About Certification of Forest Contractors (CeFCo)

Access to forest management certification and its benefits is more challenging for small forest holders who often face cost and procedural obstacles to certification. The project was designed to explore a new concept whereby forest managers use certified forestry contractors, reducing the costs and work load for forest managers seeking certification.  Ultimately, the goal is to boost certification among small forest operations.

At the heart of this project is the development of guidelines and tools for sharing certification tasks between forest owners and contractors. This has been done following a three-step process. Essentially, a certified forestry contractor would assume responsibility for demonstrating compliance with the forest certification standards related to forestry operations, with which forest owners frequently have difficulty proving compliance.

This will simplify the certification process for forest owners by reducing the total number of certification requirements with which they must actively prove compliance.  Although the landowners are ultimately responsible for ensuring forestry operations on their land meet all standards, contractors are important to fulfill the requirements for certification. Learn more about how this works.

Certification will provide contractors an independent quality assurance for their customers, and potentially increase demand for their services.

Concluded in May 2012, this three-year project has been rolled out and tested across five European countries: Bulgaria, Denmark, Portugal, Spain and Sweden.