Alec Senese, Bayer Crop Science, Digital Pest Management
Bug Bytes

Did Barcode Scanning Kill IPM Inspections?

By Alec Senese
2 Comments
Alec Senese, Bayer Crop Science, Digital Pest Management

While this method may be a great way to ensure an important job is being done, the problem with this approach is that it does not ensure the most important jobs are being done.

Barcode placement on rodent traps was introduced as a simple and seemingly obvious way to make sure that the work of an IPM inspection was being performed. Each trap would have to be manually inspected in order to scan the barcode, providing proof that the task was completed.

While this method may be a great way to ensure an important job is being done, the problem with this approach is that it does not ensure the most important jobs are being done. In facilities that are large and complex, the act of checking and scanning traps is a lengthy and laborious process. This leaves little time for thorough investigative inspection and corrective actions, which are a vital part of preventing future rodent problems. Pest control technicians’ time should be spent using their understanding of pest biology and behavior to be pest detectives in your facility, not spending the majority of their time on time-consuming tasks that require little brainpower.

So did barcode scanning kill IPM inspections? Probably not, but it certainly didn’t help.

Comments

  1. Bruce Achterman

    Wow that’s a conclusion contrary to thousands of users of barcoding in pest management. I feel like I’m responding to those who think we should eliminate rodenticides. Barcoding has provided so many benefits to pest techs I’d have to question how knowledgeable the individual making this comment is regarding food safety and pest management.
    Here’s just a few reasons barcodes are used:
    They ensure that the pest tech has been to the device.
    They ensure that the tech has opened and inspected the device.
    They help ensure the device is operational and properly located.
    They help make the tech be more accurate and efficient in recording every detail of their observations such as environmental deficiencies, pest type and number, evidence of pest activity, product use/applications, corrective actions, etc.
    They very importantly provide data which spatially pinpoint where an infestation source is located.
    And so much more.
    The conclusion from users is that barcoding has made Integrated Pest Management commercially possible. Its use has helped those that were failing audits pass them. Most importantly the use of barcodes helps ensure that the food we eat is safe at least adulteration from pest activity.

  2. Bruce Achterman

    Let me add that what’s in a monitoring device doesn’t always reflect an accurate assessment of pest activity nor the conducive conditions for pest activity. That’s why “Boots on the Ground” should never be replaced.

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