The Forest Stewardship Council is an international, non- governmental organisation dedicated to promoting responsible management of the world’s forests. FSC has developed a system of forest certification and product labelling that allows consumers to identify wood and wood-based products from well-managed forests.
What the FSC do
Forests must be managed to the highest environmental, social and economic standards. Trees that are harvested are replanted or allowed to regenerate naturally but it does not stop there. The forests must be managed with due respect for the environment, the wildlife and the people who live and work in them. This is what makes the FSC system unique and ensures that a forest is well-managed, from the protection of indigenous peoples rights to the methods of felling trees.
Every year an area half the size of the UK is cleared of natural forests: temperate and tropical, North and South and on every continent. These forests, which once covered half of the planet, are irreplaceable and their loss has profound economic, social and environmental impacts. Forests support up to 1.6 billion of the poorest people in the world, and 60 million indigenous people and countless species of plants and animals are wholly dependent on forests for their lives. Forests also have a beneficial effect on regulating the climate. Deforestation is a major contributor of CO2 emissions. The products of this deforestation can be found throughout the UK and if you buy these products you could be supporting this destructive timber trade.
For more information visit www.fsc-uk.org
10 Facts about FSC
- You can buy wood products with a clear conscience when you see the FSC logo. FSC forests are managed with consideration for people, wildlife and the environment.
- The FSC label guarantees that the trees that are harvested are replaced or allowed to regenerate naturally.
- Parts of the forest are protected entirely, in order to protect rare animals and plants.
- FSC protects the rights of indigenous people to use the forest. If they have sacred sites in the forest these are exempt from felling.
- The forest owner must use local workers to run the forest, and provide training, safety equipment and a decent salary. The forest owner is often obliged to support the community in other ways, such as through the development of schools.
- FSC is a market-based initiative which also ensures better conditions for the forest and the people whose livelihoods depend on it.
- FSC gives an assurance that future generations will be able to enjoy the benefits of the forest.
- All the wood is tracked from the forest to the store. Every link between the forest and the consumer is certified to make it clearly identifiable which wood is FSC certified and which is not.
- FSC is the only wood certification scheme endorsed by the major environmental charities, including WWF, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace and The Woodland Trust.
- The FSC label is not only available on wood for furniture. It can also be found on floors, decking, paper, printed matter, charcoal, kitchen utensils, even venison!