Forest certification plays a notable role in promoting sustainability. This certification shows that forestland holders have adopted innovative practices toward realizing sustainable business models. Relatively little analysis has been devoted to identifying the efforts of transforming a conventional business model into a sustainable version through the application of forest certification. This paper examines the elements of a sustainable business model: value proposition, value creation and delivery, and value capture in certified forestland holders’ business operations. Empirical results have confirmed that certification signifies a successful sustainability transformation within adopting firms. However, these small organizations struggle with obtaining know-how regarding sustainable forest management. There needs to be adequate external support, such as government consultants or academic researchers, in order to successfully adopt third-party forest certification. However, while practicing sustainable forest management activities will not guarantee premium prices, the certification has, in some rare cases, helped to develop a new niche market. Good communication with stakeholders has improved firms’ relationships with local residents, but more channels of communication are still needed to activate green consumers.
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