Woodfuel, Schemes and Quality Assurance

1 November 2023

As Woodsure has grown over the years so too have the schemes that we both run ourselves and administer on behalf of other parties. As a result, some approach the schemes with hesitance regarding what scheme might be best for their situation. In this brief overview, we explain the difference between the schemes that Woodsure administer, including the Ready to Burn scheme and the flagship Woodsure Fuel Quality schemes. 

Woodsure Fuel Quality

Woodsure is the UK’s only woodfuel quality assurance scheme. The Woodsure fuel quality schemes look to certify fuels for businesses and self-suppliers utilising the internationally recognised BS EN ISO 17225 standard. This is in an effort to raise the quality of woodfuel in the industry as the standard will grade the relevant fuel and provide a certification mark to show that it meets stricter regulations that deem the fuel to be cleaner and safer for the environment. 
This scheme is also suitable for meeting the requirements of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI). The RHI brought in a requirement that all fuel used to claim RHI from April 1st 2022 must meet the relevant standards. Woodsure also provides a Self-Supplier scheme for those that wish to meet these standards with their own fuel which can be applied for if they do not sell the fuel and have a boiler under 1MW. 
The Woodsure quality assurance scheme is not suitable to meet the requirements of the Air Quality (Domestic Solid Fuels Standards) (England) Regulations 2020, for which you require the Ready to Burn certification. Woodsure provides a higher standard of quality assurance for woodfuel products. 

Woodsure fuel quality assurance is available for firewood, briquettes, wood chip, hog fuel and pellets. 

Ready to Burn Certification Scheme for Wood Fuel

The Ready to Burn certification scheme is a Defra scheme, as listed in The Air Quality (Domestic Solid Fuels Standards) (England) Regulations 2020. Certification for wood fuel is administered by Woodsure. This scheme is required in order for any business that sells wood fuel to meet the requirements of the regulations that came into force on the 1st of May 2021. All fuel sold for domestic use (in England) under 2m³ needs Ready to Burn certification. 

The main criteria of the scheme is to ensure all wood sold for immediate use in domestic properties has a moisture content of 20% or less.  
There are circumstances where the sale of wood fuel may be exempt from requiring Ready to Burn certification. For example, if a business is exclusively selling volumes over 2m³, then they only need to provide the relevant government advice slip to customers to inform them how to season before use. If you are unsure if your fuel requires a Ready to Burn certification, we would advise you to get in touch with the scheme administrators to discuss your situation and options to ensure that you’re on the right path for yourselves. 

This certification does not provide a fuel quality grading like the Woodsure scheme but meets the requirements of the Regulation. It is considered a lighter touch and has minimal requirements to get certified for sale. As such, it does not meet the Fuel Quality requirements of the RHI.  

You can apply for both schemes separately or together for a reduced fee. For more information, contact the team by calling 01684 278188 or emailing [email protected].

Biomass Suppliers List (BSL)

The Biomass Suppliers List (BSL) is a list of woodfuel that has proven it meets the eligibility requirements for the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme. It allows RHI participants to easily demonstrate to Ofgem that the fuel they are using in their biomass boilers meets the sustainability criteria required to claim their RHI payments. The BSL has been administered by Woodsure since July 2021. The team administering BSL operates independently of the team that handles the Woodsure and Ready to Burn certifications. 

When and how is fuel quality added to BSL?

The Biomass Suppliers List will allow you to make an application for a fuel which will then take on board all of the requirements relevant to your application. This includes calculation of the emissions, reviewing your land criteria documentation, and your fuel quality certification (such as Woodsure Fuel Quality), to ensure it all meets the requirements accordingly. This will then provide you a BSL number which is used to help self-reporting with the RHI or to provide to your customers so that they can use this fuel to claim their RHI. 
Although there are situations where one must use the BSL, such as if you wish to sell the fuel, this is an optional service that makes certification of a fuel to claim the RHI easier and more accessible. If you are unsure if you need BSL certification in order to claim RHI, please contact the BSL team at [email protected] and they will be able to assist you further.

In short – What do I need?

  • If you sell the fuel to the general public – you will likely need the Ready to Burn certification.
  • If you wish to use your own fuel to claim RHI – you will need the Woodsure Fuel Quality certification and likely a BSL certification.
  • If you wish to sell fuel to a customer so they may claim RHI – you will need the Woodsure Fuel Quality certification and a BSL certification, and likely need the Ready to Burn certification. 

Wood Fuel Testing

The laboratory is accredited by UKAS under ISO/IEC17025:2017 General requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories. It currently offers the following accredited services: 

  • Testing of wood fuel moisture under the standard BS EN ISO 18134 Determination of moisture, for the purpose of satisfying the moisture scheme requirements of the Ready to Burn scheme
  • Testing wood chip particle size against recognised commercial fuel specification standards, BS EN ISO 17225-4 
  • The lab can also carry out non-accredited bespoke fuel testing that can be provided utilising the required resource above

Please forward all queries regarding independent lab testing to [email protected].


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Unit 5 Newtown Trading Estate

Green Lane


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