How to Eliminate Fruit Flies for Good

Every year the pesky fruit fly makes its cameo appearance in bars around the world. Sometimes fruit flies come in droves and sometimes they come alone. They multiply quickly. Each adult can lay up to 500 eggs, and an egg can become an adult Fruit Fly in just eight short days. A lone ranger can quickly turn into a colony.

The presence of fruit flies makes your bar look unclean, can deter customers, and give you a bad reputation. They can find their way into your liqueur bottles, ruining your stock, and they’ve even be known to dive bomb drinks. Getting rid of these pests is not difficult, it just requires diligence.

Population Control

This summer, the fruit flies will try an infiltrate your bar. The larvae of the fruit fly can come in on fruit and adults can fly through the smallest cracks around your doors and windows. Therefore it’s important to have control procedures in place. They have a big sweet tooth and a love for damp places where they can lay their eggs. They also have a taste for fermented products (like beer).

  • Clean, clean, clean and CLEAN! – A clean bar leaves nowhere for them to lay their eggs and nowhere they’ll find things to snack on. This should be a general practice anyway.
  • Fruit – Ensure cut fruit is covered during the shift and that it’s covered and placed in the fridge overnight. Displays of uncut fruit might look good but this is a source of the fruit fly, consider keeping all fruit in the fridge until it needs to be cut.
  • No Wet Items Left Out – Wet towels, sponges, and mops are all perfect nesting grounds for this pest. Ensure these item get put away in their appropriate places at night.
  • No Standing Water – It’s another favorite nesting place of the fruit fly.
  • Seal Bottles – Seal them at the end of the shift. Leave them sealed throughout the day too if practicality allows. You can buy special caps for this but I’ve also seen people using golf tees.
  • Fruit Fly TrapsThese are effective and designed for this task; just make sure you change them as often as the manufacturer recommends.
  • Use Drain Cleaners – Products like Spartan’s Drop-in-a-drain once a week in your drains will keep your drains free of any fruit fly problems.

Eliminating The Enemy

Follow the above procedures and you should never have a fruit fly problem. If, however, your fruit fly situation has become untamable then the following are considered good methods of elimination.

  • Clean Your Drains – Again, using a product like Drop-In-A-Drain can go a long way towards getting rid of fruit flies. If you have an existing problem, you’ll have to use Drop-In-A-Drain daily for 2 weeks to completely break down any grease buildup. After that you can switch to weekly. Drains are the fruit flies go-to breeding ground, this will help you get to the source of the problem.
  • High Powered Fans – At night, point these down the bar and over drains. The flies just can’t fight the force.
  • Call The Professionals – If it comes down to it call a pest control service. Just be aware of the unwanted attention and rumors that a pest control unit might bring to your establishment; people might not believe you when you tell them “it’s just fruit flies.”

Take the above guidelines into consideration and educate your staff on why you’re implementing these practices; they’ll want the fruit flies gone as soon as you do! You’ll soon be fruit fly free and if you keep up these practices and they should stay away for good.

Do you have a technique for getting rid of Fruit Flies? We want to know about it! Don’t forget to share in the comments below or on any of our social media accounts. Follow us on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and YouTube! 


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Benjamin Michael Beddow

Food and Beverage Professional

As a food and beverage professional for over ten years, Ben has spent most of his time behind the bar, giving him a broad and in-depth knowledge of all things drinkable and drink related. Now, as a traveling freelance writer exploring the gastronomy, drinks, and food service industry of the world, Ben has taken his knowledge and experiences to the world wide web to share with others. The love for the trade never dies and Ben can still be found running around restaurants and slinging drinks in ski resorts in the USA during the winter season.

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