In a previous post, I described getting pantry moths in our kitchen. Unfortunately, something like this can happen to anyone, no matter how clean you keep your house. Pantry moth eggs can end up in flour, rice, and many other products while still at the factory, and are undetectable until they hatch. Before you know it, you’ve got moth larvae crawling through your cupboards and laying more eggs.
After dealing with 3 infestations, I found that the only way to get rid of all the bugs was to get rid of all my dry goods. Here I am classifying “dry goods” as anything you keep in your cupboards that is not sealed in a can. So this includes flour, rice, oatmeal, pasta, nuts, sugar, various chips and snack foods etc. Then, for good measure, I sprayed all the cupboards with diluted bleach, then cleaned with hot soapy water, and left them empty for several days to make sure any stragglers were killed.
I found out that keeping dry goods in airtight containers can help prevent a return infestation. That way, if I buy another bag of rice with, shall we say, “extra protein,” the bugs would be contained. Or if there were any eggs still lurking in the cupboards, the resulting larvae would not be able to get into any other foods. I also started a policy of keeping all newly-bought dry goods in the freezer for one week (in an airtight container) to kill any potential eggs before transferring to the cupboard.
So, yes, I now literally have every single dry good in my house kept in an airtight container. You may think this is an extreme measure, and for many people, it probably is. The vast majority of people will never take the measures described in my video below, and they still will never see a pantry moth in their kitchen. However, I am probably more likely than others to get them, since they’ve already been in my kitchen 3 times. Plus, I have a paranoid fear of insects, so I found that following these steps gave me some peace of mind. The stress of knowing that there were bugs crawling around in my cupboards is not something I want to experience again.
The video below shows what types and sizes of containers I used, and how I keep them labelled and organized. I was not paid, bribed, or compensated by any of the companies to plug their products. I am simply describing some products that worked for me, and I’m sure there are many others. If you know of some other good ones, please mention them in the comments.
- Bormioli Rocco Fido at the Container Store
- Lock & Lock at Amazon and Lock & Lock website. Ordering directly from the company’s website results in very slow shipping, but they frequently have sales, so you may be able to get better prices there.
- Libbey jars at Amazon or Target