With their abundance of food and water, restaurants are likelier to attract pests than many other types of businesses. From cockroaches to rodents, food establishments are vulnerable to countless varieties of infestations. As a restaurant owner or manager, it may seem like the odds are stacked against you. The good news is, however, that you and your employees have a great deal of control over whether pests invade your place of business.
What Attracts Bugs and Rodents?
Food scraps and dirty dishes -- especially those left out overnight -- are pest magnets. One surprising place where dirty dishes, food and other forgotten waste draw pests is the employee locker area. Overflowing or otherwise neglected garbage cans lure insects, mice and rats with their sticky residue, food waste and other debris. Cardboard boxes make the perfect egg-laying spot for roaches, as well as a food source for roaches, termites, silverfish, moths, beetles and book lice. Improper food storage and even inadequate hand washing are also contributing factors.
How to Make Your Restaurant Less Pest-Friendly
Enforcing rules can be difficult, especially given restaurants' extended hours. Make it easier for employees to keep themselves and their areas clean by installing hand sinks at all kitchen entryways and providing abundant stations stocked with cleaning supplies. Inspect nightly, or enlist the aid of a trusted employee, to ensure that the following tasks are completed daily:
- Take out the trash
- Thoroughly clean all surfaces
- Remove food from cardboard boxes after deliveries
- Store all food in sealed containers in a cool, dry spot away from the floor
Reinforce the idea that all spills and crumbs should be cleaned up immediately. Create checklists for each employee to ensure that cleaning duties are completed. Let workers know to report any bug or rodent sightings right away to prevent infestations from getting out of control.
Ways to Keep Pests Out
It can be tempting to prop back doors open, especially for quick smoke breaks or to enjoy a cool breeze. Unfortunately, this is a common way for pests to enter -- even if a door is only left open for a few minutes. If you use a screen door, be sure the screen is free of tears. Seal gaps and holes along walls, as well as around doors and windows. Repair cracks in equipment, and call a plumber to repair any pest-attracting leaks.
Contact Presto Pest Control to establish a preventive strategy. Presto Pest Control offers safe, effective residential and commercial pest control in and near Baltimore, Philadelphia, Richmond, Virginia Beach, Harrisburg, Allentown, Salisbury, and Washington, DC.