The name Quercus suber L. stems from the fact that the cork oak belongs to the oak family - «Quercus (oak) suber», because it is a subspecies of the oak tree - and L. derives from Linnaeus, who was the first botanist to describe the species.
The production of cork coverings releases low rates of CO2 - contrary, for example, to the production of wood coverings, which release 2.5 to 4 times more CO2 than a cork flooring. Furthermore, cork coverings are produced from a raw material whose production does not require the trees to be felled.
Yes. Research carried out by University of Porto reveal that cork has antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic properties. The University of Bordeaux II also discovered that cork stoppers pass those health-giving properties to the wine. Furthermore, when it is applied to flooring and footwear, cork contributes to improve posture and reduce physical effort.
The Alentejo region, the largest cork forest area in Portugal, shall propose UNESCO to classify the cork oak forest as a World Heritage Site. The reasons underpinning the application are those related to tourist interest, to the fact that the montado is a unique ecosystem in the world and that it may be advertised as a destination with an identity.
As a result of technological advances and strong investment in R&D+I, the applications of cork are increasingly surprising, from its use in construction and architecture, in design, in the manufacture of clothing, jewellery and footwear, in furniture, decoration, health and cosmetics, in energy production, pollution control, among many other original applications, and those still undiscovered.