Pests in Food

"Pests found in food" are also known as Stored Product Insects, and this term covers a large number of insects. They can infest a variety of stored products in particular foodstuffs such as grains, cereals, dried fruit, nuts, seeds and even tobacco. Pests in food pose health risks, as they can contaminate foodstuffs and spread bacteria that can lead to many health and financial issues that are better prevented.

Call Rentokil Pest Control on +258 840 549 348 or +258 21 084 736 or email us for advice on stored product insect control, or to arrange a visit from your local technician.

The dangers that pests in food pose:

Stored Product Insects Stored grain insects are a health risk in both homes and businesses such as food processing plants, warehouses, bakeries, retail outlets, restaurants, caterers, mills, farms and silos. They can also cause enormous financial losses through damage and contamination of food products. These pests further cause the following:

  • Contamination of foodstuffs and goods.
  • Damage to processing machinery.
  • Damage to goodwill and reputation, and thus income, due to a stored product insect infestation
  • Grain warming; infected grain can grow warmer leading to problems with damp and mould.
  • Non–compliance with legislation.

How to spot signs of pests in food:

Beetle Finding pests in your stored cupboard foodstuffs can be distressing. In your home, this may mean you throw out some stored flour or cereal, but in your business, the financial loss from damaged goods will be much higher. Below are some tips on how to identify whether you have a stored product insect problem:

  • Live or dead insects: look out for small beetles and moths, larvae or pupae, and insect tracks or silken webbing on areas such as food storage bins, shelves, machinery, beams and window sills, or in food spillages.
  • Damage to packaging: infestation, holes, larvae or webbing on the outside of packets or bags
  • Evidence of the pests in insects traps or rodent stations
  • Look for the above signs in food products such as stored grain, dried fruits, cheese, cereal products, sweets, cheese as well as meat and other dried foodstuffs.

How to get rid of stored product insects

As stored product insects infest food intended for human consumption, one will have to remove any contaminated foodstuffs in such a way that it will not spread the infestation, or treated in a way that does not presents any hazard to the end product.

Denying stored product pests access to your premises should be the first line of defence. High levels of hygiene need to be maintained at all times, though it is especially important in the warmer months when the temperature can accelerate the development of stored insect pests. Below are a few tips on how to get rid of stored food product insects:

  • Temperature control: If possible, maintain storage facilities at - or below - 16 C.
  • Maintain high hygiene levels: Clean up all excess food material such as spillages, and dust accumulation in premises, machinery, equipment, storage and transport vehicles
  • All stock / food material should be stored off the floor and away from walls to facilitate cleaning and inspections.
  • Keep raw materials in sturdy packaging - robust and or airtight packaging can prevent infestation in food facilities , such as food processing plants, warehouses, bakeries, storage areas and domestic premises.
  • Install tight fitting insect screens or screen doors
  • Waste management: As waste or spillages serves as both a food source and a shelter, ensure that a policy of sealed bagging of all waste is in place; that waste skips are cleaned before delivery; and the skips are kept closed except when waste is being added. Also be sure to clean external drains, sumps and pits.
  • Inspect incoming raw materials: check incoming stock for any evidence of live pests activity in an area away from the main storage area. If found it should be immediately rejected and returned to the supplier.
  • Fit monitoring devices: Traps and lures must be widely used for monitoring and locating localised infestations inside premises. They also aid in providing information on the severity and type of species of an infestation as well as the effectiveness of treatments.
  • Use Stored Pest Insect Pheromone Pots: These pots and other glue trap lures must be installed in the premises. These also act as infestation monitors and when the captured species reach specified count levels these will trigger specific treatment schedule procedures
  • Install light traps: In all internal areas of the premises to control and monitor flying insects. Commercial traps are available which utilise ultraviolet light to attract some but not all stored product pests. Pheromone lures can be added to the trap.

Stored Product Insects

Treatments offered for pests in food

At Rentokil, we have unmatched experience when it comes to protecting food clients. We take a three-phase approach that provides rigorous protection for your business. This approach includes:

  1. Reducing the probability of stored product pests entering the premises
  2. Regular vigilant inspections and monitoring
  3. Control using approved pesticides to prevent, manage and eliminate pests

Steps to Take for Professional Stored Product Insects control

  • Identify the problem species; you'll need professional help with this. Call the pest control experts on +258 840 549 348 or +258 21 084 736 to survey your premises.
  • Apply appropriate insecticides or other treatments as mentioned above. Always be sure to do it in such a way as to ensure total safety for your staff and clients.
  • Enter an insect control service contract for long-term prediction, prevention and eradication of such outbreaks.
  • Our technicians will provide you with regular treatments that are food safe and will eliminate pests in food.
  • We’ll provide staff training sessions, so they are aware of what to look out for and how to handle such situations.

If you would like further advice on crawling insects or to arrange a visit by a Rentokil pest control expert, contact us and we'll put in place an integrated pest control programme.

Call us now on
+258 840 549 348
+258 21 084 736

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