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Rainforest Alliance and Kingfisher working together to support sustainable forestry

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Issue date: 
09 June 2011
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The Rainforest Alliance and Kingfisher PLC have joined forces to tackle some of the most difficult issues facing companies who strive to source their timber from legal and sustainable sources. The SmartSource programme of the Rainforest Alliance will work with the Kingfisher Group across its business to identify sources that require special attention moving them towards FSC certification and ensuring compliance with Kingfishers own stringent timber sourcing policy along the way.

Richard Donovan from the Rainforest Alliance said, “Kingfisher is one of the world’s leading companies in driving sustainability and ensuring the timber it buys is from legal and certified sources. But there are still challenges that have to be faced and we are delighted to be working with them on tackling some of the most difficult aspects of their supply.”

Jamie Lawrence – Corporate Responsibility Manager for the Kingfisher Group said, “As a Group, 81% of Kingfisher’s timber products (by volume sold) is now from proven, well-managed sources with well over 50% now FSC certified. Kingfisher has set an international vision to build on this heritage in responsible timber procurement and ensure that we set a clear path towards full traceability and certification for the remaining timber that is not yet from forests that are independently certified.”

This collaboration between the Rainforest Alliance and Kingfisher started at the beginning of 2011. The Rainforest Alliance is helping to develop bespoke solutions to address specific supply chain challenges identified by Kingfisher.

“Whilst not shying away from discontinuing product lines as a final option where suppliers are unable to provide evidence of progress towards FSC, it is recognised that we have a duty to stay engaged with forest sources that may struggle to meet international standards.” Said Lawrence. “In some areas this will require an engaged coordinated set of interventions – that is where the Rainforest Alliance can help.”

Rainforest Alliance, under its SmartWood programme, is the world’s largest certifier of timber and timber products to the FSC standard.

“This is not just about legality, it is about full compliance with the Kingfisher Timber Policy.” Said Donovan. “And we’re delighted to be working with Kingfisher to help them achieve their objectives across all of their markets, building on the successes in the UK throughout the EU to Russia, China and Turkey. We believe that sustainability is a journey not a destination, and one that does not just end with certification, but requires commitment to continuous improvement across the three pillars of sustainability: social, environmental and economic.”

Kingfisher’s timber policy states, "…our aim [is] to ensure that our wood and paper products come either from proven, well-managed forests or recycled material". B&Q UK were founding members of the FSC and since becoming one of the first retailers to develop a responsible timber policy, back in the early 1990’s, has now completed the transformation of their supply chain to achieve their aim of purchasing 100% of its timber from independently verified sources.

The Rainforest Alliance works to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices, business practices and consumer behaviour. For more information, visit www.rainforest-alliance.org.

Kingfisher PLC is Europe’s leading home improvement retail group and the third largest in the world, with nearly 860 stores in eight countries in Europe and Asia. Its main retail brands are B&Q, Castorama, Brico Dépôt and Screwfix, which between them attract nearly six million customers every week. For more information, visit www.kingfisher.com/CR


Extpub | by Dr. Radut