In a world that thrives on social media, the last thing any retail business owner wants to see is negative posts or review about a pest infestation in their business. Unfortunately, many people associate pests with filth, which is not true in many cases. Businesses don't have ladybugs or wasps because they are filthy, but rather because there is an access point through which a pest can invade the structure.
Retail business must be proactive in commercial pest management. The cost of reactivity can be uncalculatable once a negative review has permeated the internet, products have been contaminated and/or damaged, or potential regulatory issues arise. Pest management professionals are trained to identify evidence of pests and the conditions that may provide pests access, harborage, or nutritional support.
Why Pest Management is Essential for Retail Stores
Pest management is as essential to a retail store as many other services like janitorial, plumbing, and electrical services to help protect their property, personnel, and customers. Pest Management professionals (PMPs) are trained to identify signs of pest activity or conducive conditions that could contribute to pest activity, that the average business owner and their employees may not be aware of.
How Pests Get into Retail Stores
Pests enter structures in numerous ways. Ants will trail great distances, following grout lines in tile or masonry in search of food and water. Larger outdoor cockroaches that terrify many have been found thriving in interior landscapes and stockrooms. Earwigs and other occasional invaders may simply enter a structure around plumbing lines, electrical lines, unscreened vents, or structural defects. Some pests are known to be hitchhikers like German cockroaches and bed bugs. Instead of entering through structural deficiencies, they can be unknowingly brought in by employees, customers, or deliveries and shipments.
You may not think of a shoe store as having any real pest issues, but if the store is located near a wooded lot, open field, or another business that has mouse issues, an infestation can happen. Mice love to nest in the paper packed into shoes to help maintain their shape, during storage and shipping. Rodents leave evidence of activity that is often overlooked, such as rub marks, footprints, and urine dribble. Mouse droppings can create an odor that managers and staff might not recognize, but a visitor at your facility can.
Building Design to Prevent Pests
With so much new retail facility construction going on today, where is the design focus? There are many architects that focus on award-winning designs, others on functionality, some focus on energy efficiency, and lastly the ecologically conscience focus on the environmental impact. Most businesses will not stop to think about consulting with a professional pest management company about their building design and lighting to reduce their risk of potential pest issues. Things to be considered in the designs from a pest management perspective is whether the design creates recesses or perches, though decorative in design, that provide harborage areas for pests.
Lighting1 can be as important as the design of the structure. Mercury vapor lighting is highly attractive to many nocturnal pests drawing them to the structure. Sodium vapor lighting is often known for its peach tint or warm gradient and is less attractive to pests. Many municipalities have converted their parks and street lighting to sodium vapor as a method of non-chemical pest management. Simply by reducing the attractiveness of nocturnal pests like mosquitoes, beetles, and moths, the potential for other unwanted pests that feed on these insects like bats and other birds is naturally reduced without any pesticide applied.
Today, pest management for retail businesses goes far beyond the eradication of pests and focuses more on the prevention of pests. Many have heard of the adage that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." Having Terminix Commercial as your pest management provider gives you that peace of mind that someone is looking out for your retail business and your reputation.
1 - Truman Scientific Guide To Pest Control Operations 7th Edition, Copyright © 2010 Questex Media Group LLC, 600 Superior Ave. East, Suite 1100, Cleveland, OH 44114 USA, pg. 283