I wanted to start this series by explaining what (in the humble opinion of me) the basics are. Sometimes a project or goal seems incredibly overwhelming. Food storage, provident living and emergency preparation are often things that fall into overwhelming territory. One reason to stick to the basics is the power of focus. Dave Ramsey calls it gazelle intense. Steven Covey calls it a flight plan. Who ever you would like to emulate in the world more than likely has incredible focus. So, if you want your food storage program to be successful, FOCUS. There are some guidelines to how to narrow this down. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints lists these items as important for focus:
I agree with this order and would include a 72 hour kit as part of step one. Short term needs should be the primary focus for a first timer. As you increase these short term goals the others will follow naturally. For example, once you have a three month supply and are living on it and rotating it, your grocery budget should be very stable and predictable. This step can lead to an increase in money to add to your financial reserve.
Another important component of provident living is that it is...living. It isn't a one time event. It is an everyday part of life. However, that seems like an enormous challenge when beginning. Breaking even the first steps into smaller parts is a way to give the process time to "take." If you want to be prepared in an emergency then you should have regular meetings with your family to practice and prepare. This makes the plan become real. Slow repetition over time creates habits. So, for instance, when you are working on your three month supply it should be slowly. Incorporating storage items into your weekly menu plan is a way to not only rotate your food but make it a part of life. Also, keep it simple. We think we have to eat all complicated, but we don't. Simplifying your meals can be very rewarding, healthy and cost effective.
Here are some more places of inspiration:
Lentils and Rice
3 steps to starting a home storage program
Food Storage Made Easy