Should I Buy Food or Ammo?

Ammo box
Should you buy food or ammo? Start with food, build up a stash, and then expand into guns and ammo.

I have another 240 rounds of .300 Blackout in my shopping cart online and I’m trying to decide if it’s worth spending $247, which includes shipping and tax, to buy 240 rounds of ammo.

This is good ammo. It has a 110 grain Hornady V-MAX bullet. It reported clocks in at 2,350 fps, which is pretty fast for a .300BO. I know from experience that my gun likes 110 grain bullets. What makes this especially tough is that used to purchase 1,000 rounds–not 200, but five times that–of 5.56 for less than $300 and 1,000 rounds of 7.62×39 for under $180. So paying $1 a round is sticking in my craw. Of course, the chance of seeing ammo at those low prices again is pretty unlikely.

There’s something else causing me doubts: Do I need more ammo? No. I should have enough. But I have less .300BO than I have 5.56 or .308, so if I’m going to buy ammo, it’s going to be .300BO. And 240 rounds is enough for eight 30-round magazines loaded magazines.

So why not stick with 5.56 or .308? I have more guns chambered for those calibers than I do in .300BO.

When it comes to poking holes in people with coper-clad lead projectiles, I think the Army’s experience in Afghanistan proved that the 62-grain still-penetrator 5.56 round could poke ice pick-like holes in someone but wouldn’t stop them. “Specialty” bullets give better performance, which is one reason I like he V-MAX. The .308 is superior to both, but it also requires bulkier, heavier guns. I like the .308 on a bipod for barricaded defense, but if I’m going to be running around, I’d prefer the lighter weapon for greater mobility.


I can buy 125 grain HP BT rounds from Prvi Partizan for $4 less per box of 20. That saves me $50, or I can buy 60 more rounds for the same price. It’s made overseas, and the bullet is a little slower, without the polymer tip, but in a self-defense situation, is any of that going to matter? Maybe not. With a good shot, the bad guy won’t know which bullet hit him. Part of me likes getting more ammunition for less money.

Or, instead of buying ammo, I could buy food. Think of it this way: In a long-term grid-down situation, there’s a good chance you will need ammo, but there’s a 100 percent chance you will need food. Ammo stores longer, which means you need to rotate and replenish your food supply more often.

We’re planning a Costco trip in December. $247 will buy 16 cans of Spam. 12 cans of tuna, 12 cans of chicken, 12 cans of corn, 50 pounds of flour 12 pounds of Bisquick, 10 pounds of pancake mix, 2 pounds of instant yeast, 4 pounds of baking soda, and 50 pounds of rice. (If you think this isn’t much, it’s because Costco’s prices are MUCH higher than they used to be.) If I went to Sam’s Club, I could get even more food.

Of course, it would be easier to store 240 rounds of ammo. All that food takes up so much space. At some point, we’re going to run out of room.

Or maybe I should save my money and use it for living expenses down the road.  As inflation rises, the cost of living gets higher and higher.

My Decision

I’m going to hold off on buying the ammo. I’ll buy food instead. This is consistent with the advice I’ve given before: take care of food and water before you focus on self-defense. If you are a new prepper and allocate yourself a $10,000 budget to spend on prepping, I would spend $6,500 on food, $500 on water, $1,000 on guns, and $2,000 on ammo.

But that doesn’t mean I’m going to remove the ammo from my shopping cart.