The first day of June marks the national cork oak tree and cork day, in Portugal.
This title was given in 2011, however, it has been a protected species since the Middle Ages, when cutting it down was prohibited. Nowadays, this tree can only be cut down if it is dead or sick, and even then, only with permission from the authorities.
This tree is part of the heritage of Portugal, and it is, at the same time, the most endangered and emblematic species of Portugal. It’s the only tree whose bark has the capacity to regenerate on its own, making it possible to harvest the cork up to 16 times.
Cork is an eco-friendly raw material, it is reusable and recyclable, and it’s extracted without harming the tree. It is one of the most characteristic natural products of Portugal and it’s one of its biggest and most important exports.