Group and Multi-Site Chain of Custody Standards

Smurfit Kappa holds Multi-Site Chain of Custody Certification. (© Smurfit Kappa)© Smurfit KappaGroup Chain of Custody

Group Chain of Custody has been developed to help smaller enterprises achieve FSC certification by reducing the costs of certification. Small businesses can become certified jointly under one certificate.

A Group Manager will be assigned to ensure that all members of the Group are using systems that satisfy the FSC rules. Groups can only contain businesses that have either under 15 employees (or under 25 employees and a turnover of under $1 million).

Small businesses can join up with an existing Group Chain of Custody scheme. Trade associations, marketing groups or other groups with a common need to achieve chain of custody certification, can potentially run group schemes.


Multi-Site Chain of Custody

The FSC standard for Multi-site Chain of Custody certification was developed for larger companies that have a number of sites which share the same functions, methods or procedures.

The administrative requirements, plus communication with the certification body, are carried out by a designated central part of the organisation. The central office is responsible for controlling the Chain of Custody systems and audits all sites annually, and the Certification Body audits a sample dependent on the number of sites within the certificate.

Sites may be identical in function (such as branches of a builders’ merchant) or there may be sets of sites (for example, factories and sales offices). If a new site is added or removed the Certification Body just has to be notified, but to add a new set of sites involves a further audit by the Certification Body.


Both group and multi-site CoC certification allow Certification Bodies to evaluate participating operations or sites based on samples in recognition of existing common, centrally administered and monitored control and reporting systems.

For more details, please see the FSC Standard for Chain of Custody Certification of Multiple Sites below:


© Forest Stewardship Council® · FSC® F000231