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PEFC - Peace of Mind

Feb 01 2013

ttj-articleWith just over a month to go until the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) comes into force, companies along the timber supply chain are looking for cost-effective solutions to demonstrate regulatory compliance. But PEFC-certified companies can relax; the newly revised PEFC Chain of Custody standard will be fully aligned with the EUTR.

A recent Proforest Study of the PEFC’s 2010 Chain of Custody standard demonstrated that PEFC was already in full compliance with EUTR legality criteria, except those related to legal trade and customs requirements. However, these are included in the forthcoming 2013 Chain of Custody standard. This is in line with a gap analysis of PEFC’s Chain of Custody standard in 2012, which concluded that small, yet smart changes were needed to align it with the EUTR.

The adjustments to the 2013 PEFC Chain of Custody standard, proposed after extensive consultation, can be summarised as follows:

  • expansion of the PEFC definition of controversial sources to include trade and customs legislation;
  • addition of information requirements, such as tree species name and country of harvest;
  • modifications to the PEFC Due Diligence System (DDS);
  • making it an integral element of the PEFC Chain of Custody standard and applicable to certified and uncertified material;
  • ensuring it distinguishes between high risk, medium risk and negligible risk;
  • making risk mitigation necessary for all risk categories except negligible risk;
  • making it available as a stand-alone system, allowing companies to obtain PEFC DDS certification.

The availability of PEFC DDS certification as a stand-alone system may be of particular interest to uncertified companies. Besides demonstrating EUTR compliance, it can be a stepping stone to full PEFC chain of custody certification.

Following public consultation, the 2013 PEFC Chain of Custody standard is expected to be approved in March. But companies can already align their PEFC chain of custody with EUTR in four easy steps, based on the enquiry draft of the new standard:


Originally published in the Timber Trades Journal, reprinted with kind permission.

More information:

PEFC - Peace of Mind (141.25 kB)