Friday, August 31, 2018

Kimberly-Clark to Upgrade Pennsylvania Facility

Kimberly-Clark Corp., parent company of Kimberly-Clark Professional, announced plans to invest more than US$150 million in its Chester, PA, manufacturing facility. The upgrade... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

IFMA Announces World Workplace Europe 2019

IFMA Announces World Workplace Europe 2019The International Facility Management Association (IFMA) has announced details for its 2019 World Workplace Europe Conference and Expo. Next year’s edition will take place March 20-22,... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

Weekly Product Showcase August 31, 2018

Weekly Product Showcase August 31, 2018Stay up to date on the industry's newest products and services from these ISSA members. A Scent-sational Screen The special formulation in the Vectair Systems,... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

Training detector dogs to alert at odor source

PHOTO: David Latimer

PHOTO: David Latimer

We haven’t yet, in this series on odor movement, discussed a training exercise to help your detector dog (and you) recognize the difference between a transient odor concentration and an odor source. It’s called the “point” and is demonstrated by the three dogs in the photos. The photos illustrate how the point can simplify and significantly shorten the visual search that should always follow a K9 alert to confirm the presence of the target substance.

I’ve taught arson, bomb, narcotics, bed bug and termite dogs how to identify source and how to reliably show their handlers exactly where that source can be found. To do that, I teach dogs what I call, the point. Performing the point means that dogs learn to hold their nose as near as they physically can to the specific area they’ve isolated as containing the odor source, similar to the way bird dogs perform the point to identify the location of quail or pheasants.

PHOTO: David Latimer

PHOTO: David Latimer

The “point” evolved during my days as an arson investigator. When I needed to take a fire debris sample. I needed to be sure the evidence I took came from the exact spot that the dog identified. It was crucial that I get this right because I needed a lab to determine if some ignitable liquid like gasoline was used to start or spread a fire. My case may not be prosecutable or at best very weak without such forensic evidence. I brought the point to my termite and bed bug dog training programs and found that it was an asset when it came time to visually confirm that the bugs were indeed exactly where the dog said they were.

In teaching the point, timing is crucial. I deliver a food reward by tossing the treat, just as I toss a toy to a toy rewarded dog. (I’m going to explain in much more detail in upcoming blogs why I do this rather than feed from my hand.) If you want your dog to learn to hold its nose at the odor source, you must reward when the dog is holding its nose at the source, not when it is looking at you or when it is looking or pointing its nose anywhere else. If you reward when the dog is looking at you, you’ll get a dog that looks at you for the reward. If you reward the dog when it is bobbing its head up and down in a clownish fashion, you’ll get a dog that repeatedly bobs its head up and down in a clownish fashion. You will get a repeat of whatever behavior you reward; dog training 101.

PHOTO: David Latimer

PHOTO: David Latimer

A dog that is taught the point, will quickly realize when it is not actually at source. It will abandon an alert to a transient odor concentration and re-engage the search until it finds the area where odor generation and its replenishment remains fairly constant and isn’t dispersed by air movement. This, of course, is where you are the most likely to find the subject of your search.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Truly Nolen promotes in IT



Truly Nolen Pest Control has promoted Brandon Price to IT Help Desk supervisor, based at the Tucson, Ariz., headquarters. Price joined the company in 2015 in an IT department support role. Prior to joining Truly Nolen, he spent two years working for a family-owned company, SunTap Water Systems, where he helped test and install reverse-osmosis and water softening systems.

“I am excited to take on more responsibilities and projects, while helping to implement changes to make the Help Desk the best it can be,” Price says. “My favorite thing about Truly Nolen is my co-workers, as I have built great relationships with many people who I have never met — all while helping to get a computer problem fixed.”

“Brandon has provided outstanding service in his previous roles, and I know he will bring that same level of professionalism to his new job and team,” says IT Director George Lawlor. “I know he will succeed in his new position, and I applaud him for his hard work and dedication.”

Founded in 1938, Truly Nolen of America is one of the largest family-owned pest control companies in the United States. It has more than 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories, including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and more than 60 countries.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Control Solutions Inc.: Pressurized Solutions

LOGO: Control Solutions Inc.

LOGO: Control Solutions Inc.

Find the perfect aerosol for any infestation: Pressurized Solutions — CSI’s all-new aerosol facility — includes specialized formulations manufactured under one roof. The lineup includes Stryker, Stryker 54, Spectre PS and Pivot Ultra. Learn more and request a sample today online.


from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

3 steps to solving mystery ‘bites’



In PMP’s March issue, Crawley McPherson presented a case of a “mysterious itch” — or delusions of parasitosis (DOP). This type of case is not uncommon. Unfortunately, many in the industry fail to handle these complaints professionally.

Read more: Fiction: Crawley and the mysterious itch

Often the customer begs for help and we, being compassionate, try to help them. A cardinal rule, however, is never treat unless you have identified a target pest.

If you provide any sort of treatment, you have confirmed in the customer’s mind that a biting pest is present. That leads you and the customer down a circular path that never resolves the problem.

Sometimes a treatment “alleviates the problem” on a temporary basis, which also “confirms” a pest is present. In such cases, the problem reoccurs quickly and you get a call to make another treatment. This can happen for a number of reasons. If you provide a space treatment, the aerosol droplets might “wash” the air of some contaminant and the problem disappears temporarily. Sometimes an aerosol treatment raises the relative humidity. Dry air can exacerbate skin problems. Such treatments give the customer false hope, and draws you deeper into a problem you cannot solve.

Lying to a customer also creates a problem. For instance, a homeowner wrote to me asking for a list of pest management professionals (PMPs) who would treat for “mold mites.” The man was told that these mites are very fast and difficult to capture. He also was told they breed so quickly that you can’t eliminate them.

A few phone calls later, I realized it was likely that one or more PMPs recognized he didn’t have a pest problem, so they made excuses to get out of the situation. This wasn’t helpful to the man, and certainly did not put the industry in a good light.

True contributors

Several factors can contribute to mystery “bite” problems. In office environments, dry air, computer paper dust, cable coatings, static electricity in carpets and other environmental issues can cause bite-like skin reactions. Dry air, in particular, can exacerbate skin reactions to environmental contaminants.

If just one individual (typically in a family) is complaining, there are many medical issues that can cause bite-like reactions. Diabetes and varicose veins are common causes. Allergic reactions to detergents and fabric softeners also can cause such problems.

For example, I had a customer who was an allergist. She insisted her bites were from insects and demanded a treatment with an insecticide. We monitored for several weeks without finding any biting insect. I asked her whether she prescribed treatments for allergies when she didn’t know the cause. “Of course not,” she said. I then asked her why she expected me to perform a treatment when we didn’t know the cause. Later, she called and apologized after she determined a fabric softener caused her problem.

Some of these problems are caused by a psychosis — people  imagine something is happening to them. When it happens to a housemate, a person can even become convinced it also is happening to him or her. These situations are rare, but they do occur.

What PMPs should do

1. Get a specimen for identification.

The easiest method is to place sticky traps in strategic spots. Inspect them within 24 hours; if a biting pest is present, you should have captured some. Common examples include bed bugs, bird mites, thrips, fleas, mosquitoes, spiders, lice, and pharaoh ants and certain other ant species. Usually, you will capture book lice (psocids) in sticky traps, but they don’t bite. Chiggers cause problems, but they live outdoors; you likely will not capture them indoors.

Use clear tape to press onto windowsills and other suspect surfaces to capture mites and other small specimens. Some customers will capture “stuff” from their skin and other surfaces. You will need a microscope of at least 30x power to examine such samples. A majority of these samples will contain bits of skin or other organic materials unrelated to bites. I’ve also spent hours looking at the contents of vacuums. This is usually non-productive, but sometimes necessary.

2. Ask a lot of questions.

When did the problem begin? Does it affect everyone? Does it come and go? The answers to these questions will help you determine whether it is really a pest problem or something else. Listen carefully. Sometimes the answer is right in front of you.

Sometimes it is a pest problem

Before you walk away, make sure you rule out even the smallest chance that a pest is involved. For example, I was asked to resolve a bite problem in a small office. There had been fleas, but a carpet treatment eliminated the problem. However, one person who sat at a desk continued to receive bites.

More monitors were placed. No fleas were found, except on the monitor on the desk of the person being bitten.

Further inspections found that a raccoon was nesting in the drop ceiling directly above this desk. Fleas were dropping from the ceiling. Those that reached the carpet were killed, but those that landed on the desk were not. Elimination of the raccoon and nesting materials resolved the problem.

3. If you can’t find a pest, you need to walk a fine line.

If no biting pest is found, then you should take no part in providing the solution. It is sometimes difficult to tell a customer you can’t help, but that is the professional action. Offering treatment will lead to other problems. However, the customer will be looking for guidance on how to proceed. You can help, but beware of becoming an expert in a field you know little about. I suggest the following tips:

⦁ If it is a group of affected people in a work environment, an environmental contaminant often is the cause. I usually suggest an industrial hygienist be hired to test the environment. Humidity will be tested and air samples collected to look for contaminants. If contaminants are found, the industrial hygienist and/or an engineer must determine the appropriate course of action. You are not in a position to make such judgment calls, but suggesting another professional to assist is helpful and appreciated by the customer.

⦁ If the problem is associated with one or few individuals, such as in a family unit, an allergen or medical issue may be present. If the problem occurs beneath clothing but not on exposed skin, detergents or fabric softeners may be causing the problem. If only exposed skin is affected, something in the environment may be causing the problem. I usually suggest that the person or persons visit their family doctor or an allergist. My experience with dermatologists is that many will diagnose the problem as a “bug bite.” You already know there are no biting bugs in the environment, so it must be something else. You shouldn’t make a diagnosis of the cause, but just giving the customer examples of problems and the appropriate professional to consult helps.

If you think it may be a psychosis problem (imaginary bugs), then recommending visiting the family doctor is the best advice. You can’t make this diagnosis, so don’t even suggest it. Examples include “they bore into my skin, they are too fast to capture” or “they are in my urine, I can see them but can’t trap one.” I had one such case, and medical professionals determined it was DOP. The family wanted a tent fumigation, even though we had signed documents stating no bugs were present and the fumigation would not eliminate imaginary bites. The state regulatory agency was advised, but OK’d the fumigation. The customer in question was “cured” by the fumigation. That was a weird situation that required the services of several specialists.

The bottom line is you are a PMP, so stick to what you know. If you can’t find a pest that bites, then suggest other professionals who might be able to help. Misinformation such as “mold mites breed too quickly” is neither helpful nor professional. But don’t get trapped into treating. You will regret it for a long time. There will be that rare customer who will insist on treatment and will not explore other causes. At that point, you need to walk away.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA
Dr. Joe DeMark, Field Scientist with Corteva Agriscience

Dr. Joe DeMark, Field Scientist with Corteva Agriscience

Today’s technology includes trap detection systems, which provide real-time detection of rodent activity. A typical system alerts with text and/or email, identifying which rodent station was triggered, which allows for faster removal of the rodent.

Real-time information about rodent activity allows companies to determine where and when rodent activity took place, providing discovery of the “why.” This leads to corrective action, such as exclusion or client facility management changes, to avert future rodent problems.

There are additional service benefits. Monitoring in remote or difficult-to-access areas means these stations only need to be checked on alerts, limiting the constant need for technicians to climb ladders, use lifts or require client assistance to gain access to areas to manually check stations. In addition, in field trials, rodent decomposition before removal has been found to occur far less often overall using a trap detection system, compared to traditionally serviced sites — thus reducing odor and possible avoidance issues.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Survey Finds Travelers Have Difficulty Finding Clean Restrooms

Survey Finds Travelers Have Difficulty Finding Clean RestroomsIf you dread making restroom stops during road trips you’re not alone. A new Harris poll commissioned by Cintas Corp. found that 56 percent of Americans have difficulty finding a clean... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

Disney Agrees to Increase Workers' Wages

Working at the happiest place on Earth has gotten happier for the 38,000 union employees of Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL, most who make under US$11 an hour. Disney has reached an agreement with... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

Georgia-Pacific Donates to Texas Fire Departments

Georgia-Pacific, LLC, parent company of Georgia-Pacific Professional, recently made donations to two fire departments in Texas. The Diboll Volunteer Fire Department received US$10,000 and the... Read more

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Brady Appoints New Leadership Team in Arizona

Brady Appoints New Leadership Team in ArizonaBrady has appointed a new management team for its operations in Arizona. Chrissy Sayre has been named regional general manager. In her new position, Sayre will lead Brady’s strategy and... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
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Restaurant Mold

mold in restaurant

Mold in a Restaurant?

There’s so much to love about a restaurant; tantalizing aromas, delicious food and a luxurious ambience. Unfortunately, the presence of mold can also be high up on the list of what to expect from a restaurant – especially if certain precautions are not taken.

Why Mold?

Between the ovens, stoves and storage equipment (read: water and steam) that is the very fabric of a restaurant kitchen, a high humidity environment is created that is prime real estate for mold.

Restaurant mold is particularly troubling – not only for the obvious reasons but also because keeping food quarantined in this environment is near impossible. As a business owner, you have a legal responsibility to the staff which are in your employ, and as a food establishment you must ensure that all hygiene standards are met.

Preventative Measures

Luckily, as per usual, we’re here to help you ensure your restaurant is mold-free at all times by following these top tips:

  1. Monitor moisture-friendly areas. Regularly clean and look out for signs of mold or mildew underneath sinks and around refrigeration units to keep humidity at bay.
  2. Don’t abandon hidden spaces – in fact, it’s in the little nooks and crannies that people won’t necessarily see that mold is most likely to rear its ugly head. Mold can appear on walls, floors, ceilings and even inside air conditioning ducts.
  3. Keep humidity levels low. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends keeping indoor humidity levels between 30-50%.
  4. Maintain ventilation. There are few places that a clean and properly working ventilation system are more important than a restaurant kitchen as proper ventilation reduces the amount of moisture and other contaminants in the air that can encourage mold to grow. According to Arista Air Conditioning, “buildings are more air-tight and better insulated for energy efficiency” meaning humidity is increased, yet “modern equipment only uses 10 to 15 percent of its capacity for humidity control.” They advise ensuring that you always have the right size unit for the space.
  5. Keep food fresh. A restauranteur’s primary concern should be preventing moldy food and disposing it as soon as any is found. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends that food is kept away from mold at all times to avoid contamination. It should go without saying, but ensuring all food storage areas are clean and stock regularly replenished is a must. Read how to keep fruit and vegetables fresher for longer here.
  6. Schedule professional inspections. Prevention is key, so the importance of investing in regular spot checks by those who know what to look for cannot be underestimated.

 Help! I’ve Found Mold!

You really can’t take any chances when it comes to publicly serving food, so if you even have the sneakiest suspicion that your restaurant may have a mold problem, call in the experts immediately.

That’s because as well as being just horrible to look at, mold can cause a whole host of health problems, from skin and eye irritation to asthma, bronchitis and even cancer – if exposed long enough. Forget costing your restaurant’s reputation with hefty fines or a complete shutdown; a neglected mold problem can seriously endanger the lives of both your staff and customers.

Bon appetite!

from Mold Blogger
Mold Remediation Baltimore

BOG awards college scholarship

BOG scholarship

Dillan Drennan receives his scholarship. PHOTO: BOG PEST CONTROL

Harwood, Md.-based BOG Pest Control has selected Southern High School graduate Dillan Drennan as its 2018 scholarship winner. The BOG Pest Control merit-based scholarship is awarded to one student annually pursuing a degree in chemistry, chemical engineering, biology, environmental studies or a related field.

“At BOG Pest Control, we are dedicated to promoting the well-being of our customers and the community we live in,” notes BOG co-owner Brad Leahy. “Whether it’s implementing organic-based and Bay-friendly pest control techniques and products, or investing in the life of someone through a scholarship, we are proud to make an impact.“

Drennan has had a successful high school career, earning a 3.78 GPA while playing three sports, participating in the Model United Nations, and holding a part-time job.

After watching his older brother become an environmental scientist, Drennan developed a passion for the environment, as well. Though Drennan will be majoring in accounting/finance, he plans to work for a company that positively affects the environment. He says he hopes to leave a lasting “green” effect on the company he ends up working for in the future.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Neogen: SureKill Dia-Py Insecticide Dust

Photo: Neogen

Photo: Neogen

SureKill Dia-Py Insecticide Dust is diatomaceous earth (DE) dust impregnated with pyrethrin and piperonyl butoxide (PBO) to provide quick knockdown and kill with a long-lasting residual. The dust controls most crawling insects, including bed bugs when used as a crack-and-crevice treatment, in food-handling facilities, stored products, residential, commercial, agricultural and many other sites as listed on the label.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Check the bugs for bugs

PHOTO: Mark Vanderwerp, BCE

A first in-star bed bug doesn’t always have a whole lot of hiding options, so a cast skin of an older relative will do in a pinch. PHOTO: Mark Vanderwerp, BCE

Freshly hatched bed bugs can hide inside cast skins.

Vacuuming all evidence, as well as live bugs, is worth the effort.

Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius) can’t fly, but they do have some surprising tricks. A common refuge for first-instar bed bugs is inside the cast skins of larger bed bugs. If you don’t think so, get a handful of exuvia from an active infestation and start checking.

I learned this during a Take Your Daughter to Work Day. I was entertaining several bright young girls by letting them examine cast skins under a microscope when one of them proclaimed, “I see a live one!”

“No, they’re not alive,” I responded, but she insisted. Upon examination, I realized she was right. From inside a cast skin, a tiny bed bug had emerged to amuse the children and confound the entomologist.

I put the young one to the sword for its ambition (the bug, not the daughter). Back then, a live bed bug loose in your office could put you off your feed. Now,
I figure it’s all part of the job.

The virtues of vacuuming

We’ve all seen cast skins fly around, but have we considered that some of them might be carrying a tiny refugee? This just reinforces the value of vacuuming before a treatment. When you increase the number of bugs that survive the application, you up the odds for a rebound. Heat treatments should be effective against these little stowaways, but it’s even better to suck them all up at the outset and be done with it.

A single, first-instar nymph cannot start an infestation by itself, but there’s almost always more than one. And if you consider those locations where the population has exploded, you can easily imagine how many chances could be blowin’ in the wind.

This has caused a world of confusion for scent detection teams, who have to use dead bed bugs and cast skins to train the dogs not to alert on old evidence. A vial of old cast skins may be hiding a live bug or two inside. The wise handlers heat their dead bug evidence just to make sure no one is playing possum. During a search, a dog will often alert, and the subsequent search turns up old evidence, but no live bugs. This behavior might explain a lot of them.

If you had to “unzip” all those “sleeping bags” and look inside, you might be there forever.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Inspection, identification critical for successful rodent control

Dr. Chris Keefer, Technical Services Representative, Syngenta Professional Pest Management

Before treating, it is imperative to distinguish among the three common commensal rodents: the house mouse (Mus musculus), roof rat (Rattus rattus) and Norway rat (R. norvegicus). First, inspection is critical. Identify conducive conditions to help you implement non-chemical controls like sanitation, exclusion and mechanical devices.

Additionally, you must understand behavior and population dynamics of the species you are targeting. Try different lures on mechanical devices like sweets, proteins and starches to determine the target population’s diet. If bait shyness occurs when using rodenticides in bait stations, pre-bait the station with the preferred diet before using the rodenticide.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

The United Group Appoints President

The United Group (TUG) has appointed Todd Murphy president, effective September 4. Murphy joins TUG from United Paper Corp., where he served as president. He succeeds Tobie McKown, who is retiring... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

4M Awarded Two Contracts

4M Awarded Two Contracts4M Building Solutions, a CIMS-GB-certified organization, was recently awarded janitorial services contracts with two firms. 4M will provide janitorial services to healthcare support... Read more

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Mold Remediation Baltimore

MaidPro Named a Top Franchise for Women

MaidPro has been named to Franchise Business Review magazine’s 2018 Top Franchises for Women. The publication surveyed more than 6,000 franchise owners nationwide to compile... Read more

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Mold Remediation Baltimore

Locate nests to help curb ant callbacks



No matter how long you’ve been a PMP, chances are you’ve experienced a callback (or two) on an ant management job. You can develop a strategy, though, that will help reduce the number of callbacks, ensure customer satisfaction and even boost revenue. Success depends on finding the nest. Here are some suggestions for locating nests of five different ant species.

Odorous house ants (Tapinoma sessile): Nests likely will be near homes outdoors in soil and under mulch, logs and rocks, or in cracks. They may also be found in the walls and floors of a structure.

Pavement ants (Tetramorium caespitum): Nests typically are found outdoors in the soil under and next to cement slabs, sidewalks, patios and driveways. But they can also be indoors under foundations and inside hollow walls.



Carpenter ants (Camponotus spp.): Look for nests outdoors where wood, like tree stumps and plants, is damp or moldy, and indoors where wet and damaged wood allow them to enter.

Little black ants (Monomorium minimum): Search
for nests outdoors under rocks, bricks and lumber. Search indoors behind facades and in woodwork, decaying wood and wall voids.

Argentine ants (Linepithema humile): Nests usually are shallow and found outdoors under plants, stones and boards, or along sidewalks.


Read more: 5 ways to conquer ant callbacks

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

How eliminating food sources can improve scorpion control

Arizona bark scorpion (Photo:

Arizona bark scorpion (PHOTO:

For customers dealing with threatening scorpions, a pest management company that can provide reliable scorpion control is a must-have. Providing this service offers a chance to keep these pests at bay and build long-term relationships with thankful customers.

To run a long-term, sustainable scorpion management program, it is important to consider the urban ecosystem and make it less hospitable for scorpions. This can be accomplished by a sound integrated pest management program, which should include:

  1. Identifying the scorpion species
  2. Minimizing harborages
  3. Reducing prey and food sources
  4. Physically excluding scorpions from structures
  5. Applying a perimeter treatment

The third step is typically the most overlooked part of this process. A deliberate approach to reducing scorpion prey can be easy, highly effective and an opportunity to make a long-term impact on scorpions where they breed outdoors.

Dr. Eric Paysen, Technical Services Manager, Syngenta Professional Pest Management

Dr. Eric Paysen, Technical Services Manager, Syngenta Professional Pest Management

Scorpions are predators who hunt for their prey at night to avoid the heat of the day. Likewise, many of the prey arthropods that scorpions eat are overlooked during daytime inspections. Common scorpion prey in urban settings include crickets, cockroaches and earwigs. Each of these is a pest in its own right when entering structures and, when their numbers are left unchecked, can lead to population explosions in top predators like scorpions.

While well-placed, residual liquid applications can have an impact on scorpions, granular baits can also be a useful tool for scorpion prey control. An appropriate granular bait application takes very little time, as it is usually a ready-to-use product with no mixing required. Using both in a one-two punch — reducing scorpions and their prey — can increase your odds of success.

I suggest applying granular bait around the building foundation with a spreader, creating a treated zone. You can also make applications to other areas in the landscaping where prey may hide, such as piles of river rock or flower beds.

After an initial application, it is not uncommon to find dead crickets, cockroaches and earwigs littering sidewalks and other areas adjacent to treated harborages. Judicious applications in the spring and summer will have the most impact, since these prey insects typically multiply with moisture and warm temperatures.

Thinking holistically about scorpion control can help make your treatment stronger and your customers happier.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Relocate traps for more successful rodent control

Ed Dolshun

Ed Dolshun, Technical Director and VP of Business Development, AP&G

It is not uncommon for numbers of captured rodents to drop after a successful initial trapping. Increase your chances for success by changing up your trapping sets, and moving traps to different locations within the account. It can also be helpful to move around other things that the remaining rodents have become accustomed to navigating around — like small furniture, boxes or other household items.

Doing so will force the rodents to re-explore their environment, and become more likely to encounter your newly positioned traps.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

Bunzl Expands Into Norway

Bunzl Plc, parent company of Bunzl Cleaning & Hygiene Supplies, has acquired Enor AS. Bunzl’s acquisition of the Olso, Norway-based distributor of catering and food service equipment... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

New Award Announced for Experience Convention

Experience Events, LLC will present a new award at this year's Experience Convention & Trade Show, which takes place September 5-7 at The Mirage Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV. The... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

Nuera Acquires Beam Vacuum Line

Nuera Inc. has purchased the Beam brand of central vacuum systems from Electrolux. The acquisition increases Nuera’s market footprint and product portfolio. Financial details of the purchase... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

City Wide Among Inc.'s Fastest-Growing Private Companies

Inc. magazine has named City Wide Franchise to the 2018 Inc. 5,000. The publication’s 37th-annual list recognizes the 5,000 fastest-growing independent businesses in the United... Read more

from ISSA News feed for the Cleaning Industry
Mold Remediation Baltimore

ISSA Elects New 2019 Board Members

ISSA Elects New 2019 Board MembersISSA is pleased to announce the following individuals have been elected to serve on the 2019 ISSA Board of Directors, which will be led by incoming ISSA President Paul Goldin of Avmor Ltd. Vice... Read more

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Pelsis merges with Curtis Gilmour

Pelsis Curtis Gilmour logos

LOGOS courtesy of Pelsis, Curtis Gilmour

Curtis Gilmour Inc., parent company of B&G Equipment Co., Curtis Dyna-Fog, Silvandersson and Agrisense, has reached an agreement with Pelsis Holdings (UK) Ltd to combine brand portfolios and operations.

The existing shareholders of each company — LDC, the private equity arm of Lloyds Banking Group, in the case of Pelsis and Harwood Capital in the case of Curtis Gilmour — have maintained their respective investments in the new holding company. Terms were not disclosed.

Pelsis’ UK brands include Insect-O-Cutor, Network bird control, and Edialux, one of the largest consumer brands in Western Europe.

The consolidated portfolio will be led by Pelsis Group CEO Peter Mangion and will continue to operate from its current facilities in the United States Europe. There are no plans at this time to change their distributor and sales representative networks.

“The bringing together of these great brands creates a compelling offer to customers large and small across the USA and Europe, an offer which covers the full needs of the professional pest controller as well as the end consumer,” says Mangion. “The enlarged brand portfolio is made up of some of the world’s leading brands, which have been built over years on investment in technology, quality and performance. Our collective team is made up of highly experienced people who together form a formidable force in the global pest control market, and we are very much looking forward to continuing to serve our customers with our unique offer and approach to helping solve pest control problems whenever, and wherever they occur.”

Curtis Gilmour Executive Chairman and Harwood Operational Adviser Carl Contadini adds: “Our history with Pelsis dates to better than a decade ago, when P+L Systems was a subsidiary undertaking of one of Harwood’s portfolio companies. The combining of these two companies into an enlarged group, and our reunion with Pelsis, settles an ambition we have pressed since we formed Curtis five years ago.”

LDC backed Pelsis in a multi-million-pound deal in August 2017 to help accelerate the firm’s global growth strategy. The merger with Curtis Gilmour will now see the business broaden its geographical presence to operate across 15 locations in Europe, Asia and North America and further strengthen its customer proposition by significantly expanding its product portfolio.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

IN MEMORIAM: David Nimocks

PHOTO: Ensystex

David Nimocks III PHOTO: Ensystex

David Nimocks III, founder and Chairman of Ensystex Inc., died Aug. 13 in his hometown of Fayetteville, N.C. He was 64.

The North Carolina State University graduate worked for his family business, the Terminix Company of North Carolina franchise, eventually rising to the rank of president. He founded Ensystex in 1994, with the first product being Labyrinth termite bait.

Over the years, Nimocks and his team expanded their manufacturing focus into a variety of products for pest management professionals. He was also Chairman of Relyus Direct Mail Solutions, a commercial printing service.

He is survived by wife, Jayne Lynne, three children and six grandchildren, as well as his father and three sisters. A private service was held Aug. 17.

Memorials may be made to the David Ray Nimocks III Charitable Endowment at the Cumberland Community Foundation online or by mail at P.O. Box 2345, Fayetteville, NC 28302.

from Pest Management Professional
Sacramento CA

ISSA Announces 2018 Achievement Award Winners

ISSA Announces 2018 Achievement Award WinnersISSA will present the following awards to these achievers in the professional cleaning industry during the ISSA Show North America 2018, which takes place October 29- November 1, in Dallas,... Read more

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Mold Remediation Baltimore

Rockwell Labs Ltd: InTice 10 Perimeter Bait

InTice 10

Photo: Rockwell Labs

InTice 10 Perimeter Bait is a mold- and moisture-resistant, effective and economical broad-spectrum bait for indoor and outdoor use. Its proprietary bait matrix attracts and controls a wide variety of ants, including carpenter ants, cockroaches, crickets, earwigs, silverfish, millipedes, sow bugs, mole crickets, snails and slugs. InTice 10 Perimeter Bait is the only 10 percent boric acid granular bait on the market, which the company notes cuts application rates in half, saving time, money and space for the service professional. For perimeter and turf use, only 1 pound per 1,000 square feet is needed. The active ingredient lasts up to 90 days outdoors and will not break down from heat or ultraviolet (UV) light. InTice 10 is available in 1-, 4-, 10- and 40-lb. packs.

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Sacramento CA

5 ways to conquer ant callbacks

PHOTO: Strba

PHOTO: Strba

Ant control can be a challenge for anyone, even for experienced pest management professionals (PMPs). Success depends on identifying the correct species, finding the nest, determining the ideal treatment and eliminating the colony.

No matter how long you’ve been a PMP, chances are you’ve experienced a callback (or two) on an ant management job. You can develop a strategy, though, that will help reduce the number of callbacks, ensure customer satisfaction and even boost revenue.

1. Communication

There are many skills that a modern pest control professional must use with fidelity to ensure a positive customer experience,” says Cameron Brennan, owner of Brennan Pest Control in Pensacola, Fla. “Key among them is communication, and it is often overlooked and underemployed.”

Talk to your customers, and be realistic about expectations, he recommends. It’s especially important when the source of the problem is in an inaccessible area, like a neighbor’s yard. If getting the neighbors involved isn’t possible, communication becomes critical.

“Explain the situation, offer possible solutions, and lay out a plan your customer can follow,” he says. “They’ll appreciate your candor, and you’ll spend a lot less time on the back end, backpedaling.”

Brennan, an industry veteran who opened his pest management business in February, speaks from experience. Once, a customer complained about all the dead ants in view. Now, he educates customers so they know what to expect after treatment, too.

“We are the professionals, and we should know how long our treatments will remain effective,” Brennan says.

Take the customer on a tour of the structure and demonstrate why it’s important to remove conducive conditions, he says. Explain how simple steps like cutting the grass, keeping vegetation away from buildings, storing dry pet food in sealed containers, cleaning grease off the top and sides of stoves, and vacuuming behind and under refrigerators will help keep ants away. Doing so will allow customers to take ownership of their situations for a lasting, positive outcome.

Honesty is the best policy, says Roger “Derby” Schafer, owner of A Access Denied Pest Control in Las Vegas, Nev. “Being honest in all situations is the best practice,” he says. “Earning a client’s trust one service at a time, and then maintaining that trust, is necessary for future revenue and business growth.”



2. Cooperation

For Schafer, ant management services during peak season account for about 20 percent of his company’s revenue. If heavy rains occur in the off-season, his company can generate up to
22 percent more ant service calls. Schafer attributes the increases to customers who do not have some type of maintenance program: “When the ants arrive, it can be large infestations that will generate one to two more treatments, especially if they didn’t prep correctly.”

Even customers with maintenance plans need to cooperate with his technicians to help manage pests. Preparation is key, he says, as 98 percent of the time, the customers who have issues are the ones who refused to comply with technicians’ requests to improve conducive conditions.

“A few clients think because we provide pest control, they don’t need to do anything. They hired us and think it is totally up to the pest control company to cure their ant issues,” Schafer says. “But we all know success is a 50/50 proposition.”

Convincing customers that ant management will be more successful with their cooperation can be a challenge.

“Most customers understand that pest control is a process, not an event, but there are always a few who want an immediate fix,” says Jana Claus, office manager for Natura Pest Control in Vancouver, Wash.

3. Education

Claus says her team explains their ant management process to customers, including how results won’t be immediate. Although technicians may be tempted to promise that treatment will work right away, customers will likely see an increase in activity for a short time before the ant population decreases, and then ceases altogether.

“It can be hard to give customers a realistic expectation when they want a magic wand,” Claus says. “It’s better to be honest from the very beginning rather than to make a promise based on false hopes.”

Many times, impatient customers may attempt to solve the pest problem themselves, which makes the PMP’s job even more challenging. Claus says it’s important to clearly explain to a customer who isn’t patient that using any other products during treatment is going to slow down the process.

“We have seen people desperately use window cleaners, bleach and disinfectants to kill the
ants they see,” she says. “When customers have
an understanding of how nonrepellent products work, they are less likely to go back to those unhelpful habits.”

Explaining the behaviors of ant queens, describing colonies, and outlining what the products used will actually do also is helpful.

“Any time we can educate our customers on the process, we find that it increases our rate of success with them,” she says. “Being honest and giving correct expectations from the beginning is best for both us and the customer.”

4. Dedication

Dedicating the right amount of time for the service, and scheduling follow-up service when needed, is key for Jeff Weidhaas, ACE, technical training and safety manager, Bruce Terminix Co., Greensboro, N.C.

“Setting a follow-up may seem counterintuitive to a PMP, because most of us don’t make a penny providing a re-service. But we don’t make a penny doing the five angry service calls that come in from a ‘ready to cancel’ customer because we didn’t solve the problem, either,” Weidhaas says. “I’ll invest one follow-up to save four additional service calls any month.”

Weidhaas says his company’s ant services have continued to steadily increase over the past several years. Now, ants account for more than 75 percent of Bruce Terminix’s pest control revenue, and is the primary reason its customers get — and more importantly, keep — pest control.

“Our employees who control ants need to deliver world-class service,” Weidhaas says. “Our customers are counting on us.”

Reducing callbacks is almost always a simple matter of time investment, says Dan Baldwin, BCE, CCFS, CP-FS, senior food safety scientist, Taco Bell Corporate, Irvine, Calif. 

“The callback is a triple-loser,” Baldwin explains. “One, you’re messing up your schedule and going back for free; two, you’re not doing a paid service while you’re doing the free service; and three, the client isn’t happy.”

Sure, PMPs experience an atypical situation every once in a while. You learn from it and then move on, he says. But you can avoid the majority of callbacks with a small investment of time and attention.

“Focused time is the currency of pest prevention — and properly invested, there’s a substantial return on investment,” Baldwin says. “Investing an extra
10 to 15 minutes the first time can help retain an hour or two of revenue-generating time, and spare the office staff a lot of headaches.”

5. Product Selection

Product selection, based on effectiveness, is more important than product price, says Greg See, operations manager for Pointe Pest Control in Post Falls, Idaho. He says the company worked diligently with manufacturer reps and field technicians to find the right combination of products and treatment techniques. The effort paid off; the company’s overall callback rate dropped from 6.9 percent in 2016 to 4.4 percent in 2017.

See admits he was nervous about purchasing products that were more expensive.

“I would buy everyone one bottle, write their name on it, and say, ‘This is all you get. Make it last. Choose wisely when you need to use it,’” he says. “Over time, as I began to trust our technicians more, I loosened my grip and allowed them more access to ‘better’ products.”

The company has since further honed its treatment techniques, product selection, and customer education information. At first, he says, it was a bit of a guessing game to get the exact net results he wanted, and to see whether the effort was worth it. But over time, the change became measurable.

When comparing 2017 to 2016, the company’s callbacks are down across the board, on all routes. And its overall cost of chemicals, as a percentage of company revenue, went down instead of up. See attributes this to being able to perform more paid services per day, and fewer callbacks per day or week.

“The best part is that our team morale is up,”  he says. “The technicians are glad to be doing more paid stops, and fewer callbacks.”

When shopping for an ant control product, See says he looks for results and effectiveness. He then finds the best price for that product through his distributors, manufacturer rebate programs, and bulk purchasing options.

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Sacramento CA