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Confused about sustainability? Read our simple guide to forest certifications!

AnchorIs wood from Victoria sustainable?

  • In short: yes! All our members, from growers to processors, are globally certified. There are two major certification schemes for wood products: FSC® and Responsible Wood, the National Governing body for PEFC in Australia.
  • When you buy a product made from Victorian wood, you can rest assured it has been grown and harvested under sustainable practices. In fact, forest standards in Australia are among the highest in the world!
  • Every tree harvested is regrown.
  • Wood from Victoria comes with a smaller carbon footprint. After all, it did not need to be shipped halfway across the world!
 

Are FSC® and PEFC the same? Yes and no!

  • Both are committed to the same cause: to not only protect the world’s forests now but also ensure a responsible supply of timber for future generations.
  • Both ensure that end-users get responsibly sourced timber.
  • Both have a Sustainable Forest Management certification to maintain responsible management practices for forests.

So – what are the main differences?

  • Unlike FSC®, PEFC also has a Chain of Custody scheme which tracks timber from its origin forest, allowing companies to make accurate and verifiable claims about its timber materials.
  • Certifications:
    • FSC® (Forest Stewardship Council) issues its own certifications
    • Responsible Wood / PEFC uses certified institutions for the process; the certification consists of two Australian Standards: Sustainable Forest Management and Chain of Custody.
  • Different origins: 
    • Initially, the FSC scheme was developed for tropical environments, therefore not suited for forests in Europe and North America.
    • This led to the introduction of PEFC in the late 1990s, to facilitate SFM certification in Europe.
  • Scale:
    • PEFC now accounts for over 264 million hectares of certified forests. Its certifications system is recognised in over 30 countries.
  • FSC has certified forests in over 80 countries, with 7% of the world’s forest area (180 million hectares) carrying the FSC certification.

What does that mean for me?

  • Support local timber – it’s sustainable
  • If you are unsure about the origin of the wood product you buy, look for either of the above logos. If the wood was harvested in Victoria, you can be sure it is sustainable.
  • For every tree that was used to make your product, a new tree has been planted and is growing right now!

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