[Bed Bug Supplement] Proactive Pest Management

Supplement - Bed Bug Supplement

Kansas’ American Pest Management says its ProActive program for bed bugs is preventing new infestations. Here’s how.

December 28, 2012

An American Pest Management technician applies Phantom Pressurized Insecticide to the seams of a hotel room mattress.

American Pest Management (APM), Manhattan, Kan., has adopted its own “proactive” program for bed bug control, and company officials credit this program’s success to the use of the BASF Proactive Bed Bug Treatment Protocol.

APM first put the BASF protocol to work in March 2011, treating all 65 rooms of a Manhattan, Kan.-based hotel. Prior to treatment, the 10-year hotel customer had four bed bug cases in three months. Hotel management wanted a more proactive option versus frequent curative treatments.

Following the BASF protocol, APM used non-repellent Prescription Treatment brand Phantom Pressurized Insecticide, Phantom termiticide-insecticide, and Prescription Treatment brand Alpine Dust Insecticide to eliminate and stop the spread of bed bugs. At the 12-month and final protocol-recommended inspection, no new, established bed bugs were found in the hotel.

“It’s impossible to stop new bed bugs from entering rooms, so our main goal with this project was to keep new bed bugs from establishing,” said Travis Aggson, APM vice president for operations. “We achieved that goal.”

Another benefit is the general insect control the protocol offers. Aggson said APM was getting quarterly calls from the hotel on ant and beetle activity. The regular treatments and products used help put a halt to those issues.

Other opportunities. The success seen in using the BASF Proactive Bed Bug Treatment Protocol at the Manhattan hotel has led to several other opportunities for APM. The company started working with property management companies at apartments and condominiums in January 2012. Many APM residential customers have made past investments in bed bug control.

“Customers who’ve spent a lot of money on serious control of bed bugs were receptive to the protocol — those who’ve dealt with 20 or more cases in a year,” Aggson said. “We work with one property management company that manages a 400-unit complex and spent upwards of $25,000 on bed bug treatments.”

Prior to implementing the protocol, the property management company fielded two or more bed bug calls a week. Since the treatments, APM reports that calls have stopped.

“A big part of this program is getting in units, inspecting and catching potential bed bug issues before they become established,” Aggson said. “We go in every six months for the inspection and complete the proactive treatment on units where tenants have just moved out.”

An American Pest Management technician applies Alpine Dust Insecticide to a hotel room electrical socket.

APM has employed the BASF Proactive Bed Bug Treatment Protocol for “road warrior” customers who previously invested in curative treatments.

“Business professionals who travel frequently are more apt to encounter bed bugs and bring them home,” Aggson said. “Some of our new business with the protocol has come from people in that situation who prefer a proactive treatment that prevents bed bug establishment over the hassle of preparing their homes for an intensive, expensive curative treatment.”

Business is booming. Aggson said 2011 was a great year for APM, with business tripling over 2010. Revenues were up again in 2012, as the company continues to grow its bed bug business. Most of the growth can be attributed to the APM ProActive program for bed bugs, based on the products and recommendations in the BASF Proactive Bed Bug Treatment Protocol, Aggson said.

“Our ProActive program is a continuous revenue source for us,” Aggson said. “A curative bed bug treatment is a one-time payment. With the APM ProActive program, we get a monthly or quarterly payment, depending on what elements of the protocol customers select.”

Proactive inspections lead to other opportunities, such as full-fledged curative treatments and general insect control programs. Aggson said his technicians also benefit because the APM ProActive program requires less time and labor than a traditional curative treatment.

Source: BASF Professional Pest Control Solutions