Your home’s stored food may be at risk from some of the smallest pests. Many people are unaware of their presence until it is too late. Having to discard your stored goods is wasteful and upsetting. What many people don’t realize is that most of these pantry pests can be prevented with the proper prevention steps. Specialized Pest Control & Lawn Care would like to share a few tips on how to prevent pantry pests from invading and contaminating your food.
Common Pantry Bug & Pests
Some of the most common types of pantry pests are the Dermestid Beetle, Sawtoothed Grain Beetle, Flour Beetle, Drug Store or Cigarette Beetle, Spider Beetle, the Bean Weevils and the Rice, Granary, or Maize Weevils. These pantry pests can invade homes or even be brought into your home in your very own groceries. Most of these pests will feed on starches and grain products, including sugar, flour, nuts and cereal. There are ways to prevent these invaders, but it comes with some effort.
Inspect Food for Pantry Beetles & Pests
Before using flour, sugar and spices, it is good to inspect them and check expiration dates. Old and expired pantry food is often exposed to pantry pests and should be discarded. However, this is very wasteful. To prevent waste for long term stored food and ingredients, you may want to consider freezing them. For those who like to buy in bulk and keep certain items in stock for extended periods of time (for example flour), you can freeze them for 48 hours first. If any eggs are in the food you buy, the cold temperatures will kill most pantry pests.
Use Bug & Moth Proof Food Storage Containers
Proper storage can prevent contamination from pantry pests and other pests such as rodents and cockroaches. It is recommended that you use air tight containers that can be tightly sealed. Glass or metal containers can protect food better than plastics. Every stored item in your pantry should be sealed and protected, even items such as cereal, nuts and other snacks.
Avoid Bringing Pantry Bugs into Your Kitchen
When you buy groceries make sure you inspect the packaging and look for damage or product exposure. Avoid poorly packaged food and always check the expiration date. If food has been on the shelf too long, it may be exposed to the pantry pest already. If the eggs have had time to hatch they may already be inside the food.
Clean Pantry to Prevent Weevils & Pests
If you have a current pantry pest infestation you will want to purge your pantry. Begin cleaning the pantry and throw away all exposed foods. Next get air tight or seal-able containers as you replace food. As you clean your pantry, make sure to be thorough. Vacuum the inside and treat the inside of the pantry. Consider applying Diatomaceous Earth. Use a duster and cover the entire pantry with the powder. This will help kill any remaining eggs or small pantry pests that you may have missed. Additionally, it’s a good way to kill pests without adding any chemicals to your food storage. Clean up the diatomaceous earth after 48 hours. Wipe down and thoroughly clean the shelves before placing food inside the pantry.
Year Round Pest Control
If you need further help, contact a professional pest control service to help you control and prevent pantry pests. For all your pest control needs, contact Specialized Pest Control & Lawn Care today!