It is important to understand the importance of food preservation inventory lists and to be diligent about keeping one.
The late winter and early spring months are a great time to take an inventory of the items in your food preservation pantry.
Now if you are like me, you might have a list of what you canned up last year – but I bet – unless you are a super organized person – that your list is no longer accurate.
Let’s face it, sometimes food gets eaten up and not marked off the list – or maybe some of the jars didn’t seal right and forgot to remove them from the list.
Either way, taking an inventory now gives you an accurate count of what is left – what is gone – and helps you figure out what to plant for next year’s food preservation pantry.
Importance Of Food Preservation Inventory Everywhere Food Is Stored
In addition to taking an inventory of the pantry, be sure to check what is left in the root cellar, freezer and spice cabinet.
This is a great time to decide how to preserve what is left in the root cellar – you can dehydrate, freeze or can it for longer term storage as long as it is still safe to eat.
Items in the freezer most likely need used up – or canned to preserve them a little bit longer.
Figure out what you have left and then decided what you are going to do with it.
Leftovers such as vegetables work great in soups or stews.
Eat some, then can the rest.
Take Inventory Of Your Spices As Well
When it comes to spices, I don’t like to keep those longer than one year because the essential oils begin to fade and they don’t taste as good as far as I am concerned.
Once I have an inventory I often convert these older spices into spice mixtures and go ahead and grind those up.
This gives me more space in my cabinet and I find I use them faster.
What To Do With Unused Food Past It’s Prime
When I find food that is past it’s prime I do one of two things with it.
If the food is still edible – and not moldy – I feed it to my poultry.
They enjoy the treat and it saves on the feed bill.
Food that is moldy or so far past it’s prime that it is not fit for them goes into the compost pile.
I usually dig into the center of the pile where it is still hot and put the food in there so it does not attract wild animals.
Be sure to cover the food up with some of the compost you dug out.
Keeping A Well Documented Food Inventory History Helps You
I have found, by doing this faithfully every year I have a much better idea of what I need to grow and how much.
I often find food that I thought I was out of – and can come up with some very creative ways to use those little bits of leftovers before they spoil.
This is also a great time to look at the dates on the food you sort.
Remember the oldest date belongs at the front and the newest date belongs in the rear.
This makes sure you use up things before they go bad. I hope this article has been helpful to you.
Please feel free to ask questions or leave comments.
Have you found a better, easier way to accomplish this task?