By law (Ontario Regulation 319/20 under the Crown Forest Sustainability Act), The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) requires management units to be audited at least once every ten years.


Independent Forest Audits

Independent Forest Audits (IFA) are carried out by a multi-disciplinary team of auditors to examine the performance of BOTH the sustainable forest licence holder (the industry) AND the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (the ministry) in meeting their forest management responsibilities. During the IFA process, the audit team reviews our plans, records, and operations to assess whether or not sustainability is being achieved. This information is communicated through audit findings and documented in audit reports.  

The audit also assesses the effectiveness of forest management activities in meeting the objectives set out in the forest management plan (FMP) and provides an opportunity to improve Crown forest management in Ontario through adaptive management. 

IFA Process & Protocols

To ensure the objectivity of the audit process and its findings or conclusions, every member of an audit team must be independent of the Ontario Government and of any licensee, contractor, or entity (e.g., licensee, industry, ministry unit or official) who is the subject of the audit.  

The ministry and industry respond to audit findings by jointly preparing action plans and reporting on the progress towards the completion of actions i.e. status report. Action plans are developed after the final independent audit report is accepted. Audit reports cannot be made public until tabled in Ontario’s legislature, a process which can take 2 years. Action plans describe how the findings made by the independent auditor will be addressed. 
The most recent IFA carried out on the Bancroft Minden Forest was conducted by KBM Resource Group during the fall of 2018. The audit covers forest management planning and implementation activities carried out during the six-year period April 1, 2011 through March 31, 2017.