Did you know?
Cork is a natural raw material that is 100% biodegradable, recyclable and renewable. It is considered to be one of the most eco-friendly materials in the world! The extraction method is 100% safe for the tree. Not a single tree is cut down in the cork harvesting process!
Cork is the outer bark of the Cork Oak Tree, which grows mainly in the Mediterranean area. Cork trees are the only type of tree in the world that regenerates its stripped bark. The first bark can be harvested from a tree that is 25 years old, and then again every 9 years. No bark is wasted during the cork production process. The residue is granulated to make other cork products and cork dust is even used for fuel. Harvested cork oak trees can live up to 300 years.
The bark is harvested completely by hand and provides over 100,000 jobs. As local people rely on these trees to support their livelihoods, they also look after the forests. Some entire communitiesderive a sustainable annual income from the cork harvest.
Harvesting cork bark assists in the absorption of CO2 (carbon dioxide) and greenhouse gases. In fact, harvested cork trees absorb 3 to 5 times more CO2 than unharvested trees. The cork oak forests support one of the worlds highest levels of forest biodiversity. Cork forests also help prevent soil erosion.
Due to the importance of maintaining the cork forests and the cork industry, worldwide organizations such as the WWF (World Wildlife Fund) call for their protection and encourage the use of cork products.