National Forest Stewardship Standards

National Forest Stewardship Standards (NFSS)

FSC’s forest management certification confirms that forests are managed in a way that preserves biological diversity and benefits the lives of local people and workers, while ensuring that these forests remain economically viable. There are ten principles that any forest operation must adhere to before it can receive FSC forest management certification. These principles cover a broad range of issues, from maintaining high conservation value to community relations and workers’ rights, as well as monitoring the environmental and social impacts of the forest management.

To allow industry players to adopt practical, actionable and responsible forest management practices that allow them to fulfil growing market demand for certified forest products. FSC develops National Forest Stewardship Standards (NFSS) for individual countries based on our globally-consistent International Principles and Criteria.

NFSS are developed through a collaborative and consultative process, owned and managed by six to nine in-country representatives who hold a chamber balance of economic, social and environmental perspectives and are supported by FSC staff members. These individuals form a country’s Standard Development Group (SDG) and ensure FSC’s principles and criteria are enacted through country-specific and relevant indicators and indicator. These indicators and verifiers ensure bottom-up, grassroots input at the country level while also maintaining globally consistent standards.

Currently, there are 12 SDGs in the Asia Pacific region, including Australia, China (Chinese only), India, Indonesia, Japan (Japanese only), Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam; with Cambodia, Laos, Philippines, Solomon Islands and Sri Lanka in the preparation stages of forming an SDG. Before a country’s National Standard is put in place, Interim National Standards (INS) provide a vehicle for forest managers to enter the FSC system and join ethical and responsible forest trade.

As of early 2022, Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and Vietnam have their NFSSs in place.

To find out how you can get involved with the NFSS for your country, please contact FSC APAC Regional Team or your local FSC representative.