emergency food kit

Emergency Food Kits: The Ultimate Guide

Being Prepared For Any Situation

The worsening climate crisis is making the risk of being hit by a natural disaster substantially higher, which means that everyone should be prepared to evacuate with little or no notice. By being prepared, you’ll stand a higher chance of protecting yourself and your family.

In this handy guide, we’ll discover what natural disasters are and why they’re increasing in frequency, what an emergency food kit is, and the items you should include. Let’s dive in.

What are Natural Disasters?

The United States is extremely vulnerable to major natural disaster events. While some countries experience just one or two types, the size of the US means that all varieties of natural disasters occur. Winter storms, floods, tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires - they’re all happening regularly.

The frequency of natural disasters is increasing as a result of the climate emergency, with a record number of billion-dollar disasters striking the US in 2020. It’s not just the US either - all countries worldwide are experiencing heightened risks of natural disasters.

What is An Emergency Food Kit?

They say that chance favors the well-prepared, and this motto should act as the driving force behind preparing your emergency food kit. Survival food kits should contain all the food and drink that you’d need if you were forced to flee your home at a moment’s notice. With most natural disasters happening quickly, and some happening without any warning, it’s important to have portable emergency food supplies.

Official government bodies recommend having enough transportable food to last at least three days. Remember that you’ll need 72 hours’ worth of food and drink for every member of your family, including your pets. You’ll need enough food for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Depending on how much you can carry or transport, you may opt to put more than three days of food and drink supplies in your emergency food kit. Anywhere up to 14 days’ worth is best practice.

What to Include in an Emergency Food Kit

The items in your emergency food kit need to be able to weather any storm. Light to carry food and drink is desirable, especially for those of you without a vehicle. If you have a vehicle you’d use in an emergency, pack your food and drink in bags that will fit in your boot and as foot storage under your seats.

Adding fresh or frozen food to your emergency kit is a big mistake because it will become unsafe to eat after a short time and there might not be anywhere that you can cook frozen items. Foods need to be transportable, shelf-stable, and lightweight.

The food in your kit should include all the nutrients you need to keep you healthy while you wait for the natural disaster to pass.

We recommend that you include the following items in your emergency food kit.

  • Clean drinking water - to keep you hydrated and alert.
  • Canned vegetables - to avoid needing to carry fresh vegetables which may go off.
  • Crackers - due to them being incredibly light.
  • Dried fruit - because fresh fruit would take up much more space.
  • Freeze-dried meals from Mountain House - because they’re packed full of calories and nutrients to help keep you moving.
  • Canned soups - because they’re easy to carry and stack.
  • Canned and dehydrated meats - because of their high protein content.
  • Protein bars - because they’re easy to carry and contain lots of protein.
  • Cereal or granola - due to their lightweight.
  • Shelf-stable foods from Augason Farms - because they’re nutritious.
  • Baby food and pet food - if applicable to your specific circumstances.
  • Treats - because fleeing a natural disaster is stressful and packing treats for yourself and those you love will ensure everyone remains upbeat and motivated.
  • A can opener - while not something you can eat, you might need this for some of the canned vegetables and soups.
  • How to Heat Canned Foods
  • During natural disasters, it’s common for the electricity supply to be cut off; this means you wouldn’t be able to heat canned foods in a microwave or on a hob. Fortunately, there are alternatives.

Remove the label and open the can before heating. Place the can over a fireplace, candle warmer or camp stove and heat until ready to eat.

What Else to Include

Alongside food and drink items, you should pack the following items too.

  • A flashlight.
  • A wind-up or battery-powered radio with spare batteries.
  • Maps of your state and the wider country.
  • A cellphone and charger.
  • Money.
  • Essential medication.
  • A list of emergency contact numbers.
  • A fully-stocked first-aid kid.

If you're going to be camping anytime soon, ensure you pack the essentials.