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Whether you’re opening up a new church café or you just need a new kitchen to serve your congregation, effective pest management is essential for keeping everyone safe and well. But what exactly do you need to know?

The Food Safety Act 1990 and the Food Hygiene Regulations 2005 deem ‘food to be unsafe if it is considered to be injurious to health or unfit for human consumption.’ So, before you open your new kitchen, it’s important to have your pest prevention systems in place.

Adequate pest control
Pest control methods are essential in commercial and semi-commercial kitchens to ensure high standards of food hygiene – without them, you could be at risk of contamination; the possibility of claims and compensation from customers in your café; and fines and charges. At Steelplan, we understand that keeping your congregation and community safe is important to you – luckily, the best defence is a good offence…

Crafty critters
Unfortunately, rats and mice are the most common type of pest, and while a mouse can squeeze through a hole the width of a pencil, it’s easy to put appropriate controls in place to stop them coming in. Dissuade these animals from entering your premises by:

  • Ensuring all food waste is appropriately disposed of and no waste is stored inside your church. It’s also a good idea to keep outside bins away from your kitchen doors.
  • Checking stored ingredients and where possible, storing food in sealed containers.
  • Keeping all produce off the floors and ensuring you clear up any spillages as soon as you can.
  • Cleaning your cupboards regularly.
  • Fixing any dripping taps or leaks and mopping up water – rats and mice can also come in through cracked drains so if during kitchen installation, you come across any issues, make sure they are resolved by an expert.
  • Not allowing non-food waste to build up and removing empty boxes from your kitchen.
  • Employing a contractor to lay down traps – that way, you can keep an eye on any rodent activity and decide on next steps if there is evidence of rats and mice.

Obviously, installation time is dependent on the size of the kitchen, plus the complexity and specification of the equipment you want. With Steelplan Kitchens, we will work with you from the initial project idea through to the finished kitchen, with clear budget ideas at the offset – making it easier for you to have a clear plan and timeline.

Ban the bugs
Aside from rats and mice, it can sometimes feel difficult to keep on top of bug infestations, such as ants and flies, particularly in the warmer months when you might have your windows open more often. Unfortunately, there are a variety of different places for insects to harbour in a kitchen, from cracks and crevices to drains and even table legs. But you can protect your kitchen and your congregation from these miniature pests by:

  • Installing Steelplan Kitchens’ Steeltop worktops – designed to provide the ultimate work surface for longevity, durability and ultimate hygiene, they are made with welded-in, seamless sink bowls and drainage, preventing bacteria from hiding in joints and grouting.
  • Concealing all cracks and holes with a quality caulking agent or other sealant.
  • Putting away all containers after use.
  • Cleaning underneath equipment and appliances in your new kitchen.
  • Pouring boiling water down the drains periodically – this will not only kill any fly eggs that have been laid during the day but will also flush away any food that might be attracting them.
  • Using flyscreens across your windows and doors, allowing fresh air in on a hot summer’s day but keeping bugs and debris out. Flypaper strips can also help prevent flies from contaminating food.

Steelplan Kitchens tip: ‘When it comes to pests, it’s best to do everything possible to keep them from being attracted to areas where they can have their needs met – such as places with food, warmth, water and places to hide.’

To start your new kitchen plans today, call the Steelplan Kitchens team on 0844 809 9186. With a variety of options, from colours, appliances and even floors, we can create your ideal kitchen, one that every member of your community can enjoy.

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