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  • Writer's pictureRobert Bate

Pantry Moths - What Should You Do

Pantry Moth

We often get asked "what can you do for pantry moths?" to which our reply is along the lines of describing the process of elimination and eradication. Pantry moth is just one of many species of stored good pests which infest stored foods like flour, cereal, rice, nuts, spices and cured meats.

Stored good pests pose large physical risks to businesses in the food industry across the world as they are capable of destroying tons of food of dry goods. Detection can prove especially difficult as the pests dwell in the food itself and the usually the first sign of a problem comes after the first life cycle stage has already been completed and the food products are already infested.

Stored good pests come in a few different forms from crawling beetles and weevils, moths, booklice, and mites. Product pests are known to even create damage to packaging to gain access to food so always keep your dry goods in air tight, plastic containers.

You might be wondering why these insects are particularly interested in a bag of flour. Their interest in dry goods comes mostly from their breeding habits. Adults will lay their eggs in stored goods and when the eggs hatch the larvae consume the food in which the adult has left them. The larvae burrow deep into the food product, consuming as much as possible until they pupate into adults and begin the process all over again.

An adult product pest can lay up to 400 eggs which means a pantry pest problem can promptly get out of hand if you don't act quickly.

How to handle stored good pests

Identification is the first step and is usually accidental. Most people open a bag of flour with the intention of baking something only to discover scores of weevils have been calling the flour home. Or perhaps you've been driven crazy by tiny pantry moths everywhere (also known as Indian meal moths).

Once you've made a discovery and worked out there might be a problem coming from your pantry, the next step is elimination. You'll need to go through EVERYTHING in your pantry and toss out the infested goods. Unfortunately there is no way to save anything once it's been infested so don't even try as you'll just end up with another pest problem in a few weeks. Infestations can be difficult to detect so if it helps, try pouring the product into a clean bowl or some food bags to get a better look.

Once you've gone through every thing (and we mean everything) and tossed out the infested goods, placed everything else in airtight, plastic containers. It's time to wash down the shelves with warm soapy water. This step will remove any eggs that a moth may have laid on the shelves or walls of the cupboards.

Once your pantry has been wiped down, time to put everything back and enjoy the order you have restored to your pantry. For good measure, you can get a sticky bait and leave it in your pantry to catch any moths that you may have missed.

Been a while since your last pest control? Call Results Home Services on 3823 2500 and talk to our friendly team about the different pest control packages we offer to suit you and your home! Or you can email us here!

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