The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is the only truly international forest certification scheme.
The program has certified over 100 million hectares in more than 70 countries. This includes over 950 Forest Management/Chain of Custody (FM/COC) certificates and over 9,000 chain of custody (COC) certificates.
The stated mission of FSC is to promote environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable management of the world’s forests. It does this through an extensive stakeholder consultative process that sets international standards and accredits independent third party certification bodies to undertake the certification work.
FSC had its genesis in 1990 when a meeting of timber users, traders and representatives of environmental and human-rights organizations established the need for a honest and credible system for identifying well-managed forests as acceptable sources of forest products.
The FSC Founding Assembly of 130 participants from 26 countries was held in Toronto in 1993 and the first FSC Board of Directors was elected. The first FSC certificates were issued in Mexico and the USA in 1993 and forest owners and wood products processing companies are now widely represented across all continents.
FM/COC certification involves an inspection of the forest management unit to assess whether the management of the forest complies with the internationally-agreed FSC Principles:
- Compliance with laws and FSC Principles
- Tenure and use rights and responsibilities
- Indigenous peoples’ rights.
- Community relations and worker’s rights.
- Benefits from the forest
- Environmental impact
- Management plan
- Monitoring and assessment
- Maintenance of high conservation value forests
When satisfied that compliance has been achieved the certification body issues a certificate that gives the certified company the right to claim that the products they produce come from responsibly managed forests managed to the requirements of the FSC standard.
COC certification provides a guarantee that the production of FSC certified products through the successive stages of processing, transformation, manufacturing and distribution to the consumer, maintains the integrity of those products as FSC certified.
Certified companies can promote themselves as CoC certified and can license use of the FSC labels.
FSC encourages and recognizes national initiatives for the development of national standards.
Maderas Futuro / Precious Timber is currently in the final stages of an FSC audit and our membership/certification is anticipated soon.