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Ongoing negotiations with FSC for certification renewal for Polish state forests

State Forests in Poland have recently revealed that they are in active negotiations with FSC International to renew certification terms, marking a significant step forward in their commitment to sustainable forest management. The discussions between primarily revolve around shaping agreements and refining rules outlined in the national standard. Notably, several regional directorates have already terminated existing agreements but are now seeking extensions, highlighting the importance of maintaining certification standards across all operations.

FSC, or the Forest Stewardship Council, is recognised as one of the leading forest management certification systems globally. However, formal objections to certain agreement clauses have restricted its application within the Polish State Forests, with only four regional directorates currently authorised to use the FSC label. In contrast, all 17 directorates possess certification from an alternative system known as PEFC.

Photo © Aksitaykut |

In previous months, regional directorates terminated certification agreements with FSC due to unresolved issues within the contracts and a lack of consensus on national standards. As a result, certifications expired, prompting a need for renegotiation and alignment with industry expectations.

Witold Koss, Director General of State Forests, stressed the voluntary nature of certification processes and the importance of ensuring that agreements benefit both parties. The upcoming negotiations aim to address these concerns and foster a mutually beneficial partnership. The first meeting between State Forests and FSC International is scheduled for the end of February, signifying a proactive approach to resolving certification challenges.

Additionally, State Forests announced plans to initiate the process of extending certification validity for two regional directorates—Katowice and Szczecin. This derogation will allow continued use of the FSC label until the end of August, providing timber entrepreneurs with additional time to comply with evolving standards and requirements.


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