Nature's Best Sweden has been recognized according to the Global Sustainable Tourism Council's international criteria for sustainable tourism.
- It is an essential milestone for the label, which gives increased confidence among consumers, nature tourism companies, and other stakeholders who are looking for sustainable alternatives, says Pär Innala, responsible for Nature's Best.
The recognition means that the quality label has undergone a thorough review by GSTC's experts to ensure it meets its global standards.
- It is an important recognition, which means that Nature's Best Sweden now joins a group of a group of reputable sustainability systems such as Earthcheck, Green Key, and Ecotourism Australia, to name a few, says Pär Innala.
The Nature's Best quality label, for which Naturturismföretagen (Swedish Nature and Ecotourism Association) is the principal, has, during the more than 20 years of its existence, always been a solid system for nature tourism companies to ensure the quality of their operations. The label is based on six basic principles as well as thematic criteria depending on the nature and cultural experiences the company provides.
- After GSTC was launched in 2008, we have followed the development of the global standard to align Nature's Best's criteria with GSTC's during the latest revision. says Pär.
Follow-up and measurement of sustainability development
The piece of the puzzle missing for the label to be recognized was a concrete tool for a follow-up to evaluate and measure the development of labeled companies in sustainability work over time.
- From now on, the tool is at hand for Nature's Best-labelled companies and for those starting the process, says Pär Innala.
- That Nature's Best, in its entirety, is recognized by the GSTC is fantastic. Since the audit, the labeling has aligned with the global goals. With the new tool for ongoing follow-up, Sweden has a unique tool to ensure that nature tourism develops sustainably in the country, says Camilla Jönsson, secretary general of Naturturismföretagen.
Camilla also sees it as an advantage that the industry collectively gets access to an international network with the sole focus of working for the sustainable development of the hospitality industry.
- In 2024, Sweden will host the global GSTC conference, and it is a central piece of the puzzle in Swedish hospitality industry development, she says.
With the recognition, the Naturturismföretagen as an association are now also members of the GSTC.
- Being a member is an obvious step for the association because we aim to work for sustainable development among Swedish companies in nature tourism, says Camilla Jönsson.