SmartWood's purpose is to improve the effectiveness
Enable forestry in conserving bio-diversity and providing equity for local communities, fair treatment to workers, and creating incentives for businesses so that they can benefit economically from responsible forestry practices.
Initiated in 1989, SmartWood is the oldest and most extensive certification program in the world. SmartWood is a program of the Rainforest Alliance, an international nonprofit environmental group based in New York City. Though the program initially focused on tropical forests, today SmartWood now works in all forest types -- tropical, temperate and boreal -- and operations, including natural forests, plantations, large commercial operations and small-scale community projects. SmartWood has certified more than 800 operations and 25 million acres worldwide, and demand for certified lumber from these operations is increasing rapidly. Products crafted from SmartWood certified wood now include furniture, musical instruments, flooring, and picture and window frames. SmartWood's record of innovation and commitment to the highest principles of environmental and community integrity have established this program as the "gold standard" of certification schemes.
SmartWood is managed by a headquarters staff of experienced forestry specialists and administrators based at Rainforest Alliance offices in New York and Vermont, in collaboration with a growing number of independent nonprofit organizations that focus on forest monitoring, evaluations, assessments and forest product certification in tropical, temperate, and far northern regions.
SmartWood provides on-the-ground services to clients through its worldwide network of regional offices and independent, nonprofit organizations. By having regional managers in place at the local level, we are able to offer superior customer service to our certification clients and assist them with their certification needs. Each regional office focuses on building SmartWood's brand equity in the marketplace and delivering a full range of quality certifications and services available through Rainforest Alliance's SmartWood program. SmartWood also works on a region-specific basis in collaboration with various other independent, nonprofit organizations that focus on forest monitoring, evaluations, assessments, and forest product certification in tropical, temperate, and far northern regions.
Through certification, and use of the SmartWood label, the program provides a commercial incentive for forest managers to adopt sustainable forestry practices. SmartWood certifies forest products that come from "well-managed" forests ("sources"). Candidate sources may include a natural forest, a plantation, a large commercial operation or a small-scale community project. SmartWood also certifies companies that process, manufacture or sell products made from certified wood, through "chain of custody" certification. In short, certification:
© Copyright 1996, Ivan Ussach
The world always needs wood -- the question is whether we're managing it well for the future.
SmartWood serves as an internationally recognized clearinghouse for information on sustainable forest management and certified wood products. Public information is sent daily in response to requests from consumers, architects/designers, manufacturers, woodworkers, builders and municipal governments. Available information includes: the program description, brochures and sales sheets, certification guidelines, application forms, and publications on certification.
- Ensures that timber harvesting is ecologically sound, and socially and economically beneficial to local communities
- Creates market incentives for producers to responsibly manage forests and harvest timber
- Gives consumers the power to positively "vote" for conservation when they buy certified wood products
- Contributes to the preservation of forests and forest wildlife worldwide
|Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)
FSC Trademark © 1996 Forest Stewardship Council A.C.
The FSC is a nongovernmental institution with headquarters in Oaxaca, Mexico, established to set standards for forestry certification programs worldwide and accredit certification organizations that comply with these standards. The FSC was created by certifiers, forest products businesses and environmental groups to monitor certification and prevent a confusing proliferation of standards. SmartWood was accredited by the FSC for natural forest management certification in early 1996, and is now accredited for plantation, non-timber forest products and chain-of-custody certifications.