Ipe for End-Grain Cutting Board?

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Forum topic by Dchip posted 09-14-2011 02:47 PM 3790 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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271 posts in 3222 days

09-14-2011 02:47 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question ipe end-grain cutting board

This question has been touched on as a footnote in other forums, but I couldn’t find anything of a general consensus. I’ve seen it used in cutting boards, but that doesn’t necessarily make it safe. Any indisputable evidence as to why it shouldn’t be used for this purpose?

-- Dan Chiappetta, NYC,

6 replies so far

View David's profile


198 posts in 2633 days

#1 posted 09-14-2011 07:33 PM

The dust and oils are toxic and allergenic. You could probably get away with it if it’s properly sealed and taken care of, but is it really worth it?

-- Perilous to all of us are the devices of an art deeper than we ourselves possess. --Gandalf the Grey

View RickLoDico's profile


55 posts in 3030 days

#2 posted 09-18-2011 10:53 PM

I made this one 10 years ago and no one has gotten the least bit ill. The only finish on it is mineral oil.

-- He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.

View shopdog's profile


577 posts in 3455 days

#3 posted 09-19-2011 02:39 AM

I’ve made a lot of Ipe cutting boards, but I only give them away to people that I don’t like.
Seriously, the pesticides and other poisons in the foods that you cut are worse than any problems from an ipe cutting board.

-- Steve--

View Dchip's profile


271 posts in 3222 days

#4 posted 09-19-2011 03:37 PM

Thanks guys. I’ll probably keep the first one for a bit before I start making them for others.

-- Dan Chiappetta, NYC,

View EPJartisan's profile


1118 posts in 3095 days

#5 posted 09-20-2011 06:16 PM

Almost all the chemicals in the heartwood of Ipe (Tebebuia or Pua d’ Arco) are Quinonoids, which are derivatives of aromatic compounds and don’t really bond well with anything in our bodies, so by themselves are not toxic, but makes the wood have a very distinct smell from the oils …. and they can be altered to make some medicines. The wood dust on the other hand is horrible for you to breath, even though it smells great. Alas… finishing for food.. I have no idea.

-- " 'Truth' is like a beautiful flower, unique to each plant and to the season it blossoms ... 'Fact' is the root and leaf, allowing the plant grow and bloom again."

View Dchip's profile


271 posts in 3222 days

#6 posted 09-21-2011 04:20 PM

Thanks EP. It’s seems reasonable that the dust would be the greatest threat, considering the vastly increased surface area of the wood in this form as well as its contact with sensitive lung tissue.

-- Dan Chiappetta, NYC,

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