There are quite a few hidden gems in Chandler, not the least of which might be this non-descript office-building-looking retail store located just off the I-10 at Chandler Boulevard. They sell food storage supplies; freeze-dried foods; hard-to-find whole grains, cereals and seeds; and emergency preparedness supplies such as sun ovens, water purification supplies and hygiene kits.
From camping to solar cooking, baking or just getting ready for the end of the world there really is something for everyone at the Honeyville Farms retail store. Because everyone has some need for freeze-dried scrambled eggs and bacon or emergency toilets.
Unless you've been into camping or canning for a while, you're bound to find something you've never seen before - and if you're anything like us, the square footage of shelving dedicated to "storable food" will leave you reeling.
If you're not familiar with the company, Honeyville Farms has sold wholesale grains and other food products to restaurants since 1951. Through their four retails stores, they can also bring some of their thousands of products to the masses at affordable prices. The owners belong to the Church of Latter Day Saints, and although the products tend to cater to the preparation and food storage needs of Mormon Church members, the company is not officially associated with the church.
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The variety of freeze dried fruits wasn't nearly as interesting as the freeze-dried onions, tomatoes and even spaghetti. We didn't like the sound of TVP, or textured vegetable protein. Like, at all. Don't even get us started on the oversize cans of instant non-fat dried milk.
But according to an employee, home bakers appreciate the bulk size flours including almond (bleached or blanched), barley, millet, oat, potato and even coconut. They swear that in the Valley of the Sun, there are some who cook using only sun ovens. Their selections of high-quality dried food are widely used by campers and backpackers.
Each of the retail stores also offers free classes on a variety of topics. Upcoming classes at the Chandler store include meals in a jar, sun oven demos and garden basics. For a complete list with dates and times, visit the Honeyville Farms Chandler store blog.