I was at a local hardwood supplier and found some very cool looking hard Maple. Is there a term or name for what happened here? Also is it food safe for use as a cutting board? I primarily got it to make a cribbage board but will have enough for two or a cool looking cutting board but want to verify first.
It’s supposed to already be kiln dried so that shouldn’t be a problem. I’d be fine using it for food related stuff but would rather not have a guest or family member find out how spalting happens and get worked up about it
This wood figure is the consequence of fungi (actually mushrooms) breaking down the lignin in the wood, which makes spalted wood far less resistant to moisture and, in particular, microbials. As moisture content and microbes tend to be high in most foods, spalted maple is probably not ideal for a cutting board.
The fungi behind white rot use fruit bodies to spread their spores, so, in contrast to moulds and yeasts, the spore content in the wood should be low, which of course does not absolve the dust from spalted wood in any other way.
London, UK; Cambridge, MA
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