How sustainable are Europe’s tropical timber imports?




Executive summary

This report identifies trends in the trade of tropical timber on the EU market, and explores how a European commitment to 100% verified sustainable tropical timber, can contribute to deforestation-free supply chains and help meet climate change mitigation targets.

The report was commissioned by IDH, the Sustainable Trade Initiative, convenor and key funder of the European Sustainable Tropical Timber Coalition (STTC,, and developed by Probos, a not-for-profit, Dutch consultancy specialized in the forest and timber sector with extensive international experience in timber market and wood flow research.

The report looks at trends in primary tropical timber imports of key EU markets and the current market share of certified sustainable tropical timber. It presents as key findings that:

  1. In 2016, it is estimated that only 30% of primary tropical timber products on the EU market were verified sustainable.
  2. If the seven main timber-consuming countries (Amsterdam Declaration countries Germany, France, the UK, Netherlands and Italy plus Belgium and Spain) sourced only verified sustainable primary tropical timber, an estimated additional 5.3 million ha of tropical forests can be impacted.
  3. More European ambition and public-private action is needed to push up the market share of verified sustainable tropical timber to 100%.

Download the report below, or read more about it here.

Image credit: Mark van Benthem/ Probos

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