You never want to find creepy crawlies in any area of your home, but the kitchen is the worst place to discover them. If you encounter insects in the same area where you store and prepare food, you just know they’ve been crawling around in your snacks. That’s enough to make anyone lose their appetite.

Plus, any infestation that begins in the kitchen is likely to spread throughout the home. So follow these tips to prevent pests from taking up residence in your kitchen.

Take care when shopping. Occasionally, pests get into the home via food that was already infested during the manufacturing, shipping, or storage parts of the food chain process. Inspect all boxes and bags for signs of damage to ensure you’re not accidentally bringing unwanted hitchhikers into your home.

Periodically clean out your pantry. Check food items for expiration dates, and throw out anything that has expired. Wipe down shelves to address residue that can attract unwanted critters.

Invest in proper food storage containers. Many food packages are not meant to be used as storage containers. If you purchase items that are not packaged in resealable containers, you will need to transfer them to something that is airtight (both for freshness and to keep insects out). Resealable bags, or plastic or glass containers with airtight lids, will serve this purpose well.

Clean thoroughly. Wipe down counter tops and cabinets to remove spills and crumbs at least once per day. Sweep or vacuum the floor, paying attention to cracks, and don’t forget about the dining room.

Try bay leaves. The pungent odor of bay leaves repels many pests. Add a leaf to containers of items like rice and flour. You can even leave a few bay leaves lying around the pantry.

Of course, sometimes you can do everything right and still experience a pest control problem. Give us a call and we can diagnose your particular pests, and then help you take steps to eradicate the problem.