Cork flooring – is this the future?

As a flooring that’s natural and renewable, cork is a sustainable and environmentally friendly choice. Yet, there is a lot more to cork than its green properties…

Cork walls and floors in modern Japandi style room

For years, we have raved about Granorte and its innovative manufacturing process, producing cork floors and other products in Portugal, where it has been finding new ways to use the waste cork from wine stopper production since 1972. The cork used in Granorte’s flooring ranges is originally harvested from the bark of trees within Portugal’s protected forests.

Portugal produces around 50 per cent of the world’s cork supply and its forests are strictly protected by the government. In fact, the first regulations protecting the country’s cork forests date back to the 13th century. This strict protection, which includes government approval for the removal of trees, ensures that Granorte cork floors come from a sustainable natural resource. These forests also lock in carbon, with a recent study showing that Portuguese cork forests absorbs 4.8 million tonnes of carbon each year.

Granorte cork samples

Image credit: Granorte

Unlike wood, cork is harvested from the bark of the tree and is renewed after nine years for the life cycle of the tree, which can be more than 200 years. This makes cork a rapidly renewable natural resource*, yet by the time it reaches Granorte, it is also a post-industrial recycled material, coming as the waste of the wine stopper industry. The cork industry is highly efficient in its raw material use with every gram used. Even cork dust is harnessed as a green energy source.

Granorte takes this natural material and manufactures a range of highly sustainable flooring options. In its purest form – the glue-down tiles of Tradition – this makes a Granorte floor made from 90 per cent recycled and rapidly renewable natural resources. There are few other floors that are suitable for commercial use that have this status. Even with its engineered floating floors using Uniclic, Granorte achieves up to 80 per cent renewable natural materials status.

Granorte’s range of cork flooring provides commercial interiors with a wide range of sustainable choices, backed by high levels of UK stock.

Granorte is one of our Recommended Suppliers and regularly features in our Supplier News section of the website. If you are interested in becoming one of our Recommended Suppliers, please email Katy Phillips.

Main image credit: Granorte

* Reference available upon request.