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Brief Introduction to Water & Food Storage

We have seen that with the Coronavirus that in many countries people have been panic buying and supermarkets have run out of foods. This event is signally us to keep a store of food and water so that we do not have pressure at times of challenge, and do not put pressure on the available food supplies.

We suggest you make your food store according to your own individual home and needs. Even buying several extra items when you shop each week will help you build up your food store without pressure.

Storing Water

Most people are surprised when they realise just how much water they use each day. We suggest you:

  • Store drinking water, in case the water supply is disrupted or unsafe to drink.

  • You'll need at least three litres of clean drinking water and two litres of water for washing and cooking per person, per day.

Image: Internet

How to store water

The safest and most reliable emergency water supply is to buy sealed, commercially bottled water. Label the containers ‘drinking water’ and write the date of expiry.

If you want to use recycled drink containers:

  1. Clean and rinse the containers with dishwashing soap and water

  2. Add a solution of one teaspoon of liquid household non-scented chlorine bleach to four cups of water and swish over all interior surfaces of the container

  3. Rinse thoroughly with water

  4. Fill with drinking water

  5. Secure the lid tightly

  6. Label the outside of the containers with ‘Drinking water’ and the date when they were filled and when they need refilling.

  7. Your own water containers should be refilled every 6 to 12 months.

  8. Keep stored water in a cool place away from direct sunlight. Avoid having materials such as petrol etc., as vapors can penetrate plastic.


It is best that you choose what you feel is easiest for you to store according to the needs of your household, your local climate and situation. In hot and humid climates food cannot keep as long as in cold climates. Consider food supplies that:

Image: Container Stories

  • Ready-to-eat canned or bottled food: Dried and long-life food (The Pantry List - Australian Food Safety Information Council - foodsafety.asn.au)

  • Or you may choose to build a store of food items, which you regularly use such as food items that can keep for several months. For example rice. If you regularly use rice then you can create a system where you store it in order of age. For example, the oldest rice is stored at the front of the store and the newly bought rice is placed at the back of the store. You use rice from the front and then you are ensuring that your rice store does not go out of date and also can build a store of several months’ food without having to think about it going out of date.

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