When it makes sense NOT to rotate prep stock.

Worrier King

There's a bit of extra-value in having food stores that are already sealed, canned, etc. with additional shelf life - non-rotation doesn't apply to foods that your not prepping yourself and buying in bulk elsewhere ex: Freeze Dried

If you go thru a lot of certain longer lasting prep foods (rice, beans, etc) in your weekly diet, sometimes it's better to not rotate stocks and just to direct consume your newly acquired , fresher foods; as long as your prepped food stores have semi-distant expiration dates, and remain in a long term, storable condition with good remaining shelf life.

$20 not spent on rotating plastic/mylar/jars/buckets/O2 absorbers means more $$$ for food in your pantry. Although that doesn't mean you would cease trying to increase prep stock and building your food storage. But, without the expense of the constant rotation of your longer term, main dietary supplements, you may have more money to buy and store new consumables that would extend you a week or two, albeit they will not be "longer term". Must be done without doing attrition to the stores of your favorites, as the more you consume of a certain foodstuff is also the stuff you want to have stored for TSHTF.

If I've got 10 years life left on something, it has more value to it (as long as its edible yet), as it does if its consumed now in a rotation, and then having to expend extra $$$ and energy prepping the rotation by replacing what was already good to go.
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Deep Blue Dragon

Senior Member
With Y2K I learned the wisdom of prep what you eat and eat what you prep. However, I've given up trying to eat *everything* we prep. I now think of some preps (the longer term items) as insurance, like car or home insurance; we may never collect on that investment but if we need to use those long-term preps it will be money well spent.

This includes the dry bulk items (grains and beans, dehydrated fruits, TVP, etc.) stored in 5 gal. pails with mylar bags and oxygen absorbers; also #10 cans of dry milk, eggs, cheese powder, canned items that we really don't eat much or at all but would be great to have in a crisis (canned ham, canned beef, canned chicken, etc.).

I will continue to rotate the canned foods we really do eat (tuna, soups, kid food like Spaghettios, etc.) and smaller quantities of dry/bulk foods (beans and rice) that I've been putting up in Foodsaver (vacuum sealer) bags. Also non-food items like meds, tp, cleaning supplies, etc.
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Worrier King

Thank you DPD for elucidating that even better for me. :sal:

Some goods do need to be rotated.

With the point being you don't need to prep everything you buy, you have that "insurance policy" of your prepped foods, and those prepped foods have a extra-value over the newly acquired prepped foods. Enabling you to save $$$ just by eating some of your main dietary BULK foods when you acquire them and not prepping them all.


JART (just a random thought)

I was just thinking about what foods/juices I could stock then give to the pig, goats, chickens or a still when it gets questionable to eat? Instead of rotating back into my diet.

Then just restock those itiems. kinda a lazy way but need time too dig in deeper takes money and a job. Rotating is a job in and of its self. Could be I'm just lazy though.

Hate to see so much stock go to waste, when us busy....errr lazy preppers keep saying I will start rotating tomorrow... :D



Would my 1999 apple juice make good vinergar now? Hay now thats a thought....

I bet distilled white vinegar keeps for a long time. I gotta get a still.


we rotate the rice by feeding it to the dogs and the powdered milk - not the stuff in cans but have done that with someone else giving us some old stuff - we feed it to our bottle baby goats when we are short of goat milk to feed them - we do not really like cow milk ourselves esp powdered cow milk much prefer the fresh goat milk - when we were trying to lessen our load to bring to the new place and alot was stuff we put in juice and soda bottles for y2k [ so 6+ years old ] we fed all sorts of stuff to the goats, chickens and dogs - they enjoyed it and since we had stored for more people then we were no way rotating it easily - so now I just plan to rotate some of my rice using the dogs - we eat some but not near what we would want to have stored - not like throwing it out but we do not eat as much as that stuff now as we would if things got bad - we have lived off our food often enough due to illness or job loss that we do not like to be without some "food insurance"


Contributing Member
Meal in a can soups

I have noticed that if you can afford to stock up on meal in a can, you can maintain a decent short term WTSHTF stockpile. I am stocking up when the sales come for things like chunky veg beef soup, chunky chili, chicken noodle, chicken and rice, beef and barley etc. These cans on sale are under $1.50 and are not an unpleasant lunch. I don't have plans to stock 6 months worth. That's a different scenario. Having 3-4 weeks worth of enjoyable food in rotation isn't hard. 2 cans per day per person = 5 dozen cans per person for a month. The dates on these cans are typically 2 years or more in the future. Not hard to rotate.



Thank you for your reply.

You gave your goats and chickens 1999 y2k stock and thay liked it. IMHO I think thats a great way to rotate your old stock. And thay are still kicking, heh... got her done and fatting up your livestock. Cool beans!

My grandpa would go to the bread store every month and pick up a truck load of out dated breads, pies, cakes, etc... for so much a pound and feed a bucket full of that with oats to his meat cow every day. Plus a bucket full of bread to the catfish in his small catfish pond.

The beef and fish meat was the best I ever eat. Sweet yet tender and fat. Some of the fish went 8 pounds and the beef HUGE at two-three years old, ready to butcher.





How about useing old stock for baiting in animals one could harvest. Heh now thats another thought, :D.

My S.O. has a recipe for crow pie.... Heh...I love crow pie,... :D......


I figure that if the dog food advertised rice in the food that rice must be ok for the dogs and we were told at the new place we are at now that across the mountain they grow alot of pinto beans and sell the culls and trash for good prices - soooo decided to see if the goats like them - some turned down their normal grain to eat the beans and the milk production stayed up through the summer heat - at this new place we go to the food bank and pick up the not good any more for people produce - share with a pig guy but sometimes an enormous amount - last week next to nothing - have goats that will leave good hay to eat tomatoes - they love them - our dogs love the eggplant and will steal it from the goats -

I figured that I might have paid a bit more for the grain we stored etc than normal goat food but we sure do not eat that amount of carbs normally - but the "food insurance " would be cheap to me even if we threw it all out - we have been give 55 gal drums of wheat many years ago - when we lived on the outskirts of Scottsdale some of the Momans had more money than sense and would put wheat etc in 55 gal drums and then throw it away after 5-10 years - I told some of the ladies throw it my way and we have the strong 55 gal metal barrels from them still - you have to be more careful feeding the wheat - I think it is no more than 10% of the ration since it gets kneaded in their stomach and ferments/rises if too much will cause stomach problems - some prefered it to the barley and corn

I even have a dog that likes canned mushy peaches - the other thinks they are going to kill him but he will eat a days old rotten carcass he finds on the desert and many times drags it home

one Mexican worker we had for awhile made a cage that the birds could get into for the grain it put there but could not figure out how to get out - I was amazed how many birds he got a day - each one was small but they sure added up esp if it was the only meat you got

Barry Natchitoches

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Canned goods -- even commercially produced canned goods - can be safely eaten after a year in the can,

However, they loose their vitamin and other nutrient value after a year inside that can.

Freeze dried foods and dehydrated foods can retain a portion of their nutrients long after a single year's worth of time.

However, to use them you must have sufficient clean water supplies to cook them. Depending on the emergency situation, you may or may not have enough clean water to use these preps.

Because she wants to feed us food full of nutrients, my wife's first choice is to cook fresh foods right out of the garden. Or second choice (during non-harvest times) is out of the produce aisle at the superarket.

But we use our fair share of commercially canned vegetables too in everyday cooking, as well as stored for TSHTF type usage.

My wife's a stickler about feeding her family nutritious food during normal times. So she does NOT rotate the vegetables. She only buys canned vegetables the two times a year that they tend to go on sale at a very low price anyway (I'm not sure exactly when that is, but I think one time is in early spring and the other during the fall sometime). But she will use the canned veggies from the last major sale to feed us during the normal times.

During the fall sales, though, she buys more than the six months or so veggie cans we need till the next big sale. The remainder go into our own personal "food bank," to be stored for the next two years (depending on the veggie) or until TSHTF, which ever comes first.

That extra does NOT get rotated. It just sits on a back shelf, the one that is labeled "Food Bank" and if the world doesn't collapse by the end of two years, then it is pulled off the Food Bank shelf and donated to the Memphis Food Bank.

We figure that it is better to give it to the Memphis Food Bank at two years old, than it is to throw the canned food away. (Oh, DW just told me to add that she pulls canned tomato and tuna off the shelf at 18 months instead of two years).

Beans and rice she buys at least yearly, and what we do not use in a year also gets put into our personal Food Bank, to sit unrotated until TSHTF or else until the end of three years, after which she donates it to the Memphis Food Bank.

DW cleans the Food Bank shelving of old food twice a year -- the same weekend that we change the clocks for Daylight Savings Time.

She also changes out all the bottled water at that time (we just clean all the bottles and then put fresh, clean, Memphis tap water back in them).

And she also pulls out the 72 hour kits and rotates the food and water in them. All of that, plus changing the smoke detector batteries, the weekend that we change the clocks for Daylight Savings Time.


I even have a dog that likes canned mushy peaches - the other thinks they are going to kill him but he will eat a days old rotten carcass he finds on the desert and many times drags it home

Heh, heh,......

Not as bad though when I see one of my dogs dig up a fresh kitty snack from under the rose bushes...... :shkr:

A vary good link and good reading....


I gotta get a home distillation set up going. I think it would be a awsom way to rotate some of your stock. Replace my water barrels with mash err whisky, vodka, etc, YAR!.