If you’re like most people, your pantry is overflowing with different food items. You’ve probably tried to keep it organized, but there just isn’t enough room. If this is what you’re experiencing, then it’s time for a clean out. The pantry should be cleaned out on a regular basis. At the very least this should occur monthly.

Free Up Space

Chances are that a good amount of the food in your pantry isn’t good anymore. Getting rid of spoiled food will free up pantry space. After all, if it is not good enough to eat, why would you keep it? If you feel bad about wasting food, you could always start a compost bin out back and put the expired food there. As you clean out your pantry, check the expiration date on each item. According to I Value Food, if the item is open, you may want to taste test it even if it is within its expiration date. Opened items can go stale long before their printed expiration date.

Prevent Pests

A dirty pantry is the perfect place for pests like mice and cockroaches. Old food and food crumbs can attract pests in your kitchen. Once they have found the pantry, it won’t be long before they start chewing through cardboard boxes and plastic bags to get at the sealed items. According to Insight Pest Solutions, to keep away pests, food in your pantry should be stored in well-sealed containers. If you find that a pest has been into your food, it’s best to exercise caution and throw out all contaminated food items. There is no way of knowing if those pests are capable of transmitting diseases.

Know What You Have

You can waste a lot of money buying excess food that you can’t use before it expires. Many people waste food because they don’t realize or remember what they already have. If you are regularly cleaning out your pantry, you will have a better idea of your pantry’s contents. You can then make plans to use the food that is closest to its expiration date. This can help you out when you’re having a hard time putting together your weekly meal plan.

The pantry is an important part of your home. It is where all your food preparation starts. It doesn’t much matter how sanitary your food prep is if your storage isn’t sanitary as well. There really are so many benefits to keeping things clean. You just need to put aside a little time to do it.

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