Catering equipment supplier Nisbets has their say on the wooden boards saga

by | Feb 19, 2018 | Features | 0 comments

After a Birmingham restaurant was recently fined ?50,000 for the unhygienic serving of food on wooden boards, Nisbets has issued some practical advice on the best way to ensure that your wooden boards are fit for use.

Dean Starling, Development Chef at Nisbets believes that wooden boards are not unhygienic per se, it is more the way that they are cared for and used;

?Wooden boards have hit the news recently with some media reporting that they are ‘incapable of being cleaned’.? The truth however is that wooden boards can provide an attractive alternative to plates however, it’s worth being aware of the dangers associated with this material.

Generally, wooden boards bring a warm, organic feel to the table and inherently have antimicrobial properties. However, they can prove to be difficult to clean thoroughly because of the grooves in the wood?s surface that appear over time, particularly when in prolonged contact with water as this causes them to warp and crack.? This can be exacerbated if boards are put through a dishwasher.

Whilst it?s important to stress that a wooden board should never be used for both chopping and serving food to customers, as long as they are cleaned hygienically and replaced when they become scored or stained, wooden boards are perfectly safe to use for serving food.?


Wooden board cleaning & maintenance tips from Nisbets:


Wooden platters and serving boards look great under the lights, and are perfectly safe for serving food if cleaned thoroughly. They are ideal for serving bread, charcuterie or cheese. Generally food that needs no further preparation or heavy cutting is best for wooden boards and platters. Sharp knives will score and damage the board over time, creating grooves which harbour harmful bacteria.

A steak is an example of what not to serve on a wooden board as it will require a sharp knife.

Care and Maintenance

One of the most important aspects of maintaining a wooden chopping board is to season it. Not all boards come seasoned, so some will need to be seasoned before first use. Season your board whenever it feels it is losing its seal, which could be weekly or monthly depending on its usage.

Never season with vegetable oil or olive oil as these substances will rot and make your board unsanitary. Instead, use food grade oil to treat your board and apply with a soft cloth or brush – this prevents it from drying out too much which will cause the wood to crack and expose areas to attract bacteria. Wipe the oil over the surface of the board and allow a few hours for it to soak in. Wipe off any excess with a dry cloth.

Nisbets issue advice on wooden boards
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Pinterest
  • Print Friendly
  • reddit
  • LinkedIn

If your wooden boards will be used to chop meat, they should always be disinfected after cleaning. Use one teaspoon of chlorine-based bleach to every two pints of water to disinfect the board. Spread the solution over the board and allow it to rest on the surface for a few minutes. Afterwards, clean thoroughly again with soapy water and rinse well.


As soon as the board has been cleaned and sanitised, pat the underside of the board using catering roll or disposable towels and allow the surface to air dry. Drying in direct sunlight is never recommended, as this can cause the wood to splinter and reveal cracks which are hard to clean.

Once completely dry, wooden boards (or in fact boards made of any material) should be stored in an upright position to prevent moisture being trapped underneath. This also stops dust and airborne particles settling on the cutting surface. For any particularly strong odours left after cleaning, rub the board with half a lemon which will leave it smelling fresh and also help to sanitise the surface.

If your wooden boards become difficult to clean, stained or cracked then they should be replaced as soon as possible.

more latest news ➡

Yorkshire Garden Centres adds two Dean's stores to portfolio

Yorkshire Garden Centres adds two more sites to portfolio

Bradford-based Yorkshire Garden Centres has announced it is to operate two more sites in Yorkshire.  The two Dean's Garden Centre sites at York and Scarborough will be added to the group that already has sites at Tong, Tingley, Otley and Bingley in West Yorkshire....

Klondyke Group announces Outdoor Living showcase

Klondyke Group’s Outdoor Living Showcase

A sprinkling of Sherbert through the Cottage garden; the simplicity and calmness of Urban Nature through to the mood and mystery of Moroccan Delights; these were amongst the main themes revealed at the Klondyke Group's Outdoor Living Showcase Event hosted this week...

GCA BoT results show garden projects on the up

January’s GCA BoT results reveal rise in garden projects

Hard landscaping topped the sales table in the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) Barometer of Trade (BoT) report for January 2024 with hardy plants, seeds and bulbs also doing well. Figures recorded by GCA member garden centres last month show a good start to the...

Rising stars nominations deadline 1 March

March 1 deadline for Rising Stars nominations

The GCA is urging members to get their 2024 Rising Stars nominations in by March 1 to help showcase and develop the industry’s most talented individuals this year. The Westland Horticulture sponsored programme offers those who participate the chance to be mentored...

Handy drops new catalogue for 2024 season

Handy unveils the latest gardening and DIY products

British garden manufacturer Handy has announced the arrival of its new catalogue and Monthly Dealer Promotions Calendar, both designed to provide retailers with valuable increased margins on a wide range of gardening and DIY products and ensure they have everything...

HTA shows caution for garden retailers

Garden Centres cautious despite good start to year

The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) releases its February monthly market update, which shows that despite the UK economy's recently announced recession, garden retail continues to show some green shoots to kick off the year. The resilience is a continuity of...

Read GCR's latest edition!
Read GCR's latest Made in Britain Supplement!

Subscribe ToThe Wednesday Word

Subscribe To
The Wednesday Word


Get all the latest news, events & more straight to your inbox every Wednesday.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This