Conclusions and recommendations

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Non-timber forest products (NTFPs) are not inherently ideal candidates for certification. They are most commonly consumed at a subsistence level, are traded locally and regionally, and most are not featured in markets open to ‘green' or ‘fairtrade' messages. However, for some of the NTFP species in trade, certification offers a way to improve market access, to capture a greater share of benefits at a local and community level, and to promote wider conservation objectives. Many of the most valuable NTFPs are also those most poorly managed, and certification offers consumers a chance to buy wisely and responsibly, rewarding companies and producers who seek to purchase and produce sustainable and fairly traded raw and processed materials. This chapter discusses some overarching lessons learned by the NTFP certification project and review potential opportunities and challenges. It concludes with some recommendations for ‘next steps' in developing and implementing effective NTFP certification.

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