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Local, Regional or International?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
My wife came home with disturbing news after grocery shopping the other night.

1. She says the organic food store can't get whole nutmeg anymore because there was a blight on the nutmeg farm, both of their distributors are unable to provide whole nutmeg. They said it will take 10 years for new nutmeg trees to yield whole nutmegs! She went to a a high-end grocery store and could only find two small bottles of whole nutmeg left on the shelf.

2. Sam's Club where we've been buying cold-pressed extra virgin OO for some 20+ years, apparently no longer carries "cold pressed" oil anymore. We used to get large jars (gallon?) for like $6-7 years ago, she bought about 30 jugs of the stuff. And periodically we've been buying some since then too. Use a lot of it! Now we're down to buying small glass jars of EVOO that some I've never heard of, for lots of $$$$$. As long as I'm working I don't mind all that much, but what happens if I become unemployed?

3. We stocked up on short grain brown rice at the organic store, and the price had tripled since a couple months ago.

I see this as just the beginning of a world wide food shortage. I'm starting to think maybe one day, maybe soon, chefs and cooks will be hard pressed to find even staples to cook with, let alone more exotic foods, not to mention people rich enough to afford to eat out...

So we're stocking up on staples that are somewhat stable. Stable staples! :) or (: ????

post #2 of 7
Shoot cummon I thought you went to Holy Land for you EVOO!?!?? :) My favorite excuse to go there.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Stopped going to Holyland to eat, as I discovered Big Marina (where El Bustan's used to be). It is further north on Central. The food is outrageously good compared to Holyland, but they don't have a grocery store attached.

Never thought of buying EVOO at Holyland. Might have to check it out. Prices reasonable?

post #4 of 7

Oil prices leading to rising shipping cost, water shortages (I saw on the news that they are topping avocado trees in California to conserve water. Rain fall has been good, but rising population in Western states is leading to water shortages) and food riots in other nations have got me a bit worried as well.

Local news here reports that Sam’s Club is limiting the amount of rice individuals can purchase in a single day. Apparently people are stocking up because they are concerned about rising costs of gas.

It’s not only food professionals that should be concerned, folks that just want to eat might want to pay attention as well.

I’m trying not to be Chicken Little, but I am embracing my inner Boy Scout (be prepared) and trying to think about things that might be difficult to get a hold of but are key to the way we eat and live.

I was watching Antiques Road Show the other night and somebody brought in a Kentucky sugar chest, the kind with locks on it that show just how valuable sugar and coffee were to our ancestors.

If we end up in a severe crisis, sugar, salt and flour are vital; especially sugar and salt, for food preservation. Coffee will be a luxury along with yeast risen bread (foil encased vacuum packed bricks of yeast keep well).

Right now, I’m just thanking my lucky stars the previous owner of our house saw fit to plant a variety of fruit trees including citrus and I’m looking into putting in several varieties of berries while trying to locate some heirloom fruit and vegetable seeds that will do well in my area. (Hybrids won’t produce fruit on subsequent generations.)

Food supplies and staples that are stable that might come in handy: canning jars, pectin, pressure canner, spices, ammo (just kidding, unless it is for hunting wild game), gelatin and grains. Don’t forget, if food is scarce other things will be as well. Chlorine bleach is your friend and not something you can make at home. Do wine and spirits count as staples?
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Izbnso, I hear ya!

We got a small and a large indoor greenhouse which have built in soil heaters, temp control, fans for air circulation, humidity probe, built in lights and a timer to turn the lights on or off at preset times.

I mostly grow kitchen herbs in the little one, and aloe vera, cactii, and other herbs (marjoram is growing all over the place!) in the big one.

I have two 4' square hydroponic set ups, although I'm not using them now. The lights are too expensive. But these could work outdoors if the electronics were sheltered from rain.

We can all the time. 2 years ago a friend gave me a bag of heirloom tomato seeds. We planted a few, but nothing came up. This year I gave the bag of seeds to a co-worker whose brother has a farm, greenhouse and sells at the Farmer's Market. He planted the seeds, and over 100 of them sprouted. I'm to get half the crop. We're planning on eating fresh heirlooms for sure, but mostly going to can them and have canned heirloom tomato sauce. Previous experience over the last 35 years has shown that tomato sauce will last in the jar for over 4 years with no problems.

We're stocking up on flour, rice, sugar, sea salt, olive oil, powdered milk (yuck!~ but if its all you had to drink, well?...), changing the Everpure water filter on our water supply (its been 17 years since we changed filters). The mfg recommends every 6 months, but the water seems just as good as it did 17 years ago, but prudence tells me to change it now whilst I still can get one.

We have about 1/2 acre of land, but its in Minnesota, so not much can be grown, not enough for subsistence living.

I, too, try to look ahead and plan as best I can for all eventualities. Yes, we have electric appliances, but we also have gas appliances. And yes, I didn't change the fireplace insert to gas or electric, because I figure I can always chop wood, and if I had to, I could section off the living room and live by the fireplace in the dead of a cold Minnesota winter, if no other power was available. One can always melt snow for water if one is desperate enough. (BTW: if you have to choose, always melt ice instead of snow, it takes less power (heat) to melt ice than snow, since snow is sort of self-insulated because of the air pockets inherent in the crystallization nature of snow).

Survivalism. The ultimate human (and all living things) prime directive!

post #6 of 7
Sugar was indeed a prized possession. My father in law recalls a time during the Italian occupation of Cephallonia (as a young man living in Greece) during WWII. He wanted to find sugar for his Mother so he made an exchange with one of the Italian soldiers. In exchange for a bag of sugar he gave the soldier his pet cat. Don't ask me what happened to the cat...

I was recently speaking with a Russian friend who personally experienced the fall of communism. He said the fall started with inflation. Then the quality of education went down... then gas prices got too expensive for anyone to drive.... then you walked into the grocery store and nothing was on the shelves....

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."


"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
I read that when Kruschev visited America many years ago, he thought the supermarkets were all rigged just for his visit. He just couldn't accept the tremendous bounty of food in America.

So they gave him a telephone book and asked him to pick a store at random, they took him there, and he found it to be the same as everywhere else.

German prisoners during WWII down South kept writing back their relatives in Germany telling them not to sacrifice by sending them foodstuffs, as they wouldn't believe the bounty in America. The relatives just wouldn't believe their stories and were convinced that they were "forced to write that.

Hate to see things go back to post WWII conditions in Europe.

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