FSC® Chain of Custody (CoC) Certification Overview

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No TÜV SÜD Certification Mark


Chain of Custody (CoC) / Voluntary assessment

Basis for Certification (certification standard):

Certification provisions of the standard owner, Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) in the currently valid version (http://www.fsc.org)

Standard owner:

Forest Stewardship Council (FSC®)

Certification mark:

No TÜV SÜD certification mark is issued.
Certified organisations are authorised to use the FSC® logo according to the rules defined by the standard owner.


What does the FSC® Chain of Custody (CoC) standard cover?

The objective of the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) is to promote environmentally friendly, socially beneficial and economically viable forest management. To achieve these objectives, the FSC® has developed forest management standards. Source: http://www.fsc-deutschland.de/de-de/der-fscr/Vision   

The objective of the FSC® Chain of Custody (FSC® COC) standard is to ensure that products identified by the FSC® logo are actually made from resources that come from responsibly managed sources.

The standard defines requirements for organisations to ensure the traceability (chain of custody) of the resources used and make correct statements on the materials used in the manufacturing of a product.

  • What does “certification” according to FSC® Chain of Custody (CoC) by TÜV SÜD mean (accredited certification body is TUV SUD Czech sro, Licensecode FSC®A000530)?
    • The customer has submitted to voluntary assessment (audit) according to defined criteria (certification standard).
    • A certificate is only issued if the assessment (audit) does not reveal any major nonconformities with the requirements of the certification standard.
    • The certificates are valid for a restricted period of time. Interested parties can check the validity of individual certificates in the standard owner's certificate database (http://info.fsc.org/certificate.php).
    • To maintain certificate validity, the certificate holder must annually complete an announced audit with a positive result.
    • Taking into account the standard owner's requirements for the use of the FSC® logo, certified organisations are entitled to use the FSC® logo on their products or in their advertising or communications.

  • How do we audit?

    The audit is carried out by independent and qualified experts (auditors) appointed according to the criteria of the FSC® standard.

    The audit is based on document review, employee interviews, on-site inspections and random checks of individual documents, records and receipts.

    During the audit, the audit team checks whether the organisation has correctly implemented and applied the requirements of the standard. In particular, the auditors verify whether the organisation:

    • holds training courses to ensure correct implementation of the requirements of the standard;
    • correctly evaluates its suppliers in terms of the requirements of the standard (e.g. valid certificate, correct FSC® claims on invoice and delivery documentation);
    • correctly verifies upon receipt of goods whether the purchased material is actually identified by the required FSC® claim;
    • effectively keeps FSC® certified goods segregated from non-certified goods in storage and processing to avoid confusion;
    • uses correct FSC® claims and uses the FSC® label correctly on goods and sales documents (invoices and delivery notes);
    • keeps a correct FSC® mass balance (balance sheet of certified goods purchased and sold) and has ensured that the conversion of certified input materials to claims on sold FSC® certified products is correct.
  • What is beyond the scope of certification according to FSC® Chain of Custody (CoC) standard?
    • FSC® Chain of Custody (CoC) certification does not mean that the organisation produces and/or sells exclusively products in conformity with the FSC® standard. Certification only authorises the organisation to sell products with FSC® label. Only the products identified with the FSC® label actually fulfil the requirements of the FSC® standard.
    • The FSC® Chain of Custody (CoC) standard does not make or imply any statement about the quality or sustainability of a product or service provided by the certified customer. The certificate only covers the origin of the resources used for products or services identified with the label.
    • Certification according to the FSC® Chain of Custody (CoC) standard is based on random samples and the assessment of the processes in the organisation. Given this, it is impossible to inspect every single product or every single production. TÜV SÜD certification thus cannot give a 100% guarantee that all products of a certified company and their labelling are free from nonconformities and that the organisation meets the criteria of the standard at all times, even though this is one of the key objectives of the FSC® Chain of Custody (COC) standard.



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