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Swatting Flies in Warm Temperatures

Warmer than usual temperatures are predicted for this summer and higher temperatures are conducive for many pests, including flies. The filth fly breeds quickly in summer temperatures, so the food industry needs to take early precautions to help ensure food safety.

Warmer than usual temperatures are predicted for this summer and higher temperatures are conducive for many pests, including flies. The filth fly, like the common house fly, breeds quickly in summer temperatures. A short developmental period of just seven days and large reproductive potential make it possible for filth flies to swiftly invade indoor spaces in the summer months.
While it is possible for internal contamination, most filth fly problems come from the outside in. However, this external hazard can be combatted through the reduction of fly attractants and the elimination of breeding sites on property.
The food industry needs to take precaution of filth flies during the summer months because:

  • Filth flies carry bacteria and other organisms responsible for food borne illnesses
  • Filth flies can contaminate food in the open air, as well as preparation areas
  • Just one ounce of organic debris can harbor 800 fly maggots
  • The presence of flies in food service locations can cause customer complaints and a loss of reputation

For these reasons, plant managers need to take the proper precautions to prevent filth flies from entering their food facilities during the summer.

Prevention tips for making your facility a no-fly zone include:

  • Keep refuse area as clean as possible to reduce its attractiveness to pests. Place this area on a regular cleaning schedule and perform supervisory inspections to make sure that staff is cleaning areas thoroughly.
  • Insist upon a clean dumpster from your waste handler when units are changed.
  • Install dumpster units on a concrete pad free from cracks, where organic material may collect.
  • Make sure you have the right size dumpster for the amount of garbage typically collected. It is important the dumpster lids are able to close.
  • Consider supplementing good sanitation with the use of fly control materials. There are several effective fly control baits on the market which can be used in stations or sprayed onto dumpster walls, dumpster lids and other areas where flies congregate.
  • Keep all doors closed while not in use.  If doors need to be open for ventilation, screens should be installed to prevent fly entry.
  • Use air curtains on doors or drive through windows that are opened frequently.
  • Place personnel doors away from dumpster areas. Frequently used doors near pest congregation locations can increase the risk of contamination.
  • Make sure the building is completely sealed by checking for gaps where potential pest introduction could occur.
  • If flies get past your exterior defenses, consider the use of insect light traps inside your facilities to intercept flies as they enter.