A GOLD medal award in an international branding competition has added to the Australia-wide success of the Responsible Wood campaign.

The Responsible Wood logo won best brand and best design agency in the Oceania region in the 5thInternational Best Brands contest, which honours excellence in design around the world.

Since Australian Forestry Standard changed its name to Responsible Wood in November last year – reflecting a clear consumer-focused strategy – the organisation reports a widespread ‘pick-up’ of the new brand by all sections of the forest and forest products industry, including architects, designers, specifiers and builders along the value-added chain.

“The campaign is moving forward, raising the profile of the organisation and delivering greater benefits for those who participate in the Responsible Wood system,” CEO Simon Dorries said.

“The campaign’s advancement will see the appointment of a dedicated marketing and communications officer with responsibilities to include face-to-face contact with industry stakeholders around Australia,” he said.

“Responsible Wood activities are mounting as acceptance of our sustainability and certification credentials widen and a round of major standards revisions gets under way.”

Mr Dorries said the revised standards would introduce new opportunities for innovation and technology in the sector where there was a genuine acceptance of the advantages of certified wood products.

During the PEFC half-yearly meeting in Geneva, a presentation of the new Responsible Wood branding and marketing campaign by Simon Dorries won high acclaim from international delegates.

Responsible Wood brand designer Gary Schmidt, a director, Loa Branding, said: “We’re extremely proud of the process we shared, and outcome we arrived at – a symbol showing timber being protected, transformed and renewed, in a timeless form that suggests authority and strength.

“Everyone in the studio knew this project would hold significant cultural weight, and that it would have a lot of concerned eyes on it. It wasn’t something we were willing to do by half, so discovering the board shared that vision and intent was a huge relief.

“We couldn’t be prouder that the Responsible Wood brand has received this international recognition.

“It really is a wonderful reflection of the organisation’s commitment to the industry.”

Adding to the support of the Responsible Wood brand, Brisbane-based Finlayson Timber and Hardware says certification to Australian standards for forest management “from the year go” has been the linchpin to the success of the family’s business in both domestic and export markets.

“The seismic shift to ‘green building’ and the concerns we have noted, and rightly so, among consumers, architects, designers and builders about timber legality and sustainability makes support of timber certification a ‘no-brainer’ for us,” company director Michael Finlayson said.

Finlayson’s was one of the first timber sawmiller-merchants to embrace the Australian Forestry Standard scheme from its beginning.

“Now we continue this commitment through the re-named Responsible Wood program for forest management and chain-of-custody, which has had a positive impact on our trading success,” Mr Finlayson said.

Hyne Timber’s manager, strategic relations, Katie Fowden said the Responsible Wood logo and its message were aligned to the company’s wood sales and marketing policy.

“It sends a clear message to our customers – and their customers – through our national distribution network that the wood supplied is from a reliable and legal source,” she said.

Simon Dorries, CEO, Responsible Wood