Aisles reopen at Metro Vancouver Walmart after 'severe pest infestation'

Several aisles in a New Westminster Walmart had to be closed starting on June 25, 2021, due to a "severe pest infestation."

All the aisles at a Metro Vancouver Walmart have been permitted to reopen after being forced to close due to a "severe pest infestation."

The closure came after a routine inspection at the New Westminster Walmart in Queensborough late last month. A report filed by Fraser Health said dozens of food packages were found chewed by rodents, resulting in a "high" hazard rating in the dry-food department.

The report detailed what the rodents chewed on including Cheetos, walnuts, rice, Chipits, soup mix, instant noodles and Crispers, among several other items. Staff were ordered to throw all those packages away.

Fraser Health's report also noted droppings were found in several areas, including around bags of pet food and on several food shelves. As a result, staff members were told they must block off the affected food aisles, throw away all contaminated items, clean shelves with a bleach solution and have a pest control company come to the store.

While a follow-up inspection was completed a few days later, nine aisles had to remain closed until steps were taken to prevent pests from entering the store.

A third inspection was completed on July 2, giving the store the green light to reopen all the aisles. The latest report ranked the risk level as low in the store and said all recommendations from a pest-control company were completed.

In total, the affected food aisles were closed for a full week. The next inspection at the store will be in six months.