I was reading the Feb-March 2014 edition of France Today and came across this interesting piece of ‘wine trivia’ (trivia in the nicest possible way) about wine corks written by Linda Johnson – Bell and I thought I would share it with you.
“Around 340,000 tonnes of cork are extracted annually from 2.3 million hectares of cork oak forests around the world, which go to make 12 billion stoppers. Portugal accounts for some 55 per cent of world cork production, with its 716,000 hectares of cork forest, exporting around 90 per cent of its raw material. This level of production ensures that both cork oak forests and the industry itself, which is perfect for arid and semi-arid areas, remain sustainable. In fact, regularly stripping cork oaks helps them to regenerate naturally and during this process, the tree absorbs, on average, five times more CO2. It is estimated that every year, cork oak forests retain up to 14 tonnes of carbon dioxide. Portugal reforests at a rate of ten thousand hectares per year, that is, an annual growth of around 4 per cent, with two new cork oaks being planted for each old tree.”