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CORKART
About CORKART Flooring  |  Colors & Patterns  |  Chemical Composition  |  Harvesting Cork

CORKART Cork Floating Floors are decorative, comfortable, durable and easy to maintain. If properly maintained, they will last for generations.
  • Cork is natural, recyclable and biodegradable. No natural or man-made material replicates its properties.
  • CORKART floors can be easily maintained by vacuuming and damp mopping with approved cleaners. Cork is inherently resistant to mold and mildew.
  • CORKART cork floors create a warm, comfortable, resilient surface. It is antimicrobial, and will not spread flame.
  • Made up of over 100 million prism shaped cells per cubic inch, each one filled with air, CORKART floors inhibit the conduction of sound.
  • CORKART floors are suitable for installation over hot water radiant heat systems, provided that the temperature does not exceed 27°C (81°F).
  

CORK, A NATURE'S PRODUCT

In a world of growing environmental awareness, the cork oak survives without the use of chemical herbicides, fertilizers or irrigation. Moreover, it's the only tree that regenerates after harvesting.

The cork industry is a major producer of non-timber forest products worldwide. Natural, unique and ideal as a closure for wine and spirits, cork is used in industries as diverse as floors (floating floor and cork tiles), shoe manufacturing, construction (insulator planks), automotive (gaskets), and leisure (fishing rods).


THE MONTADO CORK OAK FOREST


© 2002 by APCOR
"Montado" - cork oak forest
The montados (cork oak forests) are extensive agro-forestry systems of great socio-economic and biological importance. Many threatened species, such as Bonelli's Eagle and the Iberian lynx, depend on these areas for their survival. Natural cork is biodegradable, yet it can also be recycled. Many countries have developed recycling initiatives to conserve this precious resource. Apart from its economic importance, the montado also supports great natural biodiversity, including wildlife, pastures and aromatic shrubs. Animals found in cork oak forests include hares, nesting black storks, Iberian Imperial Eagles, kites, southern gray shrikes, black vultures, wolves, wild boars and Iberian lynxes.

The forests also provide the ideal winter habitat for millions of migratory birds, such as robins, thrushes, chaffinches and woodpeckers, and the 60,000 herons that come from Northern Europe


NATURAL REGENERATION AN IMPORTANT FACT

Cork renews itself naturally, as cork oak bark grows 1.0 to 1.5 millimeters each year. Once the trunk's circumference has reached 70 centimeters, the cork can be stripped. The tree is then harvested in regular cycles throughout its lifespan, usually over 150 years.

Traditional harvesting methods allow the cork oak to thrive without the use of synthetic herbicides, fertilizers or irrigation: "Since earliest times, the technique of cork removal reached a balance rare in the exploitation of natural resources. The balance between the surface to be stripped of cork and the size of the cork oaks is perfect, refined and cyclic. Every nine years, the exploitation of this valuable vegetal tissue takes place so that the cork oaks can regenerate it."
- From Nuno Leitão, Cork - Renewable vegetal tissue


SOME GENERAL IDEAS
  1. Cork is the outer bark of the evergreen cork oak (Quercus suber). This variety of oak grows mainly in Portugal, Spain, southern France, Italy, and the Maghreb.
  2. Cork consists of a tight web of up to 40 million cells per cubic centimeter. The cell membranes retain gas, giving cork its capacity to float, insulate and re-expand quickly after compression.
  3. Cork is natural, recyclable and biodegradable. No natural or man-made material replicates its properties.
  4. Cork is sustainable. It is harvested by stripping the bark every nine years. Each cork oak tree provides an average 16 harvests over its 150-200 year lifespan.
  5. Cork retains unique qualities of flexibility, elasticity and compressibility. Its extreme resilience, impermeability, lightness and insulating efficiency make it ideal for a large number of applications.
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