There are an amazing variety of pests that can infiltrate our food products, and they come with names like warehouse beetle, saw-toothed grain beetle, confused flour beetle, drugstore beetle, Indian meal moth, bean weevil, merchant grain beetle and more. But, don't worry; we're not going to get into the entomology of these insects. We imagine you're not that interested in knowing which of these pests are part of the Pyralidae family or a detailed description of their life cycles. You want to protect your pantry from infestation, right? Well, here's how you do it.
How Pantry Pests Get In
There are three ways these pests can get into your food. They can find their way into your home through your exterior walls, they can hitchhike into your home inside food packages, and they can spread from one food package to other stored foods.
Excluding pantry pests is the same as excluding other bugs and wildlife. Exterior entry points need to be sealed, and pest control measures are sometimes necessary to bolster vulnerable areas. But, you can take extra measures inside your pantry by using a caulking gun to seal any tiny holes you find and installing a door sweep on the bottom of your pantry door.
It is important to keep your pantry dry with a fan or a dehumidifier if possible. A dry environment will keep your food from decaying and create an environment pests don't prefer.
Store pantry food on wire shelves instead of wood. Wood catches particulate matter, and these remnants lure pests in. Wire shelves allow particles to fall to the floor, where they can easily be swept up and maintained.
Put new products to the back and older product toward the front (so they get used first). And, periodically go through your pantry and throw away any items that are past their due dates. When food begins to spoil, the smell is like a dinner bell for pests.
Hitchhiking Pantry Pests
When you purchase pantry products from the store, it is important to make sure that packages are not damaged in any way. Although damaged packages aren't a sure sign that pantry pests are inside, it is better to be safe than sorry. The last thing you want to do is introduce an unwanted insect to your pantry.
Spreading Pantry Pests
Once inside your pantry, pantry pests can mature and spread to other packages. By storing products in hard plastic, sealable containers, you can contain and destroy pests that were already in the food from the store. These containers will also prevent exterior pests from getting in and infesting your stored goods.
If you already have an infestation, we can help. At Witt Pest Management, we have the specialized knowledge to properly deal with pantry pests, and salvage as much of your stored food products as possible. Have peace of mind the next time you bake with safe and effective professional pantry pest control with a call to Witt Pest Management.