Certification is viewed as one of the most effective ways of curbing unregulated logging and conserving natural forests in the tropics. In the meantime, there are several dozen certifying organisations. Among these, the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) lead the field worldwide.
However, the overall certified area is growing much more slowly than environmental organisations and forest experts would wish; and most of it , while covering around eight percent of the forested area worldwide, is actually located in the industrialised countries. Furthermore, the awarding practices of the certifying organisations repeatedly attract criticism.