The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) announced Bettina Ring as its new Chief Sustainability and Diversity Officer today. Ring will provide leadership internally and externally on strategic initiatives related to sustainability and diversity. She will also seek to leverage SFI’s scale to drive meaningful change in the forest and conservation sector through collaboration with SFI’s network. Ring has deep connections to the forest sector, most recently serving as Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry for the Commonwealth of Virginia, and to SFI, having formerly served on the SFI Board of Directors and recognized as the SFI President’s Award winner in 2018. Additionally, under Ring’s leadership, 68,000 acres of Virginia’s state forests were certified to the SFI Forest Management and American Tree Farm System Standards, which provide assurance of sustainable practices on managed forestlands.
Successful pilot projects to certify rubber producers large and small, and the supply chain companies that process rubber, set a new standard for environmental sustainability in the rubber industry. On 22 September, PEFC will hold a webinar to help other rubber producers follow their lead.
Natural rubber represents a USD 300 billion supply chain. Most of this rubber is produced by independent smallholders in Southeast Asia, on the borders of some of the world’s most ecologically important forest areas.
Sourcing this rubber sustainably helps protect these forests and is a necessary step towards achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals before 2030.
Sustainable forest management and chain of custody certification are relatively new for the rubber industry. But early adopters are already on the move.
We have piloted certification for both natural rubber and rubberwood across Southeast Asia. Working with growers of all sizes, we have developed group certification solutions that allow smallholders to band together and prove their sustainable practices.
These early adopters demonstrate that certification is entirely achievable. By getting certified, they both open up market access for their rubber, protect adjacent forests and improve their own livelihood.
Lessons learned from these early adopters have value for the entire rubber sector. That is why, on 22 September, we will organize a webinar to share their stories.
Anyone who grows, processes, manufactures, or sells rubber products will get an insider’s view on how they, too, can achieve certification.
Interested participants can register for free at: treee.es/firstmovers-web.
The online event, titled: “Get PEFC Certified – Learn from First Movers in the Rubber Sector” will address common technical questions that come up during the certification process. Participants will learn from those who have come before and discover valuable collaboration opportunities.
We will lead a discussion on all types of certifications, including sustainable forest management certification for smallholders and other types of plantation owners, and chain of custody certification for companies in the rubber value chain. Participants will learn how to achieve these certifications, and how to build the B2B linkages that will make them successful.
Event speakers will also discuss the benefits of certification, including improved management systems, proven risk mitigation, improved smallholder livelihoods and productivity, and expanded market access.
This webinar is part of the PEFC Supporting Sustainable Rubber Campaign, telling the story of natural rubber and the people that produce it, and making the connection between sustainable natural rubber production, forest health and smallholder livelihoods.