Growing consumer recognition of certification logos is good news for brand owners and packaging producers
Leading brand owners know that reputation is everything. They also know their choice of wood, paper and packaging products has a direct impact on their reputation because the products they choose affect forests and communities at home and around the world — today and into the future. That’s why so many organizations use on-product certification labels and include forest certification in their environmental value statements and procurement policies.
These efforts to protect and enhance company reputations with consumers and supply chain partners are spurring all kinds of activity. Large corporations continue to come together to talk and act on the sustainability front. In many cases, these efforts are related to stopping deforestation. Over the past few years we have seen the emergence of several groups dedicated to corporate environmental responsibility.
The Consumer Goods Forum, for example, has a zero deforestation goal. The Sustainability Consortium also has key performance indicators that offer actionable steps for companies to move from commitments to meaningful action on deforestation; in April, the organization held a sustainability summit in Washington, D.C., that featured working groups involving the forestry sector. And the World Business Council on Sustainable Development Vision 2050 lists halting deforestation and increasing yields from managed forests as one of its “must haves.”
What these initiatives all have in common is they recognize the potential that forests hold for the supply chain, for our future and for the overall health and wellbeing of our society, because from the air we breathe to the water we drink, forests touch us all. So when a Fortune 500 company sources forest products, a land manager makes a forest management plan or a consumer buys copy paper, they can all make the right choice for our forests by choosing SFI.
Choosing an on-product label from SFI is a good way to stand out in consumers’ minds as a responsible company that offers environmentally sound products. Almost one in four U.S. consumers recognized and understood the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) logo in a recent survey. The Natural Marketing Institute (NMI) surveyed almost 20,400 consumers and found that 24% recognized the SFI logo and what it stands for.
When consumers buy products with the SFI label, they are not only purchasing a product that meets rigorous certification standards, they are also helping grow future forests, sustain communities, fund conservation research, educate youth and train loggers.
This recognition for SFI is part of an encouraging trend that has consumers looking for on-product certification labels. Almost 70% of 1,000 U.S. consumers in a 2014 survey said they would prefer companies that source wood-based products responsibly to use a forest certification label to inform consumers. The survey was conducted by the European polling company GfK for the Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).
More and more companies are getting on board. Twenty percent of Fortune 100 companies are already using the SFI on-product label, and products certified to SFI Standards are sold in more than 120 countries. Meanwhile, more than a quarter-billion acres of forestland, stretching from Canada’s boreal forest to the U.S. South, are certified to the SFI Forest Management Standard. In the years ahead, we will continue to show the world that sustainable management guarantees forest regeneration, and helps keep forests as forests by serving active markets, and thus helping preserve the world’s most important renewable resource.
About the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® Inc.
SFI® Inc. is an independent, non-profit organization that is solely responsible for maintaining, overseeing and improving the internationally recognized SFI program. SFI works collaboratively with conservation groups, local communities, youth, resource professionals, landowners and countless other organizations and individuals who share our passion for and commitment to healthy forests, responsible purchasing and sustainable communities. In addition, sustainable forestry is promoted through the SFI Fiber Sourcing Standard and the SFI Chain-of-Custody Standard. SFI on-product labels help consumers make responsible purchasing decisions. SFI Inc. is governed by a three chamber board of directors representing environmental, social and economic sectors equally. Learn more at www.sfiprogram.org and www.sfiprogram.org/Buy-SFI.