The Top 5 Benefits of Cork

After Greta Thunberg declared that the world needed to act with urgency to learn the lessons from Covid-19 and climate change, we thought we’d share an insight into what we’re doing here at Harmoni to do our bit to be more eco-friendly


2021 has been a year which we’ll never forget, from the inauguration of Joe Biden, the United Nations declaring that 2021 is the international year of peace and trust, and Donald Trump being banned from Twitter. Although the world has changed dramatically following the outbreak of Covid-19 over a year ago, the growing momentum to reduce climate change and to be more eco-friendly has arguably been put on the backburner…


With sustainability as one of our core values here at Harmoni, we believe it is paramount that we all do our bit to contribute to a greener future. As a result, we’ve put together the top five benefits of cork, one of our key materials that we use to make our products! Grab a cup of tea and enjoy reading this article for some informative tips on why you should invest in some of our sustainable products as well as our philosophy.

1) Cork is naturally antimicrobial

Did you know that when cork is harvested from the tree, it is only taken from the outside layer which then regenerates itself naturally over time?
After researching which materials we would use for our desk and standing mat, we discovered that cork is the perfect material to use as it is naturally resistant to dust and mites. Great for using either to stand on, or to place your desk on it as a protective mat, cork is ideal for people who suffer from allergies or asthma. 


Unlike synthetic materials, cork is 100% natural as it is stripped from the outer layer of a cork tree. Harvested every nine years in order to ensure that the tree has enough time to regrow its outer layers, the harvesting of cork trees is a sustainable method which does not destroy any ecosystems or cause an imbalance in removing other animals’ habitats.

2) Cork trees absorb carbon dioxide

It is scientifically proven that cork trees which have been harvested absorb up to three to five times more Carbon Dioxide than ones which haven’t. Not only is this good in reducing the amount of dangerous greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, but cork trees in Portugal alone offset ten million tons of Carbon every year, producing large amounts of Oxygen!
Given that cork trees live up to the age of three-hundred and are vital within the ecosystem for protecting against fire and heat, these ancient trees are key for the survival of many animals who are endangered or at risk of dying. In particular, the cork forests in Portugal are the home to one-hundred and thirty-five plant species, as well as forty-two bird species, making these trees crucial to life in Europe. 

3) Cork is stain resistant

Stain resistant and scratch proof, cork is a non-toxic and recyclable material which is perfect for using in your home. If you’re a little bit clumsy, or perhaps you hate getting coffee marks on your surfaces, our Harmoni Cork Desk Mat provides a smooth, non-slip surface for your standing desk and protects your table from any potential scratches or spills. The mat has a warm, natural colour and features a discrete Harmoni logo, making it the perfect compliment to any desk stand.


Since cork is naturally water resistant, this makes the material extremely long lasting and protected from dirt. Lightweight and soft to touch, cork is a beautiful material that is not only eco-friendly, but also looks super elegant!

4) Cork is biodegradable

Cork is one of the most eco-friendly resources on the planet. Biodegradable, renewable and recyclable, cork bark regenerates itself approximately seventeen times during its lifetime. A fantastic alternative to plastics, foam or leather, cork is incredibly versatile. 

5) Cork is inherently sustainable

Cork oak forests are some of the most biodiverse environments on the planet. According to the World Wildlife Fund, “In cork oak landscapes, plant diversity can reach a level of 135 species per square metre, and many of these species have aromatic, culinary or medicinal uses.”

Along with being biodegradable, cork material is 100% natural and sustainable. In fact, cork trees have a large impact on the ecosystem which surrounds them. Home to rare species of animals including the barbary Deer and the Iberian Imperial Eagle, unlike palm oil, cork oak plantations do not wipe out huge areas of rainforest or pose serious climate threats. 

We hope you’ve learnt something new about cork and why we are passionate about using it to make our Harmoni products! Feel free to drop us an email with any comments or questions at katie@harmoni.design !

 

Sources

‘Top 10 Things That Have Happened in 2021’ <https://www.thetoptens.com/things-have-happened-2021/>
‘Cork for the environment’ <http://100percentcork.org/why-cork/good-for-the-environment/>
<https://corkspace.com/cork/harvesting/>
<https://uk.harmonidesk.com/collections/accessories/products/harmoni-cork-desk-mat>
<https://mindseteco.co/biodegradable-materials/>
<https://yuzumag.com/is-cork-eco-friendly/>