Going Green With Your Kitchen Cabinets

Whether you’re remodeling an existing kitchen or building a brand new one from the ground up, choosing the right materials is crucial to creating a kitchen space that will last for years to come, and is a spot your whole family can enjoy. Kitchen cabinets are much more than just storage areas (although that is certainly a critical need they fulfill), they also create an ambiance for your cooking and dining space. Going green with your building materials can ensure you have a quality product that is healthy for the planet and for your family as well.

Look for FSC-Certified Wood

It is hard to beat the beauty and durability of solid wood when it comes to outfitting your kitchen cabinets. To find the most sustainable options, homeowners should be on the lookout for wood that is FSC-certified. The Forest Stewardship Council, or FSC, certifies wood that comes from forests, which are responsibly harvested. Buying FSC-certified wood cabinets gives you peace of mind knowing that you are getting a quality product that was harvested through means that did not contribute to the destruction or harm of habitats, animals, or local communities.

Salvaged Wood

Give old wood a second life by using it to create beautiful, one-of-a-kind kitchen cabinets. Reusing wood means that no new wood is harvested, conserving trees and forests. Consumers should be mindful of where the salvaged wood is coming from and what its previous purpose was, as some types of wood may have been treated with pesticides or preservatives, making them unhealthy choices for home interiors.

Consider Bamboo

Since bamboo regrows quickly, while also having strength and durability, it is ideal for a wide variety of applications inside the home. Seek out FSC-certified bamboo products and give your kitchen an exotic feel.

Steer Clear of Formaldehyde

Many cabinets and interior boxes are constructed of pressed wood or engineered wood products, such as plywood, fiberboard, and particleboard. These products typically contain glues or binders with urea formaldehyde, which can cause formaldehyde off-gassing in your home. As formaldehyde is an established carcinogen and is associated with other health problems, this is something homeowners definitely want to avoid. Look for products specifically labeled as formaldehyde-free when shopping for your dream kitchen.

Opt for Non-Toxic Finishes

When it comes to going green in the kitchen, it is not only important to be aware of what materials the products are constructed of, but also to be aware of the types of finishes used. To protect your home’s indoor air quality, look for finishes that are low-VOC, or no-VOC. Water-based products are a good idea, and for added protection, look for products bearing GreenSeal or GreenGuard certifications.

Remodeling your kitchen or designing a completely new space can be fun, but overwhelming. When you go green with your building materials, you can rest easy knowing you are doing your best to protect the planet and those who live in your home. Going green doesn’t mean sacrificing style, either. Today’s eco-friendly kitchen materials come in a wide variety of styles and finishes to suit any taste. So go green and create the kitchen of your dreams!