One day on the train I started thinking about the reasons in favour of and against stockpiling food at home. Different people probably have varying definitions of how much they feel a stockpile is. For some it would be a reserve of enough food to feed the family for a fortnight. Others might limit their stockpile to items bought in bulk, home preserved fruits or freeze home grown vegetables as a means of saving money.
Your motive for thinking about having extra food on hand will influence what you consider as advantages and disadvantages.
If you want a safety net in case of a temporary drop in income you may feel it is better to have some money stashed away to buy groceries. That way you do not need to keep an eye on the age of items and use some up and replace them. You do not need to worry about storage space.
Advantages Reasons for having some extra non perishable food items stashed away include -
acts as a safety net in case of illness of wage earner or loss of employment
creates a feeling of security
in case someone comes to stay unexpectedly or you have to support friends or extended family through a difficult time
means there is food on hand if you are unable to get to the shops for a few days
provides food if your home became isolated from shops due to flood in surrounding area
can save you money if you buy extra items when they are on special or buy in bulk.
Disadvantages There can be potential problems associated with stockpiling including -
may need to buy a freezer to store frozen goods and this may be a considerable financial outlay. It costs money to run a freezer. Are you saving money?
you have to find a space which is dry and protected from excessive heat to store packet and tinned goods.
paper bags may split open and food could be wasted
weevils could infest foods such as cereals, flour or nuts
if there is a power failure for an extended time or your freezer breaks down you may lose a large amount of food
need to keep track of what you have and use it before it deteriorates
extra items to transport if you move house
you may be tempted to eat more than necessary simply because you have plenty of food on hand
Successful stockpiling requires careful planning and keeping track of what you have. It can help you through a difficult time. Even if you don't want to have a substantial amount of food in reserve 'just in case' or as a money saving strategy, a few extra non perishable items can come in very handy.
April 2020 I didn't know about COVID19 when I wrote this article a few years ago. Another advantage of having some food and other necessities stockpiled before an emergency is that you can use up what you have on hand if you are self isolating. You won't need to go to the supermarket and queue outside as frequently if social distancing becomes a thing.