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Tips on how to begin a food storage for emergency preparedness

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SALT LAKE CITY — With all the recent flooding in Utah, many families and individuals are starting to question their emergency preparedness. Each Tuesday of September, tips will be given on how to be ready for any emergency.

Many people don't keep their shelves completely stocked- which isn't a problem until they can't leave their home during an emergency. One Utah woman provided tips on how to manage and utilize a good food storage.

Shandra Madson is ready for any situation. She keeps a three month supply of food for her entire family in her basement.

"A month doesn't go by that I don't purchase something for my food storage," Madson said. "It relieves a lot of stress during hard times because you know you have a way to feed your family and your children."

Madson started her own food storage 13 years ago. She recently put it to good use when her family's monthly income was cut in half. But it's also something she uses on a weekly basis.

"If you're just storing it and not using it, then it's a waste of money," Madson said.

Madson buys everything on sale and uses what she has and then replaces it as needed. With her food storage process nothing goes to waste and she is continually prepared.

Don Pectol also benefited from family utilizing a good food storage system. His northern California town was almost completely destroyed by the great floods in 1964. He survived with his grandmother's food storage.

"My grandmother had put on a meal from the bottom food of meat, vegetables, fruit, everything," Pectol said.

How to Begin a Food Storage:
  1. Stock up on a 2 week supply of water.
  2. Work on a 3 month supply of food (look at what your family eats and begin there.)
  3. Buy items for the "long run" such as grains, oats and flours.

His grandmother's preparation inspired him. He's been in the emergency preparation business for most of his adult life, and the four Emergency Essentials stores in Utah are dedicated to keeping your belly full in any disaster.

Many people feel overwhelmed in starting their own food storage supply. Madson says to start small.

"They don't know where to start but they realize that they just need to start with something," she said.

The easiest way to begin is to set aside a few items each time you grocery shop. Little by little your pantry will fill up and give you that feeling of security.

Madson says grocery stores have a big sale in six month increments. September is one of the sale times which makes it a great month to begin your food storage.


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Devon Dolan


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