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TTF Report highlights UK timber certification development

Press release from the issuing company

The Timber Trade Federation (TTF) has published a 44 page report presenting the development of timber certification in the UK over the last three to four years.

The objectives of this certification study, conducted in 2009 for the year 2008 were:

1. To quantify certified softwood roundwood, sawn timber and panel products available from recognized schemes within the major sectors of the timber industry in the United Kingdom for the year 2008 and compare this to the results from the previous study for 2005 and to indicate how certification might develop into 2009.

2. To make an estimate of the quantity of certified timber available from recognised certification schemes and provide a comparison of how the main certification schemes have developed between 2005 and 2008.

3. To assess the effect that the Olympic Games to be held in London in 2012 was having on the working practices of companies appointed to the Olympic Delivery Authority's (ODA's) supply panel.

The report found that the level of certification in the UK timber industry has increased significantly between 2005 and 2008. The certified proportion of the 8.18m tonnes of softwood roundwood harvested in the UK in 2008 increased to 83.9% from a level of 80.5% in 2005. The report also found that the certified proportion in the UK of the 14.40m m3 of timber and panel products produced and imported in 2008 grew to 83.6%, from a level of 66.7% in 2005.

Some of the other key findings of the report were;

1.    Imported softwood lumber certification has been the area which has seen the most significant growth, from 58% of imports in 2005 to over 90% in 2008.

2.    The level of certification of timber and panel products imports to the UK has risen from 55.8% in 2005 to 81.4% in 2008.

3.    The Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) dominate certification in the UK, with each building upon their strengths in their specialist areas. The PEFC schemes share of UK imports was around 50%, with FSC having a 30% share.

4.    The PEFC share of timber and panel products produced in the UK and imported rose to 32% in 2008, from a level of 18% in 2005. The share of FSC products increased from 48% in 2005 to 52%.

5.    Around 1 in 3 customers now specifically request certified goods, an increase from around 10% of sales in 2005 to over 30% in 2008.

The report also found that the Olympic Games, which will be held in London in 2012, has to date, had the effect of raising the external profile of the corporate social responsibility of some ODA supply companies.