What goes in a three-day Emergency Food Supply?

August 30, 2021





Emergencies come in all shapes and sizes – ice storms, hurricanes, floods, tornadoes. Each can leave you dependent on supplies you have at home for a short time. A three-day emergency preparedness kit will be useful for most disasters and having one ready can eliminate some stress and worry.

The kit should include food, water, personal hygiene items, flashlights, blankets, and other essentials. The food needs to be non-perishable. Select foods that require no refrigeration, minimal or no preparation or cooking, and little or no water. If you will have to heat food before eating it, pack a grill, camping cookstove, and fuel also. Food items that are compact and lightweight will make managing your supply easier.

The following foods are recommended for a short-term disaster supplies kit:

  • Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, and vegetables.
  • Canned juices, milk, and soup. If you stock powdered soups, store extra water.
  • Staples such as sugar, salt, and pepper.
  • High-energy foods such as peanut butter, jelly, crackers, granola bars, and trail mix.
  • Foods for infants, elderly persons, or persons on special diets — such as diabetics or those with allergies.
  • Comfort foods such as cookies, hard candy, sweetened cereals, lollipops, instant coffee, and tea bags.
  • Water, enough for one gallon per person per day.

Make sure you have a can opener, scissors, or knife for opening foil and plastic pouches,

and disposable plates, cups, and utensils.

Pack all items in plastic bags (zipper closures work well) to keep them dry and as airtight as possible. Keep a list of dates when food items need to be inspected and rotated or used and replaced with newly purchased items.

Foods in a refrigerator and freezer can be used at the beginning of an emergency. If you have a warning about a possible power outage, you can extend the storage time of food in a freezer by filling empty spaces with water frozen in clean plastic containers or jugs. Food will keep in a well-insulated, well-filled, closed freezer for two to three days.

For more information about disaster kits, visit the Home & Garden Information Center website at

NOTICE:  Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to people of all ages regardless of race, color, gender, religion, national origin, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, marital or family status and is an equal opportunity employer.





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