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09/06/2019

Regional Affiliate Certificate Group Changes

Source: Jess Gillen, RACG, August 30, 2019

On October 31st, 2019, the RACG FSC certificate will be transferred from NEPCon to a different certification body, SGS North America (SGSNA).

Though there is work required to switch certification bodies, we periodically review our certification contract to ensure that you get the best rate, with the least hassle, possible. After almost a decade with Rainforest Alliance, including making some tough decisions internally that were needed to keep your annual rate unchanging during that same decade, SGS North America was hands down the best option during this review cycle.

What does this mean for you?

The RACG FSC certificate code will change, from NC-COC-005576 to SGSNA-COC-005576. You will need to make this change in your systems and internal processes so that all outgoing invoices and shipping documentation reflect this new certificate code. We strongly recommend that you continue to use your current one or two-digit sub-code at the end of the certificate code (those will not change).

The RACG FSC Trademark License Code (FSC® C103525) will not change; the FSC logos you use for your customer’s jobs and your own promotional uses remains the same. This also means that the FSC label generator will continue to use the same login.

Probably the biggest change is that we will no longer be able to use the Rainforest Alliance Certified Seal (green frog). If you are using the RAC Seal, you will need to remove this from all materials such as customer jobs, websites, and other promotional materials as soon as possible (or as you do new jobs) but no later than October 31.

The next big change to be aware of is that FSC trademark approvals will not be submitted through a trademark portal. On October 31st you will need to begin emailing your trademark submissions. SGSNA provides a 24-hour response time. Information for trademark submissions will be shared with you prior to October 31st.

After October 31st, 2019, we will be adding SFI Chain of Custody (CoC) certification to the RACG group in addition to the FSC CoC certification.  Our certificate will share a group SFI CoC code, the same as we do for FSC CoC certification. We will not receive the SFI CoC Code until after the transfer has been completed; be assured we will provide it as soon as we receive it.

Our documentation set is currently being revised to accommodate the new certifier information, as well as the SFI requirements. A separate email will be sent shortly to Primary FSC contacts for each member with a link to the updated documentation set.  If you need to have additional contacts within your organization receive this transition email, please let us know as soon as possible. The document set should be reviewed and completed at your earliest convenience.

The price for your RACG membership will not change.

Learn more about RACG

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