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Stored Product Pests

At the commercial level, constant vigilance is essential to maintain food free from insects on its journey from the farm to the consumers' table.

Have a problem with Stored Product Pests

Stored Product Pest Management is of the utmost importance for those in the food manufacturing. There are two types of grain pest classifications: Primary Grain Pests and Secondary Grain Pests.

Common Stored Product Pests

Primary Grain Pests

Primary grain pests are those insects which for the main part, attack and infest sound whole grains e.g. wheat, oats, barley, rice and generally carry out the immature stages of their life cycle within a grain kernel. Such insects include:

TypeDescription
Rice and Granary Weevils Granary and Rice Weevils are most common stored product pest. They feed on the whole grain and infest stored food. Rice Weevils are considered the most destructive pest of stored products. They can also be found in other types of stored products found in pantries like dry spaghetti. Granary Weevils are very similar to the Rice Weevil, however, adults cannot fly and they live longer. You will find the Granary Weevil in the cooler regions of Australia (and the world).
Lesser Grain Borer A strong and widespread pest of whole cereal grains and becomes an extremely serious problem during hot and dry conditions. Like the Rice Weevil, the Lesser Grain Borer enjoys feeding on other products that can be found in pantries like dry pasta and cereal. Can penetrate through packaging.
Angoumois Grain Moth This pest feeds on whole cereal grains in fields and in storage, like barley, corn, rice, maize, sorghum, millet, and wheat. Infested stored grain has unpalatable taste and a sickening smell. Can be found in mild to warm temperate and tropical regions.

Secondary Grain Pests

Secondary grain pests prefer to infest broken grains, flour, cereal products and other products ranging from confectionery to dried meats and even including tobacco and pepper. Commonly encountered insects belonging to this group include:

TypeDescription
Saw-Toothed Grain Beetle The Saw-Toothed/Merchant Grain Beetle is omnivorous and can attack cereals, bread, flour, cake mixes, dried fruits, nuts, and dried meat as well as many other products, but cannot attack whole grain.
Rust-Red Flour Beetle, Confused Flour Beetle and Flour Mite

The Rust-Red Flour Beetle can be found in warmer climates, attacking grains, cereals and other organic foods in cereal mills, food processing plants, grocery stores, ships and even households.

The Confused Flour Beetle is very similar to the Rust-Red Flour Beetle, but it cannot fly. Very commonly found in food factories and flour mills.

The Flour Mite feeds on flour and other grain-based product. Requires habitat consisting of 80%+ humidity. Can introduce fungal spores and unpleasant smell into the infected foot. Can cause dermatitis for people with sensitive skin.

Mediterranean Flour Moth This pest infests a variety of broken grain products including flour, cereals, dog food, nuts seeds, chocolate and dried fruit. The larvae spin thread and small particles may break off, landing in a manufactured food product, thus infesting it.
Spider Beetle Typically attacks decaying foodstuffs, seeds, woollens, furs, carpets, rodent carcasses', rodent droppings, old grain-based rodent baits, dried animal products, and a range of other organic materials.
Drugstore and Cigarette Beetles The Cigarette Beetle feeds on damaged portions of grain, grain products, spices, dried fruits, meats and other items. The Drugstore Beetle resembles the Cigarette Beetle, it feeds on broken or damaged grain and it infests household grain products, spices and drugs.
Tobacco Beetle Major pest of tobacco and allied products. Also considered pest to widest range of stored foods in comparison to other stored product pests. Mainly attacks tobacco, grains, seeds, dried fruit and vegetables, and more.

Where do stored product pests live?

As there is a wide range of stored product pest species, they are found across Australia. However, a majority of these pests prefer warm and humid conditions. They can be found in a variety of grains, dry food products and more depending on their preference for food.

When are stored product pests active?

Again, certain stored product pests thrive in the warm and humid conditions, so you can anticipate a spike in stored product pest damage in the summer months (or all year round for tropical regions).

Do I need professional pest control?

Stored Product Pests are regarded as critical pests within the industry and must be prevented at all cost. Insects like Stored Product Pests can cause harm to humans, farm animals and crops, and cause serious monetary loss.

During the pest service, the technician will inspect specific areas, looking for stored product pest activity and will then recommend the appropriate treatment measures. Flick Anticimex provides structured reports with detailed documentation and fully comprehensive audit services pertinent to Stored Product Pests treatment.

Treatment methods may vary depending upon the level of infestation, the offending pest species and the product which has been contaminated. These methodologies range from pheromone monitoring, contaminated food removal, space spray treatment and/or fumigation.

For more information on stored product pests, or to book an inspection, feel free to call your local branch at 13 14 40!

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