Rodents are notorious as carriers of diseases and generally a nuisance to homeowners. For a business, the presence of these persistent pests pose a much greater risk. Rodents are extremely destructive, especially for food related sectors due to the financial and social impacts they have on various key processes. Furthermore, with food, warmth and shelter, rats are able to reproduce extremely quickly. A rat can have up to 7 litters per year, with 5 to 8 pups per litter and it only takes them 21 days to reach adulthood. Their ability to multiply quickly in the right conditions could mean disaster for your company. Therefore, it is important for every business to understand how exactly rodents can impact their day to day activities and how to keep their consumers safe.
Destroys Public Image
If there were news reports that your business was facing a rat infestation, you can be sure you will have a media crisis on your hands. A rodent outbreak can easily cost businesses years of hard work rebuilding trust with their customers, business partners and employees. Customers may stop visiting your establishment or buying your products, business partners may terminate contracts and employees may opt to move to other companies. To make matters worse, public trust is extremely difficult to build once it has been loss which brings us to our next point.
As mentioned, the presence of rats affects customer and business partner perceptions which will lead to a loss in revenue, however that is not all. Once the public has their eyes on you, you can be sure local authorities will be paying a visit. This can lead to forced closures, which is a heavy hit to your production and revenue day by day. Furthermore, they may impose product recalls and depending on your business scale, this could mean heavy global losses.
This may seem like the worst case scenario, however they are more common than you think. Recently, a well known coffee brand had one of their factories closed down after a raid from local health authorities found rat droppings on their premises. Ultimately, they were shut down for two weeks, are currently undergoing a through investigation and face potential court charges. This could have been avoided by engaging an expert pest control company to manage pest infestations.
Incur Property Damage
Furthermore rats can cause property damage on your premises. This can range from minor damages such as ripped packaging or severe damages such as fire. Rats have a tendency on gnawing on wood, plastic, and electrical wires due to the fact that their teeth are continuously growing. Gnawing helps them keep their teeth trimmed. However, this is bad news for businesses as wooden beams, vehicles and electrical wires are at risk of being damaged which can cause structural damage and in the case of wires, spark a fire. This not only puts your employees at risk, it can easily affect the general public if the fire is not contained and spreads outside your premises.
For food related businesses, food safety is their number one priority. The presence of rats immediately threatens food safety by urinating and defecating around raw food materials. This can easily spread diseases such as Leptospirosis, Salmonellosis, and others. In fact, it has been reported that rodents are responsible for destroying and contaminating enough food to feed 200 million people per year! While your premises may incorporate proper pest management, contamination can occur in any part of the supply chain. If contaminated food is released to the public, this could cause major food poisoning cases or even death, and food retailers are left to face the backlash.
According to Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), it has been increasingly common for pests to be picked up in packaging and other entry points. Furthermore, with the ever changing digital landscape, the food related industry is experiencing exponential changes which brings about new challenges. Therefore, innovations in integrated pest management is extremely important to protect your business reputation and customers which is only achievable by engaging an expert pest control.
Together with GFSI, Rentokil has been advocating for the continuous improvement in food safety standards and procedures. We encourage all business owners to take up the responsibility to safeguard and enhance food safety standards to create safer foods for all. To learn more on how you can manage your rodent infestations safely and effectively, visit our website or contact us at 1300 882 911 today!