Cork: natural, renewable and recyclable
Natural, renewable and recyclable, cork is a safe choice for those who care about the future of the planet. But we believe it is possible to go even further. Step by step, we show you how Go4cork products contribute to an increasingly circular economy.
We are hearing more and more about ‘circular economy’. A more sustainable development model where the logic of “extraction, transformation, use and disposal” of products, characteristic of the linear economy, is replaced by circular reuse, recovery and recycling processes.
This way, once used, materials are returned to the productive cycle, making it possible to create new products, reduce waste and take care of the planet and people’s well-being.
How does Go4cork contribute to a circular economy? We’ll explain it in three steps.
Step 1: Go4cork products are produced mainly with unused cork from the cork stopper industry.
When we think about cork, we almost automatically think about cork stoppers. However, the production of cork stoppers uses only around 30 % of this raw material. It was precisely to give new life to this industry’s unused cork and to recycle used corks that, in 1963, Amorim Cork Composites, responsible for the Go4cork brand, was established.
Using cork from the cork stoppers manufacturing process as main raw material, the company created a unique portfolio of high performance materials. Nowadays, cork charts industries as diverse as aerospace, panels, and composites, automotive, sealants and joints, electrical power industry, construction, sports surfaces, floors, consumer goods, furniture and footwear.
So, when you choose a Go4cork product, you are not just buying a product created from a sustainable raw material. You are bringing home the result of decades of research and development around cork to provide you all the benefits this material has to offer.
Step 2: most energy we use comes from burning cork waste.
At Corticeira Amorim’s factories, nothing is lost and everything is transformed. This is also the case with cork waste from the manufacturing process, which can no longer be reused. The cork waste is, thus, burnt, generating electric power that supplies the many industrial units.
Currently, over 60 % of the total energy we use comes from burning this material called ‘cork powder’, considered neutral in terms of CO2 emissions. In addition, in recent years we have been adopting several measures to progressively reduce the use of fuels from non-renewable energy sources. This allows us to minimize our greenhouse production and reduce our carbon footprint.
Step 3: We add waste from other industries to cork, valuing and reinventing such waste
In addition to reusing and recycling cork, some Go4cork products also incorporate waste from other industries, such as footwear, automotive or packaging products. This industrial symbiosis process allows us to reduce the amount of discarded waste, reintroducing it into the productive cycle. At the same time, it gives rise to innovative products with materials which enhance cork’s properties.
Such is the case of some Go4cork underlays, building materials, and home and office accessories. Produced from composites combining the optimal quantities of cork and other recycled raw materials, they are conceived and designed to offer you the best possible performance.
Are you ready for the next step? Join this cycle and help us create even better products and, with them, improve the world we live in.