Wood vs Plastic Cutting Boards
Is a wooden cutting surface sanitary?
In 1993 the Food Research Institute at the University of Wisconsin conducted tests of wood surfaces. Their goal was to compare wooden cutting boards with plastic cutting boards for relative safety and cleanliness. Seven species of wood were tested with intentional contamination of E-Coli, listeria and salmonella (bacteria which can cause sickness in humans); as were four types of plastic. To everyone's surprise, they found that on all of the wood surfaces the bacteria were killed off within 3 minutes of touching the wood surface. This did not happen on the plastic surfaces. Therefore their recommendations were as follows: Simply use normal hygiene (soap and water) when cleaning a wooden cutting surface and all bacteria left behind will be killed by the wood itself-leaving a sanitary surface for your next usage. We also recommend using a weak (1-10) dilution of bleach if it makes you feel better. It won't harm the wood.
Are wooden surfaces difficult to maintain?
As you can see from the preceeding information, hardwood-cutting surfaces are very durable and sanitary. If after repeated usage and cleaning your block may appear a bit dull, a simple application of mineral oil. (Which is sanitary and food-safe) will brighten the finish and nourish the surface.
What if my board's finish still does not look bright and like new?
Please go to How To Care For to see how to bring your culinary products back to new.
To purchase end grain cutting boards other than cherry or walnut, custom work, butcher block tables, edge grain cutting boards, and utensils please go to Phoenix Culinary Products.