Thrive Food VS Other Food Storage Brands

I love Thrive Life. In full disclosure, it is my favorite food storage brand. 

But I do occasionally talk about and help you get familiar with other brands as well so you have options.

Below is a summary of the various food storage brands I have researched with some information about each. I hope that this helps you make more informed decisions if you are looking to find a food storage brand you can trust.

fresh foods aside food storage food brands

There are good things about many food storage brands.  I don’t believe there is any one company that comes out below Thrive in all areas.  There are other good companies and choices out there.

The purpose of today’s post is to help you choose which brand is right for your family.

Quality and taste of Thrive vs other brands

The quality of some foods doesn’t really vary between brands.  I recommend buying things like rice, wheat, rolled oats, beans, sugar, baking powder, and many other whole grains wherever you can find them the cheapest. 

Costco and the LDS cannery are good sources, and Honeyville is my favorite source for harder to find grains.

But the quality of other foods varies widely.  This is especially true of powdered milk and freeze-dried produce, meat and cheese.

I’ve ordered these products from various different companies on a quite a few different occasions.  I’ve also been a part of conducting a couple of different blind taste tests with large groups of people. 

Thrive food always wins.

Their instant milk is the best I’ve tasted. 

Their fruits and veggies are the most flavorful and colorful.

Thrive is relentless in finding the best food sources, and they go to great lengths to test multiple sources until they find the best foods available.  Each batch of food received in their facility is individually tested, sampled and approved by an on-site quality assurance department (including one of the owners of the company…he tastes every batch) and FSIS Inspector before it is packaged into cans. 

I’ve known them to reject entire batches of product (at huge cost) because it didn’t meet their standards.

The large majority of Thrive foods contain no preservatives, additives, or artificial colors/flavors.  In addition, they are mostly non-GMO, and msg and gluten free.

Cost of Thrive Life food vs other brands

Thrive Life food is not the cheapest brand.

But you need to be careful how you compare prices. 

Make sure you compare by total volume instead of # of servings or ounces.  Also, note “amount of food per can below” as this can affect overall cost too. Some companies are tricky in the way the package, label, and price the food to make it appear to cost less than it does. 

Make sure you calculate the cost per cup in order to fairly compare.

My favorite “budget brand” is Emergency Essentials. 

I have found the quality of most of their foods to be acceptable (and sometimes even great) and they are often priced slightly below (and sometimes far below) Thrive. Following their monthly specials and group buys are great ways to get your food at a lower cost.

If you really want Thrive Life food, there are ways to get it for less.  There are some unadvertised packages that are not available on the Thrive site, but can be received by working with a Thrive Life consultant. They often have deals and promotions where you can get discounts and even free product.

Amount of food per can in Thrive vs other brands

I’ve not done any official research in this area, but when I’ve ordered food from various brands, Thrive’s cans always seem to be the fullest. 

Sometimes I’ve ordered from other brands, opened the #10 can and found it to be only half full!  Ouch! That just increased my cost per serving!

While all freeze-dried foods will experience some settling, every Thrive can I’ve ever opened (and I’ve opened hundreds) has been at least 3/4 full with most being nearly full.

Availability of various brands

If you live in Utah, you can visit Thrive Life, Emergency Essentials, or Augason Farms in their physical storefronts and avoid shipping costs. 

Honeyville has stores in Salt Lake City, UT, Brigham City, UT, Tempe, AZ and Racho Cucamonga, CA. (And Honeyville’s in store prices are actually far lower than their online prices).

But if you don’t live in Utah, or near a Honeyville store or LDS cannery, you often have to pay to have your food storage shipped to you.  Augason Farms wins here as their product is available in stores like Sam’s Club, Winco, and Walmart. This makes them easier for most anyone to pick up without having to order online.

Use or rotation of Thrive vs other brands

Some food storage companies (none that I link to) sell only (or mostly) pre-made, just add water meals.  While most companies (all that I link to) sell a few of these, I will not link to those that focus solely on them.

These types of meals have their place.  I store a few for nights when I just can’t get around to cooking.  They will also be nice to have in the days immediately following a disaster when I’m not organized yet and just need a quick meal.

However, eating these foods long term will have negative effects on your health.  The mixed ingredients/sauces mean that lots of additives and preservatives are needed.  Sodium, msg etc are all very high in these types of meals.  I cannot imagine eating them long term, and as such cannot recommend them with a clear conscience.  Therefore, I do not link to or recommend any company that sells them exclusively.

Thrive Life, Emergency Essentials, Honeyville, and Augason Farms all offer products that are available as individual ingredients in separate cans.  This means they are easy to use and rotate in your own regular old recipes.  This makes it possible to “eat what you store and store what you eat.”  Thrive has just a few “just add water” meals, and Emergency Essentials probably offers the most (but they have plenty of individual ingredient foods as well).

Thrive offers the most single ingredient cans that have absolutely no preservatives/additives.  This means that a can of green beans is just that: 100% never before canned, frozen, or cooked green beans.  Emergency Essentials, Honeyville and Augason Farms have many such products as well though Thrive has the most.  All four companies have some individual ingredient cans that have a few additives or preservatives, though Thrive has the least.  Be sure to read labels if that is important to you.

Thrive offers a few additional things that make using their food easy: (1) A monthly cooking show with a professional chef  (Chef Todd),  H(2) A recipe site that has Chef Todd’s recipes as well as many consultants and customer recipes.  (3) The Thrive guide: A book with tips on how to use most of their products.  I don’t know of any other food storage company that offers that type of support for really learning how to use their products.  When you know how to use the product, the rotation is much easier and waste is much less.

Packaging of Thrive vs other brands

Most food storage comes in #10 cans (aka a 1-gallon can), 5-6 gallon buckets, or in bulk (you have to package it yourself).

Sometimes packaging food yourself can be the cheaper way to go.  For foods where the quality doesn’t vary as much (see #1 above), you should certainly consider it.  But make sure you take into account the cost of the cans, oxygen absorbers, lids, and your time.  Also be certain you know what you are doing so that your food is safe to eat when you need it.

Personally, the cost savings is minimal enough (b/c I only buy food on sale) that it is usually worth it to me to just buy my food already packaged in #10 cans or buckets.

Thrive’s cans are double lined to prevent rust from the outside or the “tin-like” taste on the inside.  The last time I checked (early 2015), Thrive food used the thickest, highest quality cans of any company.  Their buckets also come with a gamma lid which is awesome.

Some companies line the cans on the outside, but as I am writing this article (early 2015), I personally know of no other company that also lines them on the inside.

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Becky is a wildlife enthusiast and pet and livestock care expert with a diploma in canine nutrition. With over a decade of experience in animal welfare, Becky lends her expertise to Simple Family Preparedness through insightful info about pets, livestock, bee keeping, and the practicalities of homesteading.

20 thoughts on “Thrive Food VS Other Food Storage Brands”

  1. Hi, what do you think of the Legacy brand? Also, how do you minimize waste if you open a large (#10) can but don’t need it all at once? Do you stock up on Ziplocs or do some things come in smaller cans?

  2. I have a child with severe peanut allergy. Is there a brand that offers a product line that is peanut free and not manufactured in the same facility or processed on the same equipment as peanuts? This is always hard to find and I feel like I’m taking chances because I don’t really know how it is processed. Any help with this would be welcome.

  3. I am wanting to try the Thrive products. Just not sure where to begin. I have watched a few U Tubes from Vicki’s Country Home but she doesn’t provide recipes.
    What I want to do is create healthy foods that are simple to prepare. I am attempting to prep for trailer traveling newly retired…
    Any recommendations for Mason Jar type recipes would be greatly appreciated.

  4. I am just starting this year in wanting to use and store food. One company I looked at was The Ready Store. I am curious what your opinion is on that company? I have really been enjoying your website!

    • The Ready Store is actually one of my least favorite companies Sheila. I’d recommend Thrive first, but if you don’t want to go through them, I’d try Emergency Essentials, Augason Farms or Honeyville before the Ready Store.

      • I do buy mostly Thrive food but like scallop potatoes they do not have. I have ordered from Ready Store and would really like to know why they are your least favorite. I value your opinion!

        • I’ve tried some of their food Sheila and it is so so…hit and miss (like many companies), but the reason I can’t recommend them in good conscience is that I’ve seen them do some very dishonest things in their advertising – particularly in how they compare their product to other companies products…they have made completely false claims about other companies, so I just can’t trust them and won’t recommend them.

  5. I would not Recommend Thrive Market to anyone; I ordered a small bag of wheat gluten and as soon as I did I realized I was on the hook for a trial membership fee, so I immediately canceled the order and the trial membership, but a week later the order showed up at the door. I sent three more emails to Thrive Market telling them to cancel the membership; but they went ahead anyway and charged my card $59,95. Thrive Market is a vary dishonest company.

    • Thanks for letting us know that Roy! We must be talking about different Thrive companies though. I”m not familiar with Thrive Market, but I’m talking about a different company called Thrive Life. They have to be different companies because Thrive Life doesn’t carry wheat gluten.

  6. Hello,

    I know you mentioned oxygen absorbers is the tin canned foods. Are there oxygen absorbers in the 6 gallon buckets too?

    Thank you ahead for your response on this.


    • Sorry for my crazy late response here Cindy, but yes, there are (larger) oxygen absorbers in teh buckets. The food in the buckets is actually sealed inside a large mylar bag too.

  7. Thrive sells Chinese products, misrepresents the actual calories and total servings found per can. We have found Thrive to not be the company you claim it to be, so yes, we’re pretty sure you’re quite biased.

    Let’s see you post this in full-disclosure and honesty.

    • Wow. I’m always surprised by people who need to cut others down. You can see here

      exactly where each product comes from and not one is from China. I’m not sure where you are getting your information, but I personally know the owners and top executives. I’ve spent a great deal of time with them. They are extremely honest, trustworthy, good people. They do not mis-represent themselves in anyway.

      I’m happy to leave your comment up in “full-disclosure and honesty”, but see no credibility to it. What are your sources?

    • I am looking to purchase a large order in the next two weeks. Please help me to understand why you formed the opinion you did? It would be helpful to me and others, as we seek out the best foodstuff and value, in this process of choosing long term storage.
      Thank you so much.

      • Hey Carolyn,

        I’m not sure if you were asking me or Paul. I will answer and if you were asking Paul, hope he answers as well! (-:

        For me it came down to quality. I did a bunch of research on quality control and found THRIVE to be the most careful. I LOVED the double lined cans as much storage I had purchased previously did not offer this and many products ended up tasting like tin. I LOVED that they pkgd all their own food and that they were serious about finding non-GMO products and not using un-natural additives / preservatives.

        Then, after doing that research, I had the opportunity to go to a preparedness store that had carried multiple food brands for 20+ years. He was getting rid of everything and just carrying THRIVE b/c he thought the difference was that significant. I got to taste a bunch of brands (all unmarked) and compare them to THRIVE. It was incredible how different they were. THRIVE was far superior in taste. I was actually very surprised (this was AFTER I’d decided to sell it and after I wrote this article).

        Plus there are the host benefits. I give all customers 10% back in free product, so that can help with the cost. For example If you purchase $1000, you get $1100 etc.

        If you’d like me to send you any samples, I’m happy to. I think everyone should be able to try something before making such a huge investment! I offer up to $70 in free samples for just the cost of shipping / tax. Let me know what you’d like to try!



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