Dry Food Storage
Dry food, such as Beans, Nuts, Pasta, and Rice, tends to make up the bulk of stored food. For this reason it is important to understand what sorts of techniques and conditions are ideal for making these goods last as long as possible.
There are innumerable methods of storing dry foods, but the following methods are both common and known to be successful.
Buckets and Mylar
Combinations of buckets, food-grade buckets, and mylar liners are used to store food for extended periods of time.
- Food-Grade Buckets - Food can be stored directly inside of these buckets and have both physical protection from pests as well as significant protection from oxygen.
- Non-Food-Grade Buckets - Non-food-grade buckets provide protection from pests and oxygen, but may react with food and thus require the use of mylar liners.
- Mylar Liners - Regardless of what kind of bucket you use, mylar liners will provide superior protection from oxygen and should be considered for use.
- Oxygen Absorbers - Oxygen absorbers, available in large quantities as small packets, will actively remove oxygen from a container and improve any dry food storage system.
- Nitrogen Packs - Nitrogen is used to displace oxygen prior to sealing a can in "dry pack canning" to prevent rotting of the foodstuffs.
One method to pack dry goods is with the Dry Ice Packing Method.
Glass containers such as crockery, mason jars, or recycled pickle jars make excellent food storage containers as they are both excellent oxygen barriers and keep pests out. They are more fragile than buckets and do let in light which can be problematic.
Number 10 Cans
Number 10 cans are popular choice of large, metal cans that are purchased pre-filled and sealed with any number of types of food. Empty cans can be filled with one's own foods through what is called "dry pack" canning through programs such as the LDS Church uses at their Bishops' Storehouses. Number 10 cans are durable, resistant to oxygen, portable, and easily stored.