a: The purpose of the first challenge was to experience culinary life as it was before there were markets. (Nearly) all the food was gathered by the participants straight from the plants they grow on.
The purpose of this second challenge is to emulate the experience of an early settler. There is some small amount of commerce available to fulfill food requirements but most food will be gathered as it was in the first challenge. Participants will have the additional hardship of having to survive the challenge through the winter months, a difficult time for early settlers. Stores run the risk of spoiling, rotting, or becoming infested, and there is little food available for collecting. This challenge will be a competition as well, to see who can best survive the winter.
q: Do we get to use a 'cheat' item?
a: No. You are free to spend your money on any goods you like, but there are no 'exemption' declarations.
q: Do we get salt, lime, or other food processing chemicals that come from the ground?
a: They are permitted so long as you purchase them using your funds. There are no exempt materials available. Of course if you go out to a salt lake and collect salt you get to use anything you gather.
q: What about 'freegan' collecting?
a: You can collect items 'freegan' style but these cost the equivalent of their retail price from your local store. This should be calculated by the minimum quantity available at the store (if the smallest jar of pepper costs $1, those pepper packets you picked up at a local food establishment cost you $1.)
q: Can we use coupons?
a: The cash value of coupons is applied towards your spending money - a 50¢ coupon takes 50¢ away from your fund pool. This is not an exercise in savvy shopping.
q: Can I buy in bulk?
q: Can I trade my purchased items with other participants?
q: Can I buy from a wholesale club?
a: Yes, so long as you don't purchase a membership just to do so for the challenge. If you already have a membership or are going to piggyback on a friend's, it is permitted.