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Policy for Labeling Community and SLIMF Products


Advice Note for Labeling Products from Small or Community Producers

FSC has developed an Advice Note for using a special label to differentiate products originating from FSC certified community and small or community producers around the globe: the Advice Note for Labeling Products from Small or Community Producers.

Background

Currently, the market for FSC certified products does not differentiate between products from industrial operations and products from small or community producers. The development of the Advice Note for Labeling Products from Small and Community Producers is driven by Policy motion 19, which was passed at the 2008 FSC General Assembly, and states:

FSC shall develop a strategy to differentiate community forest products* from other products, that allows a phrase like “COMMUNITY ORIGIN PRODUCT”, in the claim on the FSC product. The strategy shall include all relevant aspects of Chain of custody and labeling to guarantee product traceability. * See definition of community forest management approved by FSC.

* There is no FSC-approved definition of community forest management in the FSC Principles and Criteria Glossary.[1]

The FSC has developed new label text for use in the FSC 100% and MIX labels to indicate when product content is from small or community producers. For both labels 100% of the content must be from small or community producers (as defined in the Advice Note).

As small and community producers frequently face similar disadvantages in the market, especially small volumes which make it difficult to attract buyers and negotiate good prices, the FSC made both community and small producers eligible to use the new label text. The goal is that consumers who value the opportunity to support small or community producers will choose products made of raw material from these producers and/or pay more for them. This could provide new and/or improved marketing opportunities to small or community producers, as well as large companies who purchase forest products from these producers.

The new Advice Note explains how to use the new label text. The new label text will also be used in the pilot project for FSC-Fairtrade dual labeling of timber products from small and community producers in developing countries.

Background Documents

Background Information in English and Spanish

The first version of the Advice Note for Labelling Products from Small and Community Producers in English and Spanish

Compiled comments from the public review of the first version of the Advice Note.

Status

The development process is completed.