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Michigan Focuses on Emergency Food Supplies During National Preparedness Month

The Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH), Office of Public Health Preparedness (OPHP) has teamed up with local public health departments, regional healthcare coalitions, and Michigan chefs to host a preparedness kit recipe challenge throughout the month of September to highlight National Preparedness Month.

“Preparedness month is a time for families to take stock and plan at home for ways to protect themselves during emergencies,” said Dr. Matthew Davis, Chief Medical Executive for the MDCH, who is hosting a series of preparedness YouTube videos as part of the campaign. “An important part of planning is having an extra supply of shelf stable foods on hand and knowing how to use them to prepare healthy meals when the power goes out for several days. This challenge is a fun way for Michiganders to learn more about preparedness and to share creative recipes with each other.”

Residents are invited to submit a recipe for their favorite no-cook or grill-style dish using only shelf-stable ingredients online at the newly revamped Michigan Prepares website, Shelf-stable items include foods that can safely sit on a pantry shelf for at least one year and do not require cooking or refrigeration.

There are two categories of recipe submissions, no-cook and grill style. Grill style allows for dishes to be warmed in a pan on an outdoor grill or camp stove, so long as only shelf-stable ingredients are used. Outdoor grills and camp stoves give off carbon monoxide, which is colorless and odorless, and can be deadly. This category of the challenge helps residents create recipes that encourage the use these types of equipment in a safe manner, outside and away from windows and vents that lead into the home.

Recipes for the challenge will be accepted on the Michigan Prepares website until September 30. The top three winning recipes for each category will be selected and announced in October. Winners will receive a gift card to help stock their own preparedness kit supplies. Winning recipes will be highlighted on the Michigan Prepares website and in social media, mini YouTube cooking videos, and in a preparedness e-cookbook of submitted recipes and preparedness planning tips that will be released later this year.

Michiganders are also encouraged to use the hash tag #MIPreparesRecipe on social media to follow posts about the recipe challenge, and interact throughout September. Michigan Prepares is the MDCH preparedness website for the public. The site is informative, interactive, and user-friendly, and contains useful planning tools and tips to assist Michiganders with planning to stay healthy during emergencies.

More information on the challenge, as well as featured recipes from professional chefs, regional healthcare coalitions, and local health department partners is available on the Michigan Prepares website at