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The Short List of Critical Supplies

By: Tom Chatham

In these days of uncertainty it is only prudent to have sufficient stores to carry you over until the crisis has past. It is necessary to have the things you need on a daily basis just in case your supplies are cut off for any number of reasons. Your location and capabilities will dictate what supplies are most important to you so a complete analysis of the potential crisis is needed.

The critical supply list is not meant to replace a well rounded list of food, water, clothing or other supplies but rather to highlight items that are hard to produce locally and will be difficult to find in a catastrophic situation. These items will become necessary in many circumstances where long term survival becomes necessary and you must provide most of your own needs. Some of these items will be more critical to some people than others depending on the situation you find yourself in and the plans you have.

The short list is a group of items that would be difficult or impossible to produce locally, have important health benefits or provide cutting or construction ability. While a shortage of other individual items can be worked around in many ways, these items are difficult to replace or work around when needed.

The Bakers Dozen

Motor Oil, Lubricants and Filters –

While motor fuels can be produced locally from various sources, lubricants and filters are much more difficult to produce and are vital to engine operations.

Primers, Caps, Flints and Powder –

Many of the items required for firearms are capable of being homemade or reused from original supplies. Primers, percussion caps, flints and powder supplies are the critical links that are difficult to produce locally and must be stored in depth for continued availability during critical times of need.

Vegetable and Grain Seeds –

Seeds are the basis of a sustainable food system and are critical to long term food production.

Sea Salt –

Salt is necessary for the human body to function properly. The lack of it in your diet can be lethal. Salt is also a good preservative and sea salt contains up to 60 other minerals that are beneficial to the human body. Unless you live near a source of salt, it can be difficult to procure if supply lines are cut for any reason.

Quality knife –

Nothing can replace a good knife when one is needed. It can be used in the kitchen for preparing meals, dressing out a fresh piece of meat, for cutting materials or for defense.

Ax and Saw –

Tools that can be used to procure firewood, construct furniture and devices or build shelter are critical when all other systems fail or are lost.

Duct tape –

This is a truly multi purpose item. It has very good holding power, is very strong and very durable.

Aspirin –

This is an item that can be used for reducing the effects of a heart attack, relieving pain and reducing swelling.

Iodine –

This is a multi purpose item that can be used for preventing infections, purifying water and reducing some of the harmful effects of radiation by application to the abdomen. When applied to the skin, the body will absorb what it needs.

Emergency dental kit –

When medical services are cut off for extended periods, a minor problem like a lost filling can be catastrophic to a persons’ survival. The ability to seal an open dental cavity can be the difference between a fully functional person and an incapacitated person in great pain.

Sewing kit –

If clothing supplies are cut off for any reason for a prolonged period, it will be necessary to maintain clothing until replacements can be found. Sewing supplies can also serve as a makeshift wound repair kit.

Fishing supplies –

Fishing is possible in most areas of the country from rivers, lakes and ponds. This will provide a person with a secondary source of food in critical times. Fishing line is very strong and can be used for tying and securing materials when rope is not available. It can also be used to construct snares and traps for small animals.

Reusable canning lids –

While canning equipment and jars can be reused for many years, the weak link in canning foods for long term storage is the jar lids. Most lids now used are single use items and would require an extensive supply to last many years. Reusable canning lids when cared for can last for decades and provide an additional means to store meats and vegetables for long periods.

Depending on the location and circumstances you find yourself in you may determine there are other critical items that you should have for long term survivability. That is why it is important to assess your situation and determine what long term supplies you need but cannot produce locally and insure you have a sufficient supply before they are cut off. Critical supplies will demonstrate a low cost but high payoff and multiuse capability when a proper analysis is done.