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Keeping an Old Butcher Block Clean?

I have inherited an old butcher block from a grocery store that opened in the 30's. My father salvaged it during a remodeling project around 1965. It has a sort of film on the surface that makes it feel tacky. I can clean it with a steel wool pad, but it only takes care of it temporarily and it returns in a few days. Any suggestions?

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Kelli from Portland, OR

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August 11, 20060 found this helpful

Sand it down and refinish it with a non-toxic finish.

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By carla bledsoe (Guest Post)
August 11, 20060 found this helpful

it sounds like someone put some kind of finish on it that shouldn't be used on wood. some oils do that too. some folks mistakenly think cooking oil is good for cutting boards.
i'd sand it down to clean wood.

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By chml (Guest Post)
August 11, 20060 found this helpful

Years ago I watched a butcher clean a butcher block. He used regular table salt sprinkled on kind of heavy and a rough brush (wire or scrub), and went over them every night at closing time.

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Good luck.

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By rsg (Guest Post)
September 14, 20060 found this helpful

I dont know but I have an almost idential situation and would love to get feedback from someone who actually worked off a wooden block years ago

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By Recoil Rob (Guest Post)
June 23, 20070 found this helpful

I just found this thread because I just spent the afternoon sanding two old blocks with a belt sander. The stickiness is probably old fat from years of meat cutting. My blocks smelled like old prosciutto while I was sanding. I have them baking in the sun right now and you can see the oil rising to the surface

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