Forest Certification Programs

Forest Certification

Updated information on certified forest products and forest certification systems can be found in the Southern Group of State Forester's report entitled Forest Certification Programs - Status and Recommendations in the South.

"Forest product certification has become more important as many consumers consider the impact of their purchasing decisions. The retailers of many types of forest products see the advantage, and often the need of offering products with "green" labeling. This is occurring with all types of paper and packaging products, building products, and energy products produced from wood. Market access to these "green" products by wood suppliers will often depend on the presence of certified forests at the source of the wood. Forest management certification programs have developed to provide a method of assurance that forest products offered are grown, harvested, and processed consistent with sustainability criteria specific to each certifcation program."

The major forest certifcation programs used in the United States include the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), the American Tree Farm Program, and the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). These programs are administered by independent organizations that are separate from State and Federal government agencies.

Recently, Forisk Consulting group produced a report on the major forest certification standards for the American Consumer Institute. The report describes the certification systems as they relate to southern forestry practices.