On 12 October 2021, the FSC Board’s Policy and Standards Committee (PSC) officially approved the inclusion of non-timber forest products (NTFPs) into the scope of the new FSC National Forest Stewardship Standard (NFSS) of China (FSC-STD-CHN-01.1-2021 EN).
From 2022 on, forest management certificate holders in China will be able to include NTFPs in their certification scope.
FSC-certified forests produce more than just timber, namely NTFPs such as resins, food, bamboo and more. As the demand for FSC-certified products grows in both variety and volume, the market for FSC-certified NTFPs also increases. The first version of the NFSS of China (FSC-STD-CHN-01-2016) did not include NFTPs but Chinese companies were eager to include NTFPs in their certification scope to be part of the international supply chain. To address this, FSC China submitted the application for the NFSS revision to include NTFP in the scope in 2020 resulting in this new revised NFSS of China.
The scope of NTFPs covered in the new version NFSS of China includes: bark, cork and cork products, straw, willow, rattan and similar, bamboo and bamboo products, plants and parts of plants, natural gums, resins, oils and derivatives, chemical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic products, and food (excluding prey).
The new NFSS of China (FSC-STD-CHN-01.1-2021 EN) includes the same requirements from the first version of the NFSS of China (FSC-STD-CHN-01-2016) plus new special requirements for NTFPs certification. Forest management certificate holders in China applying for NTFPs certification now need to meet the special requirements for NTFPs as found in Appendix 8 of the standard and the requirements already valid since the first version of the NFSS of China.
The revised NFSS for China (English version) can be found in the FSC Document Centre.