There is a great likelihood that bacteria, viruses, and parasites will be transferred to your food the longer a fly remains on it. You can probably still consume the food even if a fly lands on it, as long as you swat it away quickly.
But to be on the safe side though, and to be sure that no terrible pathogen made its way into it, you may want to just toss it. Flies are annoying enough on their own, but discovering what they can do to your food makes them even worse.
Celebrity chef Siphokazi Mdlankomo says that fly control may be handled with common household items. Mint, basil, ginger, and cloves are all examples of herbs you can use in your kitchen to get rid of flies, she says. “When cooking, stick a candle with cloves and light the candle.”
According to Mdlankomo, another trick you can try is to pour vinegar in a bowl or glass to catch the flies.
She believes it’s unsafe to consume food that has been contaminated by flies since they transmit so many germs. “When I clean the kitchen and the floors, I always use a mixture of vinegar and dish soap in a spray bottle.”
A solution of Jeyes fluid and water can be used to clean the pavement, and if there is no pavement, a bottle spray can be used instead, she adds.
She also stresses how important it is to always use airtight containers while storing perishable items. “Put all perishables in a sealed plastic bag and then throw it away. Dustbins, brooms, mops, and dustpans should be cleaned regularly using Jeyes fluid.”
Kitchen cleanliness is crucial
Siphe Ntsabo, founder of Ntsabo African cuisine, advises that you keep your kitchen clean. She recommends that kitchen trash must be removed daily to prevent foul odours and the development of maggots. She says that kitchen waste such as meat, blood and eggshells, serve primarily to attract flies.
“Every time food is cooked, it must be covered at the proper temperature and placed in the refrigerator to prevent it from spoiling due to heat.”
Ntsabo emphasises the need of always employing the CAYG technique which stands for clean as you go.
“The use of eco-friendly pesticides in the kitchen is an additional method for eliminating flies.” She adds.
Should you eat food where flies have camped?
Dr Manduleli Bikitsha of Khayelitsha adds that flies are a problem, especially in places with a high concentration of poor sanitation.
“The problem with flies is that they spread disease by feeding on any dirt they can find. Therefore, they are a major source of infectious diseases.”
Bikitsha stresses that flies probably transfer some poisons from whatever they ate somewhere else to food, and that we should be careful when we consume food in the summer months.
“Stomach toxicity is the most common issue. Most patients will complain of stomach pain, bloating, abdominal pains, and diarrhea. Death is possible due to intoxication or the presence of harmful bacteria in the meals that were spread by the flies.”
He stresses that eating food that has been exposed to flies is extremely risky. He also says that lice, cockroaches, flies, rats, and mice, among other things, can spread deadly diseases and bacteria.
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