Global timber trafficking harms forests and costs billions of dollars – here’s how to curb it

If a tree falls in the forest, do you care how it was brought down?

Few people think about where the wood in their furniture, floors or doors comes from or how it got there. And few would guess that one of the most illegally traded wild products worldwide is a tree, rosewood (Dalbergia).

Rosewood is so widely trafficked it is called “the ivory of the forest.” Its rich reddish-brown timber is used to make furniture, flooring and musical instruments. Yet many of the trees that produce it are threatened and internationally protected.