How to Keep Pests Out of the Kitchen Pantry
Keep stored-food pests, such as moths, beetles and meal worms, out of products they infest by storing them in airtight glass or plastic containers.
Photo by Canstock/mireczech
We’ve experienced some spring-like weather, and that may have you thinking about refreshing some areas of your home.
When you’re doing your spring cleaning, don’t overlook the kitchen pantry. Stored-food pests, such as meal worms, moths, beetles and weevils, can thrive in shelf-stable items, such as cereal, cornmeal, flour, grits, and cake mixes. A thorough cleaning once a year is an opportunity to throw out expired items and check opened items for pests.
If you come across a few uninvited guests, they were likely in the product when you brought it home from the grocery store. But these pests also exist in the natural environment and can get into these products once we open them.
Use these tips to keep pests at bay in the kitchen pantry.
- Store opened food items in airtight glass or plastic containers.
- Keep flour and cornmeal in the refrigerator or freezer until ready for use.
- Replace damaged storage containers or bags immediately.
- Clean up any spills and crumbs right away.
- Discard expired food items.
You can learn more about stored-food pests, how to prevent infestations, and what to do if you come across a heavy infestation in Extension Publication 2443, “Control Household Insect Pests.”
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