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Why seek FSC certification?

zoom© Lewis Lumber ProductsResearch has shown that FSC certification can bring improved market access, higher revenues and enhanced public image (Cashore, B. et al., 2006) (© Lewis Lumber Products)Research has shown that FSC certification can bring improved market access, higher revenues and enhanced public image.

1. Raise standards - FSC certification acts as a catalyst for improving standards in forest management

FSC certification brings economic benefits by opening up new markets; social benefits to workers and local people; and environmental benefits for biodiversity and ecosystems. It is the only forest certification scheme backed by environmental NGOs like Greenpeace and the World Wide Fund for Nature, and sets a benchmark for forest companies and communities to follow.

2. Create business benefits - Improve market access, achieve higher revenues, enhance public image

By becoming FSC certified, producer businesses and forest owners can access new markets and gain a stronger, more diverse customer base, thereby increasing revenues. Retailers and suppliers can strengthen their reputation, provide assurance about ethical and environmental product standards and forge stronger links with their own customer base.

3. Connect with the consumer - FSC provides a link between the forest and the end user

Certification allows consumers to be confident that the products they are buying come from a responsible source. FSC’s credibility is a great brand benefit, enhancing reputation and marketing possibilities.

4. Fight climate change - FSC prohibits deforestation, forest degradation and illegal logging in certified areas

As well as creating a market for sustainable forest products and highlighting the dangers of poor forestry practice, FSC prohibits illegal logging, forest degradation and deforestation in certified areas, all of which can contribute to climate change mitigation. On average, certified forestry operations designate 16 percent of their total forest area as strict reserves.

5. Get ahead of government requirements - FSC certification vastly reduces the risk of being confronted with illegal timber

A growing number of countries and regions – including the European Union, USA and Australia – have legislation banning the trade and use of illegally harvested timber and derived products. For FSC, respecting all relevant laws is the first of its ten principles and part of the certification and auditing process. FSC certification vastly reduces the risk of being confronted with illegal timber. Furthermore, national, regional and local governments increasingly reference FSC as one way to comply with their public procurement policies as they seek products that support sustainable forest management.