Written by Administrator Wednesday, 06 October 2010 13:09
Sticking with a narrow range of services has its attractions and has always been one of TFFs great strengths. No one promotes Reduced Impact Logging (RIL) as thoroughly and effectively as TFF throughout its Regional programs. But this strength has its drawbacks when searching for donor funding that is always looking for ‘new and exciting’ reasons for handing out grants.
TFF-Indonesia has faced this dilemma many times before. As a result it has developed a program strategy aimed at offering a wide range of distinct yet complimentary services.
In the past year, The Nature Conservancy through its USAID funded RAFT (Responsible Asia Forest and Trade) program has funded roughly 80% of TFFs training for RIL. This has permitted TFF to expand its engagement with the Indonesian forest concession sector to cover approximately 30 concessions controlling over 3.5 million hectares of natural forest land. 2010 has been a sterling year for new engagements for RIL training, but this is set to change as the RAFT program winds down and funding priorities shift once again.
Supply Chain Services
Over the past few years, the attention of importers has become noticeably more focused on supply chain issues. “Where did the wood … come from?” “Was it sourced and produced legally?” “Is the forest from which it came being sustainably managed?” These are some of the questions being raised by importers.
The environmental lobby has played its part in raising awareness on illegal logging and unsustainable practices, but it is concrete measures such as the passage of the ‘Lacey Act Amendment’ in the US and the ‘Due Diligence Regulation’ due to be passed later this year by the European parliament that has helped to focus the attention of manufacturers and importers on supply chain issues.
TFF-Indonesia provides a range of services aimed at bringing assurances of legality to the exporting industry or the importing company by facilitating preparations for third party legality and chain-of-custody audits and by providing individually tailored investigations and reports. This range of services can be supported by a retainer contract or can be provided under a ‘one off’ service fee arrangement.
Forest-Market Linking Program
In 2003 at the request of USAID, TFF demonstrated the feasibility of linking a specific forest management unit and industry in Indonesia with a specific retail outlet in the US.
The success of this pilot project led to the development of a “Forest-Market Linking Program” which combines legality, chain-of-custody, and RIL adoption as a robust measure of sustainable forest management…. coupled with clear market recognition.
TFF has developed a two-stage recognition for participants in this program which relies on credible and independently verified progress.
To-date, eight supply chains have received TFF recognition under this program. Participating companies include some of the best known manufactures in the Indonesian woodworking sector and offer a wide range of panel, moulding, furniture and other finished products with robust assurances of legality and sustainable forest stewardship.
Certification Support Services
Considered by many to represent the crowning recognition of exemplary achievement, FSC certification has long been held up as the ‘holy grail’ of sustainable forest management.
In belated recognition of the challenges that the FSC standard presents for FMUs, particularly in the tropical world, various advocates of the FSC certification system have proposed elaborate “step-wise” schemes of recognizing progress and achievement towards the goal of certification.
TFF-Indonesia has inadvertently come to realize that its open approach of engagement and range of complimentary services, has proven highly successful in encouraging forest management companies to strive for ever increasing measure of excellence. Most of the companies that first engaged in RIL training are now FSC certified. Companies who have in the past few years participated in RIL and legal verification activities under TFF sponsorship are now applying for forest certification.
|FSC log raft on the Kapuas river, West Kalimantan|
TFF-Indonesia has become a major proponent of FSC certification in response to the creation of a significant funding platform specifically designed to stimulate forest certification in Indonesia.
In January 2010, The Borneo Initiative, a Dutch NGO launched the first round of funding support for Indonesian forest concessions. This was followed by a second round of funding contracts in July 2010. TFF-Indonesia now represents 9 of the 13 Indonesian forest concessions that have committed to achieving FSC certification under this funding platform (see separate article in this Newsletter).
For more information on TFF-Indonesia program activities, visit www.tff-indonesia.org.
Place Ad Code Here