Georgetown, Guyana — In a record-setting accomplishment for tropical forest conservation, Barama Company announced that 570,000 hectares (about 2,200 square miles) of Barama’s forests in Guyana is being certified as meeting the rigorous environmental, social and economic standards of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). Thanks to technical and financial support from the World Wildlife Fund, Barama’s certified forest becomes the largest tropical natural forest certified by FSC in the world.
In another example of how rigorous social and environmental practices can improve business as a whole, the certification enables Barama not only to retain access to its current markets in the United States, but opens the door to new buyers in Europe and North America that demand forest products from well-managed forests. As a result, in a country with a high unemployment rate, Barama is able to employ at least 1,500 persons. Before certification, the company was in danger of down-sizing its operations. Today, Barama forecasts increasing employment in the area. Barama’s employees benefit from a better work environment and the company provides social services for local communities such as health services, medicines, transportation in and out of remote areas and emergency assistance. (more info)