Tree Cell 1

Mixed Media on Yupo Paper
30″ x 80″

Photo by Teresa Rafidi

“Many wood species look identical to the naked eye, especially in the case of finished wood products. Unfortunately this means that certain wood products entering the US – one of the biggest wood importers – are illegal, and that a few enter the country under false species claims. But with forensic wood anatomy, a powerful magnifying lens allows scientists to spot distinguishing details at the cellular level. At the U.S. Forest Service Products Lab, scientists use magnification to compare the anatomical structure of wood samples with species in reference libraries to determine the accuracy of species claims.
In 2017, WWF provided the lab with 183 specimens from 73 wood products sold online in the U.S. the scientists are now using wood anatomy testing to verify the accuracy of the species labeling. the project aims to enlighten companies about the mislabeling of wood products into the U.S.”
Source: World Wildlife Fund