International Standards - PEFC
The Australian Forest Certification Scheme is one of some 30 national schemes endorsed by the Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) and AFS Ltd is the national governing body for PEFC in Australia.
PEFC is an international non-profit, non-governmental organisation dedicated to promoting sustainable forest management (SFM) through independent third-party certification.
PEFC works throughout the entire forest supply chain to promote good practice in the forest and to ensure that timber and non-timber forest products are produced with respect for the highest ecological, social and ethical standards. Thanks to its eco-label, customers and consumers are able to identify products from sustainably managed forests.
PEFC is an umbrella organisation. It works by endorsing national forest certification systems developed through multi-stakeholder processes and tailored to local priorities and conditions.
With over 30 endorsed national certification systems and more than 240 million hectares of certified forests, PEFC is the world's largest forest certification system.
Each national forest certification system undergoes rigorous third-party assessment against PEFC's unique sustainability benchmarks to ensure consistency with international requirements.
These benchmarks have been developed based on internationally-recognised, ongoing and long-term, intergovernmental processes and guidelines for the promotion of sustainable forest management to ensure compliance with globally agreed requirements.
The benchmark criteria are regularly revised through multi-stakeholder processes involving participants drawn globally from civil society, business, governments, labour and research institutions to take account of new scientific knowledge, societal change, evolving expectations and to incorporate latest best practice.
Today, PEFC includes 36 national certification systems among its membership, which is also open to international stakeholders such as civil society organisations, businesses, government entities and intergovernmental bodies.
PEFC bases its sustainability benchmark on broad consensus by society, expressed in globally respected international and intergovernmental processes and guidelines. PEFC best practice standards promote environmentally sound, socially just, and economically viable management of our forests globally. For more information on the PEFC Standards see the PEFC website.