CITES & Guitars
Before you read on – Within the UK it is illegal to advertise, buy or sell a guitar containing Brazilian Rosewood without the instrument having an Article 10 certificate. Do not believe anything else – the guitar does not have to be imported or exported. It applies to the HOME market as well as import & export. Ebay, Reverb, Facebook & dealers generally ignore this fact.
The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)
No doubt many of you will have heard of CITES, wondered what it was about, possibly chose to ignore or were given incorrect advice, often blatantly misleading. We hear all sorts of bullshit every month from businesses that should know better. This is not intended to give chapter and verse on International Law regarding protection of endangered species, but hopefully make you aware of the pitfalls regarding guitars.
The Law is applied Internationally but administered differently country to country. In the UK, administration is by the Animal and Plant Health Agency APHA, in Bristol: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/animal-and-plant-health-agency
The common issue is with Brazilian & Indian Rosewood. The Latin name is often used, prefixed by Dalbergia. Other timber species are included in listings, but occur less commonly in guitar manufacture. Unfortunately there is no specific go-to section within guide lines for guitars. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/cites-controls-import-and-export-of-protected-species covers the lot, parrots, crocodile handbags, ivory, elephants feet, birds of prey… try getting a tune out of them.