On January 20, SCA celebrated its 20th anniversary as an FSC®-certified forest owner. On the same day, our forestry certification was also renewed for another five years.
SCA’s forest operations were certified on January 20, 1999. This was when SCA received the certification stating that our forests are managed in accordance with the criteria determined by FSC, Forest Stewardship Council®. We have since renewed the certification every fifth year: 2004, 2009, 2014 and 2019.
The certification paved the way for SCA to begin providing FSC-labelled wood and paper products and also to help private forest owners in Sweden to certify their own forest operations.
“The forest is the basis of our operations. This certification was therefore a way for us to really demonstrate that we are pursuing responsible forest operations, both for authorities, environmental organizations, the general public and not least forest owners and all of the customers who purchase our products,” says Ola Kårén, head of forest management, who continues:
“SCA is today Europe’s largest private forest owner with 2.6 million hectares of forest land and responsibility and sustainability pervade our entire business.
Renewing our FSC-certification involves a comprehensive audit, when auditors investigate whether our forest operations fulfil every requirement in the FSC standard, without any major deviation or more than ten minor deviations.
These requirements apply worldwide, regardless of how comprehensive and detailed the standard is and irrespective of the size of the forest holding. The Swedish FSC standard is seen as relatively comprehensive and detailed and SCA’s forest holding is among the largest covered by one and the same certification.
“This means it is no small matter to remain certified without interruption for 20 years! All of SCA’s employees work with this on a daily basis and make a very important contribution. The secret is systematic and uniform work in both large and small matters, and to work with follow up and internal audits. However, most important of all is that there is a willingness to do the right thing and that this pervades the entire business, which is in turn the responsibility of the management,” says Magnus Bergman, head of technology and operational development and responsible for the certification.
Only two minor deviations were identified in the certification audit conducted by the inspection firm SGS at SCA in Norrbotten and Västerbotten at the end of 2018. This must surely be regarded as top marks!
Photo: Michael Engman