How can I store emergency food for a disaster?

If a natural or man-made disaster strikes your community, you might not have access to food, water and electricity for some time. It’s important to take steps to store food so that you will be prepared if something happens. Here are some tips to get ready:
  • Store foods that you eat regularly. Foods that require no refrigeration, preparation or cooking are best.
  • Store enough food for two weeks. It is better to have extra food you can share than to run out.
  • Individuals with special diets and allergies will need particular attention; this includes babies and the elderly. Nursing mothers may need liquid formula in case they are unable to breastfeed.
  • Canned dietetic foods, juices and soups may be helpful for those with special needs.
  • Make sure you have a manual can opener and disposable utensils.
  • Should disaster strike, keep food in a dry, cool spot that is out of the sun, if possible.
The presence of the CDC logo and CDC content on this page should not be construed to imply endorsement by the US Government of any commercial products or services, or to replace the advice of a medical professional. The mark “CDC” is licensed under authority of the PHS.

Continue Learning about Survival and Emergency Preparedness

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.