April 27, 2011 - tdrake
For all you Restaurants out there…Cleanliness IS next to Godliness…almost!
Well…when it comes to bugs, it sure does help.
This article is about something that restaurants, especially small ones, sometimes dread…cleaning. Especially when business is slow, it can take a lot out of a small restaurants budget to get some very basic cleaning services done, yet sometimes, that cleaning can do more then just make things sparkle. German cockroaches, the food establishments biggest pest threat, can live off an enormously small amount of debris, they breed rapidly, and once a population is established, can take an enormous amount of resources to eradicate. Yet by cleaning everyday, you can remove the main reason why the roaches stay, the food debris.
Now, I’m not saying that an excessive cleaning has to be done everyday, but some very basic things should be done on a daily basis. I know what kind of work has to go into keeping a restaurant clean as I worked in the food industry for 2 years, long before I got into pest control, and we had a clean and tidy kitchen without a lot of extra effort. We had a thorough cleaning done once every quarter by a professional company and we did some very basic things on a daily basis, and I think that these might help you evaluate whether your
- All standing surfaces should be wiped down and cleaned after closing.
- The floors should be swept and mopped using a de-greaser everyday. Especially underneath any grills or fryers, as the grease that is produced by these is great food for roaches, and also breaks down any insecticides used to treat a kitchen.
- After mopping, all the standing water should be squeegeed into the drains. If the water won’t dry within an hour, then it’s too wet.
- All drain strainers need to be cleaned out daily.
- All dishes should be left clean. No server trays piled high with dirty dishes to be left overnight (I know to some that sounds unbelievable, but I have seen it with my own eyes).
- Soda dispenser heads and drain pans need to be cleaned daily, and the drain pan needs to be thoroughly flushed with water to clear the drain of sugar.
- Keep the storage or use of corrugated cardboard, down to a minimum. Cockroaches LOVE to hitchhike in the corrugation as the glue that holds the boxes together is usually made out of a potato starch and is a great food source. I know that restaurants that use a lot of grease in their cooking, sometimes use the cardboard on the floor to prevent slipping. If this is you, at least throw away the cardboard every night. An even better idea would be to use the heavy rubber anti-fatigue mats that are made for this purpose.
- If you have anti-fatigue mats, they should be cleaned with a de-greaser, every night.
- And finally, if food is left out to defrost overnight, make sure that it is still in it’s plastic wrap, or else the roaches will use that nice piece of food as a midnight snack, and then contaminate it with all the yuck that they carry around.
That about covers it for the basics. If you need an inspection to help identify possible problem areas in your kitchen, please call us, the Bug Man.