Touting itself as the right place before the wrong time, Emergency Essentials Inc. has grown from a home business to a thriving company with three locations and a national catalog.

Ben Summerhalder, general manager of retail operations, said the stores have never been busier. Much of that is due to the earthquake predictions."The made-for-TV movie, `The Big One,' has helped us a lot," Summerhalder said. "We have been preparing for this (an earthquake) for a long time. Since the movie a few weeks ago we have had so much business, at times there have even been shortages."

Army-style ready-to-eat meals (MRE) and 72-hour survival kits are the most popular items in the store. Summerhalder said that food storage items are also a big seller.

Along with food, mess kits, portable stoves, water-resistant matches, tents and sleeping bags, Emergency Essentials offers a wide variety of educational books and videos. Many of them teach how to prepare for emergency situations, especially earthquakes.

Emergency Essentials offers special package deals. For instance, a one-year supply of food for one person, which includes fruits, vegetables, grains and legumes, dairy products, bouillon, margarine and salt is available at competitive prices.

Visitors to Emergency Essentials can taste some of the MRE packets.

Even college students are heeding the warnings and purchasing items to store in dormitories and apartments, Summerhalder said. Emergency Essentials also rents kits for church and civic organizations teaching emergency and personal preparedness.

Emergency Essentials has three locations: in Provo, 3227 N. Canyon Road (behind Ripples); Orem, 352 N. State; and in Sandy, 8928 S. 700 East. They are open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and also offer catalog sales.