Timber

It is really important to us and our customers that the timber we sell comes from well-managed forests. We believe it's possible to supply the UK repair, maintenance and improvement (RMI) market the timber it needs without causing deforestation or degradation.

We set a target of 96% certified timber by 2017 and we are pleased that we reached this target in 2014. We have stayed steady at 97% since 2014 and are now exploring how we can continue to maintain and improve our approach.

Our Approach

We have been working to help the timber industry improve throughout the sourcing process. We:

  • use our buying power to encourage sustainable forest management
  • help smaller suppliers obtain certification
  • collaborate with leaders, such as WWF, to benefit from peer-to-peer learning and share best practice
  • report openly and accurately about our quantities and timber policies

Progress against targets

Being a member of the WWF Global Forest and Trade Network (GFTN) makes an important contribution to the continued improvement of the timber product supply sectors.

Timber

We, in common with all GFTN members, distinguish between credibly certified and source verified products. You can see the WWF analysis in our Resources library.

Our efforts to source timber responsibly and being transparent about our policies have also been recognised by WWF with a top score of three trees in their 2015 timber scorecard. To score three trees companies must:

‘Perform well against the requests WWF makes to business regarding the purchasing of timber and timber products. Most have made public commitments to using FSC and recycled timber and timber products, and to EUTR compliance, and have set up policies and control systems. They report quantities openly and accurately and have a good understanding of the source of all their timber and timber products. They are sourcing over 70% certified material, with high proportions of FSC and recycled timber and timber products. These companies are well along the journey to complete the transition to 100% sustainable timber and timber products by 2020. They are showing their competitors that it is possible to act responsibly when it comes to forest trade.’

We support the WWF Forest campaign, find out more on their website.

Timber

Why timber certification matters

By managing our timber and timber products supply chain and buying certified timber we help avoid deforestation and forest degradation.

Managing forests in a responsible way means they will continue to provide us with renewable raw materials that are vital for our society and economy. Avoiding deforestation and degradation further means that forests will:

  • continue to provide shelter and a number of other services to forest-dependent people
  • conserve unique habitats for plants and animals
  • help mitigate climate change by absorbing carbon dioxide – did you know that the world’s forests and their soils currently store more than one trillion tons of carbon? (twice the amount found floating free in the atmosphere).
What does timber certification mean?

Timber certification can refer to:

  • Forest certification: a third party issues a certificate that verifies an area of forest is well managed according to specific environmental and social standards
  • Chain of custody certification: a third party certificate verifies that certified logs are kept segregated from non-certified timber. This means holders who want to sell timber products as certified are required to track all of their logs from certified forests

FSC is a global, not-for-profit organisation dedicated to the promotion of responsible forest management worldwide. FSC certification system is recommended by WWF as the best forestry certification scheme available.