Emergency preparedness is nothing new – it’s a tradition in the Mormon religion and, for many others, a routine activity, like seeing the dentist. Organizations from the Boy Scouts to government agencies encourage people to be prepared for emergencies with water, food and first-aid kits. But there’s a growing subculture of people who want to be prepared for the collapse of American democracy and civilization. Sometimes called “preppers,” these apocalyptic types are a market for survival businesses.
Some of those businesses are decades old. Others are just babies, finding niches as prepping becomes more popular.