The UK Forest Standard was first published in 1998 (2nd edition 2004, 3rd edition 2011).
The current 4th edition was published in 2017. This update was designed to consolidate and extend the life of the Standard by:
- updating organisational details and mandates of the devolved forestry authorities;
- reflecting key policy changes arising from the increased devolution of forestry;
- updating relevant legislation and other regulatory requirements;
- incorporating recent developments in international agreements, and the way forestry activity is monitored and reported;
- incorporating recent advances in the scientific understanding of forestry;
- further strengthening the role of forest planning.
The four administrations of the UK are currently carrying out preparatory work for the next 5-yearly review of the UK Forestry Standard. The review is necessary to ensure the Standard remains relevant, reflects current sustainable forestry practices and continues to provide confidence that UK forestry is sustainable. Engaging key UK stakeholders in updating the UK Forestry Standard, via a stakeholder reference group, will be an important part of the review and proposed to start in autumn 2020.