A successful prepper knows the importance of managing their survival supplies and keeping everything organized. Many businesses use an inventory management system to store their products because they know the importance of rotating products in a timely manner. Without having a proper organizational system, items will not be found, misplaced and expire past their shelf lives.
How to Organize Survival Supplies
Short and long term food supplies should be placed in a safe and dry spot. Many people who feel they do not have adequate space for a food supply make use of unused wall space and create shelving units to use as their storage area. Another method is to use unused closets or rooms. As long as the space is dry and large enough to store foods, it can be used. Additional shelving units can be purchased to accommodate larger food supplies.
- Take all items off the shelf and sort items into categories. Sort items for needs such as baking supplies, breakfast cereals, canned goods, medical supplies, bartering/charity, etc.
- Store items next to one another that are used together. For example, keep baking needs such as flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, etc next to one another for easy access.
- Place goods with the longest expiration date in the back and work forward to the closest expiration date.
- Have a Inventory Management spreadsheet or listing system. You can find some good ones here and here. Keeping an inventory list of foods that have been purchased and adding to the list when more items have been purchased will provide a well-rounded supply. Categorize the inventory into sections such as items for baby, baking, water/beverages, cleaning, condiments, 72 hour bag, emergency supplies. The Prepared LDS Family, has a thorough suggested inventory organizational method that would be helpful for those starting out.
- The food storage inventory should be checked every 6 months to make sure that food items are properly rotated and are used within their expiration date.
Managing Your Inventory
Many find that stored food is convenient to have in their home. When they need a can of food, they go to their storage supplies and use it. Storing food is a continual process of using, rotating and resupplying. If a short term food supply is bought, the food must be used and more food purchased to resupply the storage shelf. Additionally, if any food is canned or jarred at home, a storage area can also be used for these goods.
Guidelines for Food Storage:
Use within 6 months:
- Powdered milk (in box)
- Dried fruit (in metal container)
- Dry, crisp crackers (in metal container)
Use Within 1 year:
- Canned condensed meat and vegetable soups
- Canned fruit, fruit juices and vegetables
- Ready-to-eat cereals and uncooked instant cereals (in metal containers)
- Vitamin C
- Peanut butter
- Hard candy and canned nuts
May Be Stored Indefinitely (in proper containers and conditions):
- Vegetable oils
- Dried Corn
- Baking powder
- Instant coffee, tea and cocoa
- Non-carbonated soft drinks
- White rice
- Bouillon products
- Dry pasta
- Powdered milk (in nitrogen packed cans)