Responsible Sourcing

Harvesting trees for timber places an important economic value on forests; without this value, and in the context of a fast increasing global population, the pressure to clear forests for other land-uses is huge. Buying timber from sustainably managed forests therefore helps to keep forests standing. This is vitally important, given the role that forests play in helping to mitigate climate change, enhance biodiversity and protect ecologically important habitats and wildlife.


Sustainably-managed forests not only ensure good environmental practices but also ensure that the rights of forest communities and indigenous people are respected and taken into account in forest management. Hence, sustainable forest management provides wider social benefits as well as economic benefits for local communities.


The best assurance that timber comes from sustainably-managed forests is to buy timber that has been independently certified under globally respected schemes, such as FSC and PEFC.  TTF members are leaders in this area; 91% of all our members’ timber purchases are from such sources- see here for more detail.


Risk Assessment

Here you will find information to help meet your Due Diligence risk assessment and mitigation obligations under the EUTR. This page is designed to complement the risk assessment within the RPP Guide and, as such, there may be some overlap of content.


The TTF is not responsible for the content of other third party sites. If you find any inaccuracies, suggestions for content, or feedback, please contact Xiao Ma, TTF Sustainability Manager by email:

Technical and Trade

BES EN 13556: Round and Sawn Timber  Nomenclature of Timbers Used in Europe – A useful guide on timber species, and is the standard referenced in the official EC EUTR Guidance note.


The Forestry Commission – Provides guidance on import regulations related to plant health for companies importing from outside the EU.


HMRC’s Importers Details Database – A useful web-based database to help importers check whether they have been Operators (First Placers in Box 8 ofthe C88-Single Administrative Document (SAD)) of timber products from outside the EU. It offers over 130,000 names and addresses of businesses importing from outside the EU and is updated monthly with information taken from customs administrative documents.


ClientEarth – NGO that focuses on improving the framework and delivery of environmental law. They have been very active on EUTR over the past few years. ClientEarth’s EUTR webpage provides their perspectives in an overview.


Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA)  – Releases up to date news on a number of environmental issues, including deforestation and illegal logging, based on an investigatory approach. They have published reports on the timber trade in Indonesia, China, the UK and US.


FERN – NGO created in 1995 to keep track of the EU’s involvement in forests and coordinates NGO activities at the European level. FERN’s activities look at all aspects that drive deforestation.


Forest Trends – Not-for-profit research/think tank organisation that works to expand the value of forests through their sustainable use and conservation. The work that Forest Trends do in the timber trade comes under their Forest Trade and Finance Initiative. They have a number of timber trade related publications that may be useful when conducting risk assessments. Forest Trends have strong links into China and, over the past few years, have spent increasing time researching the role of the Chinese Industry in the timber trade.


Global Witness – NGO that works to expose the hidden links between demand for natural resources, corruption, armed conflict, and environmental destruction. It compiles reports and investigates instances of illegal logging globally. Their Forests Campaign provides an easy to use search facility that will flag up potentially important documents and concerns about illegal logging.


Greenpeace International – Campaigning organisation that is against industrial logging. Their work consistently identifies weak points in timber supply chains and flags up instances of illegal logging, particularly in forests that can still be considered as “intact”. Their protecting forest pages offer links to particular regions and it is useful to stay abreast of companies under scrutiny or any particular criticisms of certification schemes.


Traffic  – Wildlife trade monitoring network. It is one of the leading NGOs that working globally on trade in wild animals and plants in the context of both biodiversity, conservation and sustainable development. Traffic has a number of publications on forest issues across the globe, some of which may be useful in carrying out risk assessments.


NEPCON – Non-profit organisation that builds commitment and capacity for mainstreaming sustainability. NEPCON were the first Monitoring Organisation to be recognised by the EC and have a useful Timber Legality website. All of NEPCON’s resources are available “open-source” and they can be contacted to undertake supply chain audits and verification.


WWF’s Global Forest & Trade Network (GFTN) Guide to Legal and Responsible Sourcing – Useful for those who are at the start of their journey of sourcing timber from legal and responsible sources by strengthening the links between companies committed to achieving and supporting responsible forestry. In particular, their guide that indicates the legality in different countries is very useful.

Species Risk Information

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) – Lists a number of species in its Appendices. Those listed on Appendices II and III, and Appendix I in exceptional circumstances, may be granted trade certificates and/or permits and these are automatically granted legal status under the EUTR. Species cleared under CITES for trade are considered to be legal under the EUTR. A list of CITES listed tree species can be found on this KEW website. An excellent resource to find out if the species you are trading is a CITES species or listed by the EU within the Annexes to the EU Wildlife Trade Regulations, is Alternatively, use this CITES database here.


DELTA – Description Language for Taxonomy – A useful search engine to find out more about different species. It is the reference database that is used by FSC.


The Forest Transparency Initiative – Provides useful information on governance and transparency issues in several Central African countries.


International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List – Database that lists the vulnerability status of different species. It is important to be aware that it is particularly sensitive to spelling and will only accept botanical names. National Red Lists can be viewed here.


WWF published a useful Guide to Lesser Known Tropical Timber Species.

Country/Region Level Assessment Tools

The World Resources Institute (WRI) Global Forest Watch Tool – Although not part of the FLA programme, provides a useful tool to give real-time global deforestation satellite imagery and information on forests. There are “how to” videos about how to use the tool, and it is very useful to access data and look at the status of areas of interest to your business. A useful aspect to look at are the competing land-use allocations that may have been made in the area that you may be sourcing from.


The FSC Global Forest Registry – Brilliant first port of call for assessing risk in particular countries or building a broader picture of global risk, especially if you are sourcing FSC Controlled Wood. There is also an opportunity for you to contribute information to this registry if you know of any particular instances of illegal logging and, as such, a number of NGOs contribute their findings here.


FSC Controlled Wood National Risk Assessments – Conducted by third parties or FSC National Offices. Once the NRA is approved it will be loaded onto the Global Forest Registry. Further details on amendments to the controlled wood risk assessment process can be downloaded here. In addition, it is worth keeping an eye on the FSC newsroom.


Illegal-Logging Info – Managed by Chatham House, with funding from UKaid. It provides a fantastic overview of illegal logging and should certainly serve as the first port of call when seeking information and staying abreast of recent developments regarding risk areas and risk species.


Transparency International’s CPI – Provides a score for each country in the world based on the perception of corruption within a country. Although not a perfect indicator, it is the most widely used global indicator of corruption and it provides a good indicator of the level of legal compliance. Transparency International also has other useful information, such as the country profiles and  Keeping REDD+ Clean Guide provides some interesting pointers on corruption as well.


World Bank Governance Indicators  – They compile and summarise information from 32 existing data sources that report the views and experiences of citizens, entrepreneurs, and experts in the public, private and NGO sectors, from around the world, on the quality of various aspects of governance.


Sanctions checks can be made on the EU’s website or the UN Security Council website. You can also investigate whether there are imposed sanctions by the UN Security Council on timber imports or exports through the search engine on their website.  This UK Government Website is also a useful information website on sanctions.

Useful Links

Useful Resources

NEPCon: Fake Documents: How to spot them and what to do about them

FSC/PEFC: Check your Certificates Expiry Dates and Validity