Small and community producers that qualify as small in area or low-intensity in terms of harvest can also form a group (or create a sub-group in their existing group) to reduce their certification costs even further.
FSC group certification allows a group of forest owners to join together under a single FSC certificate organized by a group manager. The group members share certification costs among themselves. Group certification reduces the cost and workload for each group member related to achieving and maintaining an FSC certificate. The number of group members is not limited, but the group has to be managed effectively and function according to FSC rules.
The group has to choose a group manager. This person or organization will have the main responsibility for ensuring that the forest management of group members meets the FSC requirements for certification and has to reports to the auditor on their internal monitoring.
The group manager will typically have the following responsibilities:
The group members also have some responsibilities. They are typically: