What to do about Pantry moths?

  24 answers
  • Mogie Mogie on Nov 22, 2021

    Remove and clear all dry food on the shelves or pantry. Whether contaminated or not, you need to clear your pantry sufficiently and inspect the presence of pantry moths.

    Leave the cleaned surface to dry to touch before restocking your pantry.

    Carefully, remove all shelf liners. Clean the liners with soap and hot water – to remove and kill moths’ eggs.

    Those storage containers that have pronounced gaps and holes should be disposed of first as you fix containers with tiny gaps (use seal) instead of disposing of them.Loose or non-tight storage containers should be disposed of accordingly – the gap left offers a pathway for pantry moth to access stored dry food.

    Those storage containers that have pronounced gaps and holes should be disposed of first as you fix containers with tiny gaps (use seal) instead of disposing of them.

    Upon cleaning, your pantry should be dried perfectly – this act reduces the chances of re-infestation or further contamination.

    Moisture traces will not only attract pantry moths back but also initiate mold formation, which leads to food contamination.

    Upon cleaning, your pantry should be dried perfectly – this act reduces the chances of re-infestation or further contamination.

    Moisture traces will not only attract pantry moths back but also initiate mold formation, which leads to food contamination.

    Perhaps your current storage method isn’t secure enough and thus ends up allowing pantry moths infestation – alternative methods such as the use of new plastic bags and tightly sealed tins would shield dry food sufficiently.

    By not restocking your pantry immediately after cleaning, you will prevent cases of pantry moths re-infestation. Often, pantry moth’s eggs may remain in the storage containers, especially if thorough cleaning was not undertaken.

    Also, larvae may be left in the containers upon which they mature and become adults if not removed before restocking.

    I put all opened boxes of food items inside gallon sized zip lock bags.

  • Cheryl A Cheryl A on Nov 22, 2021

    here is some info to help you out


    they are caused by open food containers so once they get started and you find them in food, it is contaminated


  • Remove everything from the pantry and get rid of any non-airtight containers. Vacuum the pantry and clean/dispose of vacuum bag. Wash everything with vinegar & water 50/50. Wait to restock the pantry to make sure the problem is gone.

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Nov 22, 2021

    We had these and they are pesky, started by removing everything and then got rid of all opened food containers. From there warm soapy water and then a rinse with the vinegar water-half and half, let dry and replace items that are never opened.

    You may think you have gotten them all, check elsewhere in your house where there is food in opened containers and toss that out, they do not restrict themselves to 1 area. We treated the pantry only to discover they were also in an opened bread crumb container over the stove, the lid was on tight and I could not figure out why "funny looking bread crumbs" were falling onto the stove until I got up there.

  • Annie Annie on Nov 22, 2021

    You need to get rid of not only the pantry moths, but any eggs they have left. This link gives the process to get rid of them once and for all hopefully


  • Sharon Sharon on Nov 22, 2021

    Get some Pheramone traps for your cupboards either at the hardware store, or amazon.... https://www.amazon.com/s?k=pheromone+traps+for+pantry+moths&crid=11HMRUC6JAWWB&sprefix=pheramone+traps+%2Caps%2C557&ref=nb_sb_ss_sc_1_16 No poison.

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Nov 22, 2021

    Hello. Here’s a link with some recommended ideas. I hope this helps solve your situation soon.

  • Betsy Betsy on Nov 22, 2021

    Hi Brad: Those pesky things, what a pain in the neck. It's not from something you've done, their eggs are in everything from cereal, corn meal, flour to pasta, not to mention bird seed! When I had them, I removed everything from that particular cabinet, vacuumed every thing with a crevice tool, sides and bottoms of shelving, and wiped it down with a mix of bleach, 1 tablespoon to a quart of warm water. I let it dry, got rid of everything, if it's something the birds can eat, throw it out for them, that looked suspicious and replaced what could be put back. Then, and this is a bit crazy, but it worked for me, was to put several sticks of Spearmint gum or even bay leaves, in the corners and along the edges. Haven't had those buggers in years:) Oh yeah, change the gum out about every 6 months or so, but don't eat it :)

    Here's a site that might help: https://www.tipsbulletin.com/how-to-get-rid-of-pantry-moths/

    Good luck

  • I bought plastic containers for anything that I thought might have an issue. I got tired of finding them in my pantry. It's worked well and since then, I haven't had a problem.

  • Simple Nature Decor Simple Nature Decor on Nov 22, 2021

    I would use a lemon scented cleaner

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Nov 23, 2021

    Source of the pests is most likely something like a grain or meal/flour/or similar. I have gotten rid of them twice: once at my home and recently at my parents.

    Both times, I removed everything that could be the source and wiped down every surface that wasn't a possible source. I cleaned every nook and cranny and made sure to seal everything. I moved all cereal, flour, and other products into sealed containers. This is the gross part, I hung a sticky fly strip in the area near where items were stored to catch all of the moths that were still flying around. It took a few of them, replacing after 4-5 days, to finally get rid of all of them.

  • Brad Hopkins Brad Hopkins on Nov 23, 2021

    That's great we did most of that except the fly paper will do that today.

  • Usually moths grow in old bags of flour, etc. I usually keep my flour in the fridge for this reason! You'll want to pretty much dispose of everything in there that isn't sealed to make sure you get rid of the source. Once you've done that, I'd give it a good wipe down and seal up EVERYTHING for awhile/future.

  • Dee Dee on Nov 23, 2021

    1. STEP 1: Empty the pantry and inspect its contents. Empty out the affected area—completely. ...
    2. STEP 2: Dispose of non-airtight containers. ...
    3. STEP 3: Vacuum the area, then clean with a vinegar-and-water solution. ...
    4. STEP 4: Don't re-stock the pantry right way!

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Nov 24, 2021

    Remove everything, check date befores, Investigate ceriels for bugs, Fumigate the Pantry then return only stuff that is in air tight vessels.

  • Chloe Crabtree Chloe Crabtree on Nov 24, 2021


    1. Properly Store Food: Ensure that food is stored in glass, resealable container or something airtight. ...
    2. Vacuum Regularly: By vacuuming moths in any life stage can be removed. ...
    3. Setup Traps: TERRO® Pantry Moth Traps are great for prevention to alert you of the problem of pantry moths.

  • Michelle Leslie Michelle Leslie on Nov 26, 2021

    Hi Brad, those little things can be such a pain. Check all your foodstuff and get rid of any that may be housing those critters. Pantry moth larvae are between ¼ and ½ inches long and you'll see the food moving. Rinse, disinfect and then thoroughly wash reusable food storage containers in hot soapy water. Vacuum your pantry top to bottom. Don't forget the cupboard corners and under the shelves. Make sure to empty the vacuum outside. Wash the shelves down with watered-down bleach. You can buy pantry moth traps to help keep them away after doing the deep clean.

  • Rymea Rymea on Nov 27, 2021

    You have to understand what you are up against. The traps attract the males moths only. So if just one male mates with a female before he get caught in the trap, then that female can lay up to 300 eggs that will hatch out in about 6 weeks. The next stage is little yellowish worm like things. The worms turn into the moth. We found them in all sorts of odd places, not just in food, like in the seams of cardboard boxes, the hinges of the cabinet doors, behind the shelves where the shelf meets the walls, etc, etc. So yes, clean everywhere. Your probably going to have to resort to a spray with residual action. Throw away all cardboard boxes or put the entire box in a plastic bag. Put out the traps and check the pantry daily, maybe several times a day for any visible worms or moths that might have escaped. Then in about six weeks expect to see a few more. Get the traps out right away and kill any you see that are just hanging around. They are probably the females.

  • Omg I hate those things. You have to clean out your entire pantry and toss everything that's not a can. I know, it sucks, but it's the only way. Clean every single surface with a disinfectant including containers you're putting back, vacuum, then get those sticky traps from Amazon. It's a monster pain in the butt and extremely awful, but these steps work.

  • Mogie Mogie on Dec 17, 2021

    Any box or bag this is open needs to be air tight so the moths can't get into it. Zip lock bags are very handy for this.