News & Commentary



FSC-IC Membership Meeting – Chicago – Nov. 5-6, 2019

Did you know that the Forest Stewardship Council is holding a meeting this week in Chicago?  We’ve been asking colleagues this question recently and been surprised at how many answered no.  The meeting is aimed at FSC members (yes – that includes MixedWood) but will be attended by non-member certificate holders as well.  It is only the second meeting hosted by FSC-International in the US, which makes it important, we think.   The venue is the Warwick...

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FSC Controlled Wood: the rubber hits the road

When it became clear, over 6 years ago, that the “old way” of Controlled Wood due diligence for FSC-certified companies would be ending, we all understood that the “new way” would include some new challenges.  With the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), nothing is ever easy.  Over the years, when clients and stakeholders asked us what the new challenges would be, our advice was simply to wait and see.  We knew that sooner or later it would become clear. As is often the case, sooner turned into...

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FSC-US BoD Elections

We wrote an article about FSC membership in December 2016 in which we outlined and summarized the organization's structure and decision-making processes.  One of our key points was the fact that FSC is a massive and influential organization that is run by a very small group of people. We think this is unhealthy and hope that FSC can find a better way to expand its membership someday.  In the meantime, those of us who are voting members (including MixedWood) have a special responsibility. Show...

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ISO 38200: a fresh look at CoC?

One of the longstanding frustrations for businesses that are interested in participating in the markets for certified wood products is the confusing and overlapping rules and terminology.  The leading programs we work with - Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) - are both nearly 25 years old, but we still, regularly encounter folks with questions about “the FSI or SFC Programs”. If the program names still confuse people, the underlying details are even...

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FSC Controlled Wood: the US-NRA is here!

It seems hard to believe, but the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) announced late last week that the long-awaited National Risk Assessment (NRA) for the United States has finally been approved and posted for use.  It's hard to believe that it's here.  It is also hard to believe that it took more than 6 years to accomplish.  The hard work isn't done, but this is nonetheless an important and helpful step forward.   As with all things at FSC, the devil is in the details.  That said, we think...

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Looking for Trees in the Lumber Yard

When you spend most of your time and attention, mired in the day-to-day world of Chain of Custody (CoC) certification, it can be easy to lose sight of why we work so hard at all of this.  At MixedWood, we are fond of pointing out just how much the FSC, SFI, and PEFC programs have in common.  One obvious but often overlooked point is in their names.  In our modern world of acronyms and abbreviations, our favorite “green” certification programs are most generally referred to by their initials. ...

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