During the period October-December 2006, Preferred by Nature assisted in testing and fine-tuning a manual for the verification of legal wood in Russia. The manual targets buyers who wish to verify the legality of the wood they purchase from Russian suppliers.
The objective of the test was to evaluate the usefulness of the draft manual as guidance for assessing the systems and methods used by Russian processing companies in order to verify the legal origin of timber. Preferred by Nature’s certification experts Nikolai Tochilov and Alexey Klochikhin were responsible for testing the manual and spent nearly 1,5 months on this task.
The evaluation was carried out within the framework of the Russian-Danish project “Verifying the Legal Origin of Russian Timber”. The project is implemented by WWF in collaboration with the Federal Forest Agency and four pilot forest companies located in the Vologda, Irkutsk and Krasnoyarsk regions.
The testing of the manual was conducted by applying the manual as well as the FSC standard STD-40-005 to the four pilot operations. A special checklist was developed by the consultants and filled in during the evaluation. On-site inspections included interviews with key staff, review of documentation, inspection of the companies’ production facilities and timber suppliers.
Results and impact
Based on the test, Preferred by Nature’s experts provided recommendations for final adjustments. They also proposed to develop a simplified checklist for Danish customers based on the final manual. Further goals and outcomes of the project included:
- Assessment of key staff qualifications and training for the system of VLO of timber
- Procedures for timber suppliers’ control prior to conclusion of the supply agreement
- Procedures for verifying incoming timber and accompanying documentation for the legal status
- Procedures of handling and dealing with uncontrolled timber
- Procedures of calculating the conversion factors during production of the final product
- Procedures of maintenance and updating of production and sales volumes