After watching the types of people that join the Survivalist Forum, there seems to be at least 4 different groups:
Hoarders – the people that stock up on everything – food, water, canned goods, beans, rice, MREs,,,. These are the people that have hundreds or even thousands of canned or dried food products.
Some of the plans that hoarders have may include storing several years worth of food. Some of those plans seem to go like this – vacuum seal food products, such as flour, rice, beans, wheat,,,, and then put the packages into 5 gallon buckets, or into air tight containers.
Gardeners – the people that have gardens. People in this type of group usually stock up on seeds, garden tools, books on gardening and fertilizer.
This group includes the organic gardener and the person who uses commercial fertilizer.
Combination of the two – People that stock up on prepared foods, but also have garden.
On a personal note, I consider a combination of the hoarder and gardener to be the best prepared. They have enough food stocks to respond to an immediate need. And then they have access to a renewable food source – their garden and extra seeds.
Some people find comfort knowing that they have a zillion cans of spam. Others find comfort knowing they have enough seeds for at least 3 years of gardens. And some people find comfort somewhere been the two.
And lastly, there is the militant survivalist. Their comfort is that they have an AR15 or AK47 and several cases of ammo. This is probably the least prepared group.
Most (not all) of these people envision hordes of looters swarming the streets after society breaks down. People in this group may even subscribe to the “Backpack” or “Bug Out Bag” type of mind set. If there is an outbreak of some kind of plague, some of the people in this group plan on grabbing their family, “heading to the hills” and living a primitive life style.