Section Contents

Impact of EUTR on Illegal Timber Imports

A recent evaluation by the European Council of the European Timber Regulation (EUTR) confirms that it is already having an impact, helping to reduce illegal timber entering member states.  Its effective implementation will add value to the EU Forest Law Enforcements Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan.

Concerns over the trade in wood and paper from illegal or controversial sources led to the introduction in 2013 of  the European Timber Regulation (EUTR). It places the onus on the European importer, and to a lesser extent other traders in the supply chain, to make the necessary checks to be able to ‘analyse and evaluate the risk of illegally harvested timber products derived from such timber being placed on the market’.

North American good forestation practice supports aims of EUTR
  • While US exporters and manufacturers are not directly subject to the new requirements, they may need to supply additional, supporting material to enable their EU customers to comply with the EUTR.
  • North American forestry practices are amongst the most stringent and regulated in the world, which is likely to facilitate compliance for EU importers.  It is extremely unlikely that products manufactured by APA member mills would ever contain any illegally sourced material.
  • For example, the U.S. Lacey Act Amendment of May 2008 has made it an offence within the U.S. to possess any plant (excluding agricultural crops but including wood and derivative products) “taken, possessed, transported, or sold” in violation of any relevant foreign or state law.
Traceability, Due Diligence and Compliance
  • The obligations on the importer/operator are such that being unable to satisfy the due diligence requirement (including being able to demonstrate compliance if called upon to do so) is a breach of the EUTR, even if the timber in question is legally harvested.
  • The EUTR requires evidence of full product traceability and to achieve this, EU importers need to have a robust ‘due diligence’ system in place.
  • This includes obtaining and  providing information on your supply of timber products, including the full scientific name of the species, volume, country of harvest (and where applicable the concession of harvest or the right to harvest timber in a defined area) and evidence of compliance with relevant local or national legislation.
  • The EUTR also requires a risk assessment of your timber supply.  In practice, information from the manufacturer on origin beyond the country of harvest is required only when your ‘due diligence’ system indicates the risk of illegal harvesting varies between sub-national regions or between concessions within those regions.



APA in Europe Wizard

All Questions OSBPlywood

What is a ‘life cycle stage’ and how do these link to the environmental assessment of whole buildings?

How do core category rules link with environmental product declarations?

Whose responsibility is it to check that wood products being imported into the EU do not originate from illegally sourced timber supplies?

Does the EUTR require mills to provide any extra documentation for customs entry into the European Union?

Must all plywood and OSB panels carry a CE marking?

What is the definition of a construction product under the CPR?

What is a Declaration of Performance referred to under the Construction Products Regulation?

What is the difference between Structural 1 and Exposure 1?

Does structural panel siding have shear values?

What are mould and mildew, and do they compromise the integrity of engineered wood?

The CE-mark on an APA plywood panel means it conforms to European Standards – but which ones?

I want to use a Rated Sheathing panel for flooring/ roofing application, what info do I need to know?

Plywood: Span rating
OSB: Span rating

What extra strength benefits do Structural 1 OSB panels provide over standard Rated Sheathing panels?

Do APA panels give off formaldehyde?

Plywood: Formaldehyde
OSB: Formaldehyde

What is the difference between a touch-sanded panel and sanded panel?

I’d like to know how APA veneer grades match those given in the European standards

How do I correctly gauge the face appearance a plywood Siding panel?

I want to specify an APA panel for concrete formwork – what do I need to know?

Are APA panels tongue and grooved on all four edges?

I am not familiar with the term ‘Sized for Spacing’ – what is its significance?

How are Performance Category and thickness related?

I’d like to know more about a panel’s Span Rating and how it links to thickness.

Plywood: Span rating
OSB: Span rating

What is Span Rating on the APA trademark and why is it important?

Plywood: Span rating
OSB: Span rating

What is the difference between Exposure 1 and Exterior plywood panels? What are their appropriate uses?

What are the main OSB panels likely to be available in Europe?

What are the main plywood panels likely to be available in Europe?

What are the main European standards that I would need to be aware of for OSB panels?

The main standards are: EN 13986 and EN 300

What are the main European standards that I would need to be aware of for plywood panels?

The main standards are: EN 13986, EN 636, EN 314, EN 635-3