The State of Florida passed Rule 5B-65 in August 2019 in a effort to halt the spread of forest destroying pests like the Emerald Ash Borer and others that have been devastating the forests of the Northeast. The Rule requires unprocessed wood to be heated to 160 degrees of internal temperature and held there for at least 45 minutes in a sealed chamber (kiln) to kill any pests within the wood. This can also be achieved by fumigation of the firewood with approved chemicals in a confined chamber for set times and concentrations, but this process does not dry then wood. Rule 5B-65 guidelines are then same as the U.S.D.A. Certification process required for wood that is transported in or through guaranteed areas.
Hardwoods that have been dried to a moisture content of less than 20% work well. They light easily and continue to burn all the way through with a hot steady flame. Wood that is above 25% typically will be difficult to light and tend to steam, smoke and hard to keep burning. Soft woods often contain too much resin that can be a maintenance problem for chimneys and burn too fast. Oak is the predominant hardwood for firewood due to good burning qualities, great aroma and abundance. Hickory, Cherry, Pecan and other hardwoods work well but are usually a little more expensive. Southernmost Fuel Wood uses 95% Oak and a 5% mixture of Hickory, Cherry and other hardwoods that have been kiln dried to 15% or less moisture content in its firewood product.
This is a question that is hotly debated by all cooks from the professional to the back yard enthusiast. Everything from the species of wood to the moisture content and what is being cooked are important in making the final decision. It all adds to the fun of cooking with wood and determining your favorite combination of meat, wood and method. A general guideline is to use good quality hardwoods that have been kiln dried to a moisture content of 15% or less and have an aromatic quality that matches the food you are preparing. Smokers tend to like a higher moisture content and strongly aromatic woods like Hickory and Mesquite, while those cooking more delicate and milder meats, poultry and fish will select dryer, milder woods like Oak, Cherry, Pecan and Fruit woods...We haven't even gotten into sauces, marinades and rubs. Southernmost Fuel Woods offers kiln dried Oak, Hickory, Cherry, Pecan and other southern hardwoods in a variety of cuts, splits, chips, chunks and grilling woods in bags boxes or bulk palettes. Contact us for your specific needs 954-783-9771.
Seasoned firewood has been cut, split and left out to dry by the natural evaporation of its moisture. The firewood, depending on how and where it's stored can take up to a year to get down to levels below 20% when it starts to become good firewood.
Kiln dried firewood has been cut, split and placed in containers that heat the air to a high temperature in order to rapidly draw down the moisture contained in the wood to whatever level is desired. Both processes will dry the wood but kiln drying can reduce the moisture content below the seasoning at a much faster rate. Southernmost Fuel Wood offers kiln dried wood that meets rule 5B-65 standards set by the State of Florida.