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post #1 of 4 Old 08-03-2008, 10:58 PM Thread Starter
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Question Food safe wood?

Hi All,
Going to try a couple salt shakers, is there a wood that is "food safe" ?
Or what would you use as a finish?
These will be my first non-pen turnings so I don't want to poison the wife with it. (yet)

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post #2 of 4 Old 08-03-2008, 11:30 PM
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Hi woodwrite,
This has been the subject of discussion before, and while there are woods which are considered toxic, one has to ask the question of its use. With a salt shaker, I would think it unlikely that any toxins from the wood would leach into the salt. I'm no chemist, and maybe with salt there might be some chemical reaction I'm not aware of. This is my disclaimer, in case anyone tries it and dies as a result!
However, the leaching aspect is usually more of a factor with moisture contact, such as with cutting boards. But even then, the question remains of how much leaching might occur, in what concentration, and is it really a concern?
But if you are concerned about it, maple is always a good route to go. It has been the industry standard for many, many moons for restaurant/bakery cutting surfaces. According to a health department report I read years ago when I was a baker, the tannins contained in maple actually hinder the growth of bacteria in the pores of the wood. And no known toxin to leach into food.
As for finishing a salt shaker, don't finish the inside at all. The outside could be done with darn near anything.
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post #3 of 4 Old 08-04-2008, 12:04 AM
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foodsafe woods

You can use any wood as long as it it well cured and doesn't have bugs in it or some wood funges.I have seen this subject come up more times than I can remember,but have yet to here of someone getting sick eating out of wooden bowls,plates or whatever,that are kept clean.If some one has heard of it I would like to know.
Thanks Ken

Last edited by The woodsman; 08-04-2008 at 12:08 AM.
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post #4 of 4 Old 08-04-2008, 06:23 AM
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toxic wood list

Here is a list to rule some out maybe ? Not from a poison your wife perspective, but wood you should be careful working with not to poison yourself turning them (wear a respirator etc.) http://www.mimf.com/archives/toxic.htm. But what the others said, a clean/dry salt shaker is not likely to transfer any "wood" to your food.

Last edited by Daren; 08-04-2008 at 07:01 AM.
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