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System Development Toolkit | PEFC International

Creating Demand/Procurement Policies

pefc-paletteInstead of directly targeting potential certificate holders, another option might be to create a demand for certified products among professional end-users.

Consider banks, insurance companies and publishers who all use vast amounts of paper; housing/development corporations who use large amounts of wood; and retailers who use great amounts of both.

Since every company is committed to delivering what the customer wants, such end-user demands can be powerful, although they require considerable effort to achieve results.

The best way forward is to build personal relationships with the end-users, or with their associations, and to suggest that they formalize their demand for PEFC-certified products in a procurement policy.

A draft procurement policy can be viewed in the Sustainable Timber: A Guide to Procurement for the Public Sector brochure.

National Procurement Policies

Government institutions do not only use timber and paper products; they can also influence the national market demand for certified products by implementing public procurement policies. Such national policies can guide the market as a whole to a preference for certified products.

There are many subjects to think about, and depending on your capacities and resources, you may or may not be able to cover them all at the outset.

In addition, your national context may direct where you need to focus most. In general:

  • A “forest economy” with vast forest resources will concentrate most efforts on promoting forest certification to its forest owners;
  • A “trading economy”, with little forest area but with a developed processing industry, will focus on promoting Chain of Custody certification to industries and trade, thus creating demand for certified products at the end-user level.
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