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"Archives threatened by silverfish"

Merak preventively tackles a real risk.

In the Netherlands, silverfish have become a real plague in the past few years. Increasing temperatures and poor ventilation are often the cause for their rapid expansion. Not only private homes, but even professional archives are threatened. In Belgium, there is also a real danger that silverfish will invade. As a specialist in information management and archives management, Merak has taken the necessary precautions to efficiently protect its archives.

The silverfish (Ctenolepisma longicaudatum) belongs to the order of bristletails. It is an insect which enjoys dry and warm surroundings (temperatures of approx. 24°C) in which it can multiply very quickly. Silverfish love bookshelves and archives spaces as they feed on cellulose, a substance mainly found in paper. In books and documents which are stored over a long period and not used very often, this destructive little insect can really create havoc. And once an archive or library has been attacked, the insects are very difficult to eradicate. Prevention is therefore essential.

Optimum climate control
Archives storage is one of the core activities of Merak and silverfish have been a real cause for concern. This is why Merak engaged a specialist in the field. Bruce Schoelitsz is a biologist at 'Kenniscentrum Dierplagen' (KAD), a Dutch knowledge centre in the field of plague control and environmental protection. Following his advice, Merak implemented a number of important preventive measures to avoid a potential silverfish plague occurring in any Merak branch.

Optimum climate control is the essential factor in tackling silverfish. In all the branches where Merak stores paper archives, the necessary equipment has been installed to rigorously maintain the optimal conditions. We also carry out even stricter checks on incoming archives. Possibly contaminated material is subjected to a thorough chemical treatment, obviously without affecting the integrity of the archives.

Efficient control of such plagues is a long-term process. The continuity of Merak's policy in this area will be an important factor in its success. The safety of the many thousands of boxes in our facilities is guaranteed!

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