Why We Need the GFTN and How it Works | WWF

Why We Need the GFTN and How it Works

GFTN is one of WWF’s leading initiatives to combat illegal logging and drive improvements in forest management while transforming the global marketplace into a force for saving the world’s forests. GFTN links more than 200 companies, communities and governments in over 30 countries to create market incentives for responsible forestry and trade practices. GFTN was established in 1991 and is the world’s longest-running and largest forest and trade programme of its kind.



The amount of wood we take from forests and plantations each year may need to triple by 2050. So can we produce more wood without destroying or degrading forests, in a world where competition for land and water is increasing?

WWF's research suggests it’s possible. But it’s a challenge that spans the whole supply chain, from where and how wood is grown and harvested to how wisely and efficiently it is processed, used and reused.

GFTN aims to transform the global forest sector into a force for saving the world's valuable and threatened forests by promoting and supporting responsible forest management and trade. By strengthening the links between companies committed to achieving and supporting responsible forestry, GFTN helps to create market conditions that conserve forests while providing economic and social benefits for the businesses and people that depend on them.  

GFTN's efforts have helped to ensure that millions of acres of forests are independently and credibly certified, a guarantee that the forests are well managed and that their products come from legal and sustainable timber harvests.

Despite progress, reliable supplies of credibly certified “good wood” are still limited. And trade in wood and pulp from illegal or controversial sources is continuing.

A growing number of forest owners and managers, manufacturers of wood and paper products, retailers, distributors, and investors support responsible forest management, but there are complex obstacles to achieving this goal. A major problem is uncertainty about how to achieve “good wood” certification and benefit from it.

GFTN supports and facilitates greater coordination of national and regional efforts to expand responsible and credibly certified forest management, including technical assistance throughout the certification process and enhanced marketing opportunities.

GFTN participants are committed to increasing the availability of forest products from well managed forests, helping each other benefit and profit from responsible forest management, and ending the purchase of forest products from illegal and controversial sources. This is the GFTN mandate.



  • The GFTN DVD  
	© Sylvia Tu

    Solutions for Committed Companies
    This 1-hour, 12-chapter video is an engaging way to learn about responsible forestry and trade in action. Download the chapters