Restaurant owners should feel duty-bound to provide a safe, healthy experience for their customers, yet for a surprising number, restaurant pest control is not on the menu. Unfortunately, some simply don’t understand why pest control is important in the food industry.

Pest control is important for food services

Proper food service pest control protects not only the customers but the restaurant owners themselves. While diners get to enjoy a nice, disease-free meal, staff and owners remain protected against fines or even closure by the health department. And, restaurant pest control can be critical to protecting your reputation. To this end, it's important for restaurants to work closely with experienced pest control experts for restaurants.

Restaurants located in Virginia, Maryland, or the Washington, D.C. metro area can find the help they need at My Pest Pros. But first, let's look more closely at the benefits of routine pest control.

Restaurant Pest Control Keeps Patrons Healthy And Safe

A wide variety of pests may threaten the comfort and safety of restaurant patrons, depending on the circumstances. For instance, restaurants with an outdoor seating area need to protect their customers against such pests as bees, wasps, and ants, all of which can sting or bite. Bee venom hardly makes for an appropriate aperitif.

More commonly, however, pest control for restaurants usually revolves around the same three pests common to most households—flies, cockroaches, and rodents. All of these pests can spread multiple diseases through the bacteria they carry, and it only takes mere seconds of contact with these pests for a restaurant's food to become contaminated. Possible health threats include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Food poisoning
  • Salmonella
  • Cholera
  • E. coli

Any restaurant with even one of these on their Yelp reviews will struggle to draw customers. And should rodents find their way into the kitchen, that same restaurant can add the possible spread of typhus, respiratory viruses, or even plague to this already troubling list.

The Consequences Of Ignoring Pest Control

Given the health threats associated with poor food service pest control, it should surprise us that so many restaurant owners ignore the issue. However, many simply put it off until facing the consequence they care far more about—  temporary closure.

To be fair, it takes a lot to get closed down. Most health departments understand that it's nearly impossible to run a restaurant without ever violating at least a few health codes here and there. One Virginia restaurant even kept its doors open earlier this year after being hit with 47 violations, including observable pests landing on uncovered food.

Such restaurants often won't seek pest control until ordered to do so. However, the above circumstance actually highlights two major considerations that illustrate why pest control is important in the food industry. First, temporary closure or forced compliance put restaurant owners on a timeline to address the problem, rather than comfortably avoiding it.

The second consideration might prove more motivating. If a restaurant only seeks pest control when ordered, the record of their failed inspection still remains online. In the eyes of customers who prefer to limit their health risks, the restaurant that allowed pest infestations to occur in the first place will forever remain less trustworthy than the one that handled the issue proactively.

The Food Service/Pest Control Partnership

Whether a restaurant seeks pest control proactively or only after the health department ordered corrective actions, they still need to do some of the lifting themselves. To this end, restaurant owners should put their trust in the hands of professionals willing to educate them on proper maintenance to avoid future threats of infestation.

My Pest Pros views our relationship with the food industry as a partnership, in which each party has a role to play. We work closely with restaurants to not only eliminate pests but also provide vital information on keeping them away.

Pests flock to restaurants largely for easy access to food and water, so much of this revolves around proper storage and cleaning. We advise semi-routine pest control, but a few simple maintenance tips will help prevent pest issues and help keep your focus where it should be – on the food and diners. Things restaurants can do to reduce the frequency of pest control visits include:

  • Close off easy entryways for pests by properly weather stripping all windows.
  • Seal gaps on the outside of the building as well, especially around exposed pipes.
  • Repair any and all leaks immediately, no matter how small.
  • If possible, try keeping the restaurant's dumpster farther from the building.
  • Regularly clean the trash cans as well as the dumpster to eliminate odors.
  • Eliminate fresh food odors as well by keeping all food tightly sealed.
  • Have our staff instruct your team on effective cleaning methods. Even the slightest bit of food debris might attract unwanted visitors!
  • Mop, don’t power wash floors.

Local Pest Control For Restaurants

Some restaurants may get by with only quarterly pest control, but the high risk of infestation in a business prone to food odors makes it advantageous to employ pest control services every two or three months. Even when following the above tips, these regular visits will help ensure common pests like flies don't make themselves at home in your restaurant's kitchen.

To this end, restaurant owners should seek to develop an ongoing relationship with a company they can trust. My Pest Pros in Fairfax serves the greater area surrounding northern Virginia. We extend our services to many restaurants in the area, with clients as far out as restaurants in Annapolis, Baltimore, Bowie, and beyond in Maryland.

While smart restaurant patrons should want their eateries to work with a pest control company, we understand they may find it off-putting to see us on the property while they're dining. To this end, we work with our commercial clients to schedule services around times that work for your business.

Contact My Pest Pros Today!

Now that you understand why pest control is important in the food industry, it's time to act. Explore for more information about our custom pest control services, or call us at 703-665-4455 with any questions you might have. We'll help you keep those pests away so that you can keep your diners—and the health department—completely satisfied.