WWF has filed complaint against Schweighofer's FSC certification

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Fordaq
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WWF Austria has filed an appeal against the FSC certification of Holzindustrie Schweighofer. The complaint is responding to an announcement made in January, when the Austrian company had received a new FSC certification, for the Chain of Custody (CoC) of its locations in Romania and three other countries. According to Schweighofer, the new FSC certification was meant to ensure that no timber that the company uses comes from controversial sources. However, the WWF has doubts that the competent certification body Quality Austria, has complied with the FSC standards and demands a comprehensive review of the process.

The complaint was lodged against the FSC accreditation body "ASI" (Accreditation Services International). ASI is not part of FSC, but accredits independent certification on behalf of FSC. Like all other certifiers, Quality Austria has also received approval from ASI FSC to be able to issue certificates.

The WWF also expresses doubts as to how the certifier could have come to know that the entire timber procurement of Schweighofer was legal, without checking all suppliers. Massive accusations from various non-governmental organizations of former foresters, or the Romanian authorities, in which Schweighofer is directly connected to illegal timber and organized crime, concerns about bogus companies etc. were apparently ignored. Most of these investigations against Holzindustrie Schweighofer are not yet completed or have not yet begun, however.

In November last year, the WWF has also filed a complaint against Schweighofer with the FSC. FSC was asked verify the allegations that Schweighofer is buying illegal wood sources from non FSC certified forests. FSC International had accepted this complaint and has started a review process.

 

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