Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Book Review: Emergency Food Storage & Survival Handbook

Emergency Food Storage & Survival Handbook: Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Family Safe in a Crisis by Peggy Layton is next on the review list here at Be A Survivor. This book is all about food and nothing but the food. I read this as one of my first food storage and prep research pieces a few years back and just re-read it for the purpose of this review. The book spends an overwhelming amount of pages on food but there is some basic survival type and disaster prep info in the beginning of the book, strictly the basics. There are some really good checklists for survival kits and equipment and they make a good reference for your preparations.

Chapter 1 Preparing for Short-Term Emergencies - This chapter provides a brief overview of disaster preparation and some of those handy aforementioned checklists. Ms. Layton goes over all of the basics including evacuation plans, bug out bags, emergency car kits, sanitation, hygiene, first-aid and cooking. She covers a lot of information in one chapter so as I stated this is strictly the basics. Her checklists are thorough and good references for building your equipment lists.

Chapter 2 Storing Water For Emergency Use - One again a very good overview of the basics is presented here. The importance of water in your plan is discussed as well as how much to store, how to store, what to store it in and how to make it safe to drink. It stands to reason that water would receive its own chapter, without it; storing all the food in the world won't help you because you will be dead in approximately three days.

Chapter 3 The Economics Of Long-term Emergency Storage - Here Ms. Layton goes over the economics of storage and how implementing a good plan you can ultimately save yourself some money and provide healthy and nutritious food to your family. She also covers the economic advantages of being prepared for disaster and the always prudent advice to sock away some cash for a "rainy day" (or the apocalypse) is presented.

Chapter 4 The Logistics of Long-Term Emergency Storage - This is an especially good chapter as it covers some topics which are mostly overlooked by many other books. This chapter spends a lot of time on "I have all this what do I do with it?" There are clever suggestions on where to actually store all your provisions including some photos of solutions that people implemented in there plans. Closets, under the bed or wherever you have available space in your dwelling are all fair game. They are also a very good discussion on rotation and other methods of reducing or eliminating spoilage with your preparations.

Chapter 5 Building Your Stockpile Of Food And Other Necessities - This chapter breaks down food storage into categories like breads, protein, vegetables and fruit, etc. This chapter is basically a description of the major food groups and how to plan to cover all the bases in your storage plan. Also discussed in this chapter are some non-food items like paper plates, towels and other kitchen accessories...this seems a bit out of place in this chapter if you ask me.

Chapter 6 Obtaining Food For Storage - Ms. Layton discusses gardening, sprouting, drying, canning as well as several other methods of obtaining food for your storage plan. These topics are all covered in a cursory manner and will require further research elsewhere if the reader desires to learn more about each of the processes.

Chapter 7 Implementing Your Food Storage Program - This is the nitty gritty of the book. There are discussions on planning and implementing your food storage plan. There are an extensive amount of charts in the book to help you organize, I think they are a bit overkill myself. There is good advice in here though that will save you money and heartache if your heed it. Planning, inventory and replenishment of your supply are all discussed in this chapter as well.

Chapter 8 Recipes Using Stored Food - There are roughly eighty pages of some pretty good recipes that Ms. Layton has compiled. Some examples are Western Style Beans & Rice, Sourdough Whole Wheat Pancakes, Chicken & Dumplings and Macaroni & Cheese Cassarole to name a few. She incorporates many survival foods into the recipes such as wheat, dried beans and rice. I think this section is nice but personally I could probably have done without it. For the Emeril Laggase's out there this will be right up your alley and you will be whipping up gourmet survival fare in no time.

Overall this was a very informative read and for someone just setting out on a food storage plan I would highly recommend reading this book or another like it to avoid some of the common mistakes beginners make when starting. I would have no problem recommending this book to my readers with one caveat; if you are an experienced prepper there may be other resources available that suit you needs just a little better...that being said this one is worth a gander at.

...that is all.

 Subscribe to Be A Survivor and Follow me on Twitter

Buy Be A Survivor stuff! ~ Donate to Be A Survivor! ~ Join "The Survivalists"!


  1. What books would you recommend for the more experienced preper?

  2. Now this is very useful. Aside from relying on those International Air Ambulance Service, you can read some of these to be more prepared.

  3. I was aware that storage was a complicated issue, but never thought that would become the subject of a book.interesting:)

  4. This was the most helpful article on food storage and survival. Thank you for sharing this!