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FSC Certification: Why it Matters

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The environmental impact of the products we consume and the materials we source has long been at centre of focus for both business and consumers in the UK and abroad, becoming an increasing global talking point in recent years, as an ever-increasing number of climate change studies reveal stark predictions for deforestation and rising sea levels across the world. The bleak findings have served to prompt drastic changes in consumer buying habits and government policy and breed new innovations at the manufacturing level. 

But for many, gaining insight into the sustainability of the production process remains an altogether difficult task, requiring a keen understanding of the sources of production and the subsequent standards upheld at every level of the supply chain.

Enter, the Forest Stewardship Council. The FSC provides certifications for forest managers and companies, rigorously applying globally consistent standards to ensure an environmentally sustainable production model is maintained, from the forest to the consumer.

There are two types of FSC certification: forest management and chain of custody, applying to forestland managers and businesses, respectively. Forest management certification is awarded to land owners or managers for practices that comply with internationally recognised standards for sustainability, whilst chain of custody certification can be awarded to manufacturers, wholesalers and virtually any business wishing to provide assurances to their customers of their products’ environmental sustainability. In fact, certification is a prerequisite for any company wishing to supply or work with FSC certified goods.

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So, why might businesses and consumers wish to purchase FSC-certified products? Traceability in the supply chain is a key factor. The Forest Stewardship Council certification ensures that materials and the processes used to produce them have been thoroughly audited, maintaining visibility and sustainability in the production process and providing guarantees of environmental viability to end users.

The Forest Stewardship Council’s primary objective is to endorse environmentally sustainable treatment of the world’s forestlands, ensuring the harvesting of timber doesn’t adversely affect both biodiversity and the local communities for whom a continuous connection to forests is pivotal for survival. To achieve this aim, the environmental, economic and social viability of harvesting and forest management practices are regularly evaluated, to preserve the wellbeing of indigenous groups and workers, both in the immediate and long-term.

For businesses, there are numerous benefits to attaining FSC certification and working with FSC-certified products. The FSC logo is recognised the world over as the standard for sustainably in forestland-produced materials, and in sourcing its approved materials, suppliers can ensure the sustainability standards expected by many major UK businesses are met. Subsequently, both corporate social responsibility and national-level policy compliance is assured.

For retailers, customer expectations can be met, since FSC’s standards are recognised globally as the highest of any forest preservation scheme. What’s more, 55% of the UK public recognise its logo (source), meaning its use on packaging provides products with added impact in marketing campaigns.

Allpack’s FSC certification