Pantry Moths

Asked September 10, 2015, 8:11 PM EDT

Recently I've been noticing these little moths flying around and little white worms hanging from my ceiling. Upon a little research I found out that they are called pantry moths. I have located and removed the source of where I believe they came from, which was a bag of bird seed from Walmart. Since the removal 4 days had gone by and I didn't see any moths. This morning (the 5th day) I found a moth on the kitchen ceiling. What can I do to make sure that I get rid of them altogether ? Do I really need to throw away all my food, like flour, sugar, pasta noodles, rice, oatmeal etc,etc...... I'm so freaked out about this, please offer any advise..... Thank you in advance.... -Wendy-

Northampton County Pennsylvania

1 Response

A great answer provided by -Shari Gallup, MS Ohio State University Extension
Eight (8) quick steps to get rid of pantry moths, also known as flour moths, and flour weevils:

  1. Remove everything from your pantry or cupboard and thoroughly clean the shelves with soapy water.
  2. Dry thoroughly before you put anything back.
  3. Inspect all your food. If you see webs in the corner of bags, bits of grains stuck together, grains hanging from the top of the bag or worse, the actual pantry moths themselves, throw the food out!
  4. Remove all food from plastic packaging and place in airtight sealed glass, ceramic or hard plastic jars. Pantry moths can actually poke holes through plastic bags.
  5. If you must use Ziploc bags, double bag them.
  6. Do not roll up plastic bags with an elastic (like I used to do with my rice). The moths will make their way into them.
  7. Place dried bay leaves in the corners of your shelves and in your flour, rice and grain containers. They deter pantry moths and flour weevils.
  8. Place all your containers back on the clean shelves.
Prevention is key so clean your cupboards and pantries every few months to deter them from coming back.

Fear not, you can inspect your food an then save what you can. Good Luck.