It is really difficult to know exactly what you are buying when you purchase a crib. Many cribs are advertised as being made of “wood”, but this can mean very different things. In Canada, there are standards for saying something is “solid wood”:
Solid wood logs.
Solid wood is the term used to describe wood-based materials that have been extracted from the trunk and further processed without mechanically altering the structure of the wood. The quality concept “solid wood” is strictly standardised, especially in the field of wooden furniture making. Only furniture with all parts (except rear panels and drawer bottoms) made of solid wood may be called solid wood furniture. If veneer (thin sheets of wood on a carrier material) is used for a piece of furniture, this must be indicated to the customer. (www.felder-group.com/en-ca/materials/solid-wood)
Images of laminate, solid wood and engineered wood.
However, there are no such standards for saying something is made of “wood”. For example, MDF is “wood”, as are wood panels, plywood and fibreboard, which all contain a very toxic mix of chemicals to hold wood slices, chips or pieces together. All engineered wood products are created by taking pieces of wood and gluing them together. It is the chemical off-gassing of the glues and the energy-intensive manufacturing process that make the use of these products problematic for our health and the environment.
And don’t be fooled by products such as “eco-plywood”, which can only claim less toxic off-gassing then its more toxic cousins. Aim for no off-gassing at all, and go for locally made, 100% solid wood, hand-made, naturally finished baby cribs!
LuLé's 100% solid wood, all natural baby crib!
As the founder of LuLé and a proud mom, I am passionate about helping you make the right decisions for your baby. All blog posts are based on information found on respected government or institutional websites, such as Health Canada.