Tiny Red Ants in Packages of Food?

Category Ants

I have these itty bitty red ants. I don't know what kind they are or how to get rid of them. They have actually gotten into packages of food that haven't even been opened yet. I can't afford to throw away groceries so if any one knows how to get rid of them I sure would appreciate it.


by imaqt1962

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August 22, 20050 found this helpful

Do they look more like tiny red spiders? They could be clover mites. If they were in an unopened (or even opened) package, you should be able to return the package to the store for an exchange.

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August 22, 20050 found this helpful

My mother had this exact same problem last week. I stopped by her house and she had her pantry completely emptied out and was washing down the shelves due to having extremely small (almost hard to see) reddish ants coming from a box of crackers. She was under the impression they came from the store with the crackers, but I haven't asked her about it anymore. Where are you located? We are in Missouri.


Trudy Powell
Independent Watkins Assoc. #357561 (i.e. vanilla, spices, extracts, salves, liniments, household cleaners, etc.)

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August 3, 20161 found this helpful

I also live in Missouri and have had this same problem. The first time in an unopened box of pancake mix and now in a new jar of peanut butter that I just used yesterday but now has the tiny red ants in it. I'm so grossed out that I ate that yesterday!

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By Carolyn (Guest Post)
August 23, 20050 found this helpful

Freeze everything, either as soon as you come in from the store, or NOW. It will kill any ants in the products. Meanwhile, wash out all of your cupboards with a borax solution - be careful about pets.


I also put bay leaves, an old ant repellant, around some cracked grout on a counter where they came in. It stopped them immediately. Needless to say, since they were coming from outside, we had the yard sprayed. Good luck.

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By manny (Guest Post)
August 30, 20050 found this helpful

Do these tiny red ants bite? I've been having bite marks on my legs and hands and i see them crawling on my bed. I know they are not bed bugs but what are they? They are all over the house. They are red in front and black at the end.

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By Brian W. (Guest Post)
October 15, 20050 found this helpful

Freeze them. Usually for 24 hours. Good luck.

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By Jodi Olivo (Guest Post)
June 16, 20060 found this helpful

All along the rim of my pool (above ground) there was hundreds of tiny tiny red ants, I hosed them away. What could have caused them to go there? I didn't get bit but i have three dogs that run around in the yard are they dangerous?

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By Nancy (Guest Post)
March 11, 20070 found this helpful

We have a vacant townhouse for sale and I noticed these tiny hard-to-see red ants in the upstairs bathroom. The house has been vacant and clean for 3 months and they still hang around.


I cannot tell how they get into the house. We are going to spray outside but given that they are on the upper floor of a 3 level building I don't know if that will help.

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By Dave (Guest Post)
May 28, 20070 found this helpful

Thanks, AmericnJewl! I had this same problem and then checked out clover mites based on your post. I have a ton of clover mites outside. Thankfully they're not dangerous to pets or people, but they do stain red if you squish them.

If your "ants" are almost too small to see - like smaller than a pinhead size, are red, and stain when you squish them, look into clover mites.

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By Bob (Guest Post)
August 2, 20080 found this helpful

Help, our kitchen is infested with tiny red ants. I can't get rid of them. They get in the dogs dish, pantry, kitchen and cupboards.

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June 26, 20090 found this helpful

They might be Pharaoh or Thief ants. www.extension.umn.edu/.../M1166.html

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