How to ensure food security in a survival situation?

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Understanding food security and its challenges in a survival situation

Definition of food security

Food security involves four fundamental pillars: availability, access, use and food stability. Each of these pillars plays a crucial role in ensuring our good health and survival.

Food availability

This is the ability to have a constant supply of food. This can come from local production, imports, donations, among others. In a survival situation, availability may be hampered by extreme weather conditions, natural disasters, civil conflicts, etc.

Access to food

Not only must food be available, but it must also be accessible. This requires sufficient resources to obtain the necessary foods. In a survival situation, barriers to access may be lack of money, lack of transportation or inaccessibility to markets.

Use of food

Once food is available and accessible, it must be used in a way that ensures adequate nutrition. This may involve proper cooking techniques, sufficient hygiene and a balanced diet.

Food stability

It is the ability to maintain the availability, access and use of food continuously. In a survival situation, instability can be caused by economic factors, such as price fluctuations, or political crises.

Food security issues in survival situations

Food preservation


Food preservation is an essential aspect to consider to ensure food security in a survival situation. This includes techniques such as drying, salting, canning and others. This aims to reduce dependence on external sources of supply and extend the shelf life of food.

Sustainable food production

Another solution to guarantee food security is to develop your own means of food production. This can include small animal breeding, beekeeping, aquaponics, permaculture, etc.

The importance of a balanced diet

A balanced diet is essential to maintaining good health in a survival situation. It involves incorporating various food groups, including proteins, carbohydrates, fiber, etc.

Survival and food safety products

There are products specifically designed for survival situations that can help ensure food safety. Some of these products include packaged foods with a long shelf life, such as MRE (Meals Ready to Eat), water purifiers, solar generators to power refrigerators, among others.
This article aims to make food safety more understandable and highlight its importance in survival situations. Preparation is key. The more prepared you are, the more able you will be to face the challenges that come your way. Food security in a survival situation is more than just a meal; It’s a question of survival.

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Identify and collect safe foods in wilderness areas

Surviving in the wild requires above all ensuring food security. This involves identifying and collecting edible foods that not only guarantee your survival, but also your health. By adopting a few basic rules and knowing the right food sources, you will increase your chance of survival in the wilderness.

Learn to Recognize Edible Plants

Nature is full of edible plants, but also toxic plants. It is therefore crucial to know the difference. Some mobile applications like Pl@ntNet can help you with identification.

Here are some basic rules for identifying edible plants:

  • Avoid plants with strong odors: most of the time, they are toxic.
  • Be wary of plants with milky sap: they often contain indigestible substances.
  • Avoid eating berries if you are unsure whether they are edible.

Hunting and Fishing for Food

If you have mastered the art of hunting and fishing, these skills can prove essential to your survival. Animals are an excellent source of proteins and lipids, essential for the proper functioning of the body. However, make sure to follow health rules when preparing meat, to avoid any food poisoning.

Harvesting Safe Foods

In a wild environment, you will be able to find a variety of edible foods other than plants and animals. Here are some examples :

Food Description
Mushrooms Some are edible but precise identification is necessary to avoid toxic species.
Insects Many insect species are edible and rich in protein.
Wild fruits and berries Several species of fruits and berries are edible, but you need to know how to identify them correctly.

Make sure you collect and consume food responsibly and ethically, respecting the surrounding nature and wildlife. Always remember the golden rule: when in doubt, do not consume. Your safety should always be your priority.

Precautions to Take When Consuming Wild Foods

Safety is paramount when eating in the wild. Here are some precautions to take:

  • Cook wild foods as much as possible to kill any parasites or bacteria.
  • Test small pieces of food before eating them in large quantities.
  • Always wash food with potable water, if possible.

Wild eating is an adventure and a skill that requires patience, knowledge and respect for nature. Always take necessary precautions to ensure your health and safety.

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Preserving Food and Preventing Foodborne Illness

Eating should not be a matter of survival, but a matter of life. When faced with difficult situations, such as natural disasters, war, or simply while hiking in a harsh environment, it is crucial to know how to preserve food and prevent foodborne illness. But well beyond these exceptional situations, this skill is also valuable in our daily lives to optimize the lifespan of our food and guarantee its health quality. This guide explains how.

The Basics of Food Preservation

Food preservation consists of using different methods to slow down and, if possible, eradicate the development of pathogens – bacteria, yeasts, molds – in foods which can cause food poisoning or infections.

Food preservation methods

1. Cold preservation: Refrigeration and freezing
2. Preservation by heat: Pasteurization, sterilization, canning (preservation in cans), cooking
3. Preservation by dehydration: Air drying, dehydration, freeze-drying
4. Preservation by addition of substances: Salting, brining, addition of sugar, addition of acids (vinegar, lemon juice)
5. Preservation by fermentation
6. Conservation by irradiation

Respect food hygiene rules

Even with the best possible preservation method, it is essential to follow certain hygiene rules to prevent foodborne illnesses. Here are some of these rules:

  1. Always wash your hands before handling food.
  2. Clean your utensils and work surfaces regularly.
  3. Separate raw foods from cooked foods to avoid cross-contamination.
  4. Cook food at the correct temperature.

Choice and use of food preservation equipment

Specific, reliable and effective devices are necessary to better preserve your food, here are some of them:

Refrigerators and freezers

Brands like Whirlpool And Samsung offer a wide range of refrigerators and freezers for long-term food storage. The main thing is to respect the recommended storage temperatures for each type of food and not to overload the equipment to ensure good air circulation.

Dehydration and freeze-drying devices

Brands like Excalibur And Cosori offer smart food dehydrators to dry your fruits, vegetables or meats. Freeze-dried foods, such as those from Mountain House, also offer options for convenient and sustainable dehydrated meals.

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Preparing and cooking food in a survival situation: best practices guide

Select Nutritious Foods

The first step is to choose your foods wisely. In a survival situation, the focus is on foods that provide the most nutrition and energy. Opt for foods rich in protein, carbohydrates and essential vitamins and minerals.

Food Recommendations:

  • LifeStraw Water Filtration System – an essential tool for purifying water from unsafe sources.
  • Datrex emergency rations – Compact and nutritious, these rations require no preparation.
  • PROBAR energy bars – Rich in nutrients and protein, these bars provide a boost of energy when you need it most.

Food preparation

Food preparation is a crucial step that can greatly affect the quality and safety of your meal. Be sure to clean your food thoroughly before eating it and handle it with clean hands.

  • Water purification : Boil water for at least 10 minutes or use a water purification system.
  • Cleaning fruits and vegetables: Rub fruits and vegetables with clean water to remove contaminants.

Cooking food

Cooking not only makes food more palatable, but also kills any bacteria and parasites. Here are some simple cooking techniques for survival situations.

  • Cooking over a fire : If you have access to wood and a source of ignition, cooking over a fire is an effective way to prepare your meals.
  • Using a survival stove : Survival stoves, such as Etekcity portable gas stove, are compact and efficient for outdoor cooking.
  • Food preservation : Use a preservation method, such as drying or salting, to prevent the growth of bacteria and extend the shelf life of food.


Never underestimate the importance of food preparation and cooking in a survival situation. In situations where every ounce of energy counts, a good diet can make all the difference.

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