Re: colored cutting boards [was: Re: Long Time Poster
From: Wayne Tyson (
Date: Sat, 16 Mar 2013 09:08:14 -0700 (PDT)
Does anyone have a link to the follow-up studies?

Folk "wisdom" is often wrong, but it's important that "science" be done right.

The Japanese sushi chef I went to for almost forty years continually wiped his board with a salt-soaked towel and scrubs his cutting board (wood, but I never asked him what kind) with salt. It would be interesting to see studies comparing the effectiveness and safety of various cleaning/disinfecting agents such as salt, alcohol, and bleach (I do not use bleach).

I continue to suspend judgment on this issue until more good science has been done (I presume it has since the authors of the study declared that more research was needed, especially upon any anti-bacterial action woods might have, but can't find it on the Internet). I have no reason to doubt the 1993 research, especially since the authors themselves acknowledged its limitations.

Bacteria, like any other organism, have certain requirements for survival and, one might say, for killing. Certain environments promote them as well as restrict them. The devil might well be in the details. the concern about tiny, even microscopic fissures in cutting surfaces would reasonably harbor bacteria. Wood is a complex material with different chemical and physical characteristics. Plastic is "inert," and unlikely to play an active role in reducing bacterial contamination.

I use both materials, I favor maple for its hardness and fine grain, but I continue to use both salt and alcohol, and certainly restrict the type of food placed on any cutting board. I clean before and after each use, and always after cutting any kind of meat. However, bacteria can be present on vegetables too, so continued cleaning, even between batches, is more wise than paranoid.


----- Original Message ----- From: "Fred H Olson" <fholson [at]>
To: "Cohousing-L mailing list" <cohousing-l [at]>
Sent: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 4:57 AM
Subject: [C-L]_ colored cutting boards [was: Re: Long Time Poster

On Feb 12/13 Chris ScottHanson wrote:
And for those of you who haven't seen or don't remember the colored
cutting board discussion way back when, it was very entertaining.
Serious stuff and good humor.

Searching the archives at   for
color* cutting board*
gets 25 hits, the first 15 look like they may be the discussion
Chris refers to.


Chris ScottHanson
Urban Cohousing Associates, Inc.
Land Acquisition, Development Consulting & Project Management
Ecovillages, Cohousing & Sustainable Communities

PO Box 1288
Langley, WA  98260

(206) 601-7802 cell

Author of:  The Cohousing Handbook - BUILDING A PLACE FOR COMMUNITY
Available from new, used and as an eBook.

Fred H. Olson  Minneapolis,MN 55411  USA        (near north Mpls)
    Email:        fholson at      612-588-9532
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