FSC has reacted swiftly, staying in touch with certification bodies and Assurance Services International as we adapted to a new environment. FSC certification is granted by certification bodies (CBs), who perform the auditing and monitoring of chain of custody and forestry organizations. These certification bodies are accredited by Assurance Services International (ASI), who provide a further layer of protection and assessment against non-conformities in the certificate holder or certification body level. FSC relies on ASI and accredited CBs to provide input towards continuous iteration and strengthening of the FSC system and be the guards and watchers for system’s integrity. Recently, one of these instances of interaction was through an annual Certification Body meeting where FSC informs CBs about the latest developments and gathers their feedback on how to move forward with certification. ASI also joins the event to provide updates and inputs. These international CB meetings have been organized for over 15 years by FSC International in Bonn and also are organized on national level by some network partners.
There are 39 CBs accredited right now located across the world from Japan to the Americas. Some CBs have been integral pieces of the FSC system since the beginning as contributing founding members of FSC while others have recently become accredited. Every one of these certification bodies must comply with the same standards no matter what. FSC would like to thank our partners on the ground, including certification bodies and ASI, for their continued hard work towards ensuring responsible forestry through continued audits and monitoring in a changing environment. Interested to learn more? Read about CBs here, and here.