It’s time for another update on our Quarantine Food Storage Challenge. Two months ago we decided that we would eat from our food storage during the pandemic both to avoid going to the grocery store and to see what it’s like living on our food storage. We’ve always been taught to have short- and long-term food stored on hand and have followed the practice since we were first married nearly 15 years ago.
Thankfully we have never had to rely on our food storage due to a job loss, natural disaster or anything else. So while we have food storage, we know that having and using food storage are two different things. So we wanted to give it a try and learn from our experience so we can improve and help others learn in the process.
For the past two months I’ve been showing you what our meals each week look like. You can find all of the Quarantine Food Storage Updates here.
Today’s update is going to be a little different. At the beginnig of this challenge I gave you an in-depth look at our pantry, food storage, deep freezer, and fridge. Together we took inventory of what I had.
I wrote down everything we had, well at least the long-term food storage things, home-canned produce, and pantry staples. I wasn’t quite as thorough on things like pasta or canned goods.
Taking a Food Storage Inventory After Two Months
Now that we’re two months into our challenge we took inventory again to get an idea of how much we have used and how much we still have left. Doing the calculations wasn’t as easy as you’d think for several reasons. First, I can’t remember if I took into consideration the pantry containers of flour, sugar, oats, etc. that we eat from (then refill from food storage buckets).
More importantly, the sizes of our various buckets and food storage containers vary. Some are measured by weight, others by volume. Some were filled by others, some were filled by us. I took the original inventory by roughly counting container sizes. I had a column for tallying #10 cans and a column for 3 gallon buckets since the majority of our food storage is in those sizes. But there are lots of other containers too. So I end up with “That looks like about a 3 gallon bucket… that one is bigger, so I’ll count it as double…” and “This says 50 lbs and it looks like about what would fit in two 3 gallon buckets, so two tally marks for that.”
All that to say that it wasn’t very scientific or mathematical the first time around. Now that I want to see exactly how much we used, I’m kicking myself for not being more thorough. So what we have is an estimate. But it still tells us a lot!
What We’ve Learned About How Long Our Food Storage Will Last
We went ahead and weighed some of the long-term food storage to get an idea of how long it would last at our current rate of use. For reference, we have a family of 8, but one is a 6-month-old who is mostly just breastfed.
In the video below, I share more details about how much we used of various thing and how much we have left. Here are just a few concrete examples.
We have used 30 lbs of powdered milk so far. We have another 130 lb of powdered milk. At our current rate of 15 lb of powdered milk per month, our remaining supply will last us about 8.5 months.
I was super curious about how much wheat we used versus how much we still have stored. We used around 160 lb of wheat in the past two months. We still have 1,200+ pounds of wheat stored. At our current rate of 80 lb per month, our food storage of wheat will last us well over a year.
Another look into our pantry, food storage, freezer, and fridge
In the video below, we’re going to take another look and see how our food storage looks after we’ve been eating from it pretty much exclusively for the past two months. While we haven’t gone to the store or done grocery pickup, I have ordered a few things here and there as I’ve mentioned in past updates.
Watching the video is the best way to get an idea of what we have in our pantry, food storage, fridge and freezer. You can use the little gear icon to turn up the playback speed if you want.
We’re still carrying on with our challenge and we haven’t pinpointed a specific end date yet. I will keep you posted!
How about you?
If you didn’t go grocery shopping for two months, what would you miss most?