Saturday, December 12, 2020

Cork Recycling

My husband and I are wine drinkers. 

I discovered today, we may also possibly be wine cork hoarders. We had a drawer-full of them. I went to go move them to our typical place we stockpile them, and it, too, was full and we needed to find another place to stash our surplus. Yes, we may be cork-hoarders.

My son, who was there for the cork-relocation-project, mentioned that there has got to be something we could do with them. Certainly, they are all there because I cannot bear to throw them away and add to the landfill. Yes, there are Pinterest pages dedicated to arts and crafts projects, but I don't see that happening over here. But, as a natural product, there has got to be some way to recycle corks. 

So, I started digging.

And what do you know. There is! More than one, in fact.

ReCork is North America's largest cork recycling program. They have a number of drop off and retail locations where you can recycle your corks in order to close the loop of waste. The corks they get back from you will get ground up to make new products, many of which you can buy from their website. This includes the shoe company SOLE and their cork soles. (Most of their drop off sites are closed currently due to Covid, there is a location finder on their website. However, you can also ship individually--however, they no longer provide shipping labels so you need to fund it yourself. In my mind, it's worth a few dollars when you consider the good it can do! To learn more, visit ReCork's website or read this article about them on SOLE's website.

Cork Forest Conservation Alliance also is involved in cork recycling through their Cork ReHarvest program. They too have cork collection boxes in multiple stores. (You can find their list here.) Part of their mission statement is to protect the cork forests in the Mediterranean area and promote the biodiversity of the area. They feel that it is through education and the promotion of sustainability that they can help make a difference.

If you are still looking for some way to repurpose them at home outside the arts and crafts arena, you could also do this, from Napa Recycling

Whatever you opt to do, I hope your corks just don't land in the landfill! 

Cheers! I'll drink to that!

Image from, ReCork screenshot taken on 11/15/2020 from their website showcasing the number of recycled corks to date, ReCork logo from, Cork ReHarvest from, Napa Recycling screenshot

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