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How to prevent a pest infestation in your church kitchen

Insects and other pests can spread bacteria and disease in your kitchen if you let them. Here, we explain how to protect your church kitchen from infestations and why a powder-coated steel carcass semi-commercial kitchen is the best choice to keep pests away.

If they are not properly maintained or made from the wrong materials, kitchens can harbour all manner of pests that can spread diseases and bacteria. A pest infestation can create an unsafe work environment for volunteers and potentially lead to the kitchen being contaminated – that’s not good for your congregation.

Pests can get into your kitchen for all sorts of reasons, but certain kitchen materials make your kitchen more hospitable to them than others. Many pest species like to reside inside solid wooden, laminate, chipboard or MDF fixtures, such as cabinets and worktops, as they feed and get sustenance from the wood. Termites, for example, can burrow into wooden cupboards and cause extensive damage.

Chipboard and MDF carcass units are not acceptable in hospital or any medical environments as they don’t meet the hygiene criteria. If it’s not suitable for a hospital environment, why would you have it in your church kitchen? The answer is, you wouldn’t.

So how can you ensure that pests aren’t infesting your church kitchen? Read our quick guide below to find out.

Which pests should I be looking out for?

Common kitchen pests include rodents such as rats and mice, insects such as cockroaches, termites, flies, ants and dung beetles.

Where do pests like to hide?

Pests can hide in all manner of places, including:

  • Under and behind electrical, heating and cooking appliances
  • Under and in boxes, packaging and food storage containers
  • Inside wall cavities, cracks and crevices
  • In disused equipment
  • Inappropriately specified cabinets made from MDF, wood and chipboard

You’ll be able to tell if pests have infested your kitchen by looking at tell-tale signs such as droppings, or listening out for noises such as scratches and scurrying. Holes and cracks that appear in worktops and other surfaces can also be a sign of critters hiding inside.

How do pests get into your kitchen?

The more resources your kitchen offers to pests (i.e. food and drink) and the easier it is to access, the more likely you are to have an infestation.

Pests often seek shelter indoors when changes in the season lead to colder temperatures, or when they lose their habitats or can’t find food or water outside. They can enter through holes and cracks around windows, doorways or external foundations. Worst of all, pests can set up shop and reproduce, leading to more pests, or their droppings (particularly rodent droppings) can attract other pest species.

Food that is left on the side or on plates that have not been washed up can attract pests and insects that breed rapidly. Pests are also attracted to water, particularly standing water (e.g. left in pet water bowls) or water leaking from taps.

This is why it’s worse to have an chipboard or MDF fittings in your kitchen that soak up water. Termites survive purely from extracting water from material they chew through, making MDF, wooden and chipboard fittings a perfect habitat – pests can damage your cabinets, which are already more susceptible to chipping and cracking than a strong, durable powder-coated steel carcass. That’s where Steelplan Kitchens can help.

What can you do to prevent an insect infestation?

  • Regularly clean and sanitise your kitchen’s worktops, cabinets and counters
  • Wash up all crockery and cutlery and put it away
  • Store food in sealed containers
  • Seal all holes, gaps and cracks in walls and ceilings
  • Install and maintain flyscreens to windows and door openings
  • Keeping doors closed when not in use
  • Ensure your kitchen is built with stainless steel worktops and powder-coated cabinets that don’t soak up water

What should you do if you have a pest infestation?

Aside from doing the above, you may need an exterminator to come and clear pests from the area, determine how they are entering the kitchen and seal the gaps. Depending on the size of your kitchen, the type of pest infestation and the work required, you could be looking at a charge for pest control services of between £150 to £200 per day.

That’s why, when choosing a kitchen for your next renovation, you need a kitchen that’s easy to clean, durable and made from materials that pests find difficult to get their teeth into.

Steelplan Kitchens installs kitchen made from powder-coated steel. Unlike wooden/chipboard cabinets, steel kitchen fittings do not contain any material that may sustain, harbour or encourage insects or bacteria, making them the perfect choice for keeping your kitchen squeaky clean and free from unwanted intruders.

Are you looking to install a kitchen that deters pests and stands the test of time? Get in touch with Steelplan today by calling 0844 809 9186 or emailing [email protected]

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