Category Archives

Pest Management

Food Safety & Fly Control in Food Establishments

The World Health Organization (WHO) deemed Food Safety such an important topic that it declared it the theme of this year’s World Health Day on April 7, 2015. This day is used to alert governments, manufacturers, retailers and the public about the importance of food safety.

SmallCommKitchen - canstockphoto16637700One of the most important jobs of a pest professional is in protecting food establishments from pests that transmit disease such as flies. Flies breed in decomposing animal and other waste and even feed on filth like that found in garbage, sewers and even feces. Food establishment owners may not recognize flies as a threat to food safety. Many may be surprised to learn that A recent study conducted by an Orkin entomologist determined that houseflies are twice as filthy as cockroaches.

A large selection of fly control products are available for use by pest professionals to protect humans from the diseases transmitted through contaminated food. However, it is essential that the client cooperate in fly control by maintaining a safe environment and protecting their food and food prep areas from pests. A pest professional should encourage that all food establishments:

Exclude pests from their food handling areas. Properly seal up openings to the outside, ensure screens are intact, install self-closing doors, utilize fly fans or air around doors and windows to ensure that flies and other insects cannot enter are just a few ways that food establishments can protect food from flies.

Having a Cleaning Protocol for food handling areas and equipment. Having a policy in place and training employees to maintain an environment safe from flies is essential. The protocols should ensure that: any equipment utilized in food operation should be properly cleaned of food scraps, areas behind equipment and appliances must be properly swept and washed down, grease must be removed and the area thoroughly cleaned to decrease the chances of attracting flies and other pests to the area.

Proper Waste Management is essential. Removing waste from a building on a daily basis is critical as flies can breed in decomposing food products and food scraps and other garbage attracts rodents to the area. Utilizing tight sealing lids to garbage receptacles and removing garbage regularly, no less than daily, from a building is essential to reducing the risk of pests.

Protect not only food but also eating utensils. Fly-proof containers, tightly sealing doors on cabinets and drawers, fly nets and plastic wrap should all be utilized to ensure that flies do not land on surfaces that can harm humans.

Food safety is an important public health initiative. Educate your accounts on how they can protect their food products from flies and other pests.

Take Your Brand Image to the Next Level with Private Labeling


It’s always a good exercise to take a step back and look at your business. Whether you are trying to become a million dollar per year operation or break into the Top 100 pest control firms in the country, it is important to know whether or not your business is properly positioned in the marketplace to achieve your set goals.  Brand Image or how your current and potential customers view your company or brand is vital to your success and goal achievement. A few things that affect your brand image in the marketplace include:

  • Marketing Materials. They may invoke a casual, laid back feeling or an elite style that says you cater to higher end clients. Regardless of what you say be sure your materials all follow a cohesive, polished look and feel.
  • Internet Presence. Perhaps you have a spokesperson that you feature online to answer customer concerns or have the leading pest library on the web, be sure your website caters to your customer base and is a resource for them to turn to when they have a pest problem.
  • Customer Service Experience. When a client calls, how your technicians present themselves or offering online chat are all ways you can communicate to your client base that service is a high priority at your company.

But there is yet another way to communicate brand image and one that can help create a perception that your firm is innovative, offers high quality products and services and commands market share…. Private Labeling.

Private labeling is the practice of a product being manufactured by one company for offer under another company’s brand. It has become a popular practice here in the U.S. for many years and is a growing trend here in the U.S. as well as in other countries. When buyers perceive value and quality by a brand they tend to trust that brand more. When your glue boards, mouse and rat traps and insect monitors carry your brand name it leaves your footprint behind in every account that you service. These free business cards go everywhere your technicians go and say these firms trust me, shouldn’t you? Private label products are no longer something that only national brands can acquire. Now any size firm has the power to create their own line of branded glue boards or customized traps. PMPs can add text, upload their logo and communicate your key messaging all with a few clicks on your computer.

As you set out to achieve your goals this year consider how private label glue boards and traps can help you get there. Improve your sales opportunities, leave your mark behind in every account that you service and impress your clients with your private labeled products. Let your professionalism, innovation and value show through in the monitors and traps that you leave behind in your client’s locations and watch your bottom line soar.

14 Problems Only A Pest Professional Would Understand

It’s a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it! In fact someone has probably always had to do it. Some pests existed long before man first set foot on the planet. They thrive in our environment, feeding off our waste and finding shelter in our homes.

As a pest professional, you’re already well aware of what it takes to get the job done; you’ve got the knowledge, the training and the equipment to keep the vermin at bay. So you know that some clients can be as difficult to manage as the pests.

The public can be a strange bunch. Sometimes it’s a wonder anyone chooses to work in a public-facing role, yet here you are, smile on your face and tools in hand, ready to rid them of any unwanted guests and return peace and harmony back into the home.

And so, here’s to you pest professionals, problems only you would understand…

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1. The client says, “We only have one mouse.”


You can tell just by looking at the piles of dishes in the sink, the food left on the counter and the mass of mice droppings at the back of the kitchen cupboard: There is more than one mouse!

2. You go out for a meal and find yourself surveying the restaurant for signs of pest activity prior to ordering. 


The average person will never know what goes on behind the scenes in a restaurant. And thank goodness for that, the restaurant business would never be the same.  Eat at home forever? Or push to the thoughts to the back of your mind and soldier on?

3. The voice at the other end of the phone expects free advice on a pest related issue, but won’t commit to booking an appointment or using your services. 


Yes, they think you have no idea they’re going to try and solve the problem, on their own, using your knowledge. Well played, Mr. Homeowner, well played.

4. Homeowner doubts your findings, “We can’t have fleas! Our house is too clean!”


No one wants to admit their home is infested, or worse yet, that it may be their fault.  We’re not surprised when a homeowner feels insulted when we break the news of an infestation. Don’t kill the messenger!

5. You indirectly become a marriage counselor. 


You are first to admit, you’re no Dr. Phil! So when the conversation moves to whose fault it is that they have a pest problem, you know just what to do … GET OUTTA DODGE!

 6. You know a DIY’er when you see one!


He greets you at the door with bites, bandages or advice of what not to do to control his infestation. You slightly grin and certainly don’t ask. Hey, you’re a DIY weekend warrior yourself at times.

7. You’re met with disappointed faces at the mention of a repeat visit.  


Hey, you’re no Superhero, no matter what they say. But completely eliminate bed bugs in just one visit? That’s just not realistic.

8. You’re asked if you can humanely release the mice outside. 


You applaud their sensitivity for the little critters. But rodents pose a slew of health and even fire hazards and WILL make their way back into the home if released.

9. You’re instructed to come in an ‘unmarkedvan. 


What is this? Are we planning a bank heist? No, they just don’t want the neighbors to know they have a pest problem. It’s an everyday struggle to change the way people look at pest management. It truly is a sign of a clean, well-kept home!

10. The Homeowner wants you out there NOW! There’s a mouse in the house! 


It’s Saturday night at 11:20pm and the phone rings. How do you explain to the homeowner that a mouse sighting is not a Saturday night emergency visit??

11. Homeowner wants to negotiate. 


It seems that no one wants to pay for anything these days. But many homeowners don’t realize the overhead, insurance, salaries and more that you have to account for in your business. In fact, you’re beginning to think your services are actually a bargain!

12. Your friends are always looking for advice. 


There’s one person at every social outing and family function taking you aside and asking you ‘how do I handle the (fill in the blank) infestation in my house’.  We feel your pain.

13. You have a laundry list of nicknames like Bug Man, The exTerminator, Bug Killer and more. 


Little does everyone know that your job goes well beyond bugs. You also specialize in accounting, marketing, sales, social media, finance, logistics, fleet management, people management, software management, inventory management, entomology, chemistry AND more!

14. We really are nothing like our reality TV show counterparts. 


‘Billy the Exterminator’ is fun to watch but it’s not exactly how your average pest professional spends their day. There’s a reason why these guys are on TV.


While there are many day to day problems encountered by a pest management professional we truly admire those who work in the industry. So, here’s to all of the professionals out there that manage pest infestations daily to protect the health and property of their customers. We salute you!



Getting Creative with Commercial Fly Control

CommercialKitchenwCatchM logoFly control can be a tricky business. But we don’t have to tell you that. As protectors of public health and business reputations there is a lot at stake and a lot of moving parts to manage in a good fly control program. So how do you manage flying insects in an environment perfectly conducive to breeding these pests? And, do so in a discreet manner? We know you have a lot of tools in your pest management tool box to do just that but we believe that until now there has been a gap in fly control.

How are you currently managing fly breeding hotspots, outbreaks and those hard to treat areas in your commercial accounts?

We have a new tool we are excited to share. One that we believe has been missing in the commercial environment. The SilenTrap™ Flying Insect Trap is a freestanding, plug-in flying insect trap. It’s perfect for knocking down those outbreaks and hot spots in your commercial accounts. It has a discreet and lightweight design allowing it to be easily moved from one location to another.

The SilenTrap™ allows you to control flies in those unique areas that a full-size ILT just won’t fit or isn’t needed for the long-term. There is no bug zapping and therefore no unsanitary clean-up around the unit. Instead, the unit attracts flying pests with its light and then captures them on the glueboard. It was thoughtfully designed to contain any flies that may inadvertently fall of the glueboard. The treatment options are limitless but here are a few ways that the SilenTrap™ can allow you to be creative in controlling flying insects in your commercial accounts:

• For areas where an ILT just won’t fit consider placing the SilenTrap™ near ice machines or floor drains. It fits easily on counters and most surfaces and can be moved around as needed.
• Consider using in areas that may not be well-cleaned or can be difficult to clean such as gaps in or around coolers, drink dispensers, machinery and kitchen equipment.
• The SilenTrap™’s discreet design allows for use on bars, on countertops and other public places where hanging an ILT isn’t possible.
• If you are unsure of the species of fly causing the infestation consider how the SilenTrap™ can assist you in preserving the fly for easy identification.
• Place the units at a height between 6 and 8 feet off of the ground, where flies are most often found.
• Recommend that the client turn out lights after business hours and leave the SilenTrap™ plugged in around outbreaks or fly-prone areas.

As you can see there are many unique and creative uses for this freestanding fly trap. We hope you will consider making it a part of your fly management program. To learn more about the SilenTrap™ visit us online today.

The Key to More Profitable Bedbug Services

APGBedBug2iStock_000015160424SmallThe bedbug problem is showing no signs of slowing down.  This unique pest carries the title of most difficult pest to treat. Bedbug work is labor intensive, in some part reliant on the cooperation of the home or business owner, expensive for both parties and now highly litigious. Bedbug work is truly a double-edged sword. Treating for bedbugs can be lucrative, but labor hours and expensive callbacks can quickly eat away at your profits.

The time has come to work smarter, not harder. Pest professionals pro-actively monitor their accounts for rodents and insects and have been doing so for decades. It is a safe, efficient, effective, low-cost method to alert us to a problem. Why would this same approach not work for your high-risk bedbug accounts? APGBed Bug Nymphs (2)Why, after performing a bedbug treatment, would you not monitor the account for further bedbug activity? Perhaps you question the effectiveness of a glue board to catch bedbugs. We say, the proof is in the pudding.  We have been delivering quality, consistency and reliability with our specialty adhesive products for over sixty years. Our bedbug detection devices were created with bedbug biology and behavior in mind – where they like to hide, what kind of materials they favor – to create a bedbug “safe haven.”  Our bedbug monitors offer:

  • Low-cost method for identifying a bedbug infestation early
  • Low maintenance, may even be checked by housekeeping or those living in the residence
  • A post-treatment tool to provide peace-of-mind to the customer
  • Safe, non-chemical method that may be used anywhere
  • Increase revenue opportunities by establishing a proactive bedbug protocol

Catchmaster® BDS2.0 Bedbug Monitor Our revolutionary new monitors are designed specifically for bed bugs.  Detect bed bugs early, before the infestation has a chance to move to a new location.

  • Cost-effective
  • Proactive monitoring tools that can be used on a large scale anywhere bed bugs may be a concern
  • Adhesive strip on the back helps it to stay in place
  • The NEW plastic cover protects glue for easy inspection
  • Our NEW double adhesive closure allows for two inspections or relocation of the device
  • A perfect post-treatment monitor to alert you to a re-infestation
  • Peace-of-mind to the client and the service provider
  • Provide specific checkpoints for technicians to repeatedly concentrate their efforts on known bedbug hotspots
  • Use for post-treatment monitoring to gauge effectiveness

Catchmaster® Slider™ Bedbug Monitor Designed specifically for use between the mattress and the box spring, our Slider™ Bedbug Monitor alerts you to bedbug activity in one of their most common harborage sites.  Our design makes the Slider™ a must-have tool in any high-risk account.

  • Designed as an ideal harborage site for bedbugs
  • Serves as an interceptor trap and as a passive monitor
  • Use to monitor the effectiveness of bedbug treatments
  • Clear protection window makes inspecting fast and easy
  • Place directly under mattress and other bedbug hotspots
  • Peace-of-mind to the client and the service provider
  • Provide specific checkpoints for technicians to repeatedly concentrate their efforts on known bedbug hotspots
  • Use for post-treatment monitoring to gauge effectiveness


The time has come to apply the same tried and true methods that alert us to other pest problems to bedbugs.  We already know the many benefits that early detection of a bedbug infestation offers.  Improve your service by offering monitoring to those high-risk accounts and install monitors post-treatment. For even more info, check out the latest addition to our Resource Library – a FREE How To Perform a Bedbug Inspection Infographic perfect for use by PMPs on their social media channels and/or website.  This ‘social’ tool will help your clients to take part in identifying an infestation early.

See what other Pest Professionals are saying about our bed bug monitoring devices:

From Sam Soto, Owner, First Rate Solutions, Inc. – “As part of our bed bug protocol glue boards, BDS2.0 and/or the Slider are used at every bed bug job.  The low cost and effectiveness of these products makes it a no brainer. They are perfect for use in residential complexes.”

From William Hoffman, Co-Owner, Hoffman’s Exterminating Co., Inc. – “In 2013 we have had a 100% increase in BedBug revenue. With the continuing discoveries in new chemistry, treatment techniques and monitoring techniques, one old reliable product still has a place in our tool box – glue boards. I think everyone in the industry agrees the we can give a “positive” Bed Bug inspection or results, but it is nearly impossible to say No bed bugs are present.  I compare this to WDIR inspections when we find evidence of termites, with no signs of treatment and are asked to state that no termites exist behind the walls. Glue boards,  like other monitors,  may not tell you that you don’t have Bed Bugs, but a capture will confirm they are present for a very small cost.”

From Myles Guevremont, General Manager, Tri-County Termite & Pest Control, Inc. – “We began using Catchmaster BDS monitors as a part of our bed bug arsenal about three years ago.  As a company that services many large commercial accounts for bed bugs, we quickly realized that it is neither practical nor particularly effective to perform visual inspections of large commercial spaces.  The BDS monitors allow us to pinpoint problem areas and focus inspection and treatment efforts more efficiently.  In one case, we had been treating bed bugs in a large office space for almost 2 months, but it was difficult to pinpoint the source of the problem. We decided to install BDS monitors throughout the cubicles of the office, and when we returned to inspect the following week, we were able to identify the point of introduction and eliminate the problem. With the redesigned BDS2.0, we have enjoyed the same level of efficacy, but the ease of use has drastically increased our productivity.”



The Secret to Improving Your Home Protection Plan’s Retention Rate

Residential Home - shutterstock_14833948 (640x426)Believe it or not, Americans don’t like to complain.  According to the Research Institute of America only 4 percent of unhappy customers bother to complain.  If your Home Protection Plan retention rate is slipping, consider these two possible causes and read on for the real secret behind keeping these annual customers on the books:
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5 Ways Glueboards Enhance Offerings


Monitoring for Money in Residential Accounts

Glueboards are an important part of any ongoing service plan.  When properly placed, glueboards can help a pest professional see exactly what type of pest activity is taking place in their customer’s home.  In turn, he can use targeted treatments for the pest problem at hand helping him to follow Integrated Pest Management practices.
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Stand out from the crowd

Differentiate Your Pest Services through Green Offerings


Green, environmentally-friendly, eco-friendly, organic, non-toxic and IPM are all buzzwords that consumers love these days.  Are you currently offering services to your customer base that prefers “green” choices?  Have you found a way to truly differentiate yourself and your services from other local pest companies?  Or, perhaps you considered green services as an opportunity but you are not quite sure how to fully embrace this type of service offering?
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