3LOG - Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) Program
Between the forest and the final consumer, forest products may undergo many stages of processing, transformation, manufacturing and distribution. This has compelled the industry and many wood products companies to employ wood chain of custody certification in recent years.
Chain of Custody certification is essential for businesses seeking to access environmentally and socially aware or to demonstrate compliance with public and private procurement policies that specify environmentally responsible materials. These include the EU Ecolabel scheme for furniture, or the US Green Building Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system.
Reasons for having Chain of Custody certification range from qualifying for LEED wood credits and customer demand to verifying that their wood supply originates from well managed forests to downstream customers.
Common industry Chain of Custody programs include that Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) or Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) certifications. FSC is widely considered one of the best forestry certification programs, although industry groups tend to consider it too strict—and environmentalists, too lax. The nonprofit was started by environmental groups in 1993.
FSC Chain of Custody certification allows companies to label their FSC products, which in turn enables consumers to identify and choose products that support responsible forest management. Mixing of FSC certified and non-certified products must be done under controlled procedures that meet the FSC Chain of Custody requirements. FSC Chain of Custody certification verifies that FSC certified material is identified or kept segregated from non-certified or non-controlled material through this chain.
The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) is a ‘forest certification standard’ and program of SFI Inc., a non-profit organization. The Sustainable Forestry Initiative is the world’s largest single forest certification standard by area.
The SFI program was launched in 1994 by the American Forest and Paper Association. It became more independent in 2007 as a separate charity, SFI Inc. In 2005, the PEFC, which itself is the world’s largest forest certifications system, recognized the SFI standard.
The SFI standard covers key values such as protection of biodiversity, species at risk and wildlife habitat; sustainable harvest levels; protection of water quality; and prompt regeneration.
The SFI program only certifies lands in the United States and Canada, and program participants must comply with all applicable laws. For sources outside of North America without effective laws, participants must avoid illegal or other controversial sources. The SFI program supports activities by international experts to find ways to address the problem of illegal logging and is a member of the international, multi-stakeholder Forest Legality Alliance.
Taking advantage of the current technology available 3LOG developed the LoaderWiz application specifically for managing the Chain of Custody of wood products.
The process can be defined as a logger in the forest signs into LIMS Mobile and identifies the active sources and the GPS coordinates are captured. The logger processes the load by entering the product, destination, truck # and load description and also scans a preprinted trip ticket barcode with the ticket # assigned in LIMS. This information will be uploaded to the LIMS system. The hauler takes the trip ticket and attaches the preprinted load ticket to the end of a log on the load and then delivers to the specified destination. The trip ticket is scanned at the destination and electronically all the load information is uploaded to confirm delivery of the specified load to the intended destination.