The thinking is that people will use their cutting boards wood or plastic to prepare chicken, wash the board insufficiently, and then prepare the salad. Chicken is always cooked, so any bacterial threat there is eliminated, but salad isnt, meaning theres a risk of food poisoning.
Sanitize the cutting board you should use different sanitizers for wood cutting boards than for plastic ones . For plastic cutting boards, you should use a chlorine-based sanitizer, such as a solution of bleach and water one tablespoon of bleach per gallon of water has a shelf life of a week or two .
You dont want to prep chicken on a wooden cutting board because the bacteria will sink into the wood grain and be hard to scrub out. Clean-washing plastic boards are better for chicken and fish for this reason, and if youre just cutting an onion or smashing a few cloves of garlic, go with plastic too.
When youre picking a cutting board, be sure to understand the material your cutting board is made from. Plastic is cheap, easy to work with and easy to clean. Wood is a time-honored material that is easy to work with beautiful, but often more expensive than plastic.
The bottom line: Wood cutting boards may have a slight advantage, but whether you use a plastic or wood cutting board, you run the risk of contaminating your food if you dont wash them properly between uses. And if your cutting board starts to look weathered and/or develop knife cuts or grooves?
Originally published in the Feb. 6, 1993 edition of Science News, the article describes research claiming that wooden cutting boards possess some sort of bacteria-killing properties, thus making them less likely to contaminate food than plastic or acrylic cutting boards. "Pathogens prefer plastic," the article declares.
Nonporous acrylic, plastic, or glass boards and solid wood boards can be washed in a dishwasher laminated boards may crack and split . Both wooden and plastic cutting boards can be sanitized with a solution of 1 tablespoon of unscented, liquid chlorine bleach per gallon of water.
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