World Business Council for Sustainable Development

Sustainable Procurement of Wood and Paper-based Products, an Introduction

Decisions regarding the purchase and use of wood and paper-based products can have far-reaching, long-term impacts for the forests where they are harvested, the communities supported by wood-using industries, and the places where those products are purchased and used.

The information in this joint WRI/WBCSD publication is organized around ten key issues, posed as “essential questions” that procurement managers might address related to the sustainable procurement of wood and paper-based products:

  1. Origin - Where do the products come from?
  2. Information accuracy - Is information about the products credible?
  3. Legality - Have the products been legally produced?
  4. Sustainability - Have forests been sustainably managed?
  5. Special places - Have special places, including sensitive ecosystems, been protected?
  6. Climate change - Have climate issues been addressed?
  7. Environmental protection - Have appropriate environmental controls been applied?
  8. Recycled fiber - Has recycled fiber been used appropriately?
  9. Other resources - Have other resources been used appropriately?
  10. Local communities and indigenous peoples - Have the needs of local communities or indigenous peoples been addressed?

The publication is designed as an information tool to help customers develop their own sustainable procurement policies for wood and paper-based products. It is also a decision support tool providing simple and clear information on twenty-two existing approaches to the procurement of wood and paper-based products from legal and sustainable sources, as well as providing additional references and resource materials.

This introduction’s associated, soon-to-be-released publication, 'Sustainable Procurement of Wood and Paper-based Products: Guide and Resource Kit', helps procurement managers identify potential resources by providing more detailed information on each of these initiatives, as well as an extensive glossary, list of acronyms, references and additional resources.

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