Flies are an ever-present threat in the restaurant industry. As a manager, you’ve probably experienced how difficult it can be to keep these pests from disrupting your guest experience. But did you know that flies can also spread harmful pathogens that compromise the safety of your food? What’s more, an infestation could create unforeseen liabilities and cost you major points on your next health inspection.

That’s why it’s important to take steps to keep flies out of your building and away from your food, starting with the greatest food source of all: your kitchen. The best thing you can do to keep flies out of this food preparation area is to apply a proven fly management program comprised of monitoring, sanitation and exclusion techniques. Here are a few Orkin Canada recommendations:

Regularly inspect potential fly attractant locations, like grease traps and garbage collection areas outside the kitchen

Remove any wet garbage as often as possible and clean refuse areas frequently. Outdoor compactors sometimes leak, and buildups of fluids under compactors can create major breeding spots for flies. Additionally, recycled cans and bottles can be fruit fly breeding sources, so drain these materials prior to putting them into bins, and place them upside down to prevent further draining. You should also clean inside bins frequently (at least each time they’re emptied).

Carefully check for fly larvae and pupae on all food, packaging and related materials as they’re unloaded from trucks

Fly eggs are often difficult to see, but larvae, pupae and adults should be easily noted.

Rotate your produce stock regularly to ensure it stays fresh and doesn’t accumulate moisture, which maggots need to thrive

Train employees to keep kitchen doors closed

Training your employees to close kitchen doors is especially important at night, since lights around a door can attract flying insects. Any door left propped open is a welcome invitation to hungry flies.

Since some types of flies are attracted to moisture, be sure to inspect floor drains and drain lines for any leaks

You can use drain scopes to check for pipe cracks, and repairing these pipes can help stop flies from living and breeding there.

Install light traps with glue boards to monitor for fly activity

The type and number of flies caught in the traps will help you determine where they’re coming from and how to best stop them.

Following the tips outlined above will provide you with a great start to keeping your restaurant’s kitchen protected from flies. But since flies are an ever-present threat, it’s a good idea to have an effective fly control strategy in place to ensure you stay fly-free over the long-term. You should consult with your pest management provider to develop a comprehensive plan tailored to your restaurant, including identification and elimination of potential attractants, creation of a sanitation schedule, implementation of exclusion techniques and more.

Need a quick reference guide for all of this? You can also download our expert tips sheet here.

Restaurant Fly Control Tips