Hi all. I am new to storing food, and I was hoping ya'll could tell me if I am doing this right. Here are the steps I am taking:
1) take dry goods such as beans and rice and seal them per serving size with my vacuum sealer.
2) put those vacuum sealed goods into a mylar bag.
3) put oxygen absorbers into the bag along with the vacuum sealed foods.
4) seal the mylar bag with an iron.
5) put mylar bag into a 5 gallon food grade bucket, along with a list of what is in there
6) store these buckets. . . Well,this part I am not sure about. Right now the only room we have to put these things is on a covered porch. Does that work?
I would appreciate any advice! Thanks all!
First of all let me say you are doing the most important thing correctly and that is being aware and willing to take action on food storage in the first place
A+ for you. Now if your anything like me your head is going 90 miles an hour with what and how to do. I was making myself crazy afraid I wouldn't do it right. Now I realize the basics of what people were telling me.
There are many ways to get it "right" when it comes to beans rice and such. Some depends on your individual location, weather, needs & finances. So general rule of thumb is Keep food Dry, Keep away from light, Keep vermin out, Try to maintain an even temp the best you can. Extreme highs and lows up and downs humidity can shorten the shelf life. Some will say you have to keep the air out as it will turn your food bad faster. Personally if you are storing dry goods the only way I think that it matters is if you live in a highly humid area.
However you are doing those things you are storing correctly.
I have spoken with several people from Philippines and Japan (high rice consumption) They all laughed at the trouble I was going to. They all said just throw the bag up on a shelf as long as rats an mice can't get to it will last for 25+ yrs. A bucket would be fine. But not really necessary. That's what led me to the conclusion that I was going over board. But to each his own.
The other important thing you need to do is have the skills to cook the food you are storing. Hence the "store what you eat and eat what you store." Long term food storage is no different. Unless you just want to store some to give away in a SHTF event.
How I have stored some rice is in 1/2 gallon jars vac sealed. 5 gal buckets with o2 in them. Just filled the bucket and threw in a packet sealed the bucket with a lid that has a gasket on it. Some of the buckets I have have a "Gama" lid. That is a lid that you can just spin off and open easily. I have 2 5gal buckets with rice that way. We eat a lot of rice on a regular basis so that works for me. I have also done the mylar bag thing in the buckets. Those go in a bucket that I was not sure was food grade. I also treat dried beans and lentils pasta the same way. (some with o2 and some without)
In the car I have some rice in serving size portions that have been vac sealed. I put the rice in a lunch sack sized brown paper bag with some dehydrated assorted veggies and some seasonings. Folded the bag up as flat as I could then put the entire thing into a vac seal bag and sealed. Store those in a water proof plastic ammo box. With sporks and foil taped to the lid.
You also will want to consider how heavy your buckets are. Should you have to pick them up to go can you carry a large full bucket. Some bucket I have are smaller with a mix of assorted thing that are vac sealed. That way I can just grab one bucket and go. Or by opening just one bucket I have a variety of food that we can eat. That will prevent me from having to open several large buckets at a time.
I store some of my buckets in the house we have a spare room that I have turned into a pantry. I also store some buckets in out buildings. Those I do put in mylar bags and use O2 in. Because of all the rain we get. I also cover them with a tarp just in case the roof leaks. Before that I had buckets in the back of closets on the back porch. I also had square Rubbermaid containers under the bed and in the closet. Can good behind the couch. Well you get the idea.
The only thing I can say without a doubt is do NOT put and O2 absorber in with sugar. What you will get is a very large rock. If you store salt you want to keep it dry dry dry. In an air tight container. I didn't and what I got was a mess that looked like melting snow. The salt absorbs the moisture from the air. The bottom of the bucket was full of water. Now you can dry it back out again. I did that in the oven on low. For the time it took to dry and the energy I just threw the rest of it out. Now I store in small bags vac sealed in vac sealed jar. Will open one around christmas time to see how it did.
Hope that helps just my 2 cents of what I have learned and do.
PS I think it was Steve Harris that said you can just put the bags of stuff in a inexpensive rubbermaid container and the silicone them shut. Maybe put duct tape around the edges too.