Wood countertops are becoming popular again in modern kitchens. We now know that wooden countertops, when properly cared for, are both long-lasting and sanitary. The advanced adhesives are strong enough to keep the wood staves bonded together even the butcher block is submerged into the water. The finishing oils (mineral oils) are safe in contact with food products and preserve the wood surfaces.
The solid wood, as a material of choice for countertops, exhibits incontestable advantages such as:
Imparting a warm, relaxing feeling, the wooden top is the natural complement of any solid wood or veneered cabinetry. The hardwood tops will wonderfully go together with hardwood floorings, moldings, cornices, and mantels, conferring a genuine sense of balance to your kitchen space.
A hardwood top is easy to cut to templates and even easier to install. Unlike the solid surface or laminate, wood tops have a minimum of chemical components, making them extremely safe in contact with foods. Unlike the other countertop materials, any occurring scratch can be easily removed by sanding the area; the wood tops constitute the only known surface that can be renewed without employing special tools or requiring specialized skills. Hardwood surfaces can be used as kitchen island tops, inserted sink covers, sections of the countertop, or as butcher block hidden under the countertop that can be pulled as drawer or cart. Your imagination will surely find plenty of other interesting, visually attractive applications.
If properly sealed and installed, a wooden top can last a lifetime. Unlike marble, granite, or tile, the wooden tops have a great shock absorbing capacity that further assures a considerable life span.
For quite a few decades, the plastic and laminate surfaces, due to their non-porous structure were considered much safer than wood for applications such as chopping meat or slicing vegetables. The wood, because of its porosity, was thought an ideal surface for harmful bacteria like Salmonella, Staphylococus or Escherichia coli to thrive. However, a study undertaken in 1993 by the microbiologists of Wisconsin Food Research Institute and another one carried out in 1998 at the University of Florida discovered the strong antibacterial properties that wood surfaces exhibit, features that no other cutting surface appears to possess.
According to these studies and to others that followed them, on wood surfaces, bacterial populations disappear quite fast, without external intervention, while on plastic surfaces, they persist and multiply. Although these properties vary among wood species, the wooden cutting surfaces are increasingly accepted as the first choice of health-conscious individuals.
Hardwood is usually priced higher than laminate but is far less expensive than stone, granite, solid surface, tile, or steel.
The butcher block countertops supplied by Lafor Wood Products come in beech wood, cherry, walnut, oak, whitebeam (hickory look), acacia (black locust), or hard maple with a large variety of dimensions and grades. Mineral oil is supplied for free along to the purchase and helps to finish and preserve the butcher blocks. Availability is immediate, and they offer samples of butcher blocks free of charge. Details at hardwood countertops