Why don’t I believe someone who says they don’t have food storage because they can’t afford it? Because chances are, these are the same folks who wouldn’t focus on food and water preparedness even if they had the funds. Sad but true. Why do I say this? First of all WATER STORAGE is FREE and yet I rarely see a person who has even a semblance of the amount of water they need. Surely they have empty 2-liter bottles that they can use to store clean water in the event of an emergency. And if they don’t, they sure as heck know someone who does.
I even see some folks who have EMPTY 55 gallon drums just sitting in their back yard or in their basement. But the second reason I really don’t buy this excuse is because FOOD STORAGE is FREE. That’s right. By paying attention you can find PLENTY of instances in which you can obtain FREE food storage and in some instances even get PAID to acquire it. Perhaps you think I’m nuts to state something so bold. But not only will I PROVE this to you, I will show you how using this strategy can help your entire personal budget as well, and earn your part-time efforts an average of $40 to $75 dollars an hour—AT HOME!
Nope, this isn’t some multi-level marketing schpiel. It’s called being aware of what’s going on around you and taking advantage of it. More simply, it’s called using coupons! Before you roll your eyes at the thought of clipping a 25 cent off coupon for a store that’s 5 miles away, allow me to clarify, because that’s certainly not what I’m talking about. Yesterday I obtained enough groceries for a couple weeks worth of meals in an emergency. While these meals would be minimalist perhaps, they will bring me peace of mind in the event of a crisis. I traveled a total of 2.25 miles. I was PAID $20 to acquire nearly $100 worth of food storage and other perishable items for my home. I don’t care what kind of income you make. Free food storage is GREAT. And getting paid to do it FREE is even better!
So I’m going to spell out for you how I did this. I printed out several coupons from Kraftfoods.com. In addition to this I receive the Sunday newspaper. In fact, due to the value I get in following this productive strategy, I actually purchase FIVE Sunday newspapers each week. Believe me, it’s worth it even to the most ardent penny pinchers—you’ll see why in a minute. I’ve even known some to buy as many as FIFTEEN Sunday newspapers each week just to maximize their coupon benefits. (Check with your local newspapers to find out if they have a special multi-paper price and what their maximum allowed number of newspapers per week is.) So in the Sunday newspaper, Albertson’s had several “double the value of your coupon” specials. This meant that any coupon I presented up to a dollar, they would recognize it as double that discount. So, off to Albertson’s I went, armed with my coupons and a strategically prepared shopping list. While that may sound annoying to you to think of taking all of that time to create, you should know that I actually subscribe to a FREE service in my area where I can simply click on the specials that I want, in the stores that I want, and for the product types that I want, and when I’m done it automatically prints off an itemized shopping list for me. (For you Utah folks visit www.savvyshopperdeals.com) This kind of service or similar to it is available in other regions of the country. Upon arriving at Albertson’s, I went to the condiments aisle. Let me break this down for you:
- A large box of Ritz Crackers was on sale for only $2.89. I had a dollar off coupon of any size Ritz. So if I doubled it, making my Ritz crackers 89 cents.
- In addition to that I had another coupon that gave me a FREE box of any kind of Wheat Thins with the purchase of a box of Ritz Crackers. Yup. My 89 cent box of Ritz Crackers qualified me for my husbands free Multi-Grain Wheat Thins. And of course I had two of each of these coupons.
- I also had $1 dollar off coupons for any Kraft BBQ sauce, which was already on sale at Albertson’s for only 68 cents. And yes, they applied the difference to my other purchases.
- I also had a previous coupon, courtesy of Johnson and Johnson for any grocery purchase of $10 or more the next time I shopped at Albertson’s. I used that to buy some canned chicken which was also on sale.
- I also purchased Kraft Ranch dressing, on sale for 99 cents, with my dollar off and $1.50 off coupons.
- I got Chinet brand paper plates for only 9 cents after my coupons.
- That day I also got celery on sale, eggs on sale, Kool-Aid and jarred Planter peanuts—all dramatically reduced.
Bottom line, when I was done purchasing everything, I paid a whopping $8.92. But wait, there’s more. I also had $20.00 worth of rebates from a couple of beer companies redeemable if I purchased “salty snacks” and other kinds of goodies. (Note: in the state of Utah it’s illegal to require a purchase of alcohol in order to receive a rebate. So no alcohol purchase was necessary.) My total money spent that day for so much in groceries? NEGATIVE $11.08. Total time spent with coupons, driving and shopping—3.5 hours. Average value of that time--$40, and to think I’m actually rather new to this whole process! I could have saved more time if I’d been more aware of where things were in the grocery store, if I had invested in a better binder for my coupons so when they fell on the floor they didn’t fly everywhere, etc. :) So, my emergency preparedness menu based on yesterday’s shopping will consist of canned chicken mixed in either BBQ sauce or Ranch Dressing, served atop crackers, (warm or cold), with some Lemonade on the side. Of course I’ll supplement that with the hugely discounted peaches and green beans I have previously purchased, and viola! You’ve got an easy emergency meal while conserving your own energy and money. Now tell me again how you can’t afford to gather food storage? I’d say if you can get free food storage or nearly free, you can’t afford NOT to. And please fill up those water barrels! Other good coupons sources: Boodle.com, pinchingyourpennies.com, grocerysmarts.com. Be sure to subscribe to your local grocery store’s e-mails for unadvertised specials. There’s an average of 1,000 unadvertised specials EVERY week in your grocery store! Join us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter here To see our upcoming event schedule, click here Check out our inhome-course programs Subscribe to Preparedness Pro today and never miss a thing! For any questions or comments on this article, please leave a comment on the blog site so that everyone can benefit! Copyright Protected 2009, Preparedness Pro and Kellene. All Rights Reserved. No portion of any content on this site may be duplicated, transferred, copied, or published without written permission from the author. However, you are welcome to provide a link to the content on your site or in your written works.
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I do that with CVS, but only one grocery around me doubles (and the deals are few and far between!)
But we spend a very minimal amount on food and I still have a good stock!
We've been using empty milk jugs for water, but recently I got 5 gallon jugs with a spout from a health food store. They held aloe vera juice and are perfect for water storage! Better yet - FREE for the asking!
Milehimama, great to hear from you. You should go to the customer service desk and ask for any "beer rebates" that they have. You can also find them in pads that you rip off your rebate from in the beer aisle. But since some folks go crazy and rip off way too many, many stores have started keeping them at the service desk. Remember, that was part of the key to my "getting paid" to buy the groceries. If you had done the same thing, you would have simply paid about double what I paid, which is STILL a great deal.
Also, PLEASE stop storing your water in milk cartons. That kind of plastic is NOT suitable as it deteriorates and leaches chemicals. So please use another source for your benefit. We want you to be able to use it, after all. :-) Your former aloe vera jugs sound GREAT.
This is music to my ears. When I see websites selling a package of one year's food storage, I cringe at the $1,000+ price tag. You can get it for so much less by shopping smart. I also buy extra papers. We have one delivered. And on Saturday, I buy the early Sunday paper at the dollar store for $1.09 each. It pays for itself over and over. For many of my friends, they refuse to store b/c of clutter more than funds. Thanks!
I know the milk jugs aren't the best storage, I'm just using it temporarily until I get the food grade containers. I can pick up 5-10 per week of the 5 gallon jugs, but wanted to have an emergency stash on hand JIC until I could get the other, better containers. If there is a real emergency, BPA water is better than NO water!
They are flimsy, though.
Wow, what great tips for everyone to follow. We have an Albertsons that doubles coupons and I love getting such great deals.
Thank you for all the great coupon resources!!!! Just recently did we start getting coupons in the local paper. Most all the stores here have ceased doubling the coupons, so I will have to be craftier....
Denise, I only have access to double couponing about twice a year here. Doesn't matter. There is still much to reap!
It has merits of keeping things dry and offering some protection, but plastic does not keep oxygen out completely.
I was wondering... Is the food saver bags worth storing food in? how long will shelf stable foods last in those bags with the vacuum system? we are just now starting our food storage. Thanks! this website is amazing!
What # should be on the Plastic storage bottles, to show it is safe to store