Finding Forest-Friendly Products
Hundreds of animals worldwide are in danger of extinction because we are destroying their forest homes faster than the forests can regrow. One of the best ways to preserve forests--and the animals that make them their home-- is to reduce the demand for unnecessary wood products. There are many simple ways you can reduce your own consumption of wood products at home, school or work by using alternative products. Ask for recycled, reclaimed, salvaged, and Forest Stewardship Council certified wood products. If you are looking for even more opportunities to save forests, you can join local organizations that rally to convince large organizations to reduce their demand for unnecessary wood products.
The Rainforest Alliance oversees two programs that certify forest-friendly products.
- SmartWood - excellent source for finding certified wood products like mulch, brooms, cabinets, fencing, flooring, furniture, lumber and much more. www.smartwood.org
- ECO-O.K. - you can find forest-friendly versions of coffee, orange juice and banana products. Their certification standards forbid deforestation, protect biodiversity, and promote worker welfare. www.rainforest-alliance.org
Conservation International creates alternatives to deforestation by developing forest-friendly projects with native communities. Projects include:
- Conservation Coffee - works with farmers to grow coffee in the shade of the forest canopy, thus protecting the forests, streams and wildlife. www.conservation.org/coffee
- Wild-Harvest Products Showcase - nuts, clothing, jewelry, candles, bath and body products are all forest-friendly items at the showcase.