October 18, 2016
Have you seen the cockroaches in Upstate of South Carolina? They can be huge - up to 2” long in fact. They are oval and reddish brown with 6 legs and tend to live in swarms. Roaches can carry many different kinds of diseases, bacteria (like salmonella), parasites, pathogens (such as tuberculosis and dysentery) and many viruses. Cockroach feces and/or dust from their dried droppings can cause people to suffer from asthma and allergies as well.
Roaches pick up illnesses from trash and sewers that they frequent and spread it wherever they roam, which can be a very big problem for commercial businesses like restaurants, hotels, food manufacturing plants, and hospitals. Food industries need to be particularly careful to keep these critters at bay for the safety of their consumers and to protect their reputation and their bottom line.
Why, exactly, will they choose your business to invade? Well, it’s really quite simple. Cockroaches can be found wherever food and moisture are readily available, especially in areas that are unsanitary or in areas that are dark, moist, and odorous. If they find these conditions in your building, they will move in.
Signs that you may have an issue with cockroaches may include finding their droppings, which will look similar to that of a mouse. They will be small and black but unlike mouse droppings, they will have ridged edges and blunted ends. These droppings will build up in areas where roaches congregate such as wall voids, underneath stoves and refrigerators, and in bathrooms. Another sign you may notice is their trademark musty odor which is caused by the cockroach’s pheromones.
Cockroaches are very hard to keep out of restaurants for several reasons. First of which is the fact that they can enter into the smallest crack, hole, or vent. Also, roaches can survive up to 3 months without food, so even the cleanest places are vulnerable. Another reason is that the female cockroach can produce upwards of 300 offspring in her lifespan (which is one year) making it nearly impossible to control their numbers. Lastly, if roaches are exposed to light, they will scuttle away quickly, making it hard to spot and capture them.
There are some do-it-yourself tips that you can implement in order to reduce the likelihood of cockroaches entering your building and spreading illness in your place of business:
Keep trash tidy and cover with a tight fitting lid
Keep food stored in airtight containers or storage areas
Clean up food and drink spills immediately
Be sure that windows and doors have good seals and a tight fit
Keep floors and counters clean