Background Information

FSC Forest Management certification is awarded to forest areas that are managed in line with the FSC Principles and Criteria (P&C). Version 5 of the P&C has been revised and was approved in February 2012. This means that Forest Stewardship Standards in each country must now be transferred to the P&C Version 5 (P&C V5).

To phase in use of the P&C V5 in a consistent way across the world – and to strengthen the credibility of the FSC system – we are developing a set of International Generic Indicators (IGIs). In countries that already have National Forest Stewardship Standards the IGIs will be used as starting point to transfer these existing standards to the P&C V5. This transfer of National Standards to the P&C V5 will be developed by the Standard Development Groups (SDGs) of each country, following the requirements of the Transfer Procedure. These National Standards, which are adapted to the characteristics of each country, are used worldwide by the Certification Bodies (CBs) to verify compliance with the P&C, as the basis for awarding FSC Forest Management certification.

In countries where there are no National Standards, the CBs have had to develop CB Adapted Standards (one per country) as an alternative basis for evaluating compliance with the P&C. In these countries, this new set of IGIs (when available) will serve as starting point for the CBs to adapt their Generic Standards to the specific conditions of each country.

The development of the IGIs and the transfer of the National Standards to the P&C V5 are two processes that are connected, with a bottom-up and top-down flow of information. Developing the IGIs means growing your ideas for the social, environmental and economic management of the world’s forests — so we welcome your input to them.