Sustainable timber

Promoting sustainably sourced timber

At Probos our mission is to sustain forests, amongst others by promoting sustainably sourced timber. A strong demand in consumer countries has significant impact on forest management and timber processing in producer countries.

Reliable data are core

We believe comprehensive market intelligence and market share monitoring are crucial. These data have to be the basis to formulate and evaluate measures aiming to boost demand for sustainably sourced timber products. Probos is heavily involved in generating such market intelligence; undertaking timber market studies and data collection, including in our capacity as Dutch National Correspondent for bodies such UNECE, Eurostat, FAO, ITTO and more recently in the framework of the FLEGT Independent Market Monitor (IMM).

Next to collecting and analysing data from the complete timber chain, we formulate recommendations for policy makers, ngos, the timber sector and other organizations. We also develop hands-on projects to remove barriers that hamper growth in demand for sustainably sourced timber. Reliable data collection is also essential for monitoring the results of policy and market initiatives.

Sustainable timber booming in the Netherlands

Our data and projects have played a central role in developing the sustainably sourced timber market in the Netherlands. We have helped the Dutch government to design, implement and monitor its sustainable timber procurement policies. The market increase is quite spectacular, as concluded from the market studies we carry out regularly: the Dutch market for sustainably sourced timber has grown from 13% in 2005 to 83% in 2015.

International sustainable timber chain

We have already expanded the data-driven Dutch approach to Belgium, and we are convinced this approach would be beneficial internationally. Many governments and other donors want to support sustainable forest management, but few base their strategies on hard data, limiting effectiveness. Therefore Probos is increasingly active in the international market, collecting and analysing reliable data and help other organizations to perform similar tasks.

Supporting the STTC

Ever since the start, Probos has been engaged as expert to support the European Sustainable Tropical Timber Coalition (STTC), who aims to increase the demand for sustainably sourced tropical timber in Europe to 50%. We currently conduct the following activities for the STTC over the period 2018 - 2020:

  • exploring the restructuring of the STTC
  • organising the annual STTC conference
  • PR and Communication, via the STTC website and newsletter
  • determining the EU’s market share of sustainably sourced tropical timber, jointly with the Global Timber Forum (GTF)

Other international activities sustainable timber

We also play a role in other international activities in the field of sustainable timber:

  • We conduct various projects in the field of so called Lesser Known Timber Species.
  • We collect data for the Chatham House indicators project to monitor levels of illegal logging and the related trade.
  • We are the National Correspondent for the ITTO FLEGT Independent Market Monitor (IMM) project.
  • We have advised the city of Berlin on how to source sustainable timber.
  • We have supported the Beijing Forestry Society in developing a practical Timber Procurement Policy (TPP) recommendation for the Authorities of Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games and the 2019 International Horticulture Exposition.