Grain is an easy thing to store, believe it or not. Most folks feel a little intimidated, when they think about storing grain, so they don’t store much.I will give recipes, on how to use the different grains in a future article. Grain isn’t for just grinding! But those you do grind, are for more than bread! For now, I will deal with just the storage of grain.
Grain storage is not as daunting, as one might think. Over the years, I have come up with a couple of grain purchasing and storage solutions, that you may find helpful.
To get grain, I go to a local elevator. Yes. I know….You are thinking that is for animal feed.
Well…it is! But considering the grain is needed, for long-term survival, and for most of us, our pockets are not lined with gold, should we be picky? The grain you can get, from your local elevator, is meant for animal food, so there is nothing more harmful on the grain than dirt and pesticides.
Now I have you completely freaked out about pesticides! Don’t worry about it! Just stock up on hydrogen peroxide!
When you go to use the grains, just put 2 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide in a gallon of the pre wash water. Let a gallon of grain set in this water, for 10 minutes, and it completely neutralizes any chemical residue!If doing this for grains to grind, they will of course need to be dried first. This method of pre treating, before use, makes animal food grains perfectly safe for human consumption!
You don’t have to pre treat the grain to store it. It can be stored for years, before this pre treatment, so just stock up plenty of hydrogen peroxide, for your future needs. A Note on Hydrogen Peroxide: ‘They’ say, hydrogen peroxide only has a shelf life of about two years. I have had a bottle of it setting on the shelf for twenty years. I opened it up and it still went to town bubbling, killing the germs, just fine, in my grandson’s knee boo boo! (Now! Back to grain.)
A 50 lb bag of grain, still costs around $20, at the local elevator. That is a pretty dog gone good deal, compared to what it costs to buy it over the internet! Yes. I know. What you can buy from the internet is already labeled for human consumption. Most of it still has pesticides on it, and it is still dirty and needs washed!
You can find the grain elevator, nearest you by using your net connected phone. Simply use your favorite search engine and type in ‘feed grain elevator your town, state initials’ and hit enter! The info that comes up tells you how many miles it is from you, and even gives you a map to get there!
If you don’t have a net connected phone, use a phone book. Call them. The folks at the elevator will be glad to give you directions.
OK. Now that the purchasing of the grain is out of the way, let’s look at your grain and seed choices.
Most grain elevators nowadays, have a feed store in them. If they don’t have something in stock, they can order it in for you, usually free of charge.
I love shopping for food at the elevator! I consider it my bulk food store!
You can get corn, whole or cracked. Oats, barley, soybeans, flax seed, millet, sunflower seeds, peanuts, wheat, and more! Oh! My!
I roast sunflower seeds and peanuts, then make all the nut butter I want! You can too! Why pay over $4 for a small jar of peanut butter, when you can make the same amount for about 15 cents!
Why pay over a dollar for a can of bean sprouts, when you can sprout your own for about 15 cents?
You can get around 70 gallons of wheat grass juice, out of a 50 pound sack of wheat. Grow your own health!
I grow mine in house boxes, then I put my wheat grass in a blender, then add as much water. Blend, strain, and drink! Twenty bucks is all it costs, for a six months supply!
Of course I would advise keeping this way of using purchasing grain on the down low, or it could incite some ABC agency to put the cabosh on it!
The good people at the elevator don’t know you aren’t feeding an army of critters, so just thank them kindly and stock up your SHTF (Stuff Hit The Fan) mountain of grains and seeds!
Now that the why of purchasing, large quantities of grain, cheaply, is out of the way, let’s talk about storing the grain.
Some folks get food grade barrels, giant mylar bags, and a mylar bag sealer, to store large amounts of grain. I have heard there can be problems with this method.
Some of these folks, have opened their barrels of mylar-sealed bags of grain, a year or so later.
What they found was stinky, webbed-entwined, ruined grain! They spent a lot of money, just to end up with a barrel full of bugs!
One of my household, best friends, is my Vac Sealer. I came up with a way to seal 5 gallon buckets, with my good friend, the sealer!
If you want to use this bucket method, to store grain, you will have to do a little bucket modification first.
First you have to have a Vac Sealer, and a hose attachment. Next, go to the Vac Seal section of your local store. Get some of those little Vac Seal containers for storing small amounts of food. I haven’t bought any in awhile, but what
I got came two in a pack. Buy however many packs of these little containers you need. You are only concerned with the vac seal fixture on the lid. You will need one per bucket.
You will also need food grade buckets with rubbers seals in the lids, some vinegar, a wire brush, a pair of scissors, that will cut heavy plastic, a drill with a 1/4″ drill bit, and some all-purpose silicone glue.
Cut the vac seal fixture off each lid of the little storage containers. Leave 1 inch of the lid, all around the fixture.
Drill a hole, in the lid, away from the center of the lid, on the flat surface.
Make sure the outside of the lid, around the hole, and the underside of the cut out, container fixture, has been rubbed well with vinegar, then rinsed and dried well.
This removes any manufacturing fluid residue that might keep the the glue from making a good seal.
Once the surfaces are dried well, scratch them up with the wire brush. This creates grooves for the glue to grip for a good, tight seal. Just make sure not to damage the vac seal fixture.
Let everything set for a couple of days to air dry. Even the slightest moisture in the vac seal fixture is not good!
When all is dry, smear a layer of silicone glue on the underside of the vac seal fixture. Be careful not to get any glue on the fixture itself. Place the center of the fixture through the hole on the bucket lid. Push down a little to spread the glue. Set the refitted bucket lid someplace dry and out of the way. Let it set there for a week or two. This allows the glue smell to dissipate and get a good set on the glue.
When ready to store the grain, place three Bay Leaves in the bottom of the bucket. Fill the bucket half full of grain. Put in three more Bay Leaves, then fill with grain to within 2″ of the top.
Put the lid tightly on the bucket, attach the Vac Sealer hose attachment and vac seal! The actually vac sealing will take a long time, but hang in there, it is worth it! The sealer has a lot of air to pull out!Handle the buckets carefully. Big bumps and knocks could unseal it.
A different solution for storing large amounts of grain is easier, and cheaper!
Build a floor-to-ceiling, 2″x2″ frame, in your, cool, dark, storage area. Make it wide enough to hold at least three 2 liter soda bottles, laying on their sides, and side-by-side. The frame doesn’t have to be fancy, it just needs to support the the bottles on the top shoulder and bottom.
Next, fill empty, washed and dried, 2 liter soda bottles, to the halfway point with grain. Put in one Bay Leaf. Fill the rest of the way with grain. Put the lid on and lay it on its side, in the rack. Stack this way to the ceiling!
This method of storing grain doesn’t remove the air from the container, but the grains will still be safe and nutritious years later, if kept out of light, and in a cool place.
The Bay Leaves used in both methods of grain storage keep bugs from hatching out, and making a stinky, web-tangled mess!
Hope these poor man’s methods of grain storage have been helpful to you!