FSC Approves Promotional Use of Logo
FSC recently approved a new trademark standard, “Requirements for promotional use of the FSC trademarks by Non-Certificate holders FSC-STD-50-002,” which lays out the rules and guidelines of trademark use for Non-Certificate Holders.
Please note that this new standard will have no impact on trademark use for Certificate Holders.
While FSC on-product labels are only allowed for organizations in possession of a valid Chain of Custody certificate, in certain circumstances, Non-Certificate holders (retailers, educational institutions, media and end users) may apply to become trademark licensees to promote FSC or the products they sell.
Now that the new standard has been finalized, applicants will no longer receive Logo Resource Packs, but instead will be issued Trademark Service Packs (TSPs) through Trademark Service Providers at FSC National Offices. The current FSC-US Logo Resource Pack codes are no longer valid. These companies must reapply to receive Trademark Service Packs and a new transparent license number.
Although the application process has not changed substantially, there are a few differences. One of the key differences is a nominal fee, which will cover a portion of the costs associated with issuing licenses and monitoring trademark use. This fee will vary according to the company’s annual revenue and will range from free for educational and media use to $700 for companies with revenue over $1 billion. Another addition to the new TSP process is a trademark license agreement to be signed by FSC-US and the applicant.
Companies seeking to promote FSC products will be issued both a unique license code and a promotional panel to be used when referencing FSC on promotional materials. This panel cannot be applied to products and is for promotional use only. All license codes will be listed in a global public Non-Certificate Holder TSP database, much like that of the Certificate Holder database, which will increase the transparency of trademark use in the US and throughout the world. Companies with headquarters in the US that want to promote FSC products globally can apply for a centralized TSP through the FSC-US national office. This centralized TSP will license companies to promote products all over the world. For educational institutions and media establishments, the trademark license application process will not change.
FSC-US has already begun issuing TSPs to Non-Certificate Holders. In July, FSC-US will begin reaching out to companies that have Logo Resource Packs in order to guide them in the transition to the TSP system. Certificate Holders that manufacture, package or label products with the FSC on-product label will continue to follow the guidelines as laid out in the FSC-STD-50-002 standard “Requirements for the use of the FSC trademarks by Certificate Holders.”
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