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Forest and Product Certification

We are committed to managing our forests sustainably, conserving natural resources and reducing waste and pollution. We believe sound management practices will ensure people today and into the future can enjoy the benefits of healthy, abundant forests.

Forest certification, fiber sourcing certification, and chain of custody certification are three ways we demonstrate our commitment to sustainability.

Internationally recognized standards provide customers and stakeholders with an objective, third-party determination of whether or not a company is implementing sustainable business practices. We support the use of these standards and the independent, third-party audits required to verify compliance.

Today, there are several forest and forest products certification systems available on the market:

  • Sustainable Forestry Initiative: SFI certifies forest lands in North America. All our North American timberlands are certified to the SFI standard. We chose SFI because it is a consistent, science-based standard that allows us to offer a reliable supply of quality, certified products at competitive prices. Our senior leaders are committed to ensuring and maintaining compliance with the 2010-2014 SFI Standard on all of our tree farms and many of our manufacturing facilities.

  • American Tree Farm System: We believe the American Tree Farm System is the most effective standard for certifying small forest landowners in the United States. Approximately 25 percent of our wood fiber comes from ATFS-certified family forest owners and it is important to us that these timberlands are also managed sustainably. ATFS is recognized by SFI as an equivalent standard.

  • Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification: PEFC is an umbrella organization that evaluates and recognizes national forest certifications demonstrating compliance with PEFC principles. PEFC endorses nearly 40 sustainable forest management standards (including the Canadian Standards Association, SFI, and the American Tree Farm System).

  • Forest Stewardship Council: We use the FSC standard where it makes sense to do so, such as on some of the lands we manage in Uruguay. FSC's standards vary internationally and within a country (the standard in Oregon is much different than the standard in Uruguay; standards in Florida are different from standards in Washington), making implementing FSC a challenge.

We are a strong supporter of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative. Our decision to choose the SFI standard has support from our customers throughout the world. Like us, our customers view third-party certification as an important tool in ensuring forests are managed sustainably worldwide.

We believe the existence of multiple certification systems is advantageous for several reasons:

  • Multiple programs can encourage greater use of responsible practices worldwide.
  • Different programs can accommodate the varying situations, resources, and needs of a variety of forest ownership types (government, private, family).
  • Multiple programs offer manufacturers and their customers greater flexibility in meeting consumer demands.
  • Competition encourages all programs to continually improve over time.

This 2013 Forbes article provides a good assessment of the need for multiple sustainable forestry certification systems.

Last updated February 5, 2015