I believe I’m having this or a similar issue and I kind of wonder if this issue isn’t the same basic problem Using Pots as Food Storage - Not refilling after hitting limit - and that is that storage items just don’t work correctly.
I started a game the day before 2865 hit and started a new one after it and both times crates just don’t work. In both cases I tried switching from an initial general stockpile to stacked crates for more specific storage, and what ends up happening is they’ll load up the crates just fine, but they just will not consistently take stuff out of crates.
So I have hearthlings not eating for an entire day and getting a morale hit even though my population is growing I have 100’s of units of food. Crafters are not grabbing mats from crates right next to them and will not craft because they think they have no mats.
I don’t know if it’s a situation where they take one item out and the crate locks up like described in that other thread or what. I’ve been trying to watch (I’m a developer and debug plenty myself and can usually make some hypothesis but have nothing yet for this) but there’s usually so much going on it’s hard to isolate. What I do see is my crafters not crafting when I have tons of mats in crates or only crafting when they can grab stuff off the ground.
Once I got all my “inventory” out of crates and back into regular stockpiles all my crafters got busy just fine.
It’s also probably worth mentioning that the game can see my resources but the hearthlings cannot. What I mean is that if I want to queue up copper bars for my blacksmith, I can see that I have 15 copper ore via the forge queue and can queue up bars without issue, but then my smith won’t actually smelt the bars because the ore is in crates.
I’ve also had mixed results getting hearthlings to empty the borked crates (in my game last night I went back to regular stockpiles rather than give up completely). In some cases they unloaded the crates just fine with the crates set to “nothing” but in other cases they would not unload crates set to nothing. Fiddling with the settings and picking something like the nonexistent ranged weapons would cause them to finally unload the crate (or as others have said, switching what’s stored works but I wanted the crates emptied so I could unplace and sell them).
Side note - I wish stockpiles/storage started off set to “nothing” rather than “all” because my people are like ninjas with putting stuff in newly placed stockpiles or crates even when I watch like a hawk and change the settings right away - inevitably whoever is picking up anything from anywhere will bring it to the new 'pile/crate, drop stuff in it, and immediately grab it and move it elsewhere due to me having changed the settings. Being able to set priority on stockpiles would be huge.
Lastly, and trivially, the animals that befriend your hearthlings seem to eat stuff off the ground (like freshly harvested veggies) but they won’t eat out of crates either. It’s kind of sad to see them running around hungry for days at a time. I ended up making a small stockpile between my farms and crates to try to get some stuff on the ground for them as I had left my food in crates (after uncrating everything else) until I noticed morale hits for not eating for a day - and that’s when I saved and quit late last night.
PS - couldn’t upload my save since I’m a “new user” (and as an aside it took 5+ hours for the confirmation email to get to me when I signed up)