It's horrible to think about how much food waste is generated by restaurants each year. Unfortunately, according to a recent study conducted by the Business for Social Responsibility in 2013, only about 1.4% of food waste is donated, but as more than 84% is tossed out into the dumpsters behind the restaurant. Food waste is left to rot in the dumpsters, and this attracts a lot of pests – particularly maggots, which basically love to eat any type of meat. They'll also eat vegetables and fruits as well. Maggot infestations can be hard to control, so it's vital that you try to prevent the infestations in the first place. Here are 3 tips you should consider implementing.

Keep the Dumpster Lids Closed and Sealed at All Times

Maggots are essentially fly larvae. If you notice swarms of flies swarming around your rental dumpster, you need to be extra cautious because there's a good chance that the flies are going to be looking for a place to lay their eggs. A female fly can lay up to 150 eggs in a single batch, and she can lay 5 to 6 batches within the span of several days. Do the calculations. If the food waste tossed in the dumpsters are exposed to external environments and easily accessible by flies, you can expect to find maggots crawling within your dumpster within days.

The best way to prevent your rental dumpster from being infested with maggots is to keep the flies away from the inside of the dumpster. You can easily do this by keeping the dumpster lids closed at all times. Better yet, keep a lock on the lid so you won't have to worry about anyone opening the lid without your consent. When renting a dumpster bin, take the time to inspect the bin – particularly where the lid and the bin meet. Patch up any holes or cracks that you see as soon as possible, as even the smallest holes can be grand entrances for flies. 

Keep Food Waste in Tied-Up Garbage Bags

Keeping a lid on the rental dumpster is not a fool-proof way of keeping maggots at bay. It's easy for small flies to get trapped within the dumpster when you open it to toss food waste in at the end of the night. An extra precaution that you can make is to dump all food waste into individual garbage bags. Tie these garbage bags tightly to prevent any flies from being able to make their way to the food waste inside. Make sure to purchase durable garbage bags that will not puncture nor tear easily. If you're not sure whether the garbage bag is secure or not, double-bag the waste to prevent spillage.

Tossing food waste in tied-up garbage bags will not only keep flies and maggots away, but it will also keep your rental dumpster clean. You won't have to worry about having to regularly scrape and clean food residue from the inner surface of the dumpster.

Freeze Meat Products for Disposal Near Pick-Up Time

Meat, fruit and vegetable food wastes are particularly attractive to maggots. If you have extra freezer space in your kitchen, you might want to consider freezing some of these waste products before tossing them into the dumpster. It's best if you can toss the waste in the dumpster close to the time when the dumpster will be picked-up. This way, you can easily limit the amount of time that the flies have to access the waste.

By freezing these products, you'll also be able to delay the food from spoiling. This will help reduce smelly odors from being emitted from your dumpster.


If you ever notice a maggot infestation in your dumpster rental, you'll have to disinfect and clean the dumpster immediately. Otherwise, the infestation will only worsen, and your restaurant may be at risk of violating health and safety codes that could get it temporarily closed down.