It’s time to cheers to the environment because your wine closures, otherwise known as the corks, may actually be good for the planet. Not only are corks biodegradable and recyclable, but there are other benefits, as well. By purchasing wine with natural corks, you are helping sustain an amazing ecosystem, as well as, fund local jobs.
Corks are made from bark from a specific oak tree found in the Mediterranean basin. However, the trees are not cut down for their bark. Instead, a portion of the bark is removed, and the tree continues to grow. A tree is stripped every 9-12 years, and will be ready to use again in roughly a decade. Therefore, there is no shortage of this tree. The Mediterranean cork forest currently lies over 6.6 million acres with enough cork to last more than 100 years. Not to mention, the removal is beneficial to the tree’s health.
The more you buy wine, the more corks needed. Therefore, the purchasing of wine creates a chain reaction of farmers needing to support and preserve more cork oak tree forests. Consumer demands definitely yield great eco-friendly results!
These specific trees live in vast forests, therefore, they create an ecosystem of its own. It prevents certain areas with a hot summer climates from becoming a desert, and creates shelter for local animals. Furthermore, these forests off set the carbon dioxide emissions of 2.5 million vehicles every year.
However, these forests are now being threatened, not by drought or disease, but by artificial wine stoppers on the market. Therefore, when buying your next bottle of wine make sure it is sealed with natural cork.
Also, there are lots of ways for you to recycle your cork after you’ve enjoyed your bottle. There are many different DIY craft ideas, that are easily found on the internet. Also, big companies like Whole Foods Markets, launched a campaign with Cork ReHarvest. Whole Foods has conveniently placed cork recycling bins in their store that allow you to easily recycle all your corks.