NORTH DAKOTA (KXNET) — It’s no secret that baking is a cherished part of the holiday season.

According to a 2020 survey conducted by market research company Ipsos, over four in five Americans see cookies and milk as a classic holiday pair.

Before families stock up on baking supplies and seasonal treats, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) is sharing timely tips on preventing a pantry pest infestation.

“Pantry pests, including merchant grain beetles and Indian meal moths, can be found in dry food products like flour, cereals, spices, candies, and chocolate,” shared Cindy Mannes, senior vice president of public affairs for the NPMA. “The baking and cooking associated with the holiday season can unfortunately attract both pantry pests and ants.”

To help families enjoy the holiday baking season, NPMA is sharing 10 key tips to prevent an infestation.

  1. Clean any spilled grain or food sources in the kitchen or pantry
  2. Closely inspect food products for any signs of an infestation before purchasing
  3. Promptly discard infested products in a sealed outdoor trash receptacle
  4. Store food in tightly sealed containers
  5. Thoroughly clean pantries or cupboards with a vacuum and soap and water
  6. Seal cracks and crevices around the home, especially in areas where utilities enter
  7. Dispose of garbage on a regular basis
  8. Eliminate excess moisture in the home by repairing any leaking pipes or using a dehumidifier
  9. remove debris or excess vegetation from around the home to reduce potential nesting sites for ants
  10. Install door sweeps on exterior entrances

If you suspect a pantry pest or ant infestation in your home, do not attempt to treat it yourself.

Visit PestWorld’s website to find a pest control professional near you to safely eradicate an infestation.