Long Term Food Storage


I would like to know why King Arthur refuses to sell wheat berries in super pails (4, 5, or 6 gallon) and ground flours in #10 cans with oxygen absorbers for long term food storage.

I believe this company is losing out on an opportunity because of the hundreds of thousands of individuals who are prepping for food security.

badge posted by: danem on July 17, 2012 at 11:10 am in General discussions
tags: storage
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reply by: swirth on July 17, 2012 at 11:22 am

Even of KAF chooses not to sell what you mentioned, you can buy these items at



and about a dozen other places that I know of from past years of ordering myself online.

Many sell wheat berries in # 10 cans with oxygen absorbers, as well. I stockpile so many food items in # 10 cans.

UPS shipping on ANY size order for $ 4.49, I think, from Honeyville Grain. Such a bargain!

www.bulkfoods.com is another great place to stock up on so many baking items that are so hard to find.

reply by: robinwaban on July 17, 2012 at 3:46 pm

i was curious when I saw this post about wheat berries. I googled wheat berries and read someone purchased 100#. I can't imagine using that much, but even if there is an issue with food security what makes wheat berries worth stockpiling? Are they a high source of protein? The following was the blurb with the article I read:
Wheatberries -- whole, unprocessed wheat kernels -- are available at any health-food store and should be soaked overnight to facilitate cooking the next day. They contain oils that turn rancid quickly. Be sure to refrigerate them in an airtight container.

reply by: Mike Nolan on July 17, 2012 at 3:59 pm
Mike Nolan

There are plenty of merchants who carry large containers of wheat berries. A number of them cater to people concerned about long term food storage.

I buy wheat berries to use in my grain mill in 25 pound bags at WalMart (of all places), and it takes me several months to go through that much.

reply by: swirth on July 17, 2012 at 4:12 pm

Robin...many folks grind wheat berries of all kinds to make their own flours for baking of all kinds...scroll way down for all the info:


For lots more info, go to


Click products

Click Grains: Whole, cracked, mixed

Click on various types of wheat berries

There is lots more info there re all sorts of wheat berries and many other grains for storage.

reply by: MangoChutney - Sandra Too on July 17, 2012 at 4:51 pm
MangoChutney - Sandra Too

The oil in the wheat berries does not go rancid quickly. It is protected from air by the bran. That is the point of storing wheat as berries instead of as flour. Whole wheat flour does go rancid more quickly because the oils are exposed to the air, and must be stored in airtight containers in the refigerator or freezer. How quickly whole wheat flour goes rancid is a matter of debate, but the berries can be stored for years at room temperature in a container which keeps out moisture.

I have often had a total of 100 pounds of whole spring wheat on hand: half red and half white. I buy that much because I want the best price I can get for a reasonable quantity, for example NOT in thousands of pounds. I also have containers allocated for 25 pounds of whole barley, 25 pounds of whole rye, and 50 pounds of whole oats. Those are gamma-lid 5-gallon pails. That doesn't include the #10 cans of steel-cut oats and red winter wheat that were my entry into the world of whole grain, which I am slowly depleting by using them if the pails run empty and the other grain is not available for a price I find suitable. By buying the grain only when the price is good, I avoid fluctuations in price from scares over floods or droughts.

How I use these grains:
1.5 pounds per loaf of bread, as flour
1/3 cup per breakfast, as meal
1/4 - 1/2 cup per dinner, as cooked grain or flour for thickener

Why I keep whole grain:
I want fresh flour, of the grain I want, whenever I want it.
I want bran and germ, as well as starch.
I want some food on hand that will keep me alive if for some reason we can't get any groceries for a couple of months. I also keep 30 - 40 pounds of dried beans towards that goal, as well as some canned fish and meat, and some dried fruit. There is also about 50 pounds of sucanat. We might be a little malnourished without vegetables, but we won't die. *grin*

reply by: MangoChutney - Sandra Too on July 17, 2012 at 4:55 pm
MangoChutney - Sandra Too

Mike, have you seen any Bronze Chief lately? All I have been able to find is Prairie Gold. I have checked both of the Superstores nearest me, and the one didn't even have the white wheat.

reply by: frick on July 17, 2012 at 6:03 pm

Mangochutney, I have a question on your keeping large quantities of dried beans in the event of some catastrophe. I have, on occasion, bought a pound of dried beans which refused to cook. A decent fresh pound will cook in 1-2 hours after a one hour boiling water presoak. Yet, there have been some that have simmered for 6-8 hours before I threw them away. So, how can beans be kept for very long term storage?

reply by: eats on July 17, 2012 at 6:45 pm

Properly stored wheat berries will keep for years. I try to keep 50 to 100lbs of wheat and 50 lbs of oat groats stored away at all times.
If you make bread every week 50 lbs isn't even a years supply. I mill the berries into fresh flour the day before I bake and the family agrees that bread from fresh milled flour is the best!

MangoChutney did a great job pointing out some of the many reasons to buy bulk grains.

reply by: swirth on July 17, 2012 at 7:09 pm

I buy cases of (6) # 10 cans of pasteurized dried whole eggs and the same qty. of a milk substitute as well as so many 5# bags of dried fruits and dried beans...the latter from Country Life Natural Foods (clnf.org) in Pullman, MI. I also buy many other grains and berries from them...cereals and nuts and nut meals, too.

A search here on clnf.org will tell about their awesome selection and refrigerated warehouses and heavy duty bags great for freezer storage, if desired.

We are set for power downs, icy roads, health issues and way beyond...I learned these lessons so well on that old dairy farm.

I'm about ready to order a freeze-proof pitcher pump for a huge water supply we have here but it uses an electric pump...I need to have water even in a 3-4 day power down and I need to water my 3-acre yard full of beauties in this god-awful drought that is burning it all up.

My business friend in W Monroe, LA always has called me a pioneer woman and I just smile.

reply by: MangoChutney - Sandra Too on July 17, 2012 at 7:56 pm
MangoChutney - Sandra Too

I always soak my beans overnight, then simmer them for three to four hours in the morning. They are ready for our mid-day dinner and are all quite soft. I keep a mixture of every type of bean I find for sale at WalMart, plus lentils and split green peas. I think that comes to 13 legumes.

My beans are kept in large tins. These were tins that were given out free for buying IAMS dogfood, so they seal pretty well but not as tightly as the pails with the gamma-lids. I suppose the sealed pails might be better, but since I replace the beans as I use up each tin they aren't in there for more than a year or two.

The only time I had a problem was when one bag of beans came from the store already infested with bean weevils. The entire tin became infested. I tried everything the local agricultural college suggested, including baking the dried beans to a certain temperature. Nothing worked until I finally put the beans into cans in the freezer. I still had to rinse out the dead bugs before soaking the beans, but at least there were no new ones breeding. In the future I shall examine the bags that I bring home more carefully.

A couples of times I had very tough beans, when I tried soaking them in kefir whey. I asked on a chef's forum and found out that soaking beans in acid toughens the skins. They will never become tender if they have been soaked in acid, no matter how long they are boiled.

reply by: MangoChutney - Sandra Too on July 17, 2012 at 8:27 pm
MangoChutney - Sandra Too

I forgot about the cases of dehydrated whole eggs we have. We aren't supposed to be eating whole eggs so I have kind of put those out of my mind. We have some dehydrated egg whites, also, and some cheese sauce. The cheese sauce is pretty good, but very salty. We have a new physician and we are trying to placate him right now, so I am cutting things out of our diet temporarily until he is done examining us. Once he gets it clear in his mind that we really do eat a pretty healthy diet, I can put some things back into our diet without him declaring that we are henceforth to live entirely on dessicated turkey breasts and laxative capsules.

We have a private well and I have not yet figured out a way that we can flush the toilets during a power outage without some advance warning to let us fill up a bathub with water. We have a 5-gallon sealed carboy with purified drinking water, a kerosene heater plus a woodpile for the fireplace, and a propane stove with burners that I can light manually, so if I could only solve the toilet water issue we would be set. It is a shallow well so probably we could use a bucket on a rope, but it is a long way and uphill from the well to the house. We have a gasoline-powered generator but no way to connect the power output to the well. In a pinch we can go out behind the barn, but this is not ideal.

reply by: swirth on July 17, 2012 at 8:50 pm

I keep 5 gallon of purified drinking water on hand and can always purify more with bleach using recommended amounts. In winter, when weather seems dire, I jug up 10 gallon of cistern water for toilets and such just before the bad hits near us. With a pitcher pump, I can use ice melter, if necessary, to clear me a path just a few feet from my back door to the water source and pump away or hook a hose onto it to fill bigger vessels.

I heat the house with wood so we have some heat to cook on if needed.

All year, I buy canned goods only when on sale, like 2/$ 1.00 or 5/$ 4.00, etc. I keep Dollar General canned goods like tuna, chicken, ham, turkey, and canned chili from another grocery store on hand in fairly large amounts. I've used a hand can opener for over 20 years so we are set to open cans.

Our roads get so bad our sheriff has closed all roads in the whole county three times in two years so I like being prepared for many days.

I keep 50# of ice melter in the house and make paths each day if needed to my big woodpile way away from the house and to get to all of my bird feeders. I'm outside a lot of the day and keep ice melter spread as needed to be safe.

reply by: MangoChutney - Sandra Too on July 17, 2012 at 9:38 pm
MangoChutney - Sandra Too

Oh yes, nothing beats one of those good hand can openers, the kind with the heavy rubber-coated handles. My husband bought me an electric one 25 years ago but I got tired of it not cutting all the way around and packed it away after just a couple of years.

If I read the websites correctly, our well is a little too deep for a pitcher pump. It's not a deep well, with the narrow bore, but it's more than 20 feet down to the water. I think probably we'd better figure out how to connect the generator to the well circuit, assuming nothing has nested in the generator so it still works. Most of the time I fill the bathtub with water when a bad storm is coming. Then we can use a bucket to flush the toilet. It's not very convenient in terms of bathing, but mostly nobody wants to shower anyway when there is a chance of ending up covered in lather with the power off.

We often don't go anywhere for the two worst months of winter. Our insurance agent once accused us of "snowbirding" because he drove by our house one snowy winter day and there were no tire tracks in the driveway. I had a heck of a time convincing him that we weren't lying about not going anyplace for weeks at a time. We started walking out to the road every day after that so there would be a path in the snow, and my husband kind of joked that the insurance agent would next accuse us of having multiple tenants in our single-family dwelling because of all the foot tracks to the mailbox.

reply by: swirth on July 17, 2012 at 9:58 pm

My can opener doesn't even have rubber coated handles; husband go me one that did but it leaves a sharp little burr around the can top and I cut my finger on the burr. The one I use is old, old and he got me another newer one like it and the darned thing just kills my hand so they've mucked with them and made them awful.

I truly understand about no tracks in the driveway (vehicle)...we live WAY off the main road and go no where for many days/weeks, even, while the neighbors run the roads just to be going whether it's sane to be out of the driveway or not. I walk down the long, long driveway each day, if it isn't icy, to get the mail but if it is really bad underfoot I don't go each day. My cute little footprints are in the snow for weeks sometimes until it melts all the snow. We put so few miles on our vehicles each year that no insurance agent would ever believe it!!!

Husband laughed just this week at those do-dads they can plug into your vehicle to monitor your driving and habits and locations...he said they'd never believe how our vehicles sit so much of the time. I've always been a good manager of our $$$ and supplies and I love being stocked so we CAN stay home. I always say 'we're public-ed out' after all the many long years of teaching and so much more public exposure.

We have 22,000 gallons of water and I think the pitcher pump will be such an improvement...the water is just 9' deep, I think, so the pump will work well at that depth.

reply by: Mike Nolan on July 18, 2012 at 2:14 am
Mike Nolan

I don't have the latest bag (what's left of it has been moved into the storage bin in the kitchen), but for several months all they had was white wheat. I even checked two other superstores in town, then one day the one closest to us had bags of hard red spring wheat. (I thought what I was buying before was hard red winter wheat, but they say memory is the second thing to go.)

The last time I was there, it looked like all they had was white wheat again. I don't know if that means it sells better or hasn't sold at all.

We don't eat as much whole wheat bread in the summer (I make hot dog and hamburger buns and sandwich rolls instead), but I'll probably run out some time this fall, hopefully by then they'll have the hard red wheat again.

reply by: pjh on July 20, 2012 at 8:03 am

danem, it's not a case of "refusing" to sell bulk wheat berries; it's a business decision. We've experimented with selling various products in various sizes, and are constantly cycling new product sin and out. At the end of the day we need to sell what makes sense for us financially. We're not a non-profit; we're an employee-owned company, working to give our customers the baking supplies they need and want while at the same time supporting our families and saving for retirement. I'm glad you can get the bulk wheat you need at other companies, whose different business model supports sales of it. Cheers -

reply by: easyquilts on July 22, 2012 at 9:21 am

I understand that Honeyville is an excellent company to deal with. I think their shipping chafe is a flat fee of about $4.95..... No matter how mich you order.... That might be Augeon (sp?), though.

I have been watching some women on UTube, who do a lot of long term food storage, and have learned a lot. These women are all serous cooks and bakers.... And they can everything from green beans to meat, chicken and fish.....


reply by: swirth on July 22, 2012 at 9:27 am

Honeyville Grain (www.honeyvillegrain.com) has $ 4.49 UPS shipping for ANY size order to anywhere in the USA...the best bargain in shipping anywhere other than FREE, as I see it, =)!

reply by: easyquilts on July 22, 2012 at 1:00 pm

Swirth.... I THOUGHT it was Honeyville. From wha t understand, it's a good company, with good products.


reply by: swirth on July 22, 2012 at 1:07 pm

Yes, Sandy...they are a very good company to order from and they sell so many things in the # 10 size cans and even cases of (6) # 10 cans. I order lots of things from them for long-term storage for times like power being down for 3+ days at a time or bad/icy roads or if we are stuck at home for other reasons and cannot get out. Their shipping takes a load off of my mind since it is so cheap.