Public announcement of UKWAS review and call for stakeholder input

The beginning of a formal process to review and, if thought necessary, revise the UKWAS certification standard was announced today by the UKWAS steering group.

The current 4th edition of the UK Woodland Assurance Standard, known as UKWAS 4, has been in effect since 1st April 2018 and in accordance with the UKWAS procedures, it is reviewed on a 5-yearly basis.

An independent multi-stakeholder working group chaired by Peter Wilson will take forward the initial review phase to determine whether a full revision is necessary. A decision on whether to continue to a revision phase will be made towards the end of this year. If so, the working group will take forward the revision with the objective of a new UKWAS 5 version of the standard being in effect from 1st April 2023.

UKWAS chair, Richard Howe, said: “The review process starts with an evidence gathering period and we are now asking standard-users and stakeholders from across the UK forestry community and beyond to help us by submitting their initial thoughts and recommendations to the working group by the end of August.

“We will be initiating a series of reviews to collect evidence over the next few months but we are particularly keen to hear from standard-users and stakeholders from the outset. We also plan two formal consultations during 2021 if we move to a full revision of the standard.”