Sanitation is the biggest factor in getting roach infestations under control. For the most part, if your restaurant is clean then you should not run into any problems with cockroaches, but sometimes that isn’t enough.
A restaurant owner’s first assumption would be to clear the area of anything cockroaches could eat. The problem is that cockroaches will pretty much eat anything. They are scavengers. Ranging from cardboard to wallpaper glue, food scraps and office paper – cockroaches will find anything to eat. When there is nothing to eat, they can live up to a month without a meal.
Now you ask yourself, “So if you can’t starve them than maybe you can keep them from making a home?” Well, that is also not an easy task. Cockroaches can make themselves at home in most places. They are very adaptable creatures. Although they favor the warmth, they can also live in areas as cold as 32 degrees Fahrenheit. You will find cockroaches hiding out in electrical outlets, cracks and crevices in the walls, and other small places. Spotting them can be incredibly difficult too because, for the most part, they only come out at night.
But there is no room for tolerance for cockroaches. They spread bacteria like you wouldn’t believe. There are over 30 species of bacteria that have been found on roaches, including Salmonella and E. coli (the bacteria that has destroyed Chipotle’s 2015 Q4 sales). Not mention viruses that cause polio and typhoid, and parasites like hookworm that are found in their eggs. Traveling at an average of three miles per hour, they can quickly spread diseases across a large area quickly.
So what can you do? Kitchens are the #1 place for cockroaches because of their warmth, and the easy access to food and water. So we have outlined some standard practices every restaurant should be performing in their kitchen.
- Keep all food stored in tightly sealed containers.
- Sweep floors at least once a day to make sure there is no food or garbage left on the floor.
- Always throw trash in dumpsters outside as soon as it is ready to be taken out.
- Make sure trash containers are closed so that no roaches can crawl into it.
- Seal off all the cracks that could be present, including ones for utilities.
- Take care of any leaks as soon as they occur.
- If your restaurant has a basement, make sure it is well ventilated and stays dry.
- Be sure to toss away excess cardboard and any wet cardboard. Roaches love to eat cardboard.
Again, even if you use all these tips, some cockroaches can still find their way inside and make a home. You may be able to keep your kitchen spotless, but if you share a building you can’t control the conditions of other units. If you end up with a roach infestation, be sure to give us a call. These aren’t a pest you want to battle yourself. It’s very hard and the consequences of having a long battle could mean the closing of your establishment.