December 18th, 2015

Happiness Is

Small town USA, post-apocolpytic, food & medicine availability

Hi. I'm working on developing a zombie RPG setting and I'm having trouble tracking down some information. The setting is a small, roughly Midwestern (as in the middle of the USA, not particularly north or south Midwestern) town that starts out with a population of under 25k though there will be significantly fewer survivors by the time the game runs. I'm planning on the game setting starting about mid to end of winter/start of spring if that factors any.

One thing I'm looking for is information about how much food the average chain grocery store might have and how many days it would be expected to last if deliveries were completely cut off. I did used to work in a supermarket and I have a vague idea of around 3 days worth of sellable food stored on-hand at any give time going by how often I remember us getting deliveries, but I can't find any information to support this idea. Googling it is just getting me links to articles about how much Americans spend on food which is 100% worthless to me since I'm trying to figure out how long the survivors would have scavengable food available in town before they'd have to head out of town/figure out how to grow some in town. I can figure spoilage rates, but I don't have a general sort of number of days or so or tons of food or whatever to start with.

The other thing is how much medicine and medical supplies would a small town clinic, fire department (EMTs), and pharmacy have on hand given the same conditions? The town is effectively overrun over the course of a couple of days since the disease was misdiagnosed as cold symptoms before it started turning, so little would have been spent on treating "victims" of the disease before it became clearly pointless. I'm a little leery of searching for things like "how much medicine does a clinic have on hand" since I don't want to trigger any warning flags anywhere. I'm not looking for specific drugs or things like that, just general numbers on types so I can ballpark for the players as to what they can feasibly find in those areas. Again, I can figure out spoilage rates if I have those numbers.

Thanks in advance for any help anyone can give! I really appreciate it. :)