How An Electric Insect Light Trap Works

Electric Insect Fly Killers work by attracting flies to a blue ultra-violet light. The flies are killed by an electrical current. There are many electric grid insect light traps which can cause fragmentation of flies upon contact with the live grid and a release of potentially harmful micro-particles when it is electrocuted. Pieces of the insects and particles can be thrown out of the device and land on food and surfaces in the vicinity.

A number of studies have been carried out to understand the effectiveness of electric insect fly zappers used to capture flies, as well as the risks that they pose in certain environments. The common theme is that such units could potentially harm a business brand if used in the wrong area due to particulate contamination.

To reduce the risk of food contamination removing flies from the environment as fast as possible is essential. 

Why Electric Insect Zappers Increase The Risk Of Contamination

An adhesive surface fly killer like Luminos 3 Plus is a quick and easy solution to remove flies from a kitchen, restaurant, café or food preparation area. However, many still use traditional electric grid units that electrocute the fly. This can lead to fly fragments and contamination if used incorrectly.

Advantages of Encapsulation Units

Encapsulation units, like Luminos 3 Plus capture flies in a rolling film. The advantage of this type of trap is that the catch surface is routinely refreshed, reducing problems in dusty environments. These traps are better suited for control of flies rather than monitoring as, once encapsulated in the roll, flies are more difficult to count. The use of encapsulation traps reduces the risk of particulate contamination in food preparation areas.

An adhesive trap will hold all insects that land on it with near certainty. In contrast an electrocution trap relies on an insect receiving a lethal shock from the grid, which is not a certainty and can lead to maimed flies walking of food surfaces unable to fly.

The use of electric grid insect zappers in food preparation areas increases the risk of food contamination in two ways: firstly by lengthening the amount of time a living fly is present in the environment and secondly by generating airborne insect fragments that could contaminate food.

Testing the Rentokil Luminos Insect Light Traps against a range of electric insect zapper units

The Rentokil test is based on releasing 100 house flies (Musca domestica) in a standard test room and then counting the number of flies that are captured at regular intervals over a seven hour period. This is repeated at least six times to ensure there is a fair reflection of performance over time. Known as the half-life measurement, a series of tests have been carried out on Luminos insect light trap units and equivalent sized electric grid bug zapper units.

The headline figures suggested that an adhesive Luminos surface unit caught flies two times faster than the equivalent electrified grid unit. This translates to a big reduction in risk of disease than when using an electric grid unit in food preparation areas.

Insect light traps using glue boards to capture flies are suited for monitoring purposes. The glue boards are changed at known intervals throughout a year and the number of types of flying insects captured on the boards will provide a valuable insight into when and where insect proofing should be improved and enforced.

Download the Rentokil Research Paper (PDF) for further information

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