Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification

PEFC is the world's largest forest certification organisation

Trafalgar Square Gets it Certified Xmas Present

Posted on December 2, 2022

London’s festive season began in its usual sustainable style with the lighting of the iconic Trafalgar Square Christmas Tree on 1st December. The traditional annual gift from Norway to the UK is the 75th in the series of trees donated by Oslo to London and is symbolic of the good relations that exist between both nations.

This year’s Christmas tree is 21m high and approximately 90 years old. Each November, a suitable tree is picked out and felled, as part of a ceremony attended by the British Ambassador to Norway, Mayor of Oslo, and the Lord Mayor of Westminster.

The Norwegian Spruce has been harvested from a PEFC-certified forest from the Ostmarka area just outside Oslo. Being from a PEFC-certified area ensures that the forest from which the tree has been taken is managed under strict controls and guidelines, to ensure that the forest and products leaving it are legal and sustainable.

The lighting ceremony featured a reading from the Poetry Society of its seasonal children’s poetry commission. The tree will be on display in Trafalgar Square until 6 January 2023, when it will be taken down and shredded for compost.

The campaign’s messages focus on three central themes – responsible sourcing, renewable raw material and the recyclability of wood-fibre based packaging. 

Responsible Sourcing

The PEFC label ensures that certified packaging is sourced responsibly through PEFC chain of custody mechanism that traces and verifies the raw material through third-party audits. Safe working conditions for foresters, manufacturers, and all other workers.

Renewable Raw Materials

Sustainable forest management protects biodiversity and water courses, helps mitigate climate change, and reduces soil erosion and desertification –all of which are good for the planet, and for the local communities that live in and around forests. When forests are managed sustainably, they become a truly renewable resource.

Recyclable Packaging

After it has fulfilled it’s important to consider the end of life solution for paper-based packaging. Recycling remains an important part of any sustainable packaging solution. Demand for tree-based products is increasing, so recycling paper-based packaging and /or using recycled fibre helps reduce the demand for fresh fibre.  Packaging that uses PEFC certified paper/pulp therefore not only protects forests at source but also provides an essential strong fibre source for the ever growing recycled board market that supplies boxes for the e-commerce sector and beyond. The PEFC Recycled logo is available to use for this very purpose.

When used to supplement PEFC certified fresh fibres, recycled materials can help meet market demand for forest-based raw materials. So, recycled materials and certified forest materials both have a role to play in providing responsible packaging solutions.

Brands that choose PEFC-certified packaging can both act and communicate on their sustainability goals. Because PEFC certification is rigorous, impartial and globally-recognised, companies can substantiate their sustainability statements on responsible forest products sourcing.

You can learn more about this campaign here: