Chain of Custody Certification


What is chain of custody certification?

Chain of Custody certification from forest to end-user ensures that FSC materials and products have been checked at every stage of processing so that customers purchasing FSC labelled products can be confident that they are genuinely FSC certified. (© Elie Hakizumwami)© Elie HakizumwamiChain of custody certification from forest to end-user ensures that FSC materials and products have been checked at every stage of processing so that customers purchasing FSC labelled products can be confident that they are genuinely FSC certified.


What are the benefits of chain of custody certification?

  • Improved market access
  • Enhanced public image
  • Corporate Social Responsibility compliance
  • Meeting customer expectations
  • Government Procurement Policy compliance
  • Use of the iconic FSC trademarks and supplementary marketing assets

Who needs chain of custody?

Any company involved in the processing or transformation of FSC certified products (e.g. manufacturing, repackaging, pack-splitting, relabelling, cutting to size or adding other forest-based components to the product) must be FSC certified in order to apply an FSC label to their products and/or sell them with an FSC claim.

These include manufacturers, timber traders, wholesalers, importers, builders, contractors, publishers, printers - in fact, all those whose customers want to promote products as FSC certified or say that they have brought or used certified products (for example in an annual environment report).


Achieving chain of custody certification

FSC does not carry out audits itself, that job is done by independent, FSC accredited certification bodies. The time is takes to become certified can vary depending on existing management practices and documentation systems. Click here for more information on how to achieve FSC chain of custody certification. To download FSC standards, factsheets and other key documents related to FSC certification, click here.


FSC also offers the following certificates:


Project certification

Individual objects or buildings of any size or scale that are built or renovated on a one-off basis can achieve FSC certification through attaining FSC project certification, which can be used for virtually any type of new build or refurbishment, civil engineering projects, or events such as exhibitions and festivals. Please click here for further information.


Multi-site chain of custody

Multi-site chain of custody has been designed for larger companies that have a number of sites which share the same functions, methods or procedures. This makes use of elements of scale and thus is more economical than seeking a separate certificate for each site. Please click here for further information.


© Forest Stewardship Council® · FSC® F000231