Consequently, FSC will introduce transaction verification in paulownia supply chains from February 2019. All businesses required to perform transaction verification for 2018 paulownia-related claims will be notified directly by their certification body by mid-March. The deadline for certificate holders to complete transaction verification is 15 April 2019.

Transaction verification is the process of comparing and verifying all transactions related to a specific product type, group or region over a given time period.

All selected FSC-certified paulownia transactions between trading partners in 2018 will be verified. Certification bodies will inform selected certificate holders and send further instructions about timelines and requirements. Certificate holders will need to submit their purchase and sales data for 2018 to their certification bodies. The certification bodies will then share these details with FSC and ASI. The aim is to fully map false claims in the paulownia supply chain.

Certification bodies will then act on mismatching volumes by issuing corrective action requests. Certificate holders may see their certificates suspended or terminated if an investigation determines they have deliberately allowed misleading transactions to enter the FSC system.

The paulownia tree originates in Eastern Asia (China, Japan and Korea). It has large heart-shaped leaves and clusters of purple or white flowers. Its wood can be used for a wide variety of purposes, such as housing components, water sports material, furniture and musical instruments.