Information Meeting on Forest Certification.

Press Release 14/04/2017.

Information Meeting on Forest Certification.

Forest certification programs typically require that forest management practices conform to existing environmental and biodiversity laws. The two largest international forest certification programs are the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).

Chain of Custody certification tracks the certified material through the production process – from the forest to the consumer, including all successive stages of processing, transformation, manufacturing and distribution. It provides evidence that certified material in a certified product originates from certified forests.

The United Nations Market Review reported that companies that produced or traded in certified forest products often had a market advantage during the recent financial crisis because ,in a buyers market,buyers could be more selective in choosing their sources of supply.

The largest supplier of wood to the processing sector in Ireland,  Coillte, is Chain of Custody certified. However this is due to change in the near future with timber from the private sector exceeding Coillte’s output.

Presently there is a limit to the volume of uncertified material the saw and panel mills can absorb – a maximum of 30% for sawmills and 20% for panel mills. After the damage of Storm Darwin the supply of timber from private sources  exceeded these figures resulting in instances of private sales being turned away, or at least postponed.

Ireland’s forest industry is export driven with overseas markets demanding certified timber, Therefore it is critical that access to these markets is maintained.



These problems have been recognised by the Forest Service who have initiated a pilot programme to implement certification with two of the country’s leading private owner forestry groups, North Eastern Forestry Group and Forest Owner Co-operative Society (F.O.C.S.)

Minister of State Andrew Doyle, TD., recently welcomed, the signing of the contract for the establishment of two certification groups, one in the north and one in the south as an important milestone for Ireland’s growing forest industry as it represents a gateway to certification for private forest owners.

Forest Owners Co-op is holding an information meeting at the Riverside Park Hotel, Macroom Co.Cork at 8.00 pm,Thursday May 11th to brief private owners on Chain of Custody requirements ,how they will affect them and the most effective way of addressing the issue. Speakers will include Karl Coggins (Assistant Principal, Forest Service) John Casey (Forest Advisor, Teagasc) Conor McSweeney (GP Wood) Eugene Curran (Forest Service, West Cork) and Michael Greaney (Participant, Certification Pilot Project)

All private forest owners are welcome.