A Google search led me The Real Milk Paint Company. They sell a product called Dark Raw Tung Oil that is non-toxic, eco-friendly, and has a darkening agent. It seals and protects the wood and I have to say I'm happy with the results!
First, there was lots of sanding....
As you can see, before the countertops were treated they were very light, and had a pinkish cast to them.
The company suggests cutting the tung oil by 50% with Mineral Spirits to help with absorption and to speed up the drying time between coats.
When the first coat went on I was concerned because the countertops didn't look much darker at all. But after applying 6 or 7 coats (with a day's drying time in between), we got a very pretty, burnished brown color.
You can really see the difference here with this untreated piece of butcherblock compared to the finished countertops in place.
Mission accomplished! Don't you love it when something works like it's supposed to?
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