Meteorite, from A.P.C. Cork’s Gem collection, is a floating floor that can also be glued down. Meteorite features a high-gloss pattern “with a special finish under the topcoat that creates an iridescent look,” according to the company.

Consumers’ seemingly bottomless appetite for Green products is paving the way for cork flooring to enter the mainstream, according to Anne Reynolds, president of A.P.C. Cork. She notes that new and innovative looks in the segment are also enticing more people toward the product.

“Cork is not just a Green product, but flooring with longevity and endless design possibilities,” she says. “The new progressive looks and style options are definitely getting cork a second look.”

Reynolds believes it is important to offer a range of colors and designs that step outside the comfort zone of the typical cork floor. “Cork is a great alternative floor with lots of options for every audience,” she says.

One challenge for the segment, she notes, is educating consumers about the different types of cork available. Cork flooring is typically offered in two formats: veneer and homogenous. Veneer flooring is simply a cork veneer on top of a granulated cork backing. Homogenous flooring, on the other hand, comes in a solid piece. One advantage of veneer flooring is that it can offer a wider range of design options; however, the flooring cannot be sanded and refinished like a homogenous floor.

Reynolds notes another challenge is that consumers sometimes have trouble telling the difference between base grade and higher-end products. “Overcoming price vs. quality is always a challenge,” she says.

However, despite the challenges, Reynolds notes that cork remains a highly Green and very unique material. “We love cork and want everyone to be able to afford it,” she notes. 

Visitwww.apccork.comfor more information. -- Michael Chmielecki