There are few feelings worse than purchasing a giant bag of flour or sugar, placing it in your pantry, and later discovering that the bag has been torn apart by rodents. If this has happened to you, don’t panic because there are easy ways to prevent rodents from invading your food supply in the future, and if it has never happened to you, here are some ways to make sure it never does.
Clean Your Kitchen
Rule number one of discouraging rodents from entering your kitchen/pantry area is to keep it clean. If you leave dirty dishes in the sink or crumbs on the floor, rodents will be attracted to that area. Clean your dishes immediately, wipe down countertops daily and clean your floors at least once a week. Be sure to not forget about tight spaces, such as under your fridge, because you would be surprised at how many crumbs end up there.
Use Metal or Glass Storage
Most people store their food in cardboard, paper, or flimsy plastic, and this makes it very easy for rodents to chew through the packaging and get into your food. Swap out your current storage for metal or glass containers because rodents cannot chew through the glass and it is very difficult for them to chew through metal. Do not forget to store pet food in a metal container as well! A metal trash can with a lid is a popular solution for storing a large number of dry goods like this.
Avoid Excess Moisture
Your food storage area needs to be kept as dry as possible, otherwise small rodents will be attracted to that area (in addition to the moisture spoiling some of your goods). Clean up spills immediately and thoroughly and make sure no a/c vents are dripping in the area. Additionally, you can place a dehumidifier in the storage area to make the space even drier.
Use Natural Deterrents
Since you are trying to keep rodents out of your food, you do not want to use harmful chemicals as a rodent deterrent. But, you can use natural substances to repel rodents. Peppermint and spearmint are two herbs that irritate the nasal passages of rodents, so if you grow these in your storage area, the rodents will almost certainly avoid it.
Rodents tend to avoid high-activity areas, so they are much less likely to invade your kitchen than your pantry. Make them avoid your pantry as well by maintaining a constant presence there. Regularly go in there to grab food items and move the storage containers around every week or so. The disruption will feel chaotic to rodents, and they will seek sustenance elsewhere.