The revision will result in a more equitable fee structure, fee changes for accredited certification bodies and certificate holders, and is expected to generate additional revenue for FSC to invest in continuing to improve the value of FSC certification.

The AAF is an annual fee charged by FSC to accredited certification bodies. It is calculated according to the AAF policy, using the value of the forest products turnover of a certificate holder.

The majority of FSC’s income comes from the AAF and is used to fund FSC’s activities. As such, the AAF is a vital contribution to achieving FSC’s mission of Forests for All Forever.

To date, FSC has successfully grown the FSC brand and promoted the uptake of FSC certification. Most notably, FSC has:

  • Increased the adoption of FSC certification in key value chains such as textiles, packaging, natural rubber and furniture, providing market growth opportunities for many chain of custody certificate holders. For example, FSC collaborated with Pirelli and BMW to launch the first FSC-certified car tyre, which is a significant step forward in the sustainable development of the natural rubber sector.
  • Increased its engagement with ecommerce. For example, FSC collaborated with Amazon to highlight FSC-certified products as part of the Amazon Climate Pledge Friendly platform to encourage consumers to choose more sustainable  products.
  • Reached millions of consumers with stories of our impact, most recently on EuroNews and National Geographic.
  • Continued development and expansion of FSC climate and ecosystem services solutions.
  • Invested in technology to make the FSC system more transparent and allow auditors to prepare for audits virtually, so making the audit process faster, more effective and data driven.
  • Developed and piloted new certification protocols for smallholders, ensuring forests are protected, while opening market opportunities for many small forest owners.

Potential extra funding from the revised AAF policy will enable FSC to build on this progress and continue to grow the value of the FSC brand and uptake of FSC certification. In turn, this will create larger markets for FSC-certified products. In addition, further investment will accelerate development of climate and ecosystem services solutions and strengthen the integrity of FSC's system through investment in blockchain technology, helping FSC to address problematic supply chains.

For more information on the AAF revision, visit the FSC website.