Q: If the state Best Management Practices (BMPs) are voluntary, does that mean Tree Farmers do not need to follow them?
A: No, under the 2010-2015 Standard for Sustainability, all Certified Tree Farmers must follow state BMPs, even voluntary BMPs! This is another way the 2010-2015 Standards of Sustainability ensures Tree Farmers are soundly managing their forests. During our 2011 Assessment, we found that some Tree Farmers did not know about their State BMPs, or realize they are obligatory under ATFS. Please work with your landowners to ensure they are aware of BMPs in your state and understand that under the ATFS certification requirements, all BMPs are required.
Thank you for your participation as an inspector with the American Tree Farm System! Your interaction with family woodland owners is helping to improve the sustainability of our forest resources across the U.S.
As always, check out the latest news of what's happening at the American Tree Farm System on our website - www.treefarmsystem.org.
Please feel free to contact us at any time with any questions or concerns.