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The importance of renewable materials such as wood or paper coming from a sustainably managed forest is increasing every day. To achieve this, a series of requirements included in the Forest Certification must be fulfilled, which entail advantages for this environment.

This is applied at two levels: forest management (GFS Certification -Sustainable Forest Management-) and Chain of Custody certification when the object of examination is the traceability of raw materials of forest origin.

What is Chain of Custody certification?

The Chain of Custody (CoC) of forest products consists of monitoring the materials extracted from this environment (wood, paper, cork, bark, resin …) during the different phases of the production process and their subsequent commercialization, in order to ensure the traceability of these forest products from the final consumer to the forest or, in the case of recycled material, to the point where the material is recovered.

All Chain of Custody certification may be carried out as a subsequent stage to the GFS certification of the forests, thus creating the complete traceability cycle from a forest-based product to its origin.

FSC and PEFC certification in Chain of Custody

To certify these systems there are two main international certifications: FSC y PEFC.

The objective of these two certifications is to be able to accredit that the certified company complies with the standards of the norms, as well as to create the unique FSC® or PEFC® seal that will allow the product to be accredited throughout its supply chain.

Ejemplo logo FSC según FSC-STD-50-001-V2 y logo PEFC según PEFC ST 2001:2008

Benefits in being certified in FSC and PEFC

Some of the benefits that this certification can bring to our company are:

  • Facilitates the opening of new markets sensitive to environmental aspects
  • Improves the image before the administration
  • Offers a tool for provide compliance with legal requirements for the timber/wood trade.

And for our customers, we can benefit from a comparison between different suppliers, since:

  • Customers’ confidence that the forest products they consume come from forests that have been responsibly managed, using environmentally friendly practices.
  • Assure consumers of the legal origin of the wood in the products they consume, guaranteeing that it does not come from abusive or illegal logging.
  • Be positively differentiated from the competition (through its own logo, demonstrating chain of custody certification).

What Will an FSC or PEFC certification audit consist of?

In order to achieve certification to these standards, prior separation is necessary, which may consist of an initial internal audit. This would be basically focus on a documentary validation of the traceability system of each type of certified raw material from its reception to the dispatch of the finished product, passing through all the stages of product transformation and a verification of the maintenance of the necessary segregation systems between product categories.

Once the certification audit process has been passed, the company receives the license to use the FSC or PEFC Chain of Custody mark, as well as the logo to be used according to the standards defined for each norm and under the authorization of its certification body.

Ejemplo logo FSC 100%, Mixto o Reciclado según FSC-STD-50-001-V2

At RepaQ we have a great experience in this area, during 2020 we performed more than 50 audits. We can advise you to adapt your company to this new certification, contact us!