Know the Forest and the Trees: A Consumer's Guide to Buying Wood

Whether you are building a deck or buying a nightstand, the source of the wood you buy matters. In the best case, your purchase could support a sustainable community rainforest initiative. But in the other extreme, the wood in your new deck could contribute to continued impoverishment of families in Latin America or deforestation in Southeast Asia.

As a consumer, you can hold retailers accountable by inquiring about the origin of the wood they sell. And by purchasing legally and sustainably harvested wood -- or by choosing recycled or composite alternatives -- you help steer the market away from destructive and illegal logging and towards sustainable business practices.

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