Once the weather service issues a hurricane warning, you should begin to reduce your perishables and fill your ice chests with ice to keep what perishables you have left. Most disasters, however, won't provide you with that valuable time. The best advice here is to use up your perishables first. The general rule is that food inside the refrigerator is useful for 24 hours (after the power goes out) and anything in the freezer can take three to four days to thaw out - so long as you keep the doors closed. To use these things, get in and get out fast, keeping the cold in as much as possible. The meats can be cooked on the grill so don't forget to have a supply of charcoal or gas for your grill.
Non-perishables consist of any foods that require no refrigeration and can be utilized within 24 hours of opening the container.These are the types of foods you might typically store on your pantry shelves: canned tuna, Vienna sausages, spam, canned fruits and vegetables, dry pasta, rice, pasta sauces, crackers, bread, and peanut butter.The wonderful thing about most of these foods is they can be eaten at room temperature without heating. A few of these products, like the rice and pasta might require some form of heating like a grill or a camp stove. So, if you or your neighbor has a grill or a camp stove and a supply of charcoal or gas, then you can get together to prepare at least a few hot meals. Using a heat source will help the dullness of eating out of a can all the time.
Fluids would be the most important part of your disaster food supply, especially water. Generally, the rule is to have 1 gallon of water for each person, each day. Even though water is crucial, other kinds of fluids are useful. Bottle juices, sodas, instant tea, instant coffee, sports beverages, the juices from the canned fruits and veggies, the broth from the canned soups, and mixing powdered milk with some of that water for use with cereal are all great ideas to have in your stock pile.
Most of these foods have already been in your food pantry. Replace them as you use them and you will be well on your way to a good stockpile. For those who live in places that tornadoes and hurricanes develop, you already know the time of year when these events are likely to occur. Generally, the cost of increasing your supply is minimal if the need occurs. Emergency preparedness for earthquakes and other disasters that can happen anytime of year, the pantry will have to be stocked all year round. Having a constant availability of food will be easy to control because you will just keep the food levels at a continuous level.