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Why Conservation Grade? & What Is It?

Conservation Grade Character Knots Natural Unique Wood 
Character-rich Conservation Grade wood is beautiful. Like a fingerprint, no two pieces of wood are alike. Unfortunately, when wood is selected for uniformity based on its color or grade, much of its uniqueness is lost.

Conservation Grade material also makes the most efficient use of the timber resource. The majority of wood that comes out of a typical log is not perfectly clear but contains some knots, mineral streaking, or other character marks. Selecting wood for uniformity uses only a fraction of the resource that is naturally available and drives up the price. With clear wood products, a lot of perfectly good wood goes to waste. Using Conservation Grade also allows for wider and longer-than-average boards because pieces with character marks don’t need to be cut up to remove so-called "defects."

Finally, using Conservation Grade wood is environmentally responsible. It helps conform demand to what forests can supply on an ongoing basis. Too often, the demand for uniformity drives loggers to go after all of the tallest, straightest trees in the forest – the trees that will supply the largest quantity of clear wood. This practice is called “high grading,” and if repeated over time it drives down timber quality because it selects against the very traits that some find desirable.

For all of these reasons, Woodright specializes in Conservation Grade products that feature the full range of natural character inherently found in wood.

What is FSC

The Forest Stewardship Council™(FSC®)is a not-for-profit organization that accredits certifiers whose programs conform to its internationally recognized Principles and Criteria, thereby providing a consistent and credible framework for independent certification efforts worldwide.

Among many other things, in order to be FSC certified, a forest owner or manager must:

  • Meet all applicable laws
  • Have legally established rights to harvest
  • Respect indigenous rights
  • Consult with local communities
  • Protect biological diversity
  • Have a written management plan
  • Engage in regular monitoring
  • Maintain high conservation value forests
  • Manage plantations to alleviate pressures on – NOT replace - natural forests

Chain of custody certification involves independent audits throughout the production and distribution chain to ensure the validity of FSC labels and claims. This system provides consumers with confidence that wood sold or labeled as FSC-certified meets the stringent requirements of the FSC. WoodRight has been awarded Chain of Custody (CoC) certification by the Forest Stewardship Council. To maintain our CoC certificate, Woodright must undergo annual audits and properly track, label, invoice, and account for the FSC-certified products we handle. Before ordering FSC certified material, customers should always confirm the validity of a supplier’s FSC certificate here. Moreover, invoices and packing slips should always explicitly notate the FSC claim for each certified product listed along with the supplier’s FSC CoC number. An FSC logo on an invoice or packing slip does NOT necessarily indicate FSC certified material.

How Can I Know If This Wood Was Responsibly Grown and Harvested?

Today, nearly every product seems to carry some sort of environmental claim. Some are accurate, but others are misleading or exaggerated. How can you distinguish a genuinely responsible wood product from one that has been "greenwashed?” The answer is credible, independent certification for forests and forest products. Forest certification is a voluntary process that ensures consumers that the wood products they buy were grown and harvested in a way that protects forests for the long term. Certifiers assess on-the-ground forest practices against a stringent set of environmental and social criteria. Operations that meet those standards can sell their timber as certified. Legitimate certifiers also audit the "chain of custody" of the certified wood to ensure that it is tracked through each stage of the manufacturing and distribution process from forest to end user. There are several certification systems in existence, but the Forest Stewardship Council or FSC is widely viewed as the responsible forestry gold standard, enjoying support from most major environmental groups, including World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, National Wildlife Federation, Sierra Club, and The Wilderness Society. WoodRight Forest Products has been awarded Chain-of-Custody certification from the Forest Stewardship Council. If you want to ensure that your wood came from a FSC-certified forest, just ask, as virtually all of our products are available as FSC-certified.

Will The Products I Receive Look Exactly Like The Pictures On The Website Or My Samples?

When selecting the boards for our samples and website photography, we work hard to include the widest range of natural markings and colors possible in an effort to provide the closest representation of the products you can expect. However, we hope that you’ll keep in mind the following: Website Photography Wood is a natural material that can contain a virtually infinite range of character markings and color variations which are impossible to represent in a single picture.Different electronic device screens, lighting conditions, finishes, and more can also contribute to aesthetic variations. (Note: a single coat of tung oil was applied to most of the samples photographed for the website) Samples We’d love to offer you the opportunity to test drive any of our species in person. Just Contact Us to request samples. You can read more about what samples are available on our Samples Page. However, please remember that wood is a natural material that can contain a virtually infinite range of character markings and color variations which are impossible to represent in a single sample. The range of natural character inherent to our Conservation Grade products can be particularly difficult to convey in a single, small sample. Even if you have one of our samples, we recommend also viewing the large pictures of the species which you are considering on the corresponding pages within our Species Selector to see a more complete range of potential character features and colors. Don’t hesitate to Contact Usfor pressure-free assistance in selecting the appropriate species and grade for your project. We don’t bite.

How Early In The Planning Or Construction Process Should I Contact WoodRight?

The earlier, the better! We will work hard to meet any construction deadlines you may have and we always try to keep lead times as short as possible. However, variable harvesting and manufacturing schedules, species availability, order complexity and sizes, and more can affect lead times. It is also helpful to view the general availability rating for each individual species within our Species Selector and Product Specifications as the less common species may take a little longer to source. As always, feel free to Contact Us to discuss your project's schedule.

Why Do Your Floor, Wall, And Ceiling Boards Come Standard In Multiple Widths Rather Than Common Single Widths?

The short answer:
  • Reduced wood waste
  • Additional dimensional stability
  • More visual interest.
Reduced Wood Waste WoodRight strives to offer the most responsible hardwood products available in the marketplace today. While good forest management and harvesting practices are foundational to sustainability, we also consider the efficient utilization of our natural resources to be a vital consideration. Like our Conservation Grade material, the use of random plank widths reduces wood waste by using a higher proportion of each piece of lumber - each provides more square footage of material yield from the same sized tree. Added Dimensional Stability and Visual Interest. Nothing can be more breathtaking or cozy than an expertly crafted and installed wide plank hardwood floor. Unfortunately, the wider the plank, the higher the risk of wood movement. Gaps in the winter and humps in the summer can be frustrating. Using multiple widths give you the beautiful uninterrupted wood grain exposure of the included wider boards, while the narrower boards help to offset wood movement and add even more visual variety and character to your space.