SBP Certification

Sustainable Biomass Program

What is SBP Certification ?

Sustainable Biomass Program (SBP) certification ensures that woody biomass feedstock is sourced responsibly and can be effectively tracked through the supply chain. SBP exists to ensure that woody biomass producers comply with the legal, regulatory and sustainability requirements for European power generators.

In addition, the SBP framework helps guarantee accurate transmission of energy and carbon data across the chain of custody to the end user, supporting national greenhouse gas reduction efforts. Another part of the standard entails that organizations demonstrate sustainable feedstock and traceability, requiring chain of custody (COC) certification from FSC®, SFI® or PEFC, which SCS provides.

Certification to SBP involves an audit to determine conformance to the key principles and requirements. The audit ensures that the biomass producer sources feedstock legally and sustainably, has implemented a Supply Base Evaluation (SBE), tracks and records biomass profiling data, and tracks SBP compliant biomass through chain of custody.


Why Choose SCS?

SCS has the expertise you need to successfully navigate the certification process. We have been a leading international certifier of environmental and sustainability achievement for more than three decades, and an accredited certifier for Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®), Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®), and the Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), all of which operate SBP-approved Controlled Feedstock and Chain of Custody Systems. As a result, we are fully versed in the nuances of these standards, and the on-the-ground challenges faced by certification applicants. Our team of professional auditors has a global reputation for providing thorough, timely and cost-effective service.

SCS is accredited by ANAB to provide SBP certification.

  • Service Offerings
  • Process
  • FAQs
  • Certified Clients
  • Apply for Certification
  • Program Documents
  • Producers of woody biomass (e.g., pellet mills, brokers, and traders of wood pellets) who want to demonstrate to customers that their woody biomass is sourced from legal and sustainably managed sources
  • Companies in the biomass sector who need to demonstrate compliance with legal, regulatory, and sustainability requirements related to woody biomass
Key SBP Principles and Requirements

SCS auditors evaluate compliance with all relevant SBP requirements. Key among these requirements, the certified company must:

  • Ensure that feedstock is legally and sustainably sourced
  • Implement a Supply Base Evaluation (SBE) to verify compliance of management systems, if applicable
  • Track and record biomass profiling data (feedstock, production, transportation) where applicable
  • Track SBP-compliant biomass through processing and production
Complementary Services

SBP certification audits can be conducted concurrently by SCS with your FSC, SFI, and/or PEFC Chain of Custody audits. Combining audits is an effective way to reduce overall audit time and expenses.

  1. Apply for Certification

    The applicant completes and submits the SCS Application form. SCS prepares a proposal for your approval with the suggested scope of work, timeline and quote. If the proposal meets your needs, a Work Order is signed and the work is scheduled.

  2. Written Procedures

    The applicant creates company procedures demonstrating how certified woody biomass will be tracked throughout your operation.

  3. Pre-Audit Assessment

    An SCS auditor reviews your procedures for thoroughness and conformance before scheduling your on-site audit. For initial and re-evaluations of Biomass Producers stakeholder consultation is also conducted by SCS, typically in advance of the on-site audit.

  4. On-site Audit

    During a site visit, an SCS auditor reviews your procedures and records, including your Supply Base Evaluation (SBE) process if relevant. Additionally, the auditor tours the facilities where material is handled and interviews key staff. We look for evidence that staff members have been properly trained in their responsibilities and understand the workflow for SBP-certified materials and products.

  5. Assessment Report

    The SCS auditor produces a report to present audit findings. The report is submitted to a qualified SCS Technical Associate, who validates the appropriateness of the auditor's methodology and conclusions.

  6. Certification Decision

    Based on audit findings, the Technical Associate decides whether to grant certification. If granted, you will be issued a certificate valid for a five-year period. Any Major Corrective Action Requests (CARs) identified by SCS must be closed prior to obtaining certification. SCS can also provide client marketing support.

  7. Maintain Certification

    Annual verification audits are required to maintain SBP certification.

Why should I get certified to the SBP standard?

Certification to the SBP standard lets your customers know that your products satisfy the stringent European chain-of-custody requirements for woody biomass production. In addition, your certification may support independently verified carbon reporting to help your customers more effectively evaluate greenhouse gas emissions.

What is the Supply Base Evaluation and when is it needed?

The Supply Base Evaluation is the process whereby a Biomass Producer validates feedstock by implementing the principles, criteria and indicators of the Feedstock Compliance Standard (Standard 1). The process comprises a Risk Assessment and a Supplier Verification Programme. An SBE is not required if all of the feedstock has either an approved Forest Management Scheme claim (FSC or PEFC), an approved CoC System claim (FSC, PEFC, or SFI), or an or an approved Controlled Feedstock System claim.

What factors influence the cost of certification?

Certifications costs vary depending on the location, size and complexity of your operation. Chain-of-custody systems range from simple to very complex, and there are separate chain-of-custody standards for companies with multiple facilities, for outsourced manufacturing, and for the verification of recycled or non-controversial sources. SCS maintains a reputation for thoroughness, quality, and efficiency, which helps our customers save time and money both on the front end and down the line. Customers can also realize significant savings when combining SBP certification with our related certification services (e.g., FSC, SFI, PEFC).

How long does it take to get certified?

At SCS, customer service and responsiveness is a priority. We typically are able to send our auditors to your facility, provide you with the audit report, and make a certification decision within 10 to 12 weeks. If you have a specific timeline for certification we will normally be able to accommodate it.

Current Sustainable Biomass Program (SBP) Certificate Holders 

All companies currently certified according to the requirements of Sustainable Biomass Program can be found using SBP's Registered Certificates database. The SBP certificate database is the official database of SSBP certificate holders. In the certificate details you can see which certificate holders are certified by SCS Global Services.

  1. Go to SBP's Certificate Holders database
  2. Enter "04" (unique identifier for SCS) in the blank box after "SBP-"

Stakeholder Review 

The Sustainable Biomass Program (SBP) requires certification bodies, under certain circumstances, to solicit stakeholder comments on our clients' Due Diligence Systems and Supply Base Report/Supply Base Report Annex 1. To see a list of current public consultations and participate by providing comments regarding conformity or nonconformity to applicable requirements, please visit our Stakeholder Review page.

The applicant completes and submits the SCS Application form. SCS will also register you as an applicant to the SBP Portal, which is publicly available. SCS prepares a proposal for your approval with the suggested scope of work, timeline and quote. If the proposal meets your needs, a Work Order is signed and the work is scheduled.

File Name Document
SBP Certification Requirements Visit Site
SBP Normative Interpretations Visit Site
SBP Standard 1: Feedstock Compliance Standard Visit Site
SBP Standard 2: Verification of SBP-compliant Feedstock Visit Site
SBP Standard 4: Chain of Custody Visit Site
SBP Standard 5: Collection and Communication of Data Visit Site
SBP Standard Instruction 2D: Requirements for Group Schemes Visit Site
SBP Standard Instruction 2E: Requirements for Risk Based Approach for Biomass Category 2 Visit Site
SBP Standard Instruction 5E: Collection and Communication of Energy and Carbon Data Visit Site
SCS International Responsible Forestry Certification – Qualifications Profile English
Sustainable Biomass Program English   |   Spanish

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Forestry Business Group