Within the hospitality industry and the restaurant sector, effective pest control is absolutely vital to ensure that high standards of safety and hygiene are maintained.

Pests can cause havoc in your kitchen, bakery, café or restaurant and, if you don’t keep the problem under control, they can spread harmful bacteria and seriously endanger your customers and jeopardise your reputation.

Across the country, environmental health teams from local councils are dedicated to ensuring that businesses meet strict hygiene and safety standards and, if they don’t, then huge fines can be issued, and premises can be shut down to safeguard the public.

This was the case recently when a bakery in London was forced to close after health inspectors found an infestation of pigeons and cockroaches in its storeroom. This severe breach of health and safety was putting customers health at risk and immediate action was required!

To prevent something like this happening to you, you must ensure that you are successfully administering an efficient pest control system.

If you operate a food or drink business, many species of pests could make a beeline for your premises – so watch out for rats, mice, moths, cockroaches, ants, beetles and birds!

Be vigilant!

Pests can be a nuisance and you must be vigilant. There are many signs to look out for… the Food Standards Agency (FSA) recommends that you:

  • Check your premises regularly for signs of pests
  • Look out for droppings, holes in walls and doors, gnawed packaging, nests, maggots, eggs, feathers, moving insects, and noise from pests
  • Keep external areas tidy and make sure that bins are kept closed and cleaned and disinfected regularly
  • Do not leave food or dirty plates out, as they will attract pests
  • Train staff to recognise signs of pests and ask them to report problems immediately. Appoint a pest control manager or contractor if necessary
  • Always operate and maintain a clean and hygienic environment and ensure that food is stored safely
  • Inspect incoming materials and check for contamination
  • Pest proof the premises with external doors and windows; drain covers and wire mesh screens

Pests are unwelcome guests – they carry harmful bacteria and can contaminate food, causing illness. They can also damage the structure of your business premises.

By focusing on upholding rigorous hygiene standards, you will hopefully avoid an influx of these troublesome critters, and ultimately you need to protect your products, premises and people!

The information contained in this article has been created for marketing purposes and is not official guidance and should not be used as a substitute for official food safety, health & safety nor fire safety advice.

Food Alert take no responsibility if the information in the article is used to form part of a safety management system or used to form part of any legal or regulatory compliance for your business. For official guidance and to engage with Food Alert services please do call our team on 020 7244 1900 or email enquiries@foodalert.com




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