The founders

Alexandre Narinx:

He is the inventor of the multidensity cork diffusing plate patent at the origin of the CorkConcept insulated packaging technology and resulting from 5 years of empirical research with market players (manufacturers, subcontractors, users, logisticians).

In the 1990s, close to the only professional European Horeca wholesaler; the man, for family reasons, has always been interested in fresh products and their deliveries.

Like other distribution players, ISPC was confronted with the problems associated with the delivery of fresh products and in particular the famous problems of the last mile (pollution and costs).

Alexandre Narinx will therefore have the idea of ​​using cork to transport "food" parcels and it is from there that the first natural insulated cork-based packaging was born, obtaining one  worldwide patent.

Philipp Quodbach:

He has held various financial management positions in Belgium and abroad, notably for large groups such as Sanofi and UCB.

Director of Beldimed, an international distributor of pharmaceutical products, he was looking for natural insulated packaging to export products worldwide that had to comply with the needs of the ‘cold chain’.

It is for this reason that Philipp Quodbach met Alexandre Narinx and founded CorkConcept with him.

Today Beldimed is successfully using CorkConcept's insulated boxes.



The multi-density cork diffusing plate technology for use in insulated packaging and developed by Alexandre Narinx and now owned by CorkConcept, benefits from a European patent granted in May 2020 and bearing the reference 3368841.

Its exact title is "Method of manufacturing a diffusing plate of cork, diffusing wall of cork and insulated container comprising such a wall"

Composition of a CorkConcept package using this patent



  1. Useful volume
  2. Cork diffusing plate
  3. PCM Gels
  4. Waters gels
  5. Cork insulating plate
  6. Natural insulation plate
  7. Outer cardboard envelope

Description of the method: using the process of the invention, a diffusing plate (1) in cork is obtained with its outer skins (2) of higher density than the inner part (3), which confers a diffusing property to the external surfaces and an insulating property to the inner part of the plate. This formation of the plate therefore makes it possible to have an insulating and diffusing power at the same time, diffusing for the external crusts and insulating by the inner alveolar part.

Specifically, the core of the CorkConcept packaging consists of two cork walls.

  • An insulating outer wall made of cork whose composition has been chosen for its insulating power, its strength and its machining quality.
  • A diffusing cork inner wall whose composition has been chosen for its rigidity/flexibility ratio as well as its isothermal/diffuser contribution.


These cork walls are the heart of the insulated part of the solution and are modular, to be adapted to the size of existing logistics and transport needs. This is without the need to make a mould, which is very expensive and avoids the need to making small customised series, since it remains stable for temperatures between -200 ° C and 130 ° C.

This cork heart is surrounded by a natural insulating wall (cellulose type).


Cork, a material that has existed for more than... 60 million years


According to the Mediterranean Cork Institute, cork oak has been present in the Western Mediterranean for more than 60 million years. However, the strong climatic and anthropogenic variations of this long period have significantly reduced its range.

Men very quickly learned to extract and use its bark: traces of cork, whose various properties had already been discovered in ancient Rome and Homeric Greece, have even been found in Egypt. At that time, its use was still little developed: plugging amphorae, construction of hives, fishing equipment,...

It was from the seventeenth century, a period when the glass industry took a leap forward (discovery of the use of glass bottles for the manufacture of sparkling wines by the Benedictine monk Dom Pérignon), that the cork industry experienced its first real boom. Indeed, the cork stopper then proved to be the best existing product for the conservation of wines.


This commercial challenge also led to the appearance of the first notions of cork culture mainly in Portugal and Spain, which are today the two largest cork producers. The first processing plants are located in Spain in the province of Girona. These companies were set up by French industrialists.

As far as France is concerned, the cork industry experienced a significant boom during the nineteenth century, but, gradually from 1950, the forests of quercus suber (cork oak) were abandoned, mainly because of too much competition from other producing countries, but also because of the arrival on the market of less expensive substitute products such as plastic.

Cork: an effective tool for sustainable development

This material is particularly conducive to the preservation of the environment.

The forests of Cork-oak:

  • reduce erosion and increase water retention;
  • maintain vegetation, even in the driest areas;
  • even reduce the advance of the desert in parts of North African countries;
  • are used as fire shields in France and replace pine forests;
  • fix carbon dioxide, the main cause of global warming. The CO2 retention capacity of cork oak forests in Portugal is estimated at 4.8 million tons per year for a global retention of 10 to 12 million tons.

In addition, cork is 100% recyclable and recoverable since you can burn its sawdust to generate the electrical energy necessary for the operation of the production tool. In comparison, 75% of plastics remain as polluting waste.


This material is also a key player in the protection of biodiversity because cork oak forests:

  • constitute the basis of an ecological system unique in the world;
  • promote the survival and flourishing of many plant and animal species: there are in fact 135 species of plants per km², more than 20 species of reptiles and amphibians, 160 species of birds and more than 30 species of mammals...


Finally, economically, more than 100,000 people depend, directly or indirectly, on cork production. Every 30 to 50 years, moreover, the cork oak forest is renewed and forms the basis of economically viable and socio-culturally beneficial Business models. And that's saying nothing about the potential of 12.5 million hectares still untapped.

Sources : 2016 -





Environmental impact

The project will have a considerable impact on sustainable development since it consists of creating 100% eco-friendly, insulated packaging (disposable, reusable and recyclable). The impact will be twofold: avoiding the use of polluting packaging and reducing the CO2 footprint from using polluting temperature-controlled vehicles.


Each box sold by CorkConcept avoids the use of a polluting box, the equivalent of 3kg of polyurethane or aluminium waste... For every 100,000 boxes sold per year in the medium term, 500 tons of waste will have been avoided each year.

The management of this waste becomes an inexhaustible source of costs and logistical difficulties for end-customers. In comparison, aluminium produces 12 tons of CO2 for one ton of aluminium, while one ton of cork produces 1.6 tons of CO2... but absorbs 2 tons (indeed, in the process of harvesting cork, a cork oak tree absorbs 5 times more C02 to regenerate its bark).

Social impact

Since the beginning of its activities, CorkConcept has used an adapted work company for the storage and assembly of its boxes.

At the societal level, CorkConcept packaging will make it possible to use less polluting, smaller urban logistics vehicles (bicycles) to reduce pollution and traffic jams in the city.

In general, CorkConcept packaging will make it possible to transport medicines (e.g. Covid-19 vaccines) and food products in the best conditions.

At the economic level, this project will have a positive impact on the consortium's partners, but also on a large number of Belgian and European players in the pharmaceutical, food, transport and logistics value chain.