Forest Certification Pathway Pilot

What is forest certification?

Forest certification provides independent assurance that farm forests are managed sustainably and offer economic benefits to the community.

Certification of farm forests increases access to additional timber markets, strengthens certified supply chains and improves the long-term sustainable management of farm forests.

There are two standards available in NSW that certify a forest to be environmentally, socially, culturally, and commercially sustainable:

  • forest certification under the Responsible Wood Certification Scheme (AS/NZS 4708 – Australian Standard for Sustainable Forest Management)
  • forest certification under the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC-STD-AUS-01-2018 EN - FSC Australian Forest Stewardship Standard).

What is the Forest Certification Pathway?

Local Land Services has developed a pathway to help landholders become certified under the Responsible Wood Forest Certification Scheme by streamlining the administrative process for Farm Forestry Certification.

The Certification Pathway complements the Private Native Forestry Codes of Practice. It supports landholders in developing a sophisticated and independently assessed Forest Management System tailored to a landholder’s property and business plan.

In the near future, the Forest Certification Pathway will be updated to include certification under the FSC Australia Forest Stewardship Standard.

What is involved in the Forest Certification Pathway Pilot?

Together with Responsible Wood, the Farm Forestry Certification Pilot will assist landholders in trailing and refining the pathway, all the way through to certification.

Landholders who participate in the Certification Pathway Pilot will receive:

  • support from a forestry certification consultant to navigate the certification process and provide specialist advice, including a Forest Management System and business practices consistent with the Responsible Wood Standards
  • certification assessment by an accredited Certification Body, including a two-stage assessment that provides opportunities for the Forest Management System to be refined in line with Certification requirements
  • continued annual audit costs and notification fees for a maximum of three years
  • the opportunity to work closely with Local Land Services to improve the Certification Pathway and ensure it adequately supports landholders in NSW.

Expressions of Interest

  • EOI opens: 17 November 2022
  • EOI closes: 9 January 2023, 5pm

Who can apply

To participate, landholders with forested land will need to meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • an existing Private Native Forestry (PNF) Plan
  • ability to undertake forest management in line with Responsible Wood Certification Standards
  • willingness to work with Local Land Services on reviewing the Certification Pathway
  • commitment to maintain Certification once the Pilot has ended
  • agreement for Local Land Services to host field days in their forest to inform other farm forest managers about the Certification pathway.

Expressions of Interest

Landholders are invited to submit an Expression of Interest PDF, 152.06 KB (EOI) to be part of the NSW Forest Certification Pilot.

Please read the NSW Forest Certification Pilot Guidelines PDF, 73.4 KB before submitting an EOI.

Please submit signed EOIs to or Local Land Services, 117 Bull Street, Newcastle West, 2302.

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