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Emergency food and water list

Always have emergency food and water on hand. Keep supplies in your home and vehicles. You can survive about 3 days without water, and around 2 weeks without long term complications from starvation. These estimates are for the average healthy adult. Time frames will likely be shorter for young children, and those with medical issues that require special diets, ex diabetics.

Water is essential to all life
Image courtesy of John Kasawa /
  • Water: Water takes priority over food, you can survive longer without food than water. Have a minimum of three days supply of water at the rate of 1 gallon per person per day. So for a four person family you would need at least a 12 gallon supply of water. More is always better. Have some five gallon jugs stored in your home, but it's also recommended to have some water packets that are more portable.
  • Water Filter: Have some portable water filters on hand (and in your vehicles). If the disaster turns into a longer term situation and your water supply begins running low, you can find the nearest water source. Get a filter that filters more than just particles. You need one that also filters out bacteria and viruses. Portable straw filters are good for the short term, they only filter around 20 gallons but they are low cost and easily portable.
  • Food: Have enough food for at minimum three days. Store enough for each person to have at least 1800 calories per day. Keep a variety of emergency food on hand. Canned food is good but has a shorter shelf life. Freeze dried food is light weight and easily portable, but requires water to prepare. If you store freeze dried food, store extra water for food preparation. MRE's (meals-ready-to-eat) are always ready and require little to no water for preparation, but the take more space and are not quite as portable as freeze dried food.

Image courtesy of John Kasawa /