Industry News

Ross Bradshaw appointed as new PEFC UK Chairman

Ross Bradshaw is the incoming PEFC UK Chairman. He succeeds Hugh Miller OBE, who announced his retirement last July, during PEFC UK Annual General Meeting.

In his farewell report, Hugh said: “PEFC has made substantial progress and has much to celebrate. In less than two decades, PEFC has gone from an organisation of 11 national certification systems to 38 member countries and it is still growing.” "Today, two thirds of all certified forests globally are certified to PEFC standards, and more than half of the world’s traded sustainable forest products are being sourced from forests that are certified to PEFC-endorsed standards", he added.

The new PEFC UK Chairman Ross Bradshaw has worked in the paper manufacturing industry for over twenty five years. He began his career by training as a paper maker in Aberdeen. In addition to his role at PEFC UK, Ross is active in a number of industry groups, including The Paper and Board Association and The Stationers Company, The City of London Livery Company for the Communications and Content industries, where he is a Liveryman.

“PEFC UK has gone from strength to strength under Hugh’s leadership. The number of companies undergoing Chain of Custody certification continues to grow, and the PEFC label is appearing on more and more consumer-facing products", underlined Bradshaw. "This year we are embarking on a new project to encourage more UK forest owners to enter into certification so that they are able to help meet growing market demand for certified raw materials."

PEFC calls on Consumers to make a difference on tackling deforestation

"By opting for PEFC‐labelled products consumers can all make our own small yet important contribution to avoid deforestation and support responsible forest management”, highlighted Mr William Street Jr., Chairman of PEFC International, at the Forest Certification Leaders' summit held yesterday in London.

“At a time when the world’s governments, businesses and civil society leaders are focusing on developing global commitments to combat climate change, to be agreed at the Climate Summit in Paris in December this year, consumers can already participate in making a difference”, Mr Street added.

According to a recent PEFC survey, more than 2/3 of consumers globally think that opting for a labeled certified product, from sustainably managed forests, can have a positive impact on the environment.

During the London summit, the panels also discussed the importance of well-managed woodlands, underlining targets and achievements of PEFC's approach. "Since PEFC started some 15 years ago, as a small European NGO, our movement has rapidly expanded to a worldwide phenomenon and now more than 260 million hectares of forests worldwide are verified as being sustainably managed. To put this in scale, that is an area equivalent to the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and Finland combined", explained Ben Gunneberg, CEO of PEFC International.

“Nowadays, we see tremendous interest in our work especially in Asia, where we have seen China, Indonesia and Malaysia obtaining PEFC recognition in the past few years. This has been acting as a catalyst to inspire other countries in the region, such as India, Japan, Nepal, Philippines, South Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam, to follow their example of promoting sustainable forest management and PEFC certification. We are about to make great strides in Africa in the Congo Basin were we expect to see the first certifications shortly,” Mr Gunneberg concluded.

PEFC UK launches new online certification tool for small woodland owners

PEFC UK has launched a new certification system designed to enable small and medium-sized woodland owners to participate in forest certification.

The new tool aims to provide a simple and cost-effective solution to assist the UK’s small and medium-sized private forest owners to become PEFC-certified. It will also help to increase the UK’s certified forest area and boost the supply of certified material to the UK primary processing sector and its customers.

The online system, developed in conjunction with Dutch consultant Evan Buytendijk BV, was announced at a special Press Lunch in central London. The event gathered major figures from PEFC International, including PEFC Chair, William Street, PEFC Secretary General Ben Gunneberg alongside Peter Latham, PEFC Director and Chairman of James Latham PLC, to discuss key issues about global forestry, construction, sustainability, paper and packaging industries.