Ask an Expert // Storing Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

 

 

Storing FruitHave you been to a farmers market yet this year? Whether it’s from a farmers market or a grocery store, don’t let that fresh produce spoil on your counter. Here are some tips on how to store fruits and vegetables so they last longer. 


One of the benefits of shopping at farmers markets is the fruits and vegetables are often fresher than those at most grocery stores. Much of the produce was picked within a couple of days, or even hours of the market. Fresher fruits and vegetables will last a little longer before they begin to spoil. But, there are also some additional things you can do at home to help your produce last even longer. Follow these fruit and vegetable storage recommendations to reduce the amount of produce that spoils before you can use it.  Use this chart to identify fruits and vegetables that spoil the quickest and be sure to use those first.

Storing Fruits and Veggies


This article was written by Heidi LeBlanc, Food $ense State Director, and Casey Coombs, RD, CD; Policy, Systems, and Environments Coordinator, Utah State University Food $ense

 




2017 Farmers Market Roundup

Farmers Market Graphic

Looking for fresh, local food? Find a Farmers Market near you and support the people in your community producing food. Quick tip:  bring cash and a few reusable grocery bags so you can shop to your heart’s content. 


9th West Farmers Market*
Sundays, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
June through October, International Peace Gardens, 1060 S. 900 W., Salt Lake City
http://9thwestfarmersmarket.org

25th Street Market
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
June through October, 475 E. 2500 N., North Logan
http://www.northloganmarket.com

Ashley Valley Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
July through September, 225 E. Main St., Vernal
http://avfarmersmarket.wix.com/avfarmersmarket

Benson Grist Mill Historic Site
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
July through October, 325 State Rd. 138, Stansbury Park
www.bensonmill.org

Bountiful Farmers Market
Thursdays, 3 p.m. –  8 p.m.
June 11 through October 15, 100 S. 100 E., Bountiful
http://www.bountifulmainstreet.com

Brigham City Farmers Market
Saturdays, 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.
June 17 through September 30
Bill of Rights Plaza and Box Elder County Courthouse
http://www.historicbrigham.org/farmersmarket/43-farmersmarket

BYU- LaVell Edwards Stadium Farmers Market
Thursdays, 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
August through October, 213 E. University Parkway, Provo
http://dining.byu.edu/farmers_market.html

Cache Valley Gardeners Market*
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
May through October, Logan Historic Courthouse, 199 N. Main, Logan
http://www.gardenersmarket.org

Cedar City’s Downtown Farmers Market*
Wednesdays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.
July through October, Hoover & 100 W., Cedar City
https://www.facebook.com/ccdowntownfarmersmarket

Downtown Farmers Market*
Saturdays, 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., June through October
Tuesdays, 4 p.m. – dusk, August through October
Saturdays, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., November through April
Pioneer Park, 350 S. 300 W., Salt Lake City
http://www.slcfarmersmarket.org

Downtown Farmers Market at Ancestor Square*
Saturdays, 8 a.m. – noon
May through October, 2 W. St. George Blvd., St. George
http://www.farmersmarketdowntown.com

Farm Fest Market – Sevier County
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – noon
June through October, 370 E. 600 N., Joseph

Farmers Market Ogden*
Saturdays 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
June 25 through September 17, Ogden Historic 25th Street, Ogden
http://farmersmarketogden.com/

Gardner Village Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
July 8 through October 28 , 1100 W. 7800 S., West Jordan
http://www.wasatchfrontfarmersmarket.org

Harrisville City Summer Farmers Market*
Thursdays, 4 p.m. – dusk
August 3 through September 21, Harrisville Main Park, 1350 N. Hwy 89, Harrisville
https://www.cityofharrisville.com/farmer-s-market

Happy Valley Farmers Market*
Fridays, 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.
June through October, 100 E. Main Street, Orem
www.happyvalleyfm.com

Heber Valley Farmers Market
Thursdays, 4 p.m. – 9 p.m.
June 8 through August 31, Main Street Park, 250 S. Main St., Heber City St.
http://www.ci.heber.ut.us/community/events/farmersmarket

High Desert Growers Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – noon
July 15 through October 31, 100 E. Main Street, Price
http://extension.usu.edu/carbon/home_family_food/farmers_markets

Long Valley Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – noon
Mid May through Mid October, 475 N. State St., Orderville
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Long-Valley-Farmers-Market/1397811127154513

Mapleton Farmers Market
Saturdays 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.
July through September, Mapleton City Center, 125 E. 400 N., Mapleton
http://www.mapletonmarket.org

Moab Farmers Market*
Fridays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.
May 5 through October 27, Swanny City Park, 400 N. 100 W., Moab
http://www.moabfarmersmarket.com/

Murray Farmers Market*
Fridays and Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
July 29 through October 29, Murray City Park, 200 E. 5200 S., Murray
https://www.utahfarmbureau.org/Agriculture/Farmers-Markets

Park City Farmers Market
Wednesdays, noon – 6 p.m.
June through October, 4000 The Canyons Resort Drive, Park City
http://www.parkcityfarmersmarket.com

Park Silly Sunday Market
Sundays, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
June 8 through September 21, 900 to 200 Main St., Park City
http://www.parksillysundaymarket.com

Provo Farmers Market*
Saturdays 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
June through October, Pioneer Park, 500 W. Center St., Provo
http://www.provofarmersmarket.org

Richmond Harvest Market
Saturdays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
June through Mid-October, 563 S. State, Richmond
http://richmond-utah.com/harvest.html

Roosevelt Farmers Market
Thursdays, 3:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
June 22 through September 28, 130 W. 100 N., Roosevelt
facebook.com/groups/101217766689683/

South Jordan Farmers Market
Saturdays, 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.
August 6 through October 29, 10695 S. Redwood Road
http://www.southjordanfarmersmarket.com

Spanish Fork Famers Market
Saturdays, 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.
End of July – November, 40 S. Main St., Spanish Fork
http://www.spanishforkchamber.com

Sugar House Farmers Market*
Wednesdays, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
June 8 through October 26, Sugarhouse Park, 1500 E. 2100 S., Salt Lake City
http://www.sugarhousefarmersmarket.org

Syracuse City Farmers Market*
Wednesdays, 4 p.m. – dusk
July 5 through September 27, Founders Park, 1904 W. 1700 S., Syracuse
facebook.com/SyracuseCityUtahFarmersMarket

Thanksgiving Point Farmers Market
Saturdays, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
August through September, 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi
http://www.wasatchfrontfarmersmarket.org

USU Botanical Center Farmers Market*
Thursdays, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. (dusk)
July through September, USU Botanical Center, 920 S. 50 W., Kaysville
http://www.usubotanicalcenter.org/events/farmers-market/

University of Utah Farmers Market*
Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Mid-August through Mid-October, Tanner Plaza, 200 S. Central Drive, Salt Lake City
http://sustainability.utah.edu/resource-center/get-involved/farmers-market.php

Urban Farm & Feed
Tuesday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Saturday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Open year round, 8737 South 700 East, Sandy
http://www.urbanfarmandfeed.com

VA Farmers Market
Wednesdays, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
August 2 – September 6, VA Medical Center, 500 Foothill Drive
Lawn and patio outside the Building 8 Canteen.
https://www.saltlakecity.va.gov/SALTLAKECITY/features/vaslchcsfarmersmarket.asp

Wayne County Farmers Market
Saturdays, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.
May through October, Center and Main Street, Torrey
http://www.facebook.com/WayneCountyFarmersMarket

Wheeler Farm Market
Sundays, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
June through October, 6351 S. 900 E., Murray
http://www.wasatchfrontfarmersmarket.com

Year-Round Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – noon, Year-Round
Wednesdays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m., May through October
50 W. Center St., Cedar City
http://yearroundmarket.weebly.com/

Zion Canyon Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – noon
Late April through Mid-October, 1212 Zion Park Blvd., Zion Canyon
http://www.zionharvest.org


*Markets marked with an asterisk utilize electronic benefit transfer (EBT) machines, allowing Food Stamp participants to use their benefits to buy fruits and vegetables at local farmers markets.

Did we miss a market? Let us know in the comments!




Welcome Farmers Market Season // Tossed Salad with Citrus Dressing

farmers market seasonWarmer weather means it’s farmers market season. Read up on some of the great benefits of shopping at a farmers market, and don’t miss the recipe  at the end!


After an especially long and snowy winter, the opening of farmers markets around the state is certainly a welcome sight. There are many individual, community and environmental benefits associated with shopping at local farmers markets. Markets often offer a wide variety of reasonably priced, high quality fruits and vegetables that are at the peak of their nutritional value. If you receive SNAP benefits, many markets offer a matching incentive program called Double Up Food Bucks (DUFB). For every $10 in SNAP benefits used at the market, you will receive up to $10 in DUFB tokens to spend on fruits and vegetables, making them even more economical.

The produce at farmers markets is often harvested within a couple of days or hours of the market, so the consumer has more time to use it before it spoils. Shopping at farmers markets also helps support farmers in your area, as well as the local economy. On average, food in the United States travels about 1,500 miles to get to your dinner plate, which can have various negative impacts on the environment. Fruits and vegetables sold at farmers markets have generally travelled just a few miles, which means savings in both your wallet and your environment. In addition to these benefits, farmers markets are a fun place to spend a few hours. Many offer free music, games and events for children and tasty food samples. The opening day of farmers markets varies around the state. Check with your local USU Extension office to find the farmers market in your community.

Here’s a great recipe for some of the first items to show up at Utah’s farmers markets. This is a great recipe to add any other fruits or vegetables that look good at the market.

Tossed Salad with Citrus Dressing

Yield: 8 servings.

From eatwellutah.org

Ingredients:

  • 4 c. torn fresh spinach
  • 4 c. torn leaf lettuce
  • 2-11 oz. cans mandarin oranges
  • ¼ small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 T. thinly sliced radishes

Dressing:

  • ½ c. orange juice
  • ¼ c. lemon juice
  • ¼ c. olive oil
  • ½ t. seasoned salt
  • ¼ t. paprika (optional)
  • pepper, to taste

Directions:

Toss spinach, lettuce, oranges and radishes in salad bowl. Combine dressing ingredients and whisk together until blended. Serve with salad. 


This article was written by Heidi LeBlanc, Food $ense State Director, and Casey CoombsRD, CD; Policy, Systems, and Environments Coordinator, Utah State University Food $ense




Six Exotic Fruits to Try

exotic fruits

You don’t have to go on a tropical vacation to get a taste of exotic fruits. Look beyond the apples and bananas next time you’re at the grocery store, and give these exotic fruits a try.


Unusual Fruits Play

See USU Extension’s Jaqueline Neid-Avila introduce some of these exotic fruits on Fox 13’s The PLACE.

When you go to the grocery store, the first thing you typically see are fruits. Most of them probably look familiar— bananas, apples, peaches, pears, melons and more. However, you may see a few fruits that look a bit unusual, if not exoctic.

These fruits could be kumquats, passion fruit, or dragon fruit, among others. While you may be able to find some of these fresh fruits in your regular supermarket, they are more widely available and affordable at Asian, Latin, and gourmet supermarkets. You can even buy them online! Like more common fruits, these unusual varieties are good sources of Vitamin A, C, potassium and fiber. Since they are not something that you would normally buy, they can be seen as a treat.

So next time you are out buying groceries, check out the unusual fruits selection. Even if their curious appearance may turn some people off from purchasing, remember that mangos and kiwis were once considered to be exotic.

Here are some exotic fruits we recommend, and some ways to eat them:

Longan

market-1270281_1920

Longan have a white, soft pulp that surrounds a large black seed. When cut in half, the fruit  resembles an eyeball. It is a small relative of Lychee.

Rambutan

rambutan-fruit-19699_1920

Rambutan have a single seed surrounded by flesh that is grape-like in texture, with a delicate flavor. This is also a relative to lychee, but sweeter and not as juicy.

Longan, rambutan and lychee are all very similar. There are mild differences, so try each one to see which one is your favorite. They can be used to make jams and jellies, or a light refreshing juice.

Dragon Fruit

fruit-2100692_1920

This is a member of the cactus family and it has a leathery exterior ranging from yellow to bright pink with lime-green spiny tips. Flecked with tiny black seeds, its juicy flesh can be white or red and has a refreshing and light flavor.

The skin is inedible, so peel the dragon fruit or scoop it out of the skin. Dragon fruit tastes refreshing cold. Pair it with banana, berries, and kiwi in a smoothie, or make fruit kebabs, alternating kiwi and dragon fruit. Try broiling kebabs in an oven for 3 minutes.

Passion Fruit

tropical-1501212_1920

This edible fruit has a sweet-tart flavor and strong tropical scent. The seeds can be eaten with the liquidy center or strained out if you just want the juice.

Since there is only a small amount of golden, jelly-like filling, passion fruit is often used as a filling or flavoring.

Guava

guava-537060_1920

Several varieties of guava are available in varying sizes (they can be as small as an egg, or as large as an apple). They can be round or pear shaped, and have rough or smooth skin. Guava can be  yellow, green, red, or purple-black on the outside, with flesh that is pale yellow to bright red. Some guava have small edible seeds, while others are seedless. To eat fresh, guava should be very ripe.

Enjoy fresh, in salads,  or juiced to make jelly or syrup. Guava can also be cooked with meat.

Kumquat

kumquats-357881_1920

Kumquats look like oval shaped miniature oranges. The skin of the kumquat is sweet, while the inside has a sour, citrus tang. This creates a surprising clash of flavor when the fruit is eaten whole. Nibble the end of the kumquat to taste the rind first. Once you encounter the mouth-puckering juice, you can either continue nibbling cautiously, or pop the whole fruit in your mouth.

Kumquats can be sliced and added to salsa, made into marmalade, pickled or added to meat dishes.


This article was written by Jaqueline Neid-Avila, RDN, CD with USU Extension in Davis County




10 Tips for Surviving Grocery Shopping with Kids

Grocery Shopping with KidsGrocery shopping with children can be stressful, but with a little planning and preparation, it can be a great experience for you as a parent and for your children. 


Sometimes it’s in the produce section, sometimes in the middle of an aisle, and often in the checkout line: a young child melting down in the grocery store. The screams of an overtired, hungry or begging child are annoying to everyone in the store but especially exasperating for the parent trying to deal with kid drama in public. The common wisdom is to do all grocery shopping alone to save money and make healthier choices, but this isn’t always practical. When I was a young mother with multiple kids to wrangle, my husband was either in college while working full-time or working two jobs, so I had to take little ones with me to the store if we were going to have any food in the house. Through my experience and learning from other moms, I’ve gleaned some tips for making grocery store expeditions survivable and even fun! Read on for 10 tips for enjoyable and stress free shopping with your kids

Always, always plan ahead for your shopping trip!  It’s vital to go into it prepared!

  1. Make a list, and arrange it as much as possible to match the layout of the store. Be like Santa and check this list twice.  Find more information about planning menus and preparing to shop here
  2. Schedule your shopping for a time when your children will not be getting tired and cranky. For most kids this is in the morning, but go with what you observe is their happiest time of day.
  3. Allow enough time to shop without rushing. This helps you make better choices and keeps the kids from feeling your stress and getting themselves worked up.
  4. Make sure everyone has eaten, and perhaps even pack a healthy snack to take along.
  5. For young kids, let them take a favorite toy or book if they’ll be riding in the cart.

Make the kids part of your shopping team. You’re all in this together!

  1. Before entering the store, go over your expectations for their behavior and make sure they understand. This is best done as a positive pep talk. Be sure to include a reminder about your treat policy. Some parents let kids put a treat on the list to be included in the shopping, some let the kids select something in the checkout line if they’ve done well during the shopping, some let the kids know that there will be no treats. It’s important to be clear with the kids about what will happen with treats ahead of time, since they’ll be bombarded with temptation in the store. 
  2. Give kids age-appropriate tasks to do. Kids of all ages can help look for products by matching what you’re looking for to the store ad or coupons (organize this ahead of time), or they can play “I Spy” and look for certain colors, letters or items.  Elementary age kids and older can learn about unit pricing and help you find the best deals. Young children love to help pick out produce, for example: “Which squash should we get?” Kids can also help you carry small items. Watch for our next article for more detailed information on age-appropriate tasks children can help with in the grocery store.
  3. Use the self-checkout if it’s available, and let your kids help scan and bag the groceries. Reusable grocery bags are the easiest for youngsters to use. Self-checkout is also a good way to avoid the kid’s-eye-level candy that causes so many grocery store meltdowns.

  Safety first!

  1. Never allow a child to stand in the grocery cart. I learned first-hand how easily a toddler can fall out of the cart when you turn your back for a second! We were lucky and my daughter wasn’t hurt, but according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission an estimated 19,800 children under five years old were treated in emergency rooms for shopping cart injuries in 2012 in the United States (cpsc.gov). Also make sure the safety belt on the cart you choose is in working order and buckle your child in securely.
  2.  Children who can walk can learn early on to hold on to the cart lightly so that they don’t wander off and get lost. My children learned this lesson so well that even after they were grown and moved away from home, a couple of them caught themselves holding onto the cart when we went shopping together! Consistent reminders to hold onto the cart works for most children. Stubborn ones might need incentive to stay in contact with the cart, and you can make a game of this.

 Sometimes tantrums just happen. Despite your best-laid plans, sometimes tantrums still happen. Don’t panic if your child has a meltdown in the store. Every parent has gone through it so most people will be sympathetic to your plight. If you are unlucky enough to get a comment from a grouch, feel free to ignore it—you are there to help your child not to impress random strangers. It’s one of the hardest challenges of parenting, but it is very important NOT to give in to a tantrum. You don’t want to teach your child that tantrums work to get what they want or to get you to leave the store before you’re finished with your shopping. Simply take the child aside and let them know that you are taking a little time out until they are ready to try again. If necessary, you can ask a store employee to set your cart aside while you take the child to the car to calm down. Once they are ready you can return to the store and finish shopping.

When your shopping trip goes smoothly and the kids maintain good behavior, don’t forget to reward them! This can be as simple as giving them a sticker or as elaborate as a special trip to the park. It’s best to avoid food or “treats” as rewards so that you don’t put children on the road to emotional eating or learning to value sweets over healthier foods. The grocery store experience can be difficult and overwhelming for kids, so when they do well be sure to reinforce that good behavior.

Finally, if possible, shopping alone can be a good choice, especially if you are in a hurry. Most people are able to make more thoughtful purchasing decisions without the distraction of another person going along, but grocery shopping can be low stress and even enjoyable with children when you are prepared. It also provides a great opportunity for children to learn about nutrition, planning, resisting impulses and  how to behave appropriately in public.

Check our calendar for Healthy Family Fun events in your area, and join us for a good time with your family learning about healthy lifestyles and relationships.


By Alissa Weller, Healthy Family Fun Box Elder County Coordinator and Carrie Durward, PhD RD Assistant Professor and Extension Nutrition Specialist




15 Benefits of Eating Local

Local Food Graphic

Some of the reasons to buy local food may surprise you. They may even entice you to visit your local farmer’s market this summer. 


Local is in. And if trends from the past several years are any indication, the movement is here to stay. Why are people so drawn to buying locally? The top three reasons Americans do so, according to the Food Marketing Institute, include freshness, supporting the local economy, and knowing where the product came from. Other studies show similar reasons, along with higher and better quality, positive relationships with growers, and the opportunity to purchase unique products.

Although many might first connect local food purchasing to positive environmental benefits, the benefits extend to your mental and physical health, your social sphere, and your community’s prosperity. Specific benefits of engaging in the local movement include:

  1. Improved nutrition, increased likelihood of making healthier food choices, obesity prevention, and reduced risk of diet-related chronic disease.
  2. Small farms preserved and rural communities sustained.
  3. Sixty-five percent of your dollar remains within the community, compared to shopping at large chain stores where only 40 percent of your dollar stays in your community.
  4. More job security in your local community.
  5. Attraction of employees and patients to local restaurants, hospitals, and other businesses advertising local food sourcing.
  6. Increased national food security.
  7. Local and small-scale farmland preserved.
  8. Food travel distance is reduced (food miles). This cuts down on fossil fuel consumption, air pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions associated with transporting food.
  9. Preserved cultivar genetic diversity.
  10. Higher likelihood farmers selling direct to consumers and markets are engaging in environmentally friendly production practices.
  11. Reduced food safety risks through product decentralization.
  12. If growing your own food, greater physical activity is an additional health benefit. 
  13. Being able to talk to the people who grew and/or made the food you are buying.
  14. Being able to ask questions about pesticides, herbicides, growth hormones, animal treatment, fertilizers, and any other queries you may have about how your food was produced.
  15. Getting to know your local producers gives you a stronger sense of place, relationships, trust, and pride within your community.

Read More

More Sustainable Food Resources 


This article was written by Roslyn Brain, Sustainable Communities Extension Specialist with USU Extension, Moab




Ask An Expert // Six Tips for Portable Emergency Food Storage

emergency foodWhat would your family eat in an emergency? Get prepared with these six expert tips on portable emergency food storage.


Weather can regularly create emergency situations such as massive power outages, dangerous road conditions or flooding across the nation. In Utah, we are not without our share of emergency weather-caused situations that can leave people stranded, without heat or lights for several hours or stopped on the freeway due to a car accident.

While these situations can be frustrating at best, some can mean there will be no relief for up to 72 hours. How would you fare if you were home or in your car “stuck” with only what you have on hand to help you survive? Would you have sufficient supplies of food and water and a source of heat/warmth and other emergency items to last for 3 or more days?

If you are new to food storage and/or emergency preparedness, this question may be difficult to answer. However, even for those who think they are prepared, it’s good to review some basics and examine what goes in a 72-hour emergency kit.

Below are six tips for preparing your portable emergency supply, adapted from USU’s online publication, “A Guide to Food Storage for Emergencies.”

1. Foods to include in the 3-day/72-hour kit:

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA 2012), the general guidelines are to stock canned foods, dry mixes and other staples that do not require refrigeration, cooking, water or special preparation along with a manual can opener and eating utensils. Examples include:

  •  Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits and vegetables
  • Protein or fruit bars
  • Dry cereal or granola
  • Peanut butter
  • Dried fruit
  • Nuts, chips or crackers
  • Food for infants
  • Powdered drink mixes to add to water
  • Comfort/stress foods, candy bars, etc.

2. Beverages to include in the 3-day/72-hour kit:

  • Bottled water
  • Soda or juices (Avoid diet sodas if possible since the artificial sweeteners break down and can cause an off flavor in soda stored beyond the expiration date. Regular soda will just taste flat.)
  • Non-perishable pasteurized milk (Sold in cartons; does not require refrigeration.)

3. How to store the 3-day/72-hour supply kit:

In case you are home and need to evacuate on short notice, these supplies should be stored in a convenient location close to a front door or garage. Use one or two portable containers. Consider a tote on wheels with a handle, backpacks, etc., that are easy to move. Be sure they will fit in your car and that they can be carried or pulled to a safe location if you need to leave the car.

4. Amount of water to include:

The recommendation is 1 gallon of water per person (adult) per day. However, the requirement for staying hydrated varies according to age, physical condition, activity, diet and climate. Bottled water is the easiest to store; whether it is purchased in individual serving sizes or larger containers such as 3-liter jugs. Again, consider how you will carry this with you.

5.  How to keep food cold or frozen at home:

If you experience a power outage that doesn’t require you to leave your home, make certain perishable foods remain useable for as long as possible. If you have enough warning or have extra space in the freezer, fill empty spaces with bagged blocks of ice or fill clean plastic containers/jugs with water and freeze. Food in the freezer may not stay completely frozen but will stay cold for 1-2 days. Foods in the refrigerator may fare better if they can be transferred into insulated ice chests and covered with cubed ice.

6. How to maintain emergency food storage:

It is not only important to obtain a 72-hour supply of food and water, but also to store it safely and rotate the food to keep it appetizing and safe to eat.

  • Keep the foods in a cool, dry place.
  • Store in tightly closed plastic or metal containers to protect from pests and to extend shelf life.
  • Throw out any canned goods that have become dented, show signs of corrosion or are bulging.
  • Use foods by their expiration/freshness dates and replace as necessary.
  • Rotate water storage annually.
  • Re-evaluate your food and water storage needs annually as families expand or get smaller in numbers.

The initial expense of time and money to establish a 3-day emergency food supply may seem daunting. However, once established, you can reduce the sense of fear, knowing you are prepared and can keep your family nourished during an emergency situation.


This article was written by Kathleen Riggs, Utah State University Extension professor, kathleen.riggs@usu.edu, 435-586-8132