The Truth About Rodents In A Restaurant
August 10, 2015
Sometimes cleaning is just not enough in the restaurant business. There are many ways that a restaurant can develop a problem with mice and with rats and those ways are not always based on cleanliness. The fact is that water and standing water can be just as bad as food or debris. As far as bugs go, it is a fact that a roach can live off a single drop of water for as long as one week. The same basic facts are true of mice and rats. While it may take a little more than a drop of water to sustain a mouse for a week, it does not take much more than that.
Most restaurants concentrate their efforts on the cleaning of food and debris. There is a little bit of emphasis that is placed on drying the kitchen and surfaces after that, but it is far less than the efforts that go into the regular cleaning. There are often drain basins and areas under equipment that have a great deal of standing water at the end of the day.
That in itself is not the full story on mice and rats and the true facts may scare some people. There must be a way that a mice or a rat can get into a building before they will take up residence. One way that mice and rats can get in a building is through the normal deliveries. This is not as common as it can be, but it does happen more than one would like to believe. There are ways that a mouse can ride along on a delivery that can be checked with some ease and there are ways that take more time to check.
Produce is the number one type of container that can bring in a little critter here and there, as well as many dry goods. While this is the fault of the supplier, there is no way that every single case that enters a restaurant is going to be completely clean of bugs and other things. Many of these are open cases that allow the produce to breathe and many of them are stored outside until delivery time. This is the best way to keep the produce fresh and it is the way that it has been done for years. So how do you get rid of the pests that come with the delivery?
One of the best ways to get rid of anything that has come along with the most recent delivery is to unpack some things outside. In the case of produce, this is pretty easy and there is usually an area that will do nicely. The loading and unloading area can be used for this purpose. If there is not a clean area to unload the produce, then the cases can be opened outside and visually checked for rodents. This will take a little extra time, but save a lot of money in the long run.
Dry goods are even easier to look at and inspect. There is generally a setup of four to six large cans in a case or something of that nature in the packing process. These can be inspected very quickly and proven to be pest free. One of the issues with the delivery process is that it occurs at some of the busiest times of the work flow. There is typically a truck that comes in the morning, when the restaurant is trying to get ready for the day. That means that cases get counted and pushed to the side for unpacking later. That is one of the times that a pest can make its way out of the case and into the building. Mice and rats that have tagged along will be upset because of the time spent in travel and as soon as the movement stops, they will be ready to look for a safer place.
This information leads to a few basics that can prevent infestation. Start with the delivery. Unpack as many things outside as possible and make sure that cases going in the restaurant are free of bugs and other critters. Open every case and have a quick look inside for anything that may have hitchhiked along. Once inside, have someone unload and put the delivery away quickly and do not leave cases sitting around that have been just brought to the store. Store items, like cans, on the shelf and not in the cases. This will keep light around products and diminish hiding places that mice and rats love to make home.
When cleaning at night, make sure that there is no standing water. A long handle squiggly is a cheap way to make this happen and can save a lot of money in the long run. Use that tools on the floor and under equipment and make sure that the surfaces are also completely dry. Any standing drops of water can provide nourishment for a surprising number of things. Make sure that the areas are inspected twice, by different people each night and each morning.
Use an exterminator. Whether there is a problem or not, an exterminator is a necessary expense. They are not just for places that have an existing problem, they are preventative also. They can also suggest changes that might help keep the place free of rodents for the future. There may be a place that is being missed in cleaning and there may be a place that is great for rodents to live. These are the pros and they know what is necessary to keep a place rodent free.
Call Alliance Pest Services for all of your pest and rodent problems.