Assessment tool for the evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses of certification schemes. the CAT assessments can be applied to all sectors, but so far, WWF has developed the CAT for forestry and agriculture specifically. The tool evaluates both system strengths (e.g. mission, governance, accreditation, chain of custody, etc.) and standard strengths (e.g. legality, workers' rights, biodiversity, etc.).

Geographical Areas of Interest


Supply Chain Focus

Forest production


Related CHapters


Includes considerations about explicit performance requirements including chain-of-custody. It assesses certification systems’ provisions for the control of chain -of-custody from the forest of origin to the final product.

Information Accuracy

Includes criteria to assess the absence of conflicts of interest in a certification scheme’s decision-making process. It also includes criteria and requirements to assess the independence of the evaluation and verification of performance in forest management and the chain-of-custody standard. Criteria and requirements to assess the use of monitoring systems to evaluate overall management, and the social and environmental impacts are also included.


Includes criteria and requirements for assessing compliance with relevant national and international laws, treaties and agreements.


Includes criteria and requirements to assess compatibility with globally applicable SFM principles and continued improvement of forest management. Assesses whether or not certification systems’ provisions for forest plantations ensure that plantations do not lead to the conversion of critical natural habitats.

Unique Forest Values

Includes provisions regarding the establishment of plantations, the conversion or loss of critical natural habitats, the mitigation of environmental impacts to conserve biological diversity and other ecosystem services, and the maintenance of critical forest areas and other critical natural habitats.

Social Aspects

Includes criteria and requirements for assessing compatibility with globally applicable social principles including: respect for human, indigenous and worker’s rights; meaningful and equitable participation of all major stakeholder group s; and transparency in decision-making and public reporting.