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  • Writer's pictureEmily Taylor

We interrupt this World War....


I've been debating on how to address the things going on, and right now, I think the best I can do is give some advice on how to prepare for potential difficulties ahead. With the war in Ukraine, it’s important to remember that Russia and Ukraine produce up to 25% of the world’s global wheat supply. China has also stated that their winter wheat harvest will be “the worst in history.” Wheat is a part of many food items and it acts as filler for things like spices, so you can expect those prices to rise even more. And, now, with the banning of oil, we can guarantee that gas prices, and by extension, shipping prices, will go up. While inflation was already hitting painfully, this is going to hurt even more for the things we previously took for granted. We can’t stop the pain to come, and while the best time to prepare may have been several weeks ago, the second best time to prepare is now.



It’s important to understand that right now, we’re not looking at total collapse. There is no US invasion imminent, no bombs falling on US soil. We’re looking at a slow boil of disruptions and inflation instead. It’s going to be painful, and it is definitely not something that post-WWII generations are going to be used to, but it is something we have actually lived through before as a nation. We’re essentially going to be going through rationing, though no one will likely refer to it as that. The outcome will be the same. And, if news is to be believed, we may also have to deal with internet outages and slow-downs as a cyberwar heats up. There are things you can do to lessen the frustration, and, even better, because of the disruptions due to the pandemic, you may already be doing some of those things. I know we have!


We’ve slowly been stocking up on things over the course of the pandemic. And, nothing may come of it, but having items on hand is a huge stress relief when you’re not certain how things will go. And, if you can find space to store items, keeping extras on hand is a fantastic way to do that. It can happen over time, and that method helps keep costs down over all. It works for things like soap, shampoo, and OTC medicines. Once we get down to one or two bottles, I add more to the list to start again.


Back before the world went mad, we also did this with toilet paper. You can buy a case of 80 that are packaged for businesses and hotels, but it works just as well on the home shelves. This actually came in quite handy during the height of the toilet paper crunch since we had bought it prior to the panic and we were able to make it last through the worst of it. The same concept applies to feminine hygiene products and other things labeled as “luxury” items.


And really, food or not, you should make sure you use what’s on your shelves in a FIFO (First In First Out) method. It will keep your stock ready to rotate on a continuous basis and it prevents the worry of “is this expired or not.” Medicines, canned goods, and most shelf-stable things have a "Best By" date if not an expiration date. For medicines, this can impact the efficacy of treatment, for foods, taste and color can be impacted.


We can go into items to keep on hand, particularly in the event of power or internet disruptions another time. In the meantime, take a deep breath, relax, and know that this too shall pass.


 

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