Are you pre­pared for a disaster?

Hawaii Tribune Herald - - GRINDS - Au­drey Wil­son

April is Tsunami Aware­ness Month and very im­por­tant to our fam­ily. My sis­ter and I were raised by a mother who was washed away by the 1946 tsunami and lost her mother, fa­ther, niece and nephew. When the waves sub­sided, my mother had no clothes ex­cept what she was wear­ing, no par­ents and no home. That in­ci­dent had a last­ing ef­fect on her when rais­ing us, as she taught us to al­ways be pre­pared with food.

So, what if we had a disaster such as a tsunami or hur­ri­cane and had no elec­tric­ity for several days? Would we be pre­pared to take care of our fam­ily for at least three days with what we have in our pantry?

The Fed­eral Emer­gency Man­age­ment Ad­min­is­tra­tion rec­om­mends we pre­pare for an earth­quake, hur­ri­cane or other disaster with ad­e­quate food and wa­ter. Keep food in a dry, cool spot, or even bet­ter, a dark area. Open food boxes and other re­seal­able con­tain­ers care­fully so you can close them tightly af­ter each use. Wrap per­ish­able foods such as cook­ies and crack­ers in plas­tic bags and keep them in sealed con­tain­ers. Empty open pack­ages of sugar, dried fruits and nuts into screw-top jars or air­tight can­is­ters for pro­tec­tion from pests. In­spect all food for signs of spoilage. Throw out canned goods that be­come swollen, dented or cor­roded. Use foods be­fore they go bad, and re­place them with fresh sup­plies, dated with a marker. Place new items at the back of the stor­age area and older ones in the front.

FEMA rec­om­mends the fol­low­ing be used within six months: boxed pow­dered milk, dried fruit, crack­ers and pota­toes.

The fol­low­ing need to be used within one year: canned con­densed meat and veg­etable soups; canned fruits, fruit juices and veg­eta­bles; readyto-eat ce­re­als and un­cooked in­stant ce­real; peanut but­ter; jelly; hard candy and canned nuts; and vi­ta­mins.

The fol­low­ing can be stored in­def­i­nitely as long as they are in proper con­tain­ers: Wheat; veg­etable oils; dried corn; bak­ing pow­der; soy­beans; in­stant cof­fee, tea and co­coa; salt; non-car­bon­ated soft drinks; white rice; bouil­lon prod­ucts; dry pasta; and pow­dered milk in nitro­gen-packed cans.

OfftheGrid.com rec­om­mends the fol­low­ing to be kept for emer­gen­cies, with equip­ment to cook with­out elec­tric­ity:

1. Pasta, which it is a good source of car­bo­hy­drates and stores well.

2. Whole grains, as they store bet­ter than flour; how­ever, you need to be able to grind the grains into flour.

3. Brown rice, which stores well.

4. Break­fast ce­real that does not have too much sugar. It is a com­fort food for kids.

5. Dried beans store very well and are a good source of pro­tein.

6. Canned meats such as

chicken, tuna and salmon. Dur­ing a disaster, meat will be the hard­est type of food to find.

7. Beef or tur­key jerky keeps well at room tem­per­a­ture.

8. Vac­uum packed sum­mer sausage, which stores well.

9. Cheese that is triple dipped in wax, mak­ing an air­tight seal around it.

10. Canned veg­eta­bles and fruit. You can also save the pack­ing wa­ter from the veg­eta­bles to make soup stock.

11. Pow­dered milk, which can be mixed with bot­tled wa­ter to make milk.

12. Spaghetti sauce is ready to use and an easy meal.

13. Cream of mush­room con­densed soup to make casseroles.

14. Bouil­lon that can last at room tem­per­a­ture and be used to make soups.

15. Sugar, which can last a long time in an air­tight con­tainer.

16. Honey, which will last for­ever.

17. Salt for food preser­va­tion.

18. Spices that your fam­ily likes.

19. Bak­ing essen­tials such as bak­ing soda, bak­ing pow­der and yeast. You will be amazed how won­der­ful a cake can be “baked” in a dutch oven that had char­coal on the bot­tom and top.

20. Peanut but­ter, a com­fort food for kids as well as adults.

21. Dried fruit, which would be a good source of vi­ta­min C.

22. Nuts, a good source of min­er­als, vi­ta­mins and pro­tein.

23. Cook­ing oil and short­en­ing.

24. Cof­fee and tea for the morn­ing bev­er­age.

25. Hard can­dies, for en­ergy and a com­fort food.

Mor­mons are known for al­ways be­ing pre­pared for ad­ver­sity, and you can be sure they have the fol­low­ing in case of any emer­gency:

1. Cloth­ing and bed­ding 2. Drink­ing wa­ter 3. Fi­nan­cial re­serves 4. Im­por­tant doc­u­ments

5. Ba­sic food stor­age or foods last­ing 30 years or more: wheat, white rice, corn, sugar, pinto beans, rolled oats, pasta, potato flakes, dried ap­ple slices, non­fat pow­dered milk and de­hy­drated car­rots.

Also very im­por­tant to have in your emer­gency box of food is a can opener.

Foodie bites

• To­day and to­mor­row, the Euro­pean stan­dard menu as well as the cui­sine of Ger­many will be fea­tured at the Bam­boo Hale at Hawaii Com­mu­nity Col­lege.

• Next week, HCC’s sec­ond-year culi­nary stu­dents will fea­ture two nights of five­course wine tast­ing din­ners, from 6-9 p.m. Mon­day (April 23) and Fri­day (April 27), at the Bam­boo Hale. Wines will be paired by Ryan Kadota of Kadota Liquors. There is lim­ited seat­ing, so reser­va­tions are nec­es­sary. Call 934-2591 to make a reser­va­tion.

If you are able to at­tend, please make ev­ery ef­fort to do so as din­ners will make you proud of the stu­dents com­ing out of our Hilo cam­pus, thanks to in­struc­tors Brian Hi­rata and Karen Daniels.

• Tick­ets are avail­able for the Ro­tary Club of South Hilo’s Hilo Huli at 11:30 a.m. Sun­day, May 6, at Moku‘ola Is­land (Co­conut Is­land). Park­ing will be avail­able at Afook-Chi­nen Civic Au­di­to­rium, with shut­tle buses run­ning; so you need not worry about park­ing or walk­ing too far. Mem­bers of the club, Ara­bel Cam­blor, Nate Chang, Valta Cook, Tom English, John FitzGer­ald, Rick Fuller, Kevin Fung, Mau­rice Gould­ing, Gene Hen­nen, David Hurd, Char­lene Iboshi, Tracy Kim, Randy Kuro­hara, Lisa Kwee, Phoebe Lam­beth, Rose­mary Lin­den, Keith Mar­rack and Ben­son Med­ina, would be happy to sell you tick­ets. Tick­ets also are avail­able at Aiona Car Sales and on­line www.hilo­huli.org.

Email Au­drey Wil­son at au­drey­wil­son808@ gmail.com.-

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