How to Prevent Pantry Pests
Many kitchens are a hotspot for pests where the smallest crumb or a small spill can attract a line of ants or dozens of roaches. But there are also a number of moths and beetles that flourish in kitchens, specifically eating the food inside of packages and containers. Because these pests survive off of foods like flour, cereals, nuts, crackers, spices, pasta, rice, and other foods you may store in your pantry, these bugs are called pantry pests.
Pantry pests generally are not a source of bacteria or health issues. However, they are still a problem if they get into your kitchen. These pests are hard to spot and they can eat their way through all of your stored food, making them hard to get rid of once you have an infestation. But with some easy prevention tips, you can reduce the risk of getting a pantry pest infestation.
Keeping Pantry Pests Out of Your Food
Moths and beetle pantry pests lay their eggs inside grains and other foodstuffs. When the larvae hatch, they will eat the food around them, and may chew through cardboard and paper to get into adjacent packages. Adult pantry moths and some adult beetles will often fly around your home or kitchen, while other beetles will continue to live inside your food.
Preventing moths and beetles from getting into your food and spreading from item to item is the best way to prevent a larger infestation. You can prevent pantry pests when you:
- Avoid Damaged Packaging – When shopping for groceries, do not purchase any packages that have been torn, crushed, or have holes in them. Bugs may have been able to get inside while the packages were in storage or transit.
- Use Airtight Containers – Pantry pests can easily chew through cardboard. You can transfer food in paper packaging to airtight, plastic containers to keep bugs from getting inside.
- Don’t Combine Products – If you store food in your own containers, do not add new food to a container that contains old food. One may already be infested, and this makes it possible for the pantry pests to spread.
- Wash Containers Regularly – Once you empty a reusable container, wash it thoroughly with hot water and soap to remove any eggs, larvae, or pest debris that may be left behind. You can then add new food to the clean container.
- Throw Away Expired Food – Past its expiration date, food will start to rot and produce a stronger smell. This smell can attract hungry pests. Check your pantry regularly for food that has expired or gone bad, and throw it away.
- Clean Shelves and Cabinets – Crumbs and spills outside of containers can also be food pantry pests. Regularly wipe down shelves, drawers, cabinets, and anywhere else you store food to remove food that might attract pests.
If you have been throwing away food and still cannot get rid of pantry pests in Virginia, ExtermPRO can help. We have safe pest control solutions to exterminate all of your kitchen pests and keep them from coming back. Learn more about our panty pest control services today.