Being prepared is always important, whether there is a big storm forecasted or bright sunny days ahead. If you’re planning to store food, you might be wondering what food has the longest shelf storage life.
What Makes Food Rancid
Surprisingly, some foods, by nature, have a long shelf life if stored properly. Before we familiarize what food has the longest shelf storage life, let us first find out what makes food unhealthy.
- Light – Store your food in airtight containers in cool, dry containers away from light. Darker places are better for storage because sunlight can increase temperature.
- Moisture – This is the number one cause of spoilage because of microbes, such as yeasts, molds, and bacteria, which grow and multiply in moist areas.
- Heat – Keep long-term foods in cool areas because heat can cause sweating, which can produce moisture where molds can grow.
Foods That Have Longest Shelf Life
One way of being prepared for disasters is to know what food has the longest shelf storage life. You might be surprised to see these foods available in your nearest supermarkets for a relatively low cost. Below are some foods with remarkably long shelf life:
- Legumes – This is a generic term for beans, peas, and lentils. All of these are good in satisfying hunger because these are low-fat, cholesterol-free sources of high-quality fiber.
- Pasta – Dried pasta could last for 30 years, if stored properly. It contains carbohydrates for energy, a small amount of protein, fiber, iron, and magnesium.
- Honey – Its low moisture content and acidity make it inhabitable for bacteria. It may become crystallized for some time, but you can heat a glass of it over low heat, simmering water until it becomes liquid again.
- Salt & Sugar – These two are included in the list of what food has the longest shelf storage life because they are pure chemicals. They will never spoil if you keep them free from moisture. Salt is used in food preservation and is a standard staple.
- Powdered Milk – It can be a source of calcium, protein, minerals, and amino acids. It lasts up to two to ten years unopened in its original airtight container.
- Pickled Vegetables – This food is packed in a solution of water, vinegar, and salt. The forming acid in the vegetables combined with the acid from the vinegar slows down the decaying process that causes fresh produce to go bad.
A lot of varieties of food can last for years. Being able to know what food has the longest shelf storage life will help you one day in times of calamities and other unexpected events. But do your part. It requires a plan to assess the food you need to store, the number of people you feed, and for how long. Make sure that these foods are stored correctly at room temperature. In that way, it can give you ease if emergencies do happen. Find out more about food storage.