The Importance of Pest Control in Pharmaceutical Plants

If you’re responsible for the operations of a pharmaceutical plant, you must be on top of your pest control management in order to maintain the quality of your product.

An infestation could cost you a fortune in contaminated materials and impending pest control services. It’ll damage your brand’s reputation while leading to a loss of orders, customers, revenues, and trust.

Flying Insects

While all flying insects have different attractants and breeding habits, they still share many similar traits.

They carry ingested pathogenic microorganisms and move between contaminated food sources and clean areas, spreading the filth on their bodies.

Flying insects present the greatest pest risk to pharmaceutical facilities and capitalize on the materials, environment, and potential breeding conditions within. Flying insects are attracted to fermenting sugars, oils, carbohydrates, decaying proteins, and vegetable matter—ingredients used in digestible medicines.

Flies to watch out for: house flies, fruit flies, bluebottles, drain flies, cluster flies, and flesh flies.

Cockroaches

The German cockroach prefers the wetter humid conditions usually found in equipment-dense production areas.

The larger American cockroach likes the warmer conditions found in drains, sewers, and waste storage areas.

The tinier Brown Banded cockroach can only survive in heated buildings, burrowing around electric motors, light switches, and electrical appliances. They feed on material with a high starch content.

Here’s what you need to worry about when cockroaches infest your pharmaceutical plant:

  • Cockroaches can carry disease-causing microorganisms such as Staphylococcus, Salmonella, Listeria and E. coli
  • Cockroaches eat mold, fecal matter in sewers, from rodents and birds, and animal carcasses, which can then be transmitted into the production area
  • Cast skins and egg cases contaminate products and packaging
  • Droppings and shed skins contain allergens, which can trigger asthma attacks in population dense areas in a pharmaceutical plant

Stored Product Insects

Beetles, weevils, moths, and mites infest edible pharmaceutical ingredients like starches, sugars or natural herbal products used to extract medically active compounds.

They’ll enter paper, cardboard, plastic, cellophane or foil packaging, infiltrating through minuscule holes smaller than the human eye can see.

If you notice any small beetles, moths, larvae, pupae or silken webbing on storage bins it’s a sign of an infestation. Also, be on the lookout for holes, larvae or webbing on the outside of packets or bags and on beams and window sills.


It is essential that pharmaceutical plants and other manufacturing facilities maintain high standards of pest control and pest prevention. Contamination will spoil your products and cost you big time in the short and long run.

Terminix Canada offers commercial pest control services throughout the Greater Toronto Area!