Chief Forester’s Standards for Seed Use
The province's chief forester established the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use in accordance with the Forest and Range Practices Act and its regulations. These standards came into effect on April 1, 2005.
On this page:
These standards require that seed used to establish a free growing stand on blocks subject to Forest and Range Practices Act must be registered, tested, and stored, with the ministry’s, Forest Improvement and Research Management Branch (Tree Seed Centre). Seed must meet specific collection, genetic diversity and physical quality requirements to be eligible for registration. Seed that has been genetically modified cannot be registered. Seed use standards also apply to seed collection (Collection Area), selection and use (Genetic Worth), and seed transfer (Areas of Use). Collectively, these standards maintain the identity, adaptability, diversity and productivity of the province's tree gene resources.
Consolidated Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use (April 2022)(PDF, 576KB) April, 2022 - current version for operational use
Memorandum: Next Phase of Transition to Climate Based Seed Transfer (PDF, 138KB)
Forest enhancement and forest carbon initiatives
For information see, Best Practices for Seed Use in a Changing Climate Dec 2019 (PDF, 279KB)
Amendments refer to changes to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use, including changes registration, storage and testing, seed selection and use, and seed transfer (areas of use).
- Climate Based Seed Transfer Areas of Use May 2022 v1 (XLSX, 3.9MB) May, 2022 - current version for operational use
- Chief Forester letter announcing amendments May, 2022 (PDF, 262KB)
Areas of use
To learn more about tree seed areas of use applicable under older versions of the Standards, visit the Area of Use webpage.
Alternatives to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use
As outlined in the Memorandum: Guidance for Preparing Alternatives to the Chief Forester’s Standards for Seed Use, under section 169 of the Forest and Range Practices Act (FRPA), and regulations pertaining to seed use (FPPR section 43 and WLPPR section 32), a person who uses seed may submit for approval an alternative to any standard established by the Chief Forester. The Guidance For Preparing Alternatives to the Chief Forester's Bulletin provides guidance when a person, using seed to establish a free growing stand, it preparing to submit and alternative to any standard in the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed use.
To learn more about the process behind requesting an Alternative to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use, please watch the Alternatives to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use video. This video covers:
1. How users can search for climatically suitable seedlots
2. How to search for seedlots that could be used in an Alternative to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use
3. The process of applying for an Alternative to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use
For your reference, you can download the Alternatives to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use slide deck (PDF, 394 KB)
1. Alternative request preparation and consultation with Policy and Planning Section
Once you have determined that you are unable to procure seed that complies with the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use, please contact the Policy and Planning team at FORHTIP.SEEDHELP@gov.bc.ca. Our team will work with you to find possible solutions and liaise with members of the tree breeding program.
2. Alternative request is received by Policy and Planning Section
Once the initial consultation has been completed, the proponent is responsible for drafting a letter to the Chief Forester requesting an Alternative to the Chief Forester's Standards for Seed Use. A final draft letter should be received a minimum of 6-8 weeks prior to carrying out the activity to which the Standards apply (sowing request deadline, planting etc).
3. Alternative is reviewed and discussed with proponent
The Policy and Planning team will review the letter and ensure that it contains all the required information. If any questions or suggestions for improvement arise, the proponent will be contacted.
4. Chief Forester’s Technical Advisory Committee reviews the request
The Chief Forester's Technical Advisory Committee reviews the requests and accesses any risks, or issues with feasibility.
5. Briefing note is prepared for the Chief Forester
A briefing note is drafted by the Policy and Planning team. The briefing note and the letter from the proponent is sent to the Chief Forester.
6. Chief Forester makes and approval decision
7. Decision letter is sent to the proponent from the Chief Forester's office
Documents and materials listed below are provided for historical reference.
- Amendments to the Standards – May 2014 (PDF, 369KB)
- Amendment to the Standards – June 2010 9PDF, 177KB)
- Maps to support the 2010 amendment
- Tested Parent Tree Areas of Use
- Amendment to the Standards – November 2008 (PDF, 160KB)
- Amendment to the Standards – June 2008 (PDF, 167KB)
- Amendments to the Standards – November 2006 (PDF, 189KB)
- Changes to Seed Transfer Limits – April 2005 (PDF, 195KB)
- Notice from Jim Snetsinger, Chief Forester – November 29, 2004 (PDF, 173KB)