Harlequin Achieves Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) Chain-of-Custody Certification by the Rainforest Alliance

December 6, 2012

We are pleased to announce that Harlequin Enterprises North America -- one of the world's leading publishers of books for women -- has been awarded Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Chain-of-Custody certification (FSC®-C104934) by the Rainforest Alliance. This achievement marks a significant milestone, demonstrating that publishing houses and forest product consumers can support sustainable forest management.

“By purchasing FSC-certified paper, Harlequin is directly influencing how forest management is conducted in North America,” said Alexandre Boursier, manager of the Rainforest Alliance in Canada. “Because of companies like Harlequin, First Nations will see their rights and resources better protected, biodiversity and high conservation values like old-growth forests will be preserved, and workers and their communities will receive more benefits from their forests."

Based in Toronto, Canada, Harlequin North America sources over 18,000 MT of paper annually. Currently, 15 percent of Harlequin’s paper supply is FSC-certified. Harlequin has committed to scale up its commitment, sourcing 20 percent of its paper as FSC-certified by 2013, and reaching 25 percent by 2014. As a Canada-based company, Harlequin’s commitment is especially significant, since 10 percent of the world’s forests -- covering 981.7 million acres (397.3 million hectares) of land -- are found in Canada.

“The FSC is recognized globally for promoting environmental and social sustainability across the forestry industry,” said Craig Swinwood, Harlequin’s COO for North America. “Through sourcing FSC-certified paper, we can help transform the paper industry into a more sustainable model, conserving Canada’s forests while improving livelihoods.”

FSC certification requirements are widely considered the gold standard for sustainable forest management, and the Rainforest Alliance is the leading FSC certifier, having certified 45 percent of FSC-certified land worldwide. Over 167.4 million acres (67.7 million hectares) of forestlands globally have been certified to FSC standards by the Rainforest Alliance. The FSC standard describes how forests can be managed to meet the social, economic, ecological and cultural needs of present and future generations.