A wise man once told me that the American people have two speeds: graze and stampede.

As a wave of extremely cold temperatures and isolated winter storms hits the South and Southeastern parts of the United States, Americans are once again proving their tendency to panic buy food and basic provisions in the event of even the most predictable and short-term emergencies.

In the age of terrorism, ongoing wars, social unrest, economic instability, cyber-warfare, ecological disasters like oil and gas spills, flooding, and changing weather patterns, basic preparedness is the responsibility of all people, and with a little bit of forethought and planning, anyone on any budget can beat the herd by storing at least a few days worth of food and water. Yet, somehow, Americans en masse still wait to disaster is on their doorstep before carrying out this fundamental civic duty.

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The following images were sent to Waking Times on January 6th, 2017, by a Wal-Mart employee of the Cambridge Court store in Charlotte, North Carolina, who photographed empty food shelves as a severe winter storm descended upon the region. Along with the photos, this employee commented that the store had been a madhouse all afternoon and that lines were incredibly long.

“It’s been a mess since Monday, the lines on the register look like people going to vote.” ~Wal-Mart employee, Ras Vosty

Emergency food sales as well as sales of other preparedness items, including livable fallout bunkers, have been on the rise in recent years in the U.S., yet there remains a vast majority of the population who tend to ridicule the idea of basic emergency preparedness. If the majority of Americans were in the habit of keeping a stocked pantry and rotating foods out as they are consumed, our dependency on the federal government in times of crisis would not be an issue, and social catastrophes like the aftermath of hurricane Katrina in 2005 would be

Even for those who are too busy with day-to-day life to manage a rotation of basic foods, there are infinite options in emergency foods available, many of which can be stored for 10 years or more and forgotten about until such need arises. Stores like Offgrid Outpost offer high quality non-GMO freeze-dried foods at an exceptional value, and for just a few hundred dollars anyone can tuck away a months supply of food for two people.

Typically, bread, eggs and water are the first items to fly off the shelves during an emergency.

Meats and other non-processed foods are almost completely gone as people prepare to cook food at home instead of eating out at restaurants as they ordinarily would do over a weekend.

Final Thoughts

If this type of panic buying, which can empty the shelves of a major box retailer like Wal-Mart in just a few hours, is so common place even in the event of a minor, predictable weather event, then what will happen when a serious crisis like a severe economic crash or an escalation of global conflict breaks out?

Ask yourself, wouldn’t it be worth it to put away at least a short-term food supply so that you don’t have to be part of the herd in a real food emergency?

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Vic Bishop is a staff writer for WakingTimes.com and OffgridOutpost.com Survival Tips blog. He is an observer of people, animals, nature, and he loves to ponder the connection and relationship between them all. A believer in always striving to becoming self-sufficient and free from the matrix, please track him down on Facebook.

This article ([Photos] Americans Panic Buy Food, Empty Wal-Mart Shelves for Winter Weather) was originally created and published by Waking Times and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Vic Bishop and WakingTimes.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this copyright statement. Please contact [email protected] for more info.