hope it helps..

            Reply to this comment
          • Jugband December 17, 20:57

            It’s not the best idea to vacuum seal powders and liquids, in most machines, for the reason you mention.

            There are two types of sealing machines in which it doesn’t matter what you seal.

            One is a “chamber” sealer, where you put the bag in a vacuum chamber. A vacuum is drawn on the chamber where your bag is, instead of inside the bag itself.

            Prices for these sealers start at about twice the price of a regular Foodsaver, etc.

            Or, you can get what are called “snorkel sealers” which work fine for powders and even liquids, and cost about the same as normal sealers.

            Snorkel sealers don’t require specially-textured bags,

            You can seal flour, powdered milk, etc. in a normal sealer by putting the powder in a Ziploc bag with a couple of small holes in one side. Lay the side with the holes on the bottom.

            Keep in mind that flour and cereals like cream of wheat often contains weevil eggs, which will hatch even if the powder is vacuum sealed. After sealing such, it’s a good idea to freeze the sealed bags for a few days to kill any bugs, larvae, or eggs..

            Liquids and semi-liquids can be sealed by sealing them in Ziploc bags, freezing the bags, then sealing the frozen bags.

            Reply to this comment
            • MikeyW March 8, 20:48

              Ziploc came out a couple of years ago with 1 qt and 1 gal vacuum bags. Vacuum was drawn with a hand pump. They sold both a kit, with bags and a pump, and bags alone. I bought a couple of kits, and the hand pumps work well. I haven’t seen the Ziploc bags in a while, but Walmart sells similar bags which, in my opinion, are superior because they can be reused more times, and are cheaper. Walmart doesn’t sell a hand pump. They sell an electric one. For preppers, the hand pump is obviously superior.

              Reply to this comment
        • SUZYQ October 24, 00:47

          Hi There,
          Yes, you can vacuum seal powdered milk and other powdered items. HOWEVER, when I do this, I first place the product in a regular food safe plastic bag. Put that bag into the vacuum seal bag and seal it up. THat way non of the powdered product gets sucked out of the vacuum seal bag and no harm to your machine.

          Reply to this comment
        • Mississippi Mama June 19, 18:33

          I place dried milk in qt Mason jars then place a coffee filter on top of milk powder. I use my jar adaptors for my Food Saver. The filter prevents powder being sucked into machine. Jar adaptors come in regular and wide mouth sizes. Cheap on Amazon. Stores for years without issues.

          Reply to this comment
      • Farmer January 15, 16:15

        Hence the problem that I would guess 99% of preppers have: where to find 200 square feet of 55 degree, low humidity, dark real estate to store food. My air conditioned cabin rarely gets down to 75 degrees in the summer. The storage shed (where most of my rice, beans, oatmeal, and spices are stored) reaches 100 in the summer and 10 in the winter. I have no other choice! So far, the rice has not exploded and anything alive in the beans is dead. Has anybody actually solved the problem of storage conditions? I’d be happy to listen.

        Reply to this comment
        • Jugband January 15, 22:27

          The solution is to store food as you can inside the house with you. That is assuming that you don’t have means to putt in a 15-foot-deep root cellar which is the IDEAL one. Items stored 10 feet underground with a cover never freeze and never get very hot either.

          In my case, my South Texas house stays just under 80 degrees in summer because that’s the coolest I can afford to keep it, Still better than storing outdoors in a shed which would be 120 degrees or more, even with the very best airflow ventilation, coming in at the floor and out of the roof.

          But you can tear out all the sheetrock in the back of a closet then replace it with painted plywood secured in a way that makes it easy to remove.

          This will be no good for 5-gallon buckets and 1-gallon cans, but create loads of space of space for #10 cans, vacuum-sealed mylar bags, etc. You essentially have a made 3.5″ x 15″x 80″ closet in the back of your closet, and there will be two such spaces behind the plywood at least, more in a wider closet. Do that with every closet in the house. You can use pieces of 1×4 and small shelf brackets to break it up into shelves, or simply start stacking #10 cans from bottom to top.

          If you’re handy enough to make it look acceptably good, you can also carry that through to bedroom walls, literally sleeping behind walls of canned goods & bags.

          More easily, you can store 5-gallon buckets on a closet a closet shelf. OR/and, you can add closet shelves above the closet shelves in your house.

          Adding a shelf requires a level, a screw driver and a drill.

          If you can’t see where the original shelf is screwed into studs, add an electronic stud finder to the list. they aren’t expensive these days. Then add a few bucks in lumber & hardware

          Home Depot will even make two free cuts on each board you buy, so if you don’t want to simply buy MDF shelves material (which I wouldn’t do, for strength) or wire shelving (too much $$$).

          Save the original closet shelf for things you’d normally need to keep on a closet shelf, or use it for food, but you can probably fit another one or two shelves in above it before you run out of vertical space.

          You can also build furniture out of water cubes, stacking them into the shape of coffee tables, end tables, and sofas, then covering them with cushions and sofa-covers, etc. and plywood on top for rigidity.

          Personally, I picked up some 15-gallon food-grade barrels from a local barrel yard for $7 each, already steam-cleaned.Then I bought a blue drinking-safe RV hose to fill them with.

          These were formerly used to transport Dr. Pepper syrup to a bottling plant. Sometimes they have these same barrels that have used to transport fruit juices. The steam cleaning takes care of any residual smell/taste. My water sits outside in said shed, and if I need it in 5-6 years (or months) I’ll worry about the disinfecting that will be needed at the time I need it.

          I keep some potassium permanganate for that very purpose, in case I somehow can’t just boil it when the time comes.

          With some work, you have a lot more storage inside your climate-controlled house than you’d think…

          Reply to this comment
          • Farmer January 15, 23:17

            Thanks Jugband …. Here’s the facts: I live in a 400 sq ft cabin – open plan with one closet. I have 75 5 gallon buckets of wheat, rice, dried beans, dehydrated beans, coffee, tea, spices …. and 100 or so #10 cans of long life food, 120 or more #2 cans of veggies, soups, chili, tomato … the one closet is taken by 40 sq feet of shelving containing med supplies, water filters/purifiers and such. The one space under my stairs to the loft (about 50 sq ft is full of canned goods. The 5 gallon buckets take up half of a 14 by 30 foot dark and dry shed next to my workshop. That’s the place that goes through temp extremes. I guess I’ll be renting a backhoe and digging a 12 by 25 ft root cellar the year …

            Reply to this comment
          • SUZYQ April 30, 19:02

            Hi there, I’ve not known that you can use Potassium Permangante to make water safe to drink. Would you be willing to share the necessary steps taken to make water safe using this product?

            Thanks a bunch

            Reply to this comment
            • Jugband April 30, 22:38

              Filter the water first, if possible, then use 3-4 crystals per liter of water, until it turns light pink, then let it sit for half an hour.

              Watch this video:
              It has other uses, too; a stronger mixture can be used as a topical disinfectant for cuts, for instance.

              Mostly, Potassium Permanganate is good for campers and hikers. It’s very portable and can keep you in water if you come to a stream, pond, etc. For long-term water treatment, boiling is a better solution and distilling even better.

              I have a couple of stills, a 5-gallon that I use for whiskey and a small stovetop model that I got for about $100 on eBay to provide more convenience, primarily for making distilled water and low-proof rum & corn whiskey on the stovetop.

              I wouldn’t recommend distilling 100 proof or above alcohol in the kitchen, because of the fire hazard if a bottle should break or get knocked over.

              I keep potassium permanganate primarily because I live in the city, and long-term, might have problems finding enough firewood to keep me in boiled or distilled water.

              Purifying will take out bacteria, the main hazard with water after city water supplies go down, but there are other hazards that can be in water, which distilling will remove.

              You should watch this video:

              After that, search Youtube for “Potassium Permanganate purification” which will bring up half a dozen such videos in a heartbeat.

              Reply to this comment
          • SUZYQ April 30, 19:05

            Hi Jugband,
            I have a small bottle of POtassium Permanganate but didn’t know that it could be used to make water safe for human consumption. Would you please share the info that tells me how to use this product?

            Reply to this comment
            • Jugband April 30, 23:06

              Filter the water first, if possible, then use 3-4 crystals per liter of water, until it turns light pink, then let it sit for half an hour.

              That won’t necessarily make water safe to drink. It will kill all the bacteria, which is the main problem with “wild” water. There can be other health hazards in it, though. It won’t remove any chemicals or metals that may be there if there is any industrial pollution.

              If you have a bunch of food-grade containers full of tap water that has been stored for 10 years, though, it won’t contain anything but whatever bacteria grew during storage.

              If I don’t have wood to boil/distill it with, that’s when my PP will come into play.

              For food-grade containers, I went to a local barrel yard and bought a bunch of used 15-gallon drums that had been used to transport Dr. Pepper syrup, then steam-cleaned. Those cost me $7 each, and I bought others earlier that had been used for transporting concentrated fruit juices for dilution before going to grocery stores.

              The best option is to distill water, using a $100 still from eBay, if you know that you will have a long-term source of firewood within walking distance after SHTF, keeping in mind that everyone else in your area will be scavenging firewood also.

              However, you can draw sewage up with a bucket and distill it.

              PROBABLY, you could filter it well through layers of gravel and sand, then hit it with enough potassium permanganate or chlorine to make it drinkable (though not very palatable)

              Unlike chlorine bleach (which is mostly water), potassium permanganate won’t evaporate.

              Chlorine evaporates much faster than water, so if you pour out a bowl of chlorine bleach and let it sit for a couple of days, almost all the chlorine will evaporate out of the water.

              Chlorine bleach is no good for mold treatment for that reason. You paint a moldy board with chlorine bleach, then all the chlorine evaporates, leaving the water to soak in and nourish the mold deeper in from the surface.

              If you want chlorine-free tapwater, you can do the same thing.

              Let it stand out it the room in a bowl or skillet for 24 hours and almost all the almost all of the chlorine treatment will evaporate.

              Too bad flouride can’t be fixed the same way…

              Be aware that like bleach, a concentration of PP that is too strong can be toxic for drinking. Don’t mix it until the water is more than pink.

              Reply to this comment
        • Geno April 30, 18:46

          Calm down Della…… let me assure you that it’s not going to be Waterworld.

          Reply to this comment
      • MauMau K September 13, 22:25

        Storing ‘plastic’ containers outside [barn, garage, etc.] can lead to the little mouse/RAT critters chewing through the plastic. Careful where and how you store your plastic buckets. Maybe they’d fit inside metal cans??

        Reply to this comment
    • Old prepper March 31, 05:23

      Dar; one has to get creative, if you want food storage. I had my son, raise my night stands, and there is room for many# 10 cans of food, under that. Then you could do that with your bed. UNDER THE BED. A lot of my stuff is in my closet. Some is out, in an area in the bedroom. There are no basements where I live. All my storage I keep in the house, where it would have A/C in summer and heat in winter.No freezing. I made a coat closet into a PANTRY. It is hardly used anyway. I could never understand some people putting that food in their garage, when it goes to over 110 in the summer time! GOOD LUCK.

      Reply to this comment
      • Red Ant klan December 17, 15:23

        Say old prepper. In your closet remove the sheet rock and you can put crap loads of can goods there and then put it back up and you got more space and will be hidden also. I did it. Oya.

        Reply to this comment
    • Chaplain Tim December 1, 22:08

      Also if your in cold country consider what can freeze. Sounds like your on top of it! If you’re running out of room you have a great start. I know I had to rethink my priorities!

      Reply to this comment
  5. Wannabe March 6, 19:01

    Love his sense of humor

    Reply to this comment
  6. TFZ March 6, 23:44

    if you want a cheap way to remove the oxygen from the bucket, squeeze and drop in a hand warmer packet before you close it up (take it out of the package 1st). and line the bottom with (baked) cat litter first (4 moisture); “preferably clean”.

    Reply to this comment
    • Jugband June 5, 19:15

      Using hand warmers as oxygen absorbers is the next best thing to an Urban Myth. They WILL serve the same function, and in the same way, but their effectiveness falls far short of what you get from an actual oxygen absorber. They work, but don’t work nearly well enough. They stop working when the oxygen level is still high enough to allow bacteria, mold, and even insects can thrive in air over .1% oxygen. Boot warmers work better than glove warmers, but neither will get the oxygen level low enough to do any good.

      Reply to this comment
  7. kitty March 7, 08:40

    even if your sugar or salt gets brick hard, it’s still usable. use a grater to shave off however much you need.
    perhaps the same could be said for your oatmeal and such since there is little nutritional value to be compromised?

    Reply to this comment
    • Wannabe March 7, 21:40

      Thanks kitty

      Reply to this comment
    • Old prepper March 31, 05:31

      Kitty; correct. Since I live in the desert, things get dried out and I never have to worry about any of that. I did can, sugar one time. Opened it, 10 years later and it seemed a “little yellow”, but other than that, all was ok. I don’t know if I put any packets of drying power, in them? Dried pasta lasts forever too. At least here. Oatmeal is already instant. ONE does not have to buy that. I use about 1/4 cup of regular oatmeal. Put in some apple juice and nuke for 2 minutes. Add cinnamon, then a little milk.
      Instant oatmeal just has a lot of sugar, in it already.

      Reply to this comment
  8. Thomas Bradley March 7, 10:13

    I was Looking forward to getting a book, what happened? YOU say you want to help people Right? well I like to read , IT’s like a good steak you eat so you can saver the taste and remember it. not some erecorded info. so if you can get the book great to me grate let me know.thanks.

    Reply to this comment
  9. Wannabe March 7, 21:43

    Off subject a little. Somebody please tell me if Jim Bakker is legit this time or is he still a con artist? Seems to me he is trying to scare people into buying his products. A lot of prominent conservative leaders have been on his program. And has anyone bought any of his long term food? I hear it is terrible

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck March 7, 22:52

      You really have to be careful buying “long term food.” A lot of food is advertised as a 3-day supply or a 30-day supple and they list how many servings are contained in the bucket. The problem is that the “servings” usually run less than 350 calories. The average daily caloric requirement for an adult ranges between 2100 to 2700 calories per day for moderate activity. Strenuous activity requires more calories. Of course, that assumes that the calorie content of the “serving” is correct. When the seller advertises that the bucket contains a 30-day supply of food and the total caloric content of the bucket comes to 1100 calories per day, I then wonder about the accuracy of the caloric content of each packet. In any event, assuming that the packet content is correct and it actually contains 325 calories, 3 x 325 comes to 975 calories a day. Everything I have ever read about the Japanese POW camps and the SS concentration camps in Germany indicates that the caloric content of the daily diet was about 1200 calories. We all know how well that worked out for the inmates of those establishments. While you will not starve to death in 30 days on 1,000 calories a day, you will be significantly affected in your daily performance and mental abilities. As an indication of your daily caloric needs in a SHTF situation, MREs run between 3600 and 4,000 calories per day. Now these are designed for young men in combat, engaged in very strenuous activity, but it gives you some indication of what you might need per day. If you are fleeing to a safer area; if you are chopping wood and tending a fire, fetching water, engaging in a fire fight on the way back from your errands, fighting fires and all of the fun things a SHTF situation might entail, your caloric requirements are going to approach the 3500 mark. The next thing is what constitutes the calories? Thirty packages of Tang at 250 calories per package bumps up the calories count but doesn’t satisfy your hunger pangs. The same with white rice. Lots of calories but not so much food value. I don’t know how long it takes to develop beriberi on a mostly white rice diet, I suspect 30 days is not enough, but it is something to be aware of. So, the first thing I would do if I were considering any vendor’s “long term food” is to examine its caloric content. If it doesn’t reach at least 2,000 calories a day I would not purchase it. The second thing is, I would buy the smallest amount I could. I would check it for damage upon arrival and I would immediately consume everything in the package (over the course of however many days it is supposed to support). Then if it is palatable and you feel that the calories contained can meet your daily requirement, in that event I would purchase the supply that you feel you might need. Again, immediately upon its receipt I would check the contents for damaged packaging. I have read too many complaints about the internal packaging being damaged to ignore this vital step. After that I would try to assure that the temperatures that the packages were stored at were as moderate as practicable for your locale. While I don’t have much respect for Dr. Phil, some of his homilies do have some truth to them. The best indicator of future conduct is past conduct. Once a crook doesn’t mean forever a crook but . . .so with regard to Jim Bakker you are free to form whatever opinion you want. Unfortunately a great many “influential” people are whores for money and for public exposure. They will appear on almost any television show for the public exposure and the money. The first name that comes to mind is Bob Dole and viagra on prime time television. Maybe everyone is ok with that but I have a problem with the man I thought would make a good president getting on television and describing his sexual deficiencies to the world. You may be okay with that and that is your right. That lowered my opinion of Mr. Dole quite a bit. I felt sorry that he felt he needed money that badly.

      Reply to this comment
      • Wannabe March 8, 00:48

        That’s quite the reply west. Thank you for taking your time to talk to me. Good info to chew on. I don’t plan to buy his food, I just can’t bring my self to support him. It just surprises me to see people like Jerry Boykin, Or Mike Huckabee on there. That is what is making me wonder about how genuine he is. It is only by Gods grace and forgiveness we wake up every day to breathe life in this world. I don’t watch his show just what I have seen on Jim Bakker you tube channel. Their food looks disgusting but I hope someone can give me true insight into the matter just so I can know if this guy is fake or really cares about helping others. Thanks again for responding you are the first to have a conversation with me. I love the dialogue and interaction with those I have never met.

        Reply to this comment
        • Hey-you August 3, 21:32

          YHWH and His Word Never told you to trust Man…only to love them….He said to TRUST HIM and only HIM…..
          He is Coming Soon.
          A Friend

          Reply to this comment
        • Maggiebaby December 2, 01:45

          I have purchased Mr BAKKER ‘s food and so far he has been completely legit. He seems to have a real change of heart. Fortunately God forgives and Mr. BAKKER is trying to help us to be self sufficient.

          Reply to this comment
      • Wannabe March 8, 00:49

        Oops, I meant to say left not west

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      • MikeyW March 8, 21:01

        AMEN! Food 4 Patriots is another scam. I got their 72 hour emergency food supply. It consisted of four packets of freeze-dried stuff. Each packet, listed to contain four servings, was reconstituted with four cups of water. One cup provided between 200 and 350 calories. Not much of a meal! In addition, their chicken with rice did not list chicken as an ingredient, even though the picture on the packed showed chunks of chicken. It took months to get my $27 back. Anyone know of any legitimate sources of freeze-dried food that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg?

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      • MikeyW April 25, 18:41

        Food 4 Patriots is one of those scams, about 275-350 calories per one-cup “meal.” Their chicken with rice meal not only did not have any chicken, it didn’t even have chicken bouillon! It took over a year, but I did get a refund.

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    • tony fuckin z March 9, 13:52

      Don’t know about Bakker but you can do and get a lot more for yourself and for a fraction of the money! TFZ

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      • Wannabe March 9, 19:03

        I agree tony

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        • tony fuckin z March 10, 15:44

          Thanks Wannabe, one reason for my attitude towards these prepped storing meals is that people are so damn spoiled in this country, They can’t imagine what is coming. I was a mercenary for seven years. The things I saw made me and my fellow troops cry. Most of all The starving children. It’s not important to have perfect meals, with desserts! They just don’t get it. I used to teach wilderness survival during my 7 years in the U.S. military. I still teach it to my karate students. How “much” nutritious food is the important thing. I even used to sell “Wise” foods on the net, but I refuse to anymore. It’s good food but it costs a fortune, as do most of the others of its type.
          The average person can do so much better on their own with just a little learning and a lot less money. TFZ (

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          • left coast chuck March 11, 01:34

            Tony: Good move dropping Wise. It was their “30 day supply of emergency food” that got me checking content of the so-called emergency food business. There are some vendors who supply close to a day’s worth of calories for the number of days they purport, but lots more are so short on the food value of their emergency rations that it should be a prosecutable offense. In my opinion, when some company advertises a 30 day supply of food, I believe I am purchasing enough food that that supply will be all I need for 30 days less water. When the supplier tells me, “Well, when you have ravioli for dinner, you don’t just have ravioli, you have vegetables and milk and desert and bread.” Well, if I had vegetables, milk, desert and bread, I most likely would have a can of Chef Boyardi and wouldn’t need your dehydrated junk. I haven’t had experience with MREs, but I can tell you that C-rations provided a calorie rich main course, ham and beans, spaghetti and meatballs, chicken a la king with rice, sausage patties in gravy (ugghhh), peanut butter and crackers or jelly and crackers, hot chocolate, coffee, sugar and creamer, and the piece de la resistance, fruit cocktail or a can of pears or a can of peaches, sometimes pound cake. That’s one meal. That’s 1200 or more calories. Every meal was the similar. The caloric content was always a minimum of 1200 calories per meal, sometimes more so that you wound up with 3600 or more calories per day. A little short of fresh vegetables and roughage, but being slightly or even majorly constipated in combat is not a bad thing. Having diarrhea in the field or in combat sucks. It is not fun any time but in those circumstances, it really sucks. Fresh oranges and apples were supposed to supply roughage, but as you can imagine, they didn’t always get to their destination — for a variety of reasons, not always the fault of supply. If the truck hits a mine or gets hit with H&I that certainly is not supply’s fault.

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          • Wannabe March 13, 13:24

            With your experience, do you suggest some good manuels on survival? There are a million versions out there, I just want one or two that will be beneficial and not waste my time with bull crap. I am looking for good info on solutions to the hard times coming, survival techniques.

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            • tony fuckin z March 14, 08:14

              Yeah, one that I recommend to all my students is “Edible Wild Plants, A North American Field Guide” from Outdoor Life Books. Best I’ve ever seen! A tip, large Rat Traps, from Home Depot etc., are great for catching birds, Squirrels, turkey, even fish etc.. I spray paint them flat green/brown; drill holes in 4 corners; put wire in them to tie them down; Bait them with nuts, seeds etc. for whatever you’re after. Set up on edge for fish, in shallows, lube spring w/ veg. oil.
              Find a book on animal snares; most survival manuals cover “most” of them. I stock Oil & Vinegar; salt, oregano, pepper.
              TFZ (

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              • Wannabe March 14, 13:05

                Thanks tony I will check it out

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              • Wannabe March 14, 15:10

                Tony, one more question, who is the author? Want to make sure I get the book you are referring to. Some have almost the same title

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                • tony fuckin z March 17, 08:21

                  Authors: Thomas S. Elias & Peter A. Dykeman @ Outdoor Life Books
                  And Me @ TFZ
                  P.S. Your best “Fresh food” survival tools: the Rat traps (more the better, a good BB gun; Benjamin, 1 of the best!
                  (.177 cal.; NOT .22 pellet)NO Crossman or CO2 powered guns! Giant packs, copper coated BB’s-Walmarts, same as gun.
                  Lrg. Bags bird seed. A .22 rifle for larger stuff (10-22 Rugar or bolt action). (Ammo- .22 CCI Stingers for big stuff & people!) Use .22 shorts & BB caps for small stuff. I don’t know where you live but if you put just a few seeds out, the birds will come.
                  No Matter how many you get, 2maro more will come. Most of the BB’s you can recover when you clean them; Use Again.
                  No, I don’t like killing robins, jays etc.; I love’um all, but you’re trying to stay alive! Fire thru open window, BACK in room; No noise outside to attract attention. TFZ

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              • thesouthernnationalist April 26, 20:14

                Would mineral oil work better on the spring?
                Seems vegetable oil would become gummy after awhile.

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            • Left coast chuck March 20, 02:09

              Arthur Bradley, PhD has a good manual out. It is well reasoned. You re right, Wannabe, there are many manuals that are not much help. The one put out by National Geographic is okay if your bugout location is the Amazon jungle or the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro, but it goes into too many esoteric locales to be useful to Joe Prepper. Most manuals have at least a few good points in them, so except for some exceptionally bad ones that I bought, I can say that no manual was a total waste. Even the NatGeo had some good tips in it. I think it had the Morse Code which is very helpful to learn.If you and your team learn Morse Code, there is a good chance that not even the military will be able to figure it out for quite a while. Way back in the days of the PRC 10 and 25, I was in a Marine Reserve Comm company and every radio operator had to know Morse. Not any more, Baby.

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              • Zorro December 2, 15:34

                left coast chuck: morse code? Being an old military radio operator, I still know morse. Once it gets in your brain, it stays forever I think. Am not proficient, but could probably put out 15 wpm.

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          • 4evryorz October 16, 19:26

            You are right nothing we spoiled Americans have experienced can prepare us for what we may have to face in the future. We don’t even like to camp in tents or sleep on the ground much less live in one.

            It’s a challenge for me to think simple who cares if the food is boring if it’s nutritious and it keeps you alive.

            I remember the commercial that said one bowl of rice a day will make a man strong again. I’m not sure how accurate that is but it did make an impression on me.

            In many countries a bowl of warm oatmeal for the orphans is their daily ration when it is available.

            We have been abundantly blessed but I fear that is only temporary.

            We are a spoiled,indulgent generation.

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            • Bill December 2, 15:27

              4rvryorz: My military survival instructor told me that equal amounts of butter, peanut butter and honey will give you your daily nutritional requirements needed for your day

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          • Marmie September 15, 07:13

            Tony, with your experience, what is your opinion of home canned foods for SHTF situations? I can’t afford all that pre-packaged stuff, plus it has a lot of crap in it that doctor has said I can’t have. Thanks for your input.

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    • thesouthernnationalist April 26, 20:06

      Make pemmican for survival food, it lasts almost forever.
      This is what the american indians ate.

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    • Flattop December 2, 15:16

      I have 2 years of Bakkers food. He usto buy from a company in Utah,, but now his food comes from Augason Farms, a reliable company. The only problem with Bakker, you have to pay the freight. If you go straight to Auguson Farms, they sometimes have deals with free shipping.

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      • Farmer January 15, 21:10

        You can also find Auguson Farms products on …. shipping is free if you spend $35. Walmart has a variety of no. 10 cans as well as the buckets.

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  10. Alan March 8, 18:30

    Would like to know what kind of vacuum sealer you use and what would you recommend.

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  11. Liz August 3, 18:01

    No one has mentioned Potatoe Flakes in small sealed packages. Thickens gravy, protects eggs against breakage, extends pancake batter mix, can be used when making biscuits to save flour.

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    • Farmer January 15, 21:17

      Agreed Liz … I buy the “pure” potato flakes; not the ones that make instant mashed potatoes. Those often contain milk and other ingredients which will degrade quicker. Since the flakes come in a cardboard box, they go right to the vacuum sealer under a light vac. Should last longer than I have left on earth!

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  12. Ulfhednar. September 11, 15:16

    I would never touch that brand of oatmeal, it’s GMO. Other than that, great job, I had my first prepping experience with Irma, I didn’t have to bug in or out, however, but good practice, for should I ever have to, in fact, the bug out kit is still in my kitchen lol. Thank you for all your knowledge & advice!

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    • Spike December 5, 01:01

      Hhmmm! I’m a farmer and never heard of GMO oats. I’m not around oats specifically for making oatmeal though.

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  13. Edge of Sanity September 11, 19:01

    I have purchased those 72-hour packages (especially when they are free and just pay postage. Since I have them I found they lack protein so I have supplemented my stash with large cans of different meats. Also the dehydrator people show mixing your own “stew” or “pasta” packages by mixing the various individual items and sealing them. They are convenient, and especially powdered eggs with all the “trimmings” and then just dropping the resealed bag (after adding water) and dropping in boiling water is a great and easy camping idea too.

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  14. drnutt December 7, 16:00

    I use this food sealing system to segregate and store medical supplies- steri-strips, bandages, ointments etc., anything that I do not anticipate needing in the immediate future. Have also used it to store extra ammo, gun stocks. I have bags of sugar, bouillon cubes, salt, etc. also in same. Get 5 gal buckets from local restaurant…just hard to get the pickle smell out.

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    • Farmer January 15, 21:14

      What …. you don’t like pickle rice? It’s good. I’ve had the same problem with free buckets and found the only solution was to wash, rinse well and air out for a week or more. Definitely worth the trouble since buckets are around $5 to buy!

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    • SUZYQ April 30, 19:26

      We get our 5 gallon buckets from a donut shop. All of their frostings and fillings come to them in these buckets. They have no odor. The buckets used to be free, but now the owner charges $1. for each bucket.

      By the way, you can get rid of most odors by filling the bucket with warm water and adding about 1 cup of bleach, and then sitting in the sun for a day or two.

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  15. Labienus December 27, 20:36

    I don’t trust any food or drink that’s been left in a bucket for ten years.

    Reply to this comment
    • Proteus January 15, 21:34

      So what’s your other choice? FEMA, Red Cross, charitable neighbor? Properly done, food buckets are safe and reliable.

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  16. Graywolf12 April 30, 13:56

    It seems a lot of people do not realize that when the S hits the fan the odds are there will be NO electricity, so your A/C homes becomes a storage building, only larger, All rules are out the window, and we will need to eat what we can get. I guess I would even eat Tofu and Avocados if I was hungry enough.

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  17. Lil Redhead July 11, 19:27

    In regards to the oatmeal packets – did you put pin holes in each of the packets before “sucking” the air out, or does it matter? I read that that’s how to store them in Mylar with an O2 absorber, so I just wondered if you’d do the same with using a vacuum machine.

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  18. ageing artist August 22, 23:16

    How do you keep bugs out of Cream of Wheat??I practiccly live on this stuff but never heard of any problems.

    Reply to this comment
    • Farmer August 23, 01:30

      I lived on a boat for a while. First thing to go when I brought food in was any cardboard. Second, since it was damp, I’d repack the flour and grain items in zip lock bags or preferably vacuum bags and freeze them for a couple days. Most, if not all grains will arrive with weevil eggs … freezing should help. Also refrigerate between uses.

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  19. 72 yr old granny prepper November 8, 15:37

    I did receive 4patriots food and put it away. Now that I know their is no meat in chicken W/ rice I will dress this up with my home canned chicken and broth or any other meat dishes w/ beef pork ETC. thanks. Will not be ordering any more.

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  20. Sheepdog March 26, 01:45

    Potassium permaganate is a poison it is not used to purify water.

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