Published: 02/16/2009 - Updated: 02/22/2014
Green Cork industry promotes a sustainable economic activity, non-polluting, which puts on the market an organic, natural, renewable and recyclable: the cork. This is highly appreciated as an insulator due to its molecular structure. Its main feature is that has many uses in industry, but especially highlights as stopper for wine, often imitated but never equaled.
In recent times there have been studies on the subject and has concluded that this material is ideal in carbon sequestration and biodiversity conservation.
A report on the ecological life cycle of cork in comparison to plastic stoppers and aluminum concludes that they "are clearly favorable " to the caps, a material that has a positive role in terms of carbon sequestration, biodiversity conservation and combating desertification.
Experts assert that each plastic cap causes ten times more greenhouse gases than a natural cork stopper. In addition, emissions of greenhouse gases from an aluminum capsule are 25 times higher than the natural cork. And we can say that over a period of one hundred years, CO2 emissions during the life cycle of a thousand caps (i.e. production, transport and bottling and end of life) is a 1533 gas pollutants, while carbon dioxide equivalent a thousand plastic caps amount to 14,833 and 37,172 if we cycle a thousand caps aluminum.
In the Mediterranean, one of the most threatened by the much-feared greenhouse effect is one of the most valuable natural ecosystems the cork. The cork is the most diverse ecosystem of the Iberian peninsula have been documented up to 400 species of fauna and flora. Climate change is an indisputable fact and has become the main threat to the future of our planet.
The cork by themselves represent an important carbon and well maintained with many producers and entrepreneurs lane. Emissions from the Portuguese cork forest in 2006 amounted to 4.8 million tonnes. Of these trees, 54 percent of corks sold in the world are made.
In total there are estimated to be around 2.5 million hectares of cork in the world, of which 27% are in Spain, mainly in Andalusia, has 350 thousand, 250 thousand Extremadura and Catalonia has 75 thousand ha, the rest of Spain has 50 mil.
At present, 23% of all cork is produced in the world (375 thousand tons a year) has its origins in Spain (78 tons). Of these, almost 24% comes from the cork of Extremadura.
With the advent of heat in the summer months, beginning in the pastures of Extremadura ritual takes the extraction of the cork planks which is then processed through the local industry , beads and caps, which are distributed all over the world.
Its ecological value
The cork, Mediterranean forest ecosystem, constitutes an obstacle to a barrier against desertification and climate change. The cork trees serve as protection against erosion and to recharge aquifers. But to produce oxygen, a feature common to all trees, the cork oak has a unique cellular structure and very particular, to retain carbon dioxide, the main responsible for global warming.
The cork in one piece, also known as natural is the "star" that is made from cork. But the cork industry has been developing products to suit market demands. Are the technical corks, made from granulated cork combined with natural resins, which can add disks to a piece of cork for areas that are in contact with the wine store. These seals breed in a high percentage of the qualities that make the best product cork for wine stores, while the natural cork is the only kind of closure in the world that allows the wine to mature and grow in bottle thanks to its ability to prevent loss of fluid to maintain.
Cork is a material that takes advantage of a comprehensive way; the production chain begins with the extraction of the cork in the field or out. This consists of extracting the cork bark that is. The best time is the Uncorking from May or June and August. Extraction of cyclic cork oaks can grow healthier the tree throughout its life, between 150 and 200 years. Each cork is subjected to approximately 16 bags. It is from the third takes when you get the cork with ideal characteristics for the production of plugs. The cork produces good quality cork every nine years.
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