As a raw material, the cork encompasses a large group of unmatched features. At the same time, it is fully biodegradable, renewable, recyclable, reusable and able to circulate continuously in the economy. Although recycled cork cannot be incorporated into cork stoppers anymore, it can be integrated into numerous products. Based on this principle, the Greencork project – the national program for the selective collection of stoppers for recycling – was launched in Portugal in partnership with the non-governmental organization Quercus and others.
The project aims to promote a new recycling practice, increase the CO2 retention period associated with cork stoppers, and raise public awareness of the environmental advantages of cork products as a support to the cork oak ecosystem. Greencork also allows the financing of a project that ensures the planting of Portuguese native trees, namely the cork oak, already contributing to the planting of thousands of trees in various parts of the country.
The promotion of cork recycling projects has also been also carried out at an international level for some time, through the following projects with the involvement of Corticeira Amorim:
This is North America’s largest cork stopper collection program, boosted by the involvement of the Canadian footwear company SOLE, which incorporates recycled cork in the production shoe’s soles;
This program has already collected millions of cork stoppers which have contributed to donating funds to various causes such as cancer research and social support projects;
Project developed in collaboration with several associations, which manage more than 5,000 cork stopper’s collection points and receive a donation for their social support projects.
It aims to obtain used or surplus cork stoppers to give them a new life, still creating employment.
These projects are notorious examples of promoting the principles of a circular economy by Corticeira Amorim, while reflecting its strong social impact. Since the beginning of the projects, more than 550 million cork stoppers have been collected for recycling and donated more than 1.5 M € for social causes and reforestation.