Flatpacked Forests: Ikea's illegal timber problem and the flawed green label behind it

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Illegal Deforestation Monitor

UK military beef supplier linked to Brazil deforestation

28.04.2020 Beef sourced by Ministry of Defence in Bahrain comes from firm connected to cattle ranchers fined R$33.5m (£6m) for environmental breaches including illegal land clearances, fires and fraud

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Robinson Lumber's perilous trade with Maderera Bozovich

06.01.2020 No US firm imports more high-risk wood from Peru than Robinson Lumber and they continue to buy from a company with a long rap sheet of alleged illegalities

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Indonesia for Sale

09.10.2019 An investigative series which explores in unprecedented depth the corruption underpinning Indonesia’s land rights and deforestation crisis

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Ukraine Prime Minister pledges crackdown on illegal logging after Earthsight exposé

25.06.2020 London, 25 June 2020 – Earthsight today welcomed the Prime Minister of Ukraine’s pledged crackdown on illegal logging in the country, days after the London-based NGO revealed wood from such activities had entered Ikea’s supply chain. Prime Minister Denys Shmygal’s announcement on Thursday came the same day environmental officials confirmed that a criminal investigation has been launched into a local forestry body used by the furniture retailer’s suppliers to source illegal wood.  Denis Kaplunov, first deputy head of the federal State Environmental Inspectorate (SEI), told Earthsight that criminal proceedings are active against the Velyky Bychkiv state forestry enterprise (SFE).The news follows an Earthsight investigation published on Tuesday which linked the SFE to illegal logging in the country’s Carpathian Mountains, home to endangered lynx and bears.                        The report, Flatpacked Forests: Ikea’s illegal timber problem and the flawed green label behind it, revealed how illegal wood ended up in best-selling Ikea products sold in stores worldwide. These included the furniture giant’s popular Terje and Ingolf chairs. Products were certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), the world’s leading green label for wood. Speaking to Earthsight, Kaplunov said federal inspectors and local police raided Velyky Bychkiv SFE in mid-June over its logging activities. Inspectors identified “numerous violations” at the forestry enterprise, he added in a Facebook post published on Thursday. Kaplunov confirmed that illegal ‘sanitary logging’, used to stop the spread of disease and pests, has continued in the area despite inspectors finding illegalities in 2018. The 2018 inspection found that the SFE broke the law when issuing logging permits, resulting in widespread illegal forest clearances. This enabled firms to cut trees during the breeding season for rare species, when it is banned. Earthsight’s 18-month investigation revealed that a major Ikea supplier, Ukrainian furniture manufacturer VGSM, was among those issued with illegal licences. Flatpacked Forests also uncovered evidence that the SFE allowed logging breaches to persist in 2019 and 2020.



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Illegal Deforestation Monitor scrutinises the unlawful conversion of forests for agribusiness around the globe.


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A guidebook to help activists and communities on the forest frontlines to investigate illegal logging and trade.


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