Can we trust the FSC?
22nd September, 2009
It's the logo we all look for when buying furniture and wood products. But the Forest Stewardship Council has come in for some serious criticism. Matilda Lee looks at both sides of the argument
You've almost certainly bought a product made from illegally harvested wood.
How can I say that? Well, globally, illegal logging accounts for between 20 to 40 per cent of wood production, according to WWF. Within the EU, WWF says that between 16 and 19 per cent of all timber imports derive from illegal or suspicious sources - much of it coming from Russia.
While it wouldn't sit well with most of us to unknowingly support the illegal logging trade, because of the fact that most of the time products aren't labelled we wouldn't know one way or the other.
Product certification is a necessary market instrument to help consumers to distinguish between good and bad. A successful certification scheme would reassure consumers and provide an incentive for forest owners and managers to legally and responsibly manage forests.
The Forest Stewardship Council, created in 1993, is meant to do just that. It's described by many as the world's leading forest certification scheme and is based on two components: the sustainable management of forests and certification of the 'chain of...
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