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Ensuring sustainable forest management

We put sustainability at the heart of our forestry policies and practices so that we can realise the full potential of the country's woodlands as economic, environmental and social resources. Where improvement is required, it is our responsibility to guide and encourage the changes, and to ensure these fit with the international commitments we have made on sustainable forest management.

What this means to us

Every Forestry England woodland has been assessed against the UK Woodland Assurance Standard (UKWAS) by an independent auditor. As a result, our woodlands carry the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) stamp of approval. This makes us the largest supplier of FSC® certified round timber in England. In recognition of this work, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) awarded us the prestigious ‘Gift to the Earth’ award.

Our forests are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC). These certifications underline the sustainable management practices we employ to take care of our forests and to provide products such as timber, Christmas trees and venison. The management of all the land in our care is done in a way to maintain biodiversity and natural ecological processes, as well as being socially and economically beneficial.

What this means to you

Looking out for the FSC® or PEFC logo allows you to make a decision on the products that you buy, and be confident that they are sustainable. WWF recommends that you look out for the logos, so you can do your bit to buy what you need without damaging woodlands and forests.

The Central Point of Expertise on Timber (CPET) has confirmed through DEFRA that four certification schemes demonstrate timber and wood products come from legal and sustainable sources:

  • FSC®- Forest Stewardship Council®
  • CSA - Canadian Standards Association
  • PEFC - Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification schemes
  • SFI - North American Sustainable Forest Initiative

UK government policy is to treat these four schemes as equivalent when purchasing timber and wood products.