Inventory of Y2K Pantry : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I have heard general comments about what type of food to have in your pantry for Y2K, but no specific lists. Can anyone give a detailed inventory of what they are storing in their pantry to weather Y2K contingencies. Please state the size of your family you are storing for. Thanks

-- Donald Miehls (, August 20, 1998


One of the best lists I've seen is from "The Cassandra Project" website.Try this link and check their table of contents.

The Cassandra Project

-- Donna Barthuley (, August 21, 1998.

We are working on one month at a time because we can't afford to buy a whole years worth at a time. We aren't going the pre-prepared food or dried food route either except what I can dry myself.

I went to a site and downloaded a food storage plan that tells me aboutwhat I need per person of each food for however many days, but I found that to be unservicable for me, guess I'm a bit slow...:)

So I fell back on my weekly menu plans and grocery lists. I planned 30 days of menus - 90 meals. Most meals I repeated 5 times. Then I figured what I would need to prepare those meals, and made out my "grocery list" accordingly. I have the option of changing any months recipes whenever I want to before I purchase the food.

I used simple meals, healthy and balanced. Also I made sure they were meals that we were already used to eating. Things like beans, rice, cornbread, puddings, home canned soups, stews, beans, and meats. Canned vegetables and fruits and bread too. We bought our wheat early this month.

I go to the Sav-a-lot every week and get canned vegetables at .29 each, and to the Big lots and get pasta where it's .38 a pound. Flour, sugar and rice are cheaper by the pound at Sam's, and I buy other items off my list as I can afford them each week. I keep a running tab of what I have and what I need to complete the month's buying. We have 6 months so far. I keep copies of recipes and meal plans in a spiral notebook.

Hope you find something of help here, sylvia

-- sylvia (, August 21, 1998.

Once you decide to store some food, you will need to know what to do to keep it edible. is the best source for food storage info I have found yet.

-- Uncle Deedah (, August 21, 1998.

If the idea of a years worth of dehydrated survival storage food is too expensive or just not palatable to you, head to your grocery store!

Did you know:

Some items like Dinty Moore stew and chili, Spam and Starkist tuna will be good for 5 years. FIVE YEARS!

Progresso Soup, Comstock canned apples, Dole canned juices, Green Giant peas and corn can be counted on for 3 years.

Skippy Peanut Butter, Ragu Pasta sauce, Green Giant beans, Sweet Sue Chkn & Dumplings, 2 years.

All of these fit into a 1999-2000 usage window.

Factor in dry storables like pasta, rice and beans, and you could put together a lean one year food storage program from your grocery store shelves. Wouldnt be a grand diet, but I would take it any day over all but the best of the freeze dried stuff.

You have to date the cans and rotate them out. You have to store them in a cool place to get the maximum life out of them. And hundreds of cans will take up a lot of space.

But if you are nervously waiting for Waltons or any other survival food company to work through their six month back orders, I would hit the grocery store now and start to put 3-6 months of the above items into your storage. Thats what we did.

Some of our friends who would listen about Y2K would absolutely not consider a years worth of dehydrated storage foods, but would start working on a storage program based on items they could get every week at the grocery store.

Timothy Rebman

-- Timothy Rebman (, August 21, 1998.

Bless you - bless you all. I have been pulling my hair out trying to make sense of all the food storage lists here. Makes much more sense to just stock up from the grocery store, if they will last long enough. We are also diligently spending the summer canning and dehydrating, arts I haven't used in 25 years as a kid at home, but I figure if I practice this year on the produce from our small garden, then the large gfarden and what we barter for next year will come when I am comfortable with working with it. We are also filling up the 2 liter Diet Pepsi bottles I use with water and a few drops of Clorox bleach and storing them under the stairs. What am I missing?

-- Melissa (, August 24, 1998.

Just to add to Timothy's helpful hints, it's a good idea to learn how to read the dates on the cans. Dating them yourself when you buy them is O.K., but it's even better to see when they were actually canned. Most companys have a 1-800 number and will give you the info. For example, on StarKist Tuna look on the top of the can. You will see 2 lines of imprinted numbers. The 2nd or bottom line will read something like this: X083G StarKist uses letters to designate years. The letter G represents 1998, F is 1997, E is 1996 and so forth. The 083 represents the day of the year it was canned. This tuna was canned on the 83rd day of 1998- in other words March 1998, and has a shelf life of 4-6 years. I would certainly advise anyone who has purchased MRE's or freeze dried food to TASTE IT. You will probably want to get a whole lot more tuna, Ragu, etc. We did!

-- Gayla Dunbar (, August 24, 1998.

Plan to keep those canned goods above 33 degrees farenheit! If you live in a Northern climate and your electricity was off for even a few days, would your storage area freeze? Bye Bye canned goods.

Aunt Carolyn

-- Aunt Carolyn (, August 26, 1998.

Shelf life

-- Red Neck (, August 28, 1998.

Here's our detailed list for two (I don't have fixed amounts yet, just trying to do it as I can). We're also vegetarians which makes a difference in our list!

Rice Quinoa Pasta Oats cereal crackers popcorn dried fruit applesauce canned fruit bottled or canned juice baking powder flours of various sorts: self-rising, whole wheat, soy flour, white flour yeast nuts sugars: honey, refined sugar, sucanat spices & herbs baking mix OIL margarine chocolate bars energy bars and cereal bars salsa brown bread Cocoa, tea, coffee tofu  aseptic package and/or dried seaweed lentils vinegar soup, canned soymilk powdered milk canned milk powdered eggs jam PB canned veggies canned beans dried beans canned tomatoes sauce salad dressing ginger tamari  3 large mayonnaise ketchup relish and pickles mustard dried mushrooms jarred roasted red peppers

Good luck!

-- Anne Gilson (, September 12, 1998.

Besides the basic foods (water, rice, beans, tuna, etc.) I'm getting, among other things, lots of batteries, extra light bulbs for the flashlights and lantern, cigarettes, lighters and matches, baking soda, bleach, ammonia, alcohol and hydrogen peroxide, clove oil, antibiotics, paper plates/cups, plastic utensils. And because I'm sensitive to wheat, boxes of quinoa/corn pasta. If Y2K is no big deal, these are things I use anyway. Oh and, of course, an extra can opener.

-- Sandy, in So.Cal. (, September 13, 1998.

Don't forget a FIRE EXTINGUISHER, in fact, get several!

-- Dave (, September 13, 1998.

I have come to believe that much of the concern about y2k preparedness, while valid, is too narrowly focused and lacks securely placing it in the context of the globally collapsing credit bubble. If scholars and analysts such as David Hackett Fischer (The Great Wave:Price Revolutions and the Rhythm of History), David Barker (The K Wave:Profiting form the Cyclical Booms and Busts in the Blobal Economy), JD Davicson & W Rees-Mogg (The Great Reckoning and others), and Robert Prechter (At the Crest of the Tidal Wave) are close to the mark re an impending global economic contraction at least as bad as the 30s and probably worse, then discussions about making preparations for 3 days or one month or 3 or 6 miss the mark. Especially if the thot is limited only to: how long should I prepare for a Technologic Seizure - a few days? weeks? months?

I am not a member of the LDS, but their reason for a one year supply of food for the family is both theological and practical. If you lose your job or business, not having to worry about feeding yourself is a great stress reliever at such a time. Plus it means they have food to share with those less prepared because of ignorance or lack of resources. (Tho I gather that less than 20% of the Mormon community actually practices what their church teaches.But then how many of us practices everything we say we believe?)

If a global Depression is on the way, it may well be here long before the fall of "99. Y2Kimpacts will then be more in the nature of multiple kicks to a person when he/she is already down. Mix in the wild card of cyber terrorism from ememies foreign and domestic and you have all the reason in the world to 1) get started on both personal and community preparedness, 2) depending on your resources start with acquiring the resources to go for three days without access to power, water, food, banks, and stores and services in general,(This is an immediately achievable goal. How do you swallow an elephant? One bite at a time), 3) move on to three/six months preparedness and eventually a year's worth if you can.

If there is a Depression and y2k is bad, but not catastrophic you will have food. If not for your self, then for others. Food banks, church pantries, homeless shelters, etc. are always looking for food, so if there is neither a Depression nor a Y2K or Cyber-terrorTechnologic Seizure you can either give it away to those in greater need, keep it as a part of your unemployment /banckrupcy insurance, or eat it as necessay.

My forecast: we will get both and they will interact. It will be a period of ugly turbulence and it won't go away in a few months.

PS For those with time to read get a copy of the Fourth Turning by Stauss and Howe for a look at the social cycles of American history and their projections about what they project abut the near future unrelated to economics or technology.

-- victor Porlier (, September 27, 1998.


Good comments. Kinda makes me wonder why we don't keep a larger reserve in the pantry all the time. Short-sightedness, I guess.

-- Mike (, September 27, 1998.

There is a great book called Making The Best of the Basics by T. Stevens. It has a lot of lists of food. He has also written a follow-on book called Don't get Caught With Your Pantry Down (clever huh). Anyway, I really enjoyed both of them. The second book has sources for anything related to being prepared.

Check out my web page. I have a database there with my list of what you should store.


-- John Layman (, May 13, 1999.

In less bizarre and techno-reliant times a stocked pantry was the is how we are living at my house, Y2K or not,...our Y2K deep storage is an extension of the extended pantry. I hate grocery shopping...never relish (pun not intended, really....LOL) "going to the store". Living otherwise makes no sense to me, and in the event that there is no EVENT....or EVENT TIME...I will not be weeping in the street, crying,..."whatever will I do with all this food?"

-- Donna (, May 13, 1999.

Donald, Melissa, and others,

Basically what we did was meet our nutritional basics first. We are now adding the extras as money allows. The simplist list I use is found on the Morman Emergancy Preparedness web site at These amounts are for a years supply to sustain a 2300 calorie a day diet. This list is given as reference to bulk grains, but if you are obtaining your storage food at the grocery, think of it as 5 lbs of flour + 1 lb of spagetti = 6 lbs of your grain allotment.

  • Grains: wheat, rice, corn, or other cereal grains; (300 lbs/person). From the grocery store, this would be your flour, cornmeal, oatmeal, popcorn, pasta, egg noodles, ramane noodles, macaroni and baking mixes. To this, I add baking powder and soda, yeast, corn starch, cocoa, vanilla and pepper...just as basics. Herbs for flavorings, etc.
  • Nonfat dry milk: (75 lbs/person) Dry milk, canned milk, cheese and such.
  • Sugar or honey: (60 lbs/person) White, brown, powdered sugar, corn syrup, maple syrup from the store. *Think sweet!
  • Salt (5 lbs/person)
  • Fat or oil (20 lbs/person) Shortening, vegetable oil, margarine and olive oil, etc.
  • Dried legumes (60 lbs/person) Pinto, great northern, navy, lentils, soybeans, etc.
  • Garden seeds and of course water, 14 gal./person for two weeks and bleach.
  • Peanut butter fits into this list also, as I recall, but not sure of the perportions? Also, one must consider eggs, although not necessary for sustainance, but for variety/baking.

    Personally, from a grocery store perspective, I would add canned fruits, vegetables and tomatoe products, especially if gardening is not an option. And vitamins for the family most definitly; with respect to ages/requirements for each person. This diet seems awfully bland, and it is, but it will sustain life and once you have acquired these basics to the level of preparedness you are comfortable with, you can breath a sigh of releif and start adding the extras. Gravey mixes, powdered drinks, coffee, rasins, expanded herbal seasonings, cinnamon, chocolate, etc. depending on your personal preferences.

    We have lived this diet, pretty much exactly, in the past for an extended time after my husband was ill and out of work for about six months; we have been living it again now for almost two months, because it is cheaper and I also feel we needed an extended period of time for trial and error for oversights.(yes, we cheat...for mother's day I requested steaks and occassionaly I will pick up a loaf of bread (yeck) if I am too busy to bake, and gotta' have my Pepsi(tm) :-) We still use packaged cereals, and buy veges/fruits, as the gardening season has just begun. We also have about six months of ham/hamburger in the freezer in very small portions for soup and rice dishes. My grocery bill (food only) is $32 to 55 a week for items we use now; almost $10 of that is milk, and Pepsi(tm)...etc. The rest of my "grocery" money is spent on storage items.

    I know how boring this diet sounds, but alot can be made with the basics and a few extras. Pudding, desert cakes with powdered sugar frosting, cinnamon rolls, cookies and apple pies are a very welcome treat at our house...and all can be made from these stored goods with very few additions to cost and items to store. It DOES take alot of extra time and planning in the kitchen. 2:00 p.m. is no time to realize you didn't soak the beans yet for supper :-)

    A Food dehydrator is a wise investment, as well as canning what you can this fall when apples, peaches, etc are in abundance. If canning and dehydration is planned, add supplies for canning:lids, rings and an extra canner seal. For processing (these are my figures for three persons for one year) lemon juice (5 quart bottles), fruit freash (10 pks.), vinigar (8 gallons), canning salt (50 lbs), and extra sugar, haven't figured yet...about 50 lbs more? Also we have rabbits, chickens and getting goats again; but still planned on above list, minus alot of the dry milk, but not all, and alot more (150 lbs) salt for game/meat preservation w/o electricity.

    Long ago I decided on a menu plan of 10 days, as was mentioned above, planning the "meals" in ounces and portions. Took an amazing amount of time, but I was "out of commission" for about a month so...anyways, amazingly, by the menue plan, buying from the grocery, the grains for example came out to 930 lbs (as the above recommendation would be 900 lbs for three people). My sugar figure was low, but my husband is a diabetic, and the 5 lbs of iodized salt, I feel, is abit low...more like 8 lbs/person; and we continue to stock rice and beans and flour well above the recommended levels as a hedge against pet food shortage (I can store alot of extra beans/rice, but no room for 25 lbs of dog/cat food...and I can eat the beans/rice in a pinch (sorry kitty).

    Hope this has helped somewhat. As I have said before, if my family had to depend on me to feed us milled wheat/corn, I fear we would starve with a full pantry. Don't be discouraged if you are not an expert in the baking/cooking skills. Goodness knows, I am a VERY bad cook/baker. I believe (if we would all admit it:-) there are times, when cooking with stored foods, we open the oven and stand in wonderment at what sort of a mess this wheat/rice/bean/sugar or what have you concoction is being presented to us...and like it or not this is our ONLY supper option :-) Plan using items your family likes and will eat. Shop sales and buy in bulk. I went to all of the groceries in our area initially and priced all of the items on my list. If a name brand flour that is usually $1.39 is on sale for $.79, when you are getting 100 lbs, the savings is termendous. Make a plan and trust your can do it! :-)

    -- Lilly (, May 13, 1999.

  • Here's a link to a document about a basic, no-frills guide to emergency food and water supplies...

    -- Kevin (, May 14, 1999.


    You are a jewel! Such wonderful advice/testimony. And I don't believe for a second you are a bad cook/baker. :-)

    Best Wishes,

    -- Bingo1 (, May 14, 1999.

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