FSC principles spread to Bulgaria and Romania



Posted on 21 September 2010  | 
Losan Romania were FSC certified in 2005 and have been selling FSC certified venner since then.
Losan Romania were FSC certified in 2005 and have been selling FSC certified venner since then.
© Losan Romania Enlarge
More than 125 million ha of forest worldwide are certified to FSC standards, distributed in over 80 countries. This represents the equivalent of roughly 5% of the world’s productive forests. The value of FSC labeled sales is currently estimated at over 20 billion USD worldwide. Companies committed to using FSC include home-improvement companies, publishers and retailers. Giants like IKEA, B&Q and Home Depot already support FSC. We spoke to two companies - based in Romania and Bulgaria – to see what the FSC standard has meant for them.

Losan Romania
Losan Romania is part of Grupo Losán, a Spanish company, exclusively dedicated to the manufacture of wood products for the furniture, decorative and equipment industries. At present Grupo Losán is made up of eighteen companies, in ten countries, strategically situated so as to be near the best possible raw materials. The company’s environmental policy has, as priority objectives, minimising the impact of its business activity on the environment, as well as an efficient and rational use of the resources necessary for the elaboration of its products. Claudiu Tanase is Quality and FSC Manager of Losan Romania.

Tell us about your company...
Losan Romania was founded in 2000 and is part of Grupo Losan, one of the leading Spanish decorative veneer manufacturers. Losan Romania is an important manufacturer of decorative veneers using as basic raw material beech and oak, but also other various native species, carefully selected for unique quality. Losan Romania also produces spliced veneers joined with glue on edge, small and large size, for furniture, doors and veneered panels.

Why did you become interested in FSC?
The competition on the venner market is quite fierce and each and every plus can make the difference between success and failure. On the other hand, the company management team at Losan Romania believes in the FSC principles. We trust that sustainable management based on social, economic and ecological criteria is the right way today and for future generation.

How do you get FSC wood supplies for your products?
The supply is difficult because of the limited areas with certified forests, but especially because of a broken "chain of custody". This is a consequence of the absence of FSC certified logging companies.

Recently our company, Losan Romania, began the process of certifying to the standard FSC-STD-004-005. This standard has been designed to allow companies to avoid trading in illegally harvested wood, wood harvested in violation of traditional and civil rights, wood harvested in forests where high conservation values are threatened by management activities, wood harvested in forests being converted to plantations or non-forest use, wood from forests in which genetically modified trees are planted. It’s designed to allow manufacturers to avoid the categories of wood considered unacceptable to be mixed with FSC certified wood.

Where do you sell your products?
The company Losan Romania, owns a vast network of outlets, selling products manufactured all over the world, from America to Asia, from Australia to Africa and the Nordic countries.

Has FSC made a difference to your business?
We are certified since 2005 and thus selling certified venner since that very year. Still, some of our clients did not ask for FSC veneers because their own products were not certified at that time. Nowadays the FSC standard is becoming more and more a worldwide necessity and requests for FSC veneer are constantly increasing. The last two years we’ve been studying this development and we can definitely say that this kind of certified poducts created a specific, strong market.

Swedish Match “Plam” Bulgaria
Swedish Match is a multinational company that develops, manufactures and sells market-leading brands in smokefree products (snus, snuff and chewing tobacco), cigars and lights products (matches and lighters). The Group sells products across the globe, with production units in 10 countries. Approximately 80 percent of the raw materials used within the Group are renewable, and environmentally harmful substances are only handled to a limited extent during production. Stefan Milchev is the Sales and Supply Manager at Swedish Match “Plam” Bulgaria manufacturing facility.

Tell us about your company...
The Bulgarian subsidiary of Swedish Match produces high quality, environmentally friendly firestarters and quicklighters for fires, BBQs and grills, firelogs, grillboxes and grillbags. The products are almost entirely sold on the European market, in Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. “Plam” is the Bulgarian brand under which our products are sold in Bulgaria. Swedish Match “Plam” Bulgaria is an FSC certified producer. Our “Chain of custody” certificate guarantees that the path of the FSC product can be traced back to an FSC certified forest.

Why did you become interested in FSC?
We did some market research, in particular we looked at our clients’ preferences, and we found out that interest in FSC was quite high. Some of our existing clients, as well as some prospective clients, were interested in getting FSC certified products. We did the market research because of our company’s environmental policy to produce environmentally sound products. We were the second company in Bulgaria to receive an FSC manufacturer certificate. In 2007 we became the first Bulgarian company to sell an FSC product on the Bulgarian market – our fire and BBQ lights.

How do you get FSC wood supplies for your products?
We get the FSC certified wood we need for our products from FSC certified forestries in Bulgaria, as well as we import some FSC material from Poland.

Where do you sell your products?
We sell our grill boxes on the Swedish market. The fire and BBQ lights we sell on the German, French, Swiss and Slovenian markets. We also sell in Bulgaria.
Losan Romania were FSC certified in 2005 and have been selling FSC certified venner since then.
Losan Romania were FSC certified in 2005 and have been selling FSC certified venner since then.
© Losan Romania Enlarge
Claudiu Tanase is Quality and FSC Manager of Losan Romania, a leading decorative veneer manufacturer.
Claudiu Tanase is Quality and FSC Manager of Losan Romania, a leading decorative veneer manufacturer.
© Claudiu Tanase archive Enlarge
"The supply is difficult because of the limited areas with certified forests, but especially because of a broken "chain of custody". This is a consequence of the absence of FSC certified logging companies."
© Losan Romania Enlarge
Approximately 80 percent of the raw materials used within Swedish Match are renewable, and environmentally harmful substances are only handled to a limited extent during production.
Approximately 80 percent of the raw materials used within Swedish Match are renewable, and environmentally harmful substances are only handled to a limited extent during production.
© Swedish Match "Plam" Bulgaria Enlarge

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