Friday, April 15, 2011

You Can't Afford Not To Garden

Just a quicky blog post to urge any fence sitters to definitely consider growing a garden this year. Food prices are going ballistic, so stocking up should be a priority for everybody that needs to eat. ;-) I don't think you have much time to procrastinate any more. If you had stocked up 6 months ago you'd already have a better return on that investment than anything else in your portfolio, including gold! This interesting article out today. Reality Now: Massive Price Increases at LDS Food Distribution Centers in Last Ninety Days Commodities have been going absolutely ballistic for months, with the mainstream focusing more on oil and gas than anything else. Price increases in other commodities like wheat, beans, and rice, which have, for the most part, been subdued on the consumer retail side because companies were willing to take the margin compression for a while, are now becoming a painful reality. A recent email from a regular reader of SHTFplan who closely follows food price fluctuations outlines that it’s not just large corporate grocery chains that are raising prices, but not-for-profit organizations. Provident Living, a huge food storage and dry goods distribution organization for the Latter Day Saints has alerted their members that prices are up from between 11% to 49% on basic food staples. Keep in mind that the LDS are extremely large buyers of food. They buy in bulk across the country, and they buy hard assets, not paper traded commodities. They don’t attempt to profit from their Prodivent Living storage centers, which are located in just about every major city in the United States. So, if they’re raising prices, it’s because their acquisition costs are going up. The most stunning aspect of the price increases, is that they have occured not in the last year, but over the last 90 days. The following chart shows the price inflation in the majority of food storage products (generally 10 pound to 25 pound bulk bags) distributed at the Provident Living centers.

The following note from DP sums up the reasons for the price increases and actions that should be taken by those who are interested in preparedness and making non-traditional investments to protect wealth: The LDS church have long been at the forefront in preparedness for families and communities. Their network of companies and church affiliations allow them access to cheaper food sources, and the capacity to store them for long periods of time through their canning facilities. As the government and Federal Reserve continues to tell the American people that inflation is low, and contained by their monetary policies, the real barometer of inflation in the economy comes from the grocers, markets, and institutions that deal with food sales and production, and must monitor prices daily as commodities continue to climb. The LDS Church ’s raising food prices at their canneries by 11 to 49% in just three months should be a serious wake-up call to all Americans on the true inflationary conditions that exist in our economy, and that we need to constantly look outside government reports for the true data affecting our spending and finances.


  1. Could you recommend some good books on the subject? I would love to start growing a good bit of produce but really can't seem to figure out how to do it properly. I only end up with a negligible amount.

  2. Kinda fun to go look at that article you linked to! The price changes at the canneries happened the weekend BEFORE I went to get my latest stock of wheat at a dry-pack in Utah. I was so annoyed & for weeks I'd been thinking -- go get your wheat, go get your wheat, the price is going to go up!! And it did!!! Grrr.

    I was working for the LDS Church's headquarters (not only in the department that oversees the canneries, but in the division directly over them) in SLC in 1999 -- you should have seen the insane #'s of people going to the canneries to prep for Y2K; it was actually pretty funny. For prices to go up like this, though, is really creepy.

    This is the year I'm praying my garden will actually succeed because of all these price increases. There's an old children's song that says, "the prophet said to plant a garden." We've nearly always done it and not worried too much about the results. This year, though, we read an article that completes the quote which says to make it as productive as possible! Here I'm preaching to the choir, but the article was inspiring to me this year:

    Thanks for the link!

  3. Stephanie Ann, we have a book called "Organic Gardening" that has been helpful but the best thing you can do is to find a gardener in your area who can answer questions. There can be so many soil variations around the country that it's more helpful to have someone that knows your soil type and any deficiencies it might have. Plus, there are forums like Backwoods Home that have ooodles of self reliant/prepper type people.

    Emily, I've ignored that still, soft voice before too and wished later that I'd listened! I agree, it *is* scary what food prices are doing. Scarier still that so many people still refuse to believe that hard times are coming. I feel bad for them, but when their philosophy is "eat, drink and be merry...", what can you do?

  4. You're certainly welcome! I feel like a dog barking at a train, it doesn't do any good because it neither stops the train or makes people pay attention. :-(

  5. If only I had more room to plant! But I hope to get in a decent sized garden...and maybe sneak in some other plants around the bushes. :) That's what my mom did -- grew bell peppers next to her decorative bushes, and tomato plants in her front flower bed.

  6. Would a local farmer or CSA work as well? We live on a super tiny lot (major metro area and all that) so we have very little room to grow anything. Our compromise has been to buy from the local food co-op and their prices have not increased for the summer. Is that a viable option for us city-dwellers? Would their food costs be as likely to skyrocket?

  7. A CSA can be a great money saving way to eat local. Without added in fuel/trucking costs the prices are bound to be better! Still, wheat and meat prices are really shooting up (I don't think you're buying those from your CSA but I could be wrong) so buy those on sale when you can.

  8. Well, we get a lot of our meat from a local organic butcher shop and some off-the-market local farmers and I haven't noticed the prices going up too much. We're gluten-free so the wheat thing won't really affect us (although we can get wheat berries from our CSA if we desire). We have been buying up rice and dried beans though.


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