In continuation of a three-part series on how to make the health inspector’s “nice list” this holiday season, we’re sharing tips on how to take control of potential pest infestations.
Food manufacturing and retail facilities are a haven for certain unwanted guests. Can you blame them? Who wouldn’t want to live in a candy factory? However, when pest control can account for up to 20% of your score during a health inspection, a poorly managed pest control program could land your business on the inspector’s naughty list, or even worse, the recall list!
According to foodqualityandsafety.com, “Up-to-date pest control documentation is one of the first signs to an auditor that your facility takes pest control seriously.” They recommend making the following important documents readily available should an inspector come a-knocking:
- Scope of service
- Pest activity reports
- Service reports
- Corrective action reports
- Trap layout maps
- List of approved pesticides
- Pesticide usage reports
- Applicator licenses
RCI member, Pat Huffman of Blommer Chocolate Co, offered the following advice in a past article published in Kettle Talk magazine:
In today’s world of ever-changing regulations, hiring a pest control service may be your best option. When looking to outsource this service, look for a reputable company with food processing experience. A residential pest control service may not have the necessary experience or training to handle food establishments.
KEEP IT REGULAR
At a very close second, the next most important element of pest control is regularity. Whether you perform this task yourself or hire a service, checking traps and applying pesticides in a safe and proper manner and on a regular basis is critical to success. Making sure that pesticides are stored away from food preparation areas and keeping good records of how they are handled are elements of an effective program.
These simple preparations can be your best defense against pests. Showing your inspector that you are in control of your pest control program will certainly help your business earn its spot on the nice list.
Stay connected with RCI through Facebook for more tips and inspiration dedicated to the retail candy maker. Not a member? Click here to learn how RCI can help you build your sweet business.