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Maxforce Cockroach Bait

Summary: Maxforce cockroach bait is a common tool used by pest management industry professionals, but it was not allows so. In fact, Maxforce Cockroach bait was largely ignored when the product was first introduced in 1988.

One of the most widely used products available to professional pest control companies is the cockroach bait, Maxforce. It is possible to find some form of Maxforce baits in nearly every commercial food service establishment throughout North America and, perhaps, the world.  Why did this product become so popular with the professional pest community?

Truth of the matter is, the Maxforce product was not an overnight success with pest control pros. In fact, when the Clorox Company introduced the Maxforce brand in 1988 it was large ignored. The pest control industry was lovingly attached to its pressurized spray tanks and the many proven liquid pesticides available for treatments. For decades, pest pros routinely reached for their spray tanks when called to duty. The tanks were easy to use, could apply a wide range of pesticides to flush out insects and the tanks required little maintenance. Maxforce baits were fairly expensive when compared to liquid pesticides. The pest control industry resisted and Clorox had a dilemma.

After two years of limited sales, Clorox made a decision to hire an outside marketing firm to promote the Maxforce brand and product line. The strategy was to establish baiting as an alternative to spray applications used for controlling cockroaches and ants. Pest control professionals were introduced to the Maxforce Domino effect, giving them a product that could kill up to forty-four roaches with a single application.

Slowly, a few pest control companies began to test Maxforce on difficult accounts. My company had a problem nursing home account where we could not get control of a persistent cockroach problem. I contacted the company who, at the time, was the sole distributor of Maxforce, and explained my problem. They sent me a free case of the product to test at my account. The only stipulation was that I had to treat the facility using only Maxforce. I was hesitant, but knowing my company was about to lose the account if I could not resolve the issue, I decided to take a chance.

We explained our tactic to the customer, got their approval, and proceeded to bait the entire facility with Maxforce bait. Hundreds of small Maxforce stations were placed in ceilings, behind and under furniture and kitchen equipment and in patient bed side tables, under bathroom sinks and in any areas where cockroaches might hide. Much to our delight, cockroach populations fell to nearly zero after only two weeks. The customer was happy and the account was saved and we were Maxforce converts.

Although Clorox did everything in their power to spread the word about the success of Maxforce, pest professionals simply did not feel the need to change. My company was enjoying a surge of business brought on by our switch from liquid treatments to baiting. We quietly went about winning new business using our secret weapon, but it took about two full years for the rest of the industry to accept the fact that baiting for insect pests was an acceptable practice.

There have been bumps along the baiting road. Cockroaches began to build resistance to the original ingredient in Maxforce, forcing the manufacturer to come out with new active ingredients. It also took a while for pest professionals to figure out that care had to be taken when using Maxforce. This product has an attractant bait that draws insects towards it, while most liquid pesticides have repellents that flush insects from their hiding places. We had to learn that you could not use a bait product in conjunction with a liquid repellent. One counteracts the other.

There was also a learning curve about how much bait was required to get the job done. Even the Manufacturers of Maxforce had difficulty with find the right answer. After some research it was determined that spacing Maxforce no more than four feet apart would provide enough coverage to attract insects from their hiding places. If it was spaced at wider intervals it was possible that the cockroaches would be aware of its presence.

After twenty years on the market Maxforce has changed its ingredients twice giving the product a label that lists a wider variety of insects. Maxforce has been sold twice over the years and is currently owned by Bayer Chemical.

Other manufacturers have jumped on the baiting bandwagon offering numerous other baiting alternatives over the years. Some products are available at supermarkets and hardware outlets, but others remain as products sold only to pest control pros. It appears baits are here to stay, enjoying an equal popularity with the tried and true pressurized sprayer.

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