Cork - Natural or Plastic

(Last Updated: 10/20/2021)

​Determine if the cork is real or plastic. Plastic cork has a shiny, smooth surface that resembles plastic or rubber. Real, natural cork does not look shiny. 


Real cork is made of natural material. Natural cork can  be recycled at some local wine and beverage stores. Check your local retailer. Find other local drop-off sites for your natural corks.

The only option known for recycling plastic corks is through Terracycle's mail-in option. They accept both natural and plastic cork.

Contact one of these retail locations about recycling your corks.

Total Wine
1106 Pacific Crest Pl NW A110 Silverdale, WA 98383
360-204-5861 | Website | Map
Eleven Winery
7671 NE Day Road W Bainbridge Island, WA 98110
206-780-0905 | Website | Map


Real cork is a natural product, safe for use in potted planting. Use ground up natural cork in the soil or as filler at the bottom of planters to help with drainage. It will break down over time. Just be sure it's not plastic!

Many artisans and crafters repurpose cork in various ways. There are a lot of cool cork crafts out there. Perhaps you want to try one yourself. 

If not, try giving it away on social media groups or donate bags to a thrift store who often sell it in their craft section.

If you cannot repurpose or recycle at a retailer, put corks in the garbage bin.