The FSC has amended its advice note about Controlled Wood certification, FSC-ADV-40-016.
The main changes are:
1. The advice note does not require physical audit of all suppliers throughout the supply chain any more. It is still required that there is clear evidence of the origin of the wood and that the wood has not been mixed with wood from controversial sources through the supply chain. It should be noted that a declaration from the supplier is not considered as sufficient evidence. In practice, it will be very difficult or impossible for e.g. secondary manufacturers to document this without some kind of supplier audits.
2. The advice note softens the requirement for actions in case of major non compliance with the requirements. The first version of the advice note required immediate suspension. This has been taken out in version 1.1 and the certification organisation will therefore have to follow the standard procedures which allow 3 months (in justified cases up to 6 months) in case of major non compliances. Immediate suspension will still be effected if the company uses wood from controversial sources in their production of FSC certified products.