The Biggest Pest Threats Infesting Your Restaurant
When you go to eat out at a restaurant you’re not thinking about potential pests in the place you will be eating but the reality is that the nature of this industry attracts some pests in specific. Here are some pests that every restaurant owner should be aware of.
Flies on Your Restaurant Food
Flies are certainly annoying little pests and they are the last thing you want to see as you are eating a nice meal that you just paid for. Most of us think of the common house fly when we refer to flies but these are not the only flies to invade restaurants. Fruit flies, drain flies and the common house fly are all pesky pests that no one in the restaurant business wants to deal with. Flies are known to contaminate every space they land on. They are not only mentally disturbing to varying degrees but they place restaurants at risk of not adhering to food safety legislations because of the fact that they transmit over 200 different pathogens that pose a risk to staff and the restaurants customers.
There are ways to avoid having to deal with these pests, however. Regular routine cleaning will help in reducing fly problems as well as installing fly screens and keeping doors and windows shut that are not properly guarded from flies entering. Keeping drains cleared and cleaned reduces the risk of drain flies as well as getting rid of all waste before it accumulates and attracts these pests. Flies are attracted to odors, particularly odors from decomposing food matter so the cleaner the facility the less likely flies will be an issue.
Cockroaches in Your Restaurant
Now here’s a pest no one wants to see in an establishment. Cockroaches! These pests can be difficult to deal with. Mostly nocturnal, they like to hide in places where they can easily go unseen. Cracks, crevices, drains, dark spaces or inside furnishings and equipment are all areas these pests can be found lurking. They consume a variety of food matter, carry disease and shed skin which is known to contain allergens. They will quickly overpopulate an establishment and are a huge concern for restaurants because of how easily they can spread bacteria like E.coli and Salmonella through their saliva, droppings and urine. The skin they shed is also known to trigger asthma related health issues.
In order for restaurants to avoid having to deal with these pests strict sanitation practices are strongly encouraged to prevent a cockroach infestation. A few cockroaches can easily go unnoticed since they prefer to stay out of sight but they will also quickly reproduce which is why it’s important that they are not given a reason to be attracted to an establishment. All food should be properly sealed and stored along with proper waste disposal, frequent drainage cleanings and spills of food and beverages being quickly cleaned up. To be effective, it’s best to be on top of messes and sanitization routines to prevent these pests from seeing a restaurant as their food source.
Restaurant Rodent Infestation
Rodents. The dreadful word no one wants to hear and yet they are the most common pests found in the restaurant industry. Rats and mice are known to frequent places where food is in great supply making restaurants a prime location for a food source. They are nocturnal pests that stay close to their nests but are known to move around if food is not available. They multiply quickly and carry a variety of diseases. Not only do they break food safety standards, they are also known to cause structural and electrical damage to the areas they inhabit because of their persistent chewing and gnawing.
To ensure that these pests do not pose a threat to your restaurant preventative measures will have to be in place. Food will need to be stored in airtight containers. Access points for rodents to enter will need to be sealed and areas outside of the restaurant as well as inside need to be tidy as rodents will look for spaces to hide and make their nests. Regular rat pest control maintenance is also strongly encouraged to keep these pests under control.
It’s the responsibility of all restaurants to adhere to public health laws and food safety legislations which is why these pests pose a big threat to the restaurant industry. Not only can they contaminate food supply but they can be costly due to replacement costs and cause a businesses reputation to be negatively impacted. This being said, understanding what pests pose a threat to infesting your restaurant and what preventative measures can be used will allow you to protect your restaurant, employees and consumers.
Image credit @ BenSmith