December 24, 2009
what are these guys?
i just moved into a sublet and found this little package in the spice closet. my guess is that it’s been there a while. it’s still sealed. they are thriving.
i’m CCing the company that packaged it here in quebec.
perhaps they can say how old it is based on the number on the label –> 08U15V
These are the larvae of Indian Meal Moths, Plodia interpunctella. It was originally native to South America, but now has a cosmopolitan distribution. It is one of the Pantry Moths that will infest many stored foods, including grain products and spices. Corn meal, oatmeal, flour, nuts and seeds are all likely sources of infestation, and bird seed seems particularly attractive as a commissary. The tiny moths fluttering around in the home are a good indication that caterpillars are feeding on some stored food products somewhere in the home. Often infestations appear in packaged foods, and it is entirely possible that the infestation began at the manufacturer’s packaging plants. We would guess that the expiration date on those sesame seeds is long expired. You can find photos of the adult moths on our site and on BugGuide.