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Forest reproductive material

Forest Reproductive Material (FRM) is the generic name for the seeds, cones, cuttings and planting stock used in forest establishment.  The 46 tree species and the genus Populus (including aspen, black poplar and grey poplar) covered by the Regulations are known as the 'controlled species'.

The Forest Reproductive Material (Great Britain) Regulations 2002 regulate the marketing of FRM.  These Regulations came into force on 1st January 2003 and implement EC Directive 1999/105.  The Forestry Commission is the Official Body that is responsible for the FRM Regulations in England, Scotland and Wales.

Guidance about how the regulations have been implemented is available.  Use the FRM Contacts button on the left hand side to request information by e-mail.

What the Regulations do
The Regulations provide a system of identification and control of seeds, cuttings and planting stock used for forestry purposes in Great Britain.  This is defined as “woodland planting of any description for any forestry purpose including, timber production, forests and woodlands for tourist, recreational, sporting, educational or amenity purposes and the conservation and enhancement of the forest and woodland environment.

The Regulations ensure that planting stock is traceable through the collection and production process to a registered source of basic material (e.g. trees from which the seed is collected or cuttings taken).

This allows those who buy FRM to have sufficient information about the material being bought, such as provenance and origin.

Should I be registered?

Voluntary Scheme
In 1999 we introduced a Voluntary Scheme for the Certification of Native Trees and Shrubs (The Voluntary Scheme) not controlled by the regulations. The procedures in the Voluntary Scheme are the same as for those species controlled under the regulations. Since the Voluntary Scheme was introduced an increased number of native species have been included in the list of controlled species.

The scheme uses the 24 native seed zones (as shown on the Regions of Provenance map) The native seed zones are a non-statutory sub-division of the statutory Regions of Provenance (for native species only). The Regions of Provenance have been split into 24 smaller native seed zones based on information about climate and geological variation. These seed zones are also divided into 2 altitude bands, above and below 300 metres.


  • FRM is controlled by a regulatory system covering 46 tree species and the genus Populus
  • Planting stock can be traced to a registered source of basic material (e.g. trees from which seed is collected or cuttings taken)

Forms and booklets.jpg

Tree and shrub species controlled under the EU Directive and those certified on a voluntary basis 

Forest Reproductive Material: Regulations controlling seed, cuttings and planting stock for forestry in Great Britain (also refered to as the FRM Guidelines) (1,762k - pdf)


Last updated: 28th September 2016