Portocork America opens bigger Napa wine cork plant with Trefinos distribution deal

One of the North Coast’s largest distributors of wine closures has inked a deal with one of the world’s biggest producers of wine closures to centralize North American sales efforts in a new 54,700-square-foot processing and distribution plant in south Napa.

Portocork America Inc., the North American distributor for Portocork International of Portugal, on Friday announced a strategic partnership with Trefinos USA to represent its CWine and Compac technical corks on the continent. Portocork’s new Napa facility, which opened in mid-December at 165 Gateway Road E., will be the new processing and distribution point for those incoming stoppers from the production plant in Spain, according to Dustin Mowe, president of Portocork America.

Trefinos was started in 1917 but has its origins over 260 years ago. It’s the combination of Spanish cork makers Manufacturas del Corcho and Barris y Cia, the latter of which got its start in 1750. Today, Girona, Spain-based Trefinos supplies over 300 million closures globally each year, making it one of the five largest such manufacturers in the world, according to Mowe.

Trefinos launched its North American operations in 2017, opening a finishing facility and warehouse in Napa late that year. Portocork America currently employs 43.

The CWine and Compac corks are produced with a supercritical carbon dioxide process designed to eradicate below detectable levels the mold compound TCA associated with “cork taint” and get rid of over 150 other nondesirable aromatic compounds.

Technical corks are made of tiny pieces of cork oak bark held together with a food-safe binder. Trefinos’s CWine cork is designed for table wines and is composed of particles ranging in size from 0.5-2.0 millimeters. Options include varying permeability for controlling how much oxygen reaches the wine during aging. The Compac stopper is designed for sparkling wines, with pieces ranging from 1.0-2.0 millimeters.

Portocork America purchased the 2.5-acre project property in November 2015 from the Jacuzzi family. The project team included Oakland-based Pound Management, RMW Architecture & Interiors and general contractor AP Thomas Construction of Sacramento.

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