You own a restaurant and the only thing that is keeping the health inspector from closing it down like the deli next to yours are your pest control efforts. Of course, if you plan on growing your culinary business, the last thing you will have time for is spraying every nook and cranny of your restaurant with bug spray.
Pests such as termites and worst of all, rodents, are virtual death sentences for a restaurant. A few mentions in the local reviews or screams from customers might be all it takes for you to lose customers.
Fortunately, a few simple tips and your diligence are all it takes to ensure that pests never darken your doorstep.
Train Your Staff in Proper Pest Control
When it comes to branching out and designating tasks, teaching your staff or new manager the intricacies of proper pest control, shouldn’t be put on the back burner. In other words, training your staff on pest control should be your first order of business.
Your staff must know what to do once they encounter a pest or infestation and the appropriate steps that will get rid of the problem.
They may already be trained in hygiene but that doesn’t mean that they will always be willing to keep a lookout for pests.
Laying out rat traps or spraying insecticides shouldn’t be the only order of the day. For example, you can emphasize the importance of picking up trash that drops off from the dumpster at the back of the restaurant. Also, make sure that the new manager inspects each area himself.
Get Rid of Roaches
These are the bane of restaurant owners everywhere, especially because they can eat almost anything. Cockroaches are known to survive for 2 months without food. They can get anywhere, once their soft bodies will allow them, which is practically everywhere. The fact that they are notoriously hard to get rid of is another reason they top a restaurant owner’s “most wanted” list.
Roaches are attracted to the scent of food. You can train your staff to be careful about how they store food items after they have prepped. For example, make sure that each member of your staff remembers to store food in glass containers that have lids. Pests can’t crawl up on smooth surfaces. Any roach that does painstakingly manage to get to the top will not be able to squeeze between the sealed lids.
Rodents are a bigger problem. Their larger size doesn’t deter them from getting into restaurants or any other places that specialize in food. Rats can infiltrate spaces through openings that are as small as quarters.
A cat can only work so long. Plus, a customer won’t appreciate cat hairs on their food any more than rat pellets on the floor. Besides, the rodents are extremely resourceful creatures and will find ways to thwart the feline, especially if there happens to be more of them. You can use rat poisons against them. Just make sure that you place the poison away from where you store the food.
Flies are another pest that the restaurant owner has to deal with. Most fly species tend to carry diseases all of which
are associated with filth. Allowing several or even one to buzz around your restaurant may make your patrons question the supposed sanitation of your place.
- You can reduce the chance of an infestation if you –
- Train your staff to wipe up any spills or clean any filthy drains as soon as they spot them
- Make sure that the trash containers outside your establishment are placed far from the windows
Install Fly Lights
You do not want a rat or any pests to dash your dreams of owning a chain of fine dining restaurants in your name. Remember, just because you own and operate a fine dining restaurant, doesn’t mean that the patrons will be fine about sharing their meal with roaches. There won’t be a restaurant to try your pest control skills on if it is too late.
Inspect Any Possible Entry Points
Pests will try to get in your place anyway possible. They can if there is food to be had. Needless to say, it’s best that
you plug up any holes in the walls, and train your staff to do the same, post haste.
Remember, rats or mice are extremely resourceful and will use their wits, not to mention sharp teeth, to lay waste to your plugging efforts. Fortunately, you can ensure that this never happens if you use cement to seal any holes shut.
Don’t Forget The Exterior
Yes, the parking lot is also part of your restaurant. You can’t stop customers from dumping their half-finished drinks on their way to their cars but you can ensure that the spill is mopped up. Pests will look for more food once they have
sampled the spill and the nearest place to find it will be, drum roll please, your restaurant.
Of course, dark colored spills are hard to spot on asphalt. You can have your staff hose down your parking lot or the surrounding area on a regular basis. Also, make sure that you dry out any standing water near your establishment. Places such as these offer convenient breeding grounds for most pests.
Dishing out delicious food isn’t the only thing that will satisfy customers and food critics. Nothing makes a patron’s stomach turn more than a pest sighting.
All you have to do to ensure that your place follows the strictest health codes is to exercise proper pest control. Asides from general cleanliness, pests are the first thing health inspectors look for. You do not want all your hard work to go down the drain after a surprise inspection. But that is exactly what might happen if your pest problem has been allowed to flourish.
You will never have to worry about that if you have trained your staff to initiate appropriate pest control procedures when you are not in yourself. Customers might laud you on keeping up with proper sanitation but it will take a single fly to prove them wrong and choose another eatery over yours the next time they decide to eat out.