Rainforest Alliance Essentials

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Are you familiar with the Rainforest Alliance? This non-profit organization─founded in 1986─works to prevent deforestation, conserve natural areas, and protect vital ecosystem services. They also provide communities and businesses with economically sustainable alternatives to forest destruction, which is where the Rainforest Alliance certification comes in.

Why certify?

Many businesses claim their products are sustainable, but how do consumers really know? Increasingly, people are demanding an independent, third-party seal of approval. Farms, forestry operations, tourism, and other businesses that meet appropriate standards earn access to the Rainforest Alliance family of marks, which include the following certification, verification, and validation services:

Farms

More than two million farms are Rainforest Alliance Certified, meeting the comprehensive standards of the Sustainable Agriculture Network (SAN)─a coalition of nonprofit conservation organizations addressing social, economic, and environmental criteria. Certified farms─and companies that source products/ingredients from them─can use the Rainforest Alliance Certified green frog seal to market products to conscientious consumers.

Forestry

The Rainforest Alliance offers forest certification, logging and forest carbon verification/validation, and forest products chain-of-custody certification with regard to wood, paper, furniture and more. The Rainforest Alliance has worked in over 70 countries with small businesses, indigenous communities, and Fortune 500 companies alike. The Rainforest Alliance also founded  was one of the founders of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), the most respected forestry standard-setter in the world.

Tourism

The Rainforest Alliance works with hotels, restaurants, and other tourism businesses to help them improve their environmental, social and economic practices. Their standard for tourism operations has been recognized by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC). Through training and technical assistance, the Rainforest Alliance teaches these businesses how to operate sustainably and verify their progress. Those that meet the requirements are eligible to use the Rainforest Alliance Verified mark.

Forest Carbon

Accredited by the American National Standards Institute, the Rainforest Alliance offers carbon auditing services to Forest Stewardship Council-certified, Rainforest Alliance Certified and non-certified forestry and agroforestry projects that demonstrate an ability to sequester carbon dioxide and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The Rainforest Alliance certifications span multiple industries with the same objective: offering a credible third-party seal of approval to those businesses that choose to make sustainability a priority. To learn more, visit Rainforest-Alliance.org

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