FSC® stands for Forest Stewardship Council®, an organization that works to promote the practice of sustainable forestry worldwide.
The FSC requires products that bear an FSC certified label to go through a “chain of custody” from the forest to the manufacturer to the merchant and finally, to the printer; this means FSC paper is guaranteed to be from sustainable forests so the health of the forest is maintained.
So far, 174m hectares of forests have met its strict criteria. Violence and the displacement of indigenous peoples are also prohibited in its forests. This is crucial as forests support 1.6 billion of the poorest people in the world.
Ripping Image is a FSC certified company, so is authorised to place an appropriate FSC logo on a printed product. Independent auditors conduct a chain-of-custody assessment of Ripping Image each year to ensure that FSC criteria for maintaining chain of custody and its high standards are met.
FSC papers are typically, but not always, made from virgin fibre which sounds irresponsible but paper made using virgin fibres that are sourced from FSC managed forests are both sustainable and responsible.
Sometimes paper making a claim that it is “recycled” can be misleading as the paper may not contain much recycled paper and it may only contain recycled paper from a paper mill. FSC has strict rules on whether paper can be considered ‘Recycled’ and must contain at least 85% post-consumer waste.
A lack of certification when claiming paper to be recycled and the fact that recycling one tonne of paper would power a home for nine months, save 7,000 gallons of water and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by one metric tonne of carbon equivalent (CO2e) leads us to believe that using FSC paper is the more responsible choice.
There is an increasing range of paper products carrying the FSC Recycled label. Post-consumer waste, such as old newspapers or reclaimed household and office waste paper, has been used to make these products. The FSC Recycled label can also be found on wood reclaimed from construction and demolition sites or, for example, used railway sleepers and telephone poles.
FSC Recycled teak has been used to refurbish the Greenwich moored Cutty Sark, the only tea clipper still in existence, and one of the most famous ships in the world!