Cork has an interesting history. If you were to ask the average individual what cork was, the most common answer you would hear is it’s the stopper in a wine bottle. Well, believe it or not, the cork that serves as a wine stopper is actually a natural material derived from a cork tree. (Wouldn’t it be nice if green backs were a natural material derived from a green back tree?)
Anyway, cork has served far more uses than just a beverage lid, so let’s take a moment to consider the evolution of another cork product…cork flooring. Cork trees are actually a subspecies of the oak tree family. This particular branch only grows in the coastal regions of the Mediterranean. Cork trees are resilient, slow growing trees that can survive well in depleted soil and harsh conditions. The bark of the cork tree is the primary source of cork materials. Cork flooring (and other cork products) are environmentally friendly in part because the bark of the cork tree regrows within ten years of being harvested.
Cork flooring used to be processed and cared for in the same manner as any other wood flooring. For this reason, with the introduction of vinyl flooring, cork lost much of its following for the easier to install and maintain option of resilient flooring.
Thankfully, new finishing techniques and advanced technologies have created a cork flooring that requires less upkeep than before. While cork flooring is still a relatively small portion of the flooring market, with the current eco-friendly movement, it is sure to make an even greater comeback.
Aside from the eco-friendly, renewable materials used to create cork flooring, this particular flooring option has several other positive features. Cork floors are naturally anti-microbial and non-toxic. They are also resistant to mold, mildew, somewhat flame resistant, and resistant to common pets. So, if you are looking for an eco-friendly, health-friendly flooring option, look no further than your nearest cork flooring company.
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