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Forest Stewardship Council® FSC®

The Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) is an international organization that brings people together to find solutions which promote responsible stewardship of the world’s forests.

  • FSC® is a stakeholder owned system for promoting responsible management of the world’s forests.
  • Through consultative processes, it sets international standards for responsible forest management.
  • It accredits independent third party organizations who can certify forest managers and forest product producers to FSC® standards.

  • Its trademark provides international recognition to organizations who support the growth of responsible forest management.
  • Its product label allows consumers worldwide to recognize products that support the growth of responsible forest management worldwide.
  • FSC® undertakes marketing programs and information services that contributes to the mission of promoting responsible forestry worldwide.
  • Over the past 13 years, over 90 million hectares in more than 82 countries have been certified according to FSC® standards while several thousand products are produced using FSC®-certified wood and carrying the FSC® trademark. FSC® operates through its network of National Initiatives in 43 countries.

FSC® certification is carried out by FSC® accredited certification bodies. FSC® itself does not certify forest operations or manufacturers. This maintains FSC®'s independence between its standards and requirements, and operations seeking certification.

FSC® provides monthly updates on the certificates issued by FSC® accredited certification bodies. The latest lists are available in the Certificates Lists section in the Document Center.

There are two types of FSC® certificates available from certification bodies:

Forest Management (FM) Certificate
Forest management certification involves an inspection of the forest management unit by an independent FSC®-accredited certification body to check that the forest complies with the internationally-agreed FSC® Principles of Responsible Forest Management.

If the forest complies with FSC® standards, then the FSC® accredited certification body issues a certificate for the operation. Certified forest operations can claim the forest products they produce come from a responsibly managed forest.

Before a certified forest operation can sell their products as FSC® certified, they must also obtain chain of custody certification (FM/COC).

Chain of Custody (COC) Certificate
Chain of custody certification provides a guarantee about the production of FSC®-certified products. Chain-of-custodý is the path taken by raw materials from the forest to the consumer, including all successive stages of processing, transformation, manufacturing and distribution.

From a customer perspective, the FSC® label represents a promise that is being made to them. Chain of custody standards are the mechanism FSC® has to ensure that 'promise' is delivered.

Operations that have been independently verified for FSC® chain of custody certification are eligible to label their products with the FSC® logo.