This Friday follow up centers around user responses to the blog from the Kaya group on Facebook. Instead of using direct quotes I have chosen to rearrange both my responses and the user responses, summing them up for the purposes of anonymity in this follow up.
Our User Responses
Our group discussion centered around the MSG used in the Knorr brand noodle and rice mixes and discussed the lack of affordability of pre-made survival foods such as Mountain House, Thrive and Saratoga Farms. There was a particular amount of concern that if these products are not consumed regularly one could unexpectedly have a reaction that includes diarrhea, migraines, and other symptoms in folks who may not even realize what the trigger is. The user emphasized that one should Make sure to try these foods before relying on them in an emergency. Most participants in the discussion agreed it’s cheaper and healthier to eat from your own garden. Suggestions included dehydrating and home canning as well as making your own mixes by looking up meal in a jar sites and making them without using the suggested meats. This user also recommended placing them in ziploc bags rather than jars for easier traveling. However it was also agreed that they do have a few prepackaged noodle meals in their food storage but they are seldom eaten. It was suggested packaged goods of this type might possibly be good for bartering too.
My Wifeofaprepper Response
This blog was incomplete and only an outline based on the concept of purchasing preps for a dollar or less when it was posted. Our budget at the moment is strictly limited and that is where the idea came from. It also accounts for the presence of things like Knorr noodles and rice mixes in our bug out bags for the time being. They are cheap, take a minimum of water and cook up well in one pan. I do want to thank our group members for participating and making others aware of the potential hazards of these items and suggesting alternate choices. I will be looking them up as well. It goes against the purpose and grain of my dear husbands groups and this blog but I truly feel that if you are dumb enough to pack foods without trying them first you deserve the results you get. My personal position as an author of this blog is that I'm here to inspire you to think, question, discuss and research things on your own.
I am not the sharpest tool in the shed and hardly the brightest crayon in the box but I take pride in being able to learn new things and think for myself. Likewise I feel it is up to the consumer to do their research on their own known issues. I cannot possibly anticipate each one. I myself am on a low sodium diet which the Knorr noodles and rice mixes are not the best for but I have made myself aware of that and compensate for in other areas of my diet. For instance most of my canned veggies and beans are minus the salt/low sodium.
I do however agree that new additions to your diet can cause problems. In the prepping world it is pretty standard practice to rotate your stock. This generally helps to prevent adverse effects during emergencies as it is food you are already comfortable preparing and eating. Whether it is regular food or survival foods such as MRE's, Mainstay bars, or foods specially developed for a long shelf life Such as Mountain House, Saratoga farms or Thrive I recommend you check their contents and include them in your regular diets and rotation of food stores. I know the survival foods are expensive but you should prepare and eat everything you plan to use in an emergency situation at least once.
When you are hungry, on the go or without basic modern conveniences is not the time to find out your survival bar tastes like cardboard and is hard enough to break a tooth or that what you are allergic to is either an ingredient or that it is made in the same factory as something you are allergic to causing issues to arise from cross contamination. We've actually had really nasty tasting survival food that I can guarantee you we would be hard pressed to eat even in an emergency. My husband has actually broken a tooth on a survival bar. My personal recommendations based on actually eating these items are Mainstay bars, thrive and Mountain House. We have mainstay bars and mountain house in our preps. For myself there are some sodium issues with certain mountain house products and I made myself aware of them purposefully.
As our gardening skills get better and we get drying equipment built or bought and our home canning skills expand beyond jellies you can be sure fresher and healthier things will be in our preps. Until then we squeeze every drop out of our budget. We like many others don't just plan and prep for one contingency or the other. We never know if a tornado is going to carry the house off to Oz without us or if we'll be snowed in for a couple weeks and its 50 miles to town so we tend to take the bug out bags with us in the car as well. We've had the opportunity to find out the hard way that it's better to be prepared than wishing for it. We have uncooked beans, rice, plain noodles/macaroni, flour, sugar, sauces and etc. for sheltering in place. I think We will definitely be checking into making some of those jar mixes to supplement both types of prepping.
If you are interested in jar mixes you can check out these sources:
There are also kindle books such as “100 Easy Recipes in Jars” by Bonnie Scott currently listing for $3.99.
I would like to thank the members of Kaya Self Sufficiency Group on Facebook for their participation and discussion. They are always an inspiration and full of helpful information and tips. It is much appreciated.
As always you can join the Facebook group, like the Facebook community page, and visit the website. All of these are conveniently called “Kaya Self Sufficiency”. I hope you have enjoyed this post and I hope you are getting better at providing as much as you can for yourself and for your family, group, or community.