On this page we give a you a very quick overview of some essential information you will need to be prepared, everything from how to do food storage to debt advice. Please be advised that the information contained in these pages is the opinion of EFS LTD and should not be taken as literal.
Please seek professional advice for further clarification. In addition to this overview it would be a good idea to check out the other links with have on our information page as these are high quality websites that specialise in a huge range of emergency preparedness.
Emergency Preparedness Dude - disaster prep and recovery
21stCentury Food Storage & Water Storage - Freeze dried, dehydrated food and water storage for emergency preparedness.
The Ready Store - Where America Goes To Get Ready
Storage Guide: Food Safety - The storage life of foods.
Rotational Method:- If our products are not for you and you have the time to put in the planning and effort then the food Rotational Method is a good choice. Follow these rules to have a store of food in your home that you can also use every day.
Think of your weekly shop and how many items you use in a week; in order to have an adequate year’s supply of food you will need to times that by 52. If you are like us and wander where to put everything each weekly shop, then imagine how your going to store 52 times that amount. You will need to become creative and organised, remembering where everything is hidden around the house and making sure that it is easy to access and replace when needed.
Of course you could always bulk store your food storage and we supply all the products to help you do it.
Food storage can often be used to make furniture out of. People have used small stacks of tins to be used as a lamp stand or a bed side table, it just needs a mdf top and a table cloth to hide the contents and you would never know it was food storage.
For those of you that are very passionate about food storage, then canning your own food could be the answer. This is a skill that has been lost in recent years but your mother or grand mother would of been all to familiar with this method. It was common to pickle foods and make jams and chutneys for long term storage. Please look at this link to find out more on canning for yourself. http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/publications/publications_usda.html
Most wheat, corn, barley etc can keep for up to or even over 30 years if packaged right. These should be stored in air tights clean containers with oxygen absorption sachets placed inside. Alternatively it can be stored in Mylar bags with a oxygen absorption sachets inside and heat sealed shut.
These can be stored in the same way as wheat. And can last a very long time. Most vegetables can be dried and stored, however, unless it has been freeze dried some of the nutritional value will be lost in the drying process. Legumes and pulses can also be stored in this way, and they can be bought from most large supermarkets already dried. For home drying a dehydrator is an essential piece of kit, however they can be expensive to buy and use.
Grow Your Own Food:
This is the ultimate in food storage. To grow your own fruit and vegetables,and in some cases rear chickens. If you have a garden, flat roof, patio, or balcony, you can grow some great tasting veg for yourself. It is much easier than you think, but it does need a little more of your time to make sure they have enough water and are weed free.
Growing fruit or veg in the garden is easy, you just need some soil so dig out a small veg patch from your lawn (after all you cant eat grass). A nice sunny spot should be best. Next is to cut some wood to edge the Veg patch and raise it slightly from the lawn. After that, mix in plenty of compost from your composter or from your local garden centre. Try to remove all weeds and roots from the patch as you go. You are now ready to plant. Potatoes are easy to grow but take up a lot of space to to their larger leaves. Runner beans, peas, carrots, broccoli are all easy to grow but must have their own space.
This means don’t put carrots in with potatoes and expect them to grow. The potato will block out there light and use most of the water.
Plant potatoes by making a 1ft trench then layering fine compost in the bottom. Next, place some potatoes in the trench evenly spaced out. The potatoes should of started to sprout already. Now cover the potatoes with more compost, then soil over the top. You will find that very quickly, the shoots will be seen and they will grow into big green leafs with a thick stork. Although be aware that this plant is easily damaged and can contract diseases. The potatoes will be ready when the leaves start to die off. If you place a fork into the ground, you should hopefully find lots of potato bulbs ready to eat.
Carrots: These are more difficult to grow and almost never look like the ones in the supermarkets. To grow them you need to sow the seeds in a propagator until the shoots have started to show. When they are 2 inches tall you can transplant them into the ground with lots of compost. And then begins the waiting game,the longer the better.It is worth being aware that they need harvesting before the end of October to avoid them dying due to cold
Growing veg when i don’t have a garden?
Potatoes will grow in boxes and tubs as long as it has good drainage and compost and light and water and is deep enough. Just get a deep plastic box, put holes in the bottom and put some course grip in the bottom, then fill ½ way with compost, plant the shooting potatoes in at this point then cover with the compost so the box is ¾ full, and water well and often. Potatoes like water. When you start to see shoots cover them with some more compost this will mean the potatoes are growing where they should and not rising to the surface. Harvest when the leaves begin to die.
Family action plans
Family action plans are something that are essential to your family. For example, the UK fire service recommends that all family’s know and practice how they will escape their home in a fire. Planning is the key to remaining safe and secure.
Fire: Your home should have doors that will last from a few minutes to up to half an hour to effectively keep the fire out. All homes should have an escape window that opens wide enough to get out. If not you can break the window carefully. If the window is double glazed the week point of the window is in the counter. Use something heavy to break the window there. It is worth using sheets or blankets to cover the window and broken glass. Should you need to jump, try to lower yourself down so your dangling with your hand holding the window then drop, you will be surprised that the drop isn’t that far. Above all remember to keep a clean head, call for help and if you need to move in the dark or smoke use the back of your hands to feel the way.
Flood: if your family lives in an area known to flood make sure you have access to sand bags and are able to move most of your belongings upstairs. Remember flood water moves quickly so speed is everything. Remember to turn all electricity off and the main switch.
This can happen at any time to anyone; life is a funny thing and can quickly turn. If you live your life without debt, and have some saving you’re going to be in a better position. Always have some cash stored in the home in a safe place, A jar or sock draw is not a safe place but somewhere you’re never going to be tempted to use it unless that critical time arises.
Death of a loved one:- this is a very difficult area however if your prepared you can make it a much easier transition. It is important to have a will and let your family know where it is. Make sure all your financial obligations, insurance and other important documents are in a safe place and easily accessible. To often we use a filing system that only we know about. If something happened and your family have to sort through them will they understand? Make sure that finances are available for funeral expenses typically you will need about £3-4000 for the funeral. You can get insurance that can cover that cost but your family must know how to access it. Alternatively you could plan and pay for everything in advance leaving your loved ones with minimal hassle during a difficult time.
72 hour packs: these are bags that have everything you need for 72 hours in a emergency. We all think nothing will happen to us, and mostly its true, however sometimes we are thrust into situations that require immediate action. For example its 2am and you here a loud banging on the door, you go to open it and find a police man telling you, you have to leave now not time to pack. If you have a 72 hour kit bag that easily accessible you won’t have a problem. This should contain food, clothes, water, money, a sleeping bag, and any medications you need, contacts etc, copies of id such as passport or driving licence. This should be kept where it is easy to grab in a emergency and should be kept up to date with anything that can perish
Unfortunately it has for too long been far too easy to get into Personal Debt. There is also a large common misconception of the notion of affordable debt. It is worthwhile remembering that debt can only be affordable if your circumstances remain consistent and do not see change; this is a risky gamble to take as one can never truly know what is waiting around the corner whether it be sickness, redundancy or any other financial emergency that quickly plunges this once affordable debt into a soon very unaffordable one.
The Killer That Is Debt
Interest will be your constant and unwelcome companion while in debt, a companion that has the added disadvantage of one that never sleeps or takes a break, and can quickly turn even the most affordable debt into a costly liability. Our advice would always be to live within your means. If you can’t afford, then it don’t buy it. We live in a buy it now culture and have lost the art of saving for something, mending a broken item instead of simply replacing it, or even just putting something aside for a rainy day because they come and sometimes when they do, it can be a monsoon. For some debt is unavoidable, in these last resort cases chose your debt carefully. Use low interest options and shop around to get the best deals and remember give serious consideration to what you can realistically afford.
We believe that the best way to think about compound interest (the interest of debt) is to imagine it very much like a snow ball rolling down a hillside. It can start small, much like a £100 purchase, but very soon, like a snowball increasing exponentially in size while rolling down the hill, it can become almost unstoppable.
Next time you reach for the credit card why not spare a thought for the snowball and remember how dangerous compound interest can be and how quickly it can get out of control.
So what to do if your in debt?
Ok, so some of us are already in debt and need a way out. Although we are not financial advise experts we believe there are some core practical things that you can do, today, to start the process of getting yourself out of debt. Please be aware however that this is just our advise and should you want to get more information you should seek the advice of a registered FSA.
Once out of debt why not start thinking about investing. Investments are for the long term and like the growth of a tree the early years are long and slow but the effort is worth it in the latter years when you have a solid investment tree.