Should I Throw Out Flour With Weevils?

Flour weevils are common insects that attack cereals and flour. The breeding rate could be adverse if the matter is not corrected in time. Perhaps you have a similar problem; what do you do?

Well, should I throw out flour with weevils? The direct answer is NO. Lightly weevil-infested flour is actually safe for human consumption. You won’t get food poisoning or other stomach upset cases.

However, for densely weevil-infested flour, it’s advisable to get rid of it completely. Normally, weevils will feed on starch content in the flour, thus rendering it unsafe for consumption.

  • Moreover, the flour is prone to poisoning in case of expiration. You will note, upon cooking, that the final flour meal has an unpleasant taste.

In this regard, it’s advisable to consider the degree of weevil invasion and where possible treat the flour using methods highlighted in this article before using.  

Related: Are Pantry Bugs Harmful?

Details: Should I Throw Out Flour With Weevils

a. Lightly Weevil Infested Flour

Lightly infested flour is suitable for human consumption (no need of throwing it out). The presence of weevils should be countable in the storage container or packet – count of 10 to 20 weevils at a glance.

  • Usually, cooked weevils have no historical cases of sickness/infection to humanity.

However, it should dawn on you that, a few weevil infestations are just an onset of the massive population – in a couple of days, the entire container will be full of hatched weevils.

  • It’s, therefore, necessary to consume the flour soonest possible.

b. Densely Weevil Infested Flour

Densely weevil-infested flour should not be used whatsoever. The flour meal has an unpleasant taste upon cooking. Usually, the weevil infestation multiplies rapidly – they end up colonizing the entire flour package.

  • You will notice tiny brown insects pacing in the container – the movement is fast but haphazard.

Moreover, the quality of flour fineness will deteriorate due to continue starch depravation – as weevils continue to feed on starch in the flour. 

c. Action to Take

Upon discovery that you have flour weevil infestation, you need to ascertain the degree/extent of the infestation. For light weevil infestation, you may opt to use the flour directly without any problem.

  • However, storing that particular flour (weevil infested) will only lead to further mess as the weevils breed further.

You need to control weevils immediately. This can be done by either placing the flour in a freezer for over 5 days – low temperature kills the live weevils and their eggs- or heating up the flour gently. 

Related: What Causes Pantry Bugs?

d. Dangers of Eating Weevils Infected Flour

Though weevils are not known to lead to direct food poisoning or any food-related sickness upon consumption (when cooked), their infestation eliminates flour favors and additives in the package.

  • In addition, the weevils deprive flour of its original taste leading to unpleasant meals upon cooking – this is a clear indicator that the flour is stale and unsuitable for human consumption.

Furthermore, weevils infested flour is highly susceptible to external food poisoning agents, and preservatives added are weakened as starch is reduced through feeding, thus causing fastened expiration.

NB: Expired flour is dangerous and should in whatsoever case be disposed of safely. Weevil infestation accelerates the rate of flour expiration – flour may expire earlier than the indicated date.

How to Tell Flour has Weevil Infestation

It’s not easy to tell whether flour has weevils at the beginning until the infestation tends to rise. This is usually because of their size – these insects are tiny, thus at times impossible to see with one’s naked eyes.

  • In addition, the weevil’s eggs are invisible and camouflage with flour color before hatching takes place.

However, if you are careful enough, you will note that the first mature weevils move about the flour, especially when you stir or turn the flour in the container.

  • The weevils appear as tiny brown bugs/insects – consider using a hand lens in order to improve overall visibility.

Alternatively, fetch a little flour with a spoon and spread it in over plane mirror – observe if you will notice any weevil move about. 

How does Flour Get Weevil Infestation?

Weevils originate from the source point, which is usually either the seller, granary, or millers. When wheat or maize is being milled, the weevil’s eggs are rarely affected in whatever way unless treated.

  • These eggs are then transferred to the package, which eventually finds itself into your house, where they hatch into mature weevils finally.

Failure of millers to treat wheat or maize before milling takes place is a key reason for weevil infestation in the flour – this particular cause can only be controlled through freezing as explained further in this article.

Alternatively, your flour may get weevils if stored with infested grains and cereals such as rice. 

Related Small Brown Insects In My Kitchen?

Ways to Prevent Flour Weevil Infestation

The following are the best ways of preventing weevil flour infestation:

1. Freeze flour before use

Once purchased, the flour should be stored in a freezer for over 5 days.

The low temperature in the freezer inactivates adult weevils leading to death. Further, the temperature prevents eggs from hatching, thus the entire life cycle of weevils is terminated.

2. Proper Flour Storage

Your flour should be stored in an airtight container – this prevents adult weevils from accessing the flour from outside.

  • However, this method may not prevent weevil infestation from the millers (source).

Alternatively, you can put your flour in a sealed bag. Avoid using polyethylene bags as a storage option whatsoever.

3. Weevils Treated Label

Always go for flour that has weevil treated label or sticker for authorizing body.

This is usually a diamond mark of quality and consumer protection measure, which guarantees you that the flour is treated against weevil infestation from the source (millers). 

Therefore, consider the extent of weevils invasion and if possible treat weevil-infested flour using methods discussed in this article before using.

  • Importantly, practice proper flour storage and healthy weevil prevention measures listed above. Related: Pet Safe Roach Killer


In summary, should I throw out flour with weevils, the direct answer is no. Why because lightly weevil infested flour is actually safe for human consumption.

  • Therefore, you won’t experience food poisoning or other cases of stomach upset. Indeed, cooked weevils have no history of causing sickness to humanity.
  • However, for densely weevil-infested flour, it’s advisable to get rid of it entirely. Normally, weevils will feed on starch in the flour, thus rendering it unsafe for consumption.

Moreover, the flour is prone to poisoning in case of expiration (external agents). You will note, upon cooking, that the final flour meal has an unpleasant taste.

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