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How to Avoid Pests Control Issues Whilst Running a Food Establishment

It is compulsory to have a highly effective pest control system where food processing takes place. Pests are a risk to businesses since no customer would wish to find an extra ingredient to a product. However, pest control is quite sensitive in environments involving food. It is important to take special cautionary actions to prevent the treatments used in pest control from posing a threat to food safety. The IPM (Integrated Pest Management) principles give guidelines on how to control pests without putting the safety of food plants at risk. 

The Integrated Pest Control Croydon systems are effective due to one simple factor; they acknowledge the fact that pest control does not take place at a go; it is a process, and that it is not a good idea to depend only on chemicals for pest control when there are so many alternatives for the same. IPM, by focusing on the primary reasons for pest infestations; availability of water, food and shelter, can be successful in prevention of pests before resorting to pesticides. Practically, the IPM process is cyclical, and it has seven crucial steps:

Step 1: Inspection

Regular inspection plans are the basis of a successful pest control program. Inspections are commonly done per week on food processors by government officials such as Croydon Council officers, and they are done more often in some plants. These regular inspections need to be centered on the most probable areas for pests to appear such as staff break rooms, receiving docks, stores, areas with fresh ingredient spillage among others. Potential pest entrances need to be identified, along with sources of water, food or any harborage zones which may trigger the pest infestation problem.

Step 2: Preventive Action

It is important to take preventive measures after having revealed potential causes of infestation through routine inspections. A highly effective measure for prevention is exclusion. This is structural maintenance done to block potential pest entrances as identified during inspection. Physical blockage of pests may help reduce the necessity to use chemical control. Also, housekeeping and sanitation can help eliminate potential sources of water and food, which is a good pest prevention measure as discovered by Michelin-Star Restaurant.

Step 3: Identification

There is different behavior for different pests. It is important to identify the notorious species in order to successfully eliminate the pests without harming other organisms. Professional pest control always begins with correctly identifying the pest of interest. It is of importance that your pest management services provider is thoroughly trained in identification of pests along with their behavior.

Step 4: Analysis

After properly identifying the problematic pest, it is important that you find out the reason for the presence of that pest in your premises. Could there be food remains or accumulated moisture attracting it? Or could there be odors? How do they gain access; could it be through the walls or floors? Could it be that the incoming shipments have pests? The answers you get are your guide to the most appropriate solutions for pest control.

Step 5: Treatment Selection

IPM emphasizes on non-chemical methods of control in Restaurant Pest Control systems, such as trapping or exclusion, before taking chemical measures. If the non-chemical measures fail or are proven unsuitable for a particular situation, chemical solutions can be used, but in the least volatile forms, in the targeted areas for treatment of that particular pest. This means that, you should use the appropriate treatments for the right areas, and do not use more than the required amount. 

Mostly, the appropriate treatment will comprise a number of responses, such as trapping, chemical treatments and baiting. However, resorting first to non-chemical solutions can help ensure your pest control program is successfully eliminating pests without harming the environment, untargeted organisms and food safety. You can also achieve higher scores for pest control scores during auditing.

Step 6: Monitoring

Due to the continuous nature of pest management, you should always monitor your facility to note any pest activity, and have operational and facility changes to eliminate the existing pests and prevent infestation by new ones. Your employees should regularly monitor your IPM program, since the pest control professional may only come once a week or bi-weekly. Your employees need to be aware of sanitation factors affecting the program. They should also report if there are signs of pests. You cannot waste a day where response to a real infestation is concerned.

Step 7: Documentation

To be honest, a visit from the auditor of food safety may build or ruin your business. Because pest control may add up to a maximum of a fifth of your overall score, it is of great importance that you have a presentable IPM program during auditing. Updated pest control records are among the first things an auditor can note to conclude that pest control is taken seriously in your facility. Significant documentation entails a service scope, reports on service, corrective action and pest activity, maps for trap layout, lists of permitted pesticides, applicator licenses and reports on pesticide usage.

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