100%Cork.Org Supporters Quickly Top 15,000; Majority are Women

"Phenomenal" Response to Natural Cork Wine Stopper Campaign

Supporters Urged to Demand Natural Cork at www.100PercentCork.Org

Jul 19, 2010, 12:36 ET from 100PercentCork.org

NEW YORK, July 19 /PRNewswire/ -- 100PercentCork.org announced today that it has rapidly exceeded 15,000 Facebook fans and that an overwhelming number of their comments support the use of natural cork wine stoppers. The finding echoes other polls and research (1) that demonstrate strong consumer preference for natural cork -- in contrast to the decision by some wineries to use plastic wine stoppers and aluminum screw caps.

"The initial response to the 100% Cork campaign has been phenomenal," said Peter Weber, executive director of the Cork Quality Council, one of the campaign's supporters. "We expect the campaign to continue gathering strength as more consumers learn about the benefits of cork -- especially to the environment -- further widening the gap between natural cork and synthetic wine stoppers."

The Facebook page has attracted more than 15,000 fans since its launch on May 20.  Of those, 69 percent are women, with the vast majority between the ages of 35 and 44.  As of July 16, 2010, the campaign's Facebook page had elicited 658 fan comments -- 90 percent of which were in favor of natural cork wine stoppers.  

"Our message of cork's environmental advantages over plastic stoppers and metal screw caps has struck a chord with wine drinkers, especially women concerned about how to preserve the environment for their children's future," Weber said.

Take the 100 Percent Cork Pledge

The 100% Cork Facebook page links fans to the campaign web site www.100percentcork.org, where readers are urged to take the 100 Percent Cork Pledge.  Pledge names will be added to petitions to be sent to major wine retailers and wineries urging them to increase their use of cork stoppers because:

  1. Metal screw caps and plastic stoppers produce 10-24 times more greenhouse gases and consume as much as five times more non-renewable energy than natural cork over their life-cycles, according to a peer-reviewed study by PricewaterhouseCoopers; and
  2. Natural cork is recyclable, biodegradable and creates a powerful incentive for sustainable stewardship of cork oak forests, which trap carbon emissions while providing one of the world's richest ecosystems.

Why Choose Cork?

Cork is harvested from the bark of cork oaks.  The process does not harm the trees, but it does provide some of the world's best-paid agricultural jobs. Skilled craftsmen carefully remove the bark from the oak trees in a practice refined over centuries, while modern processing techniques have provided superior technical performance. Natural cork is a safe, healthy, natural closure that protects wines better over time than metal-based or oil-derived closures.

The 5.4 million acres (2.2 million hectares) of Mediterranean cork forests sequester carbon, just like the world's rain forests. Portuguese cork forests alone -- which account for about a third of all Mediterranean cork forests -- retain 4.8 million metric tons of C02 every year, according to the Lisbon School of Agronomy. This is equivalent to the annual C02 emissions of more than 830,000 passenger vehicles, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

If cork was no longer needed for wine stoppers, the survival of many of these trees would be at risk.

About 100PercentCork.org

100PercentCork.org is a campaign to recruit U.S. wine consumers to choose wine with natural cork stoppers because of cork's environmental, technical and societal benefits.  The campaign seeks to educate, recruit and organize wine consumers to request that winemakers and retailers choose natural cork over artificial stoppers.  The campaign is funded by the Portuguese Cork Association and the Cork Quality Council.

For more information please contact: media@100PercentCork.org.

SOURCE 100PercentCork.org