The long-term environmental, social and economic benefits of Rainforest Alliance certification are undeniable. When farms meet the comprehensive criteria of the Sustainable Agriculture Network (SAN) Standard, not only do they protect forests, provide habitat for wildlife and ensure the rights and well-being of workers, their families and their communities -- they often see increases in productivity and receive price premiums.
The World Resources Institute and the Forest Legality Alliance studied mahogany that was sourced from small community-run forestry cooperatives in Honduras' biodiversity-rich forests, examining two approaches to minimizing the risk to importers of sourcing illegal wood. The first approach involved establishing strong relationships with suppliers and the second was to prefer certified wood. Among other things, the study found that chain-of-custody certification was a useful tool for enhancing assurances of legality.
Smallholder tea farmers in Kenya are organized through the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA), which works with farmers to produce, process and market high quality teas. KTDA promotes better tea production practices in order to help smallholder farmers increase production quantity and achieve certification--with the ultimate goal of strengthening existing tea markets and establishing new ones. Various KTDA farms are pursuing certification by Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade and UTZ.