Bedell Guitars is committed to partnering with the world’s governments and environmental organizations to insure full compliance with the legal harvest and use of all woods and materials used in our guitars. We offer assistance with permits, inspections, and chain-of-custody documentation as part of our concierge service to all Bedell instrument owners. The Bedell Tonewood Certification Project illustrates our commitment to total compliance and transparency.


The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, familiarly known as CITES, represents the governments of 180 member countries, united in their efforts to assess the endangerment status of animals, plants, and their derivatives, to determine what level of trade regulation must be assigned to protect their ongoing existence. Species that are assigned regulation are categorized within one of three appendixes, requiring varying levels of criteria that must be met in order to legally conduct international trade with them. Each member country has developed its own management authority, which monitors and facilitates the processes that must be followed to be compliant. In the United States, the Division of Management Authority of the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages these functions. Permits and inspections are required to legally import and export CITES listed species, with varying levels of accountability, dependent upon the appendix each species has been listed under. Trade in specimens that can be determined to have been acquired prior to its listing under CITES are considered “pre-convention” and can be traded with more ease than those that cannot be included as such. CITES laws impact sale and travel, both commercial and noncommercial, across national borders. Species used in Bedell instruments that are currently (2014) listed under CITES:

Appendix I:       Brazilian rosewood (dalbergia nigra)

Appendix II*:   Honduran or bigleaf mahogany (swietenia macrophylla)

*Annotation: permits required for logs, lumber, sawn wood, and plywood only – not required for finished instruments

Appendix III: None


The Lacey Act requires chains of custody be collected for all specimens of animals, plants, and their derivatives being traded, regardless of their status under CITES. The documentation chain serves as evidence of compliance to the laws of every country, province, state, and any other applicable governing bodies that the species has been traded through on its way to the current importer/exporter. Compliance with the Lacey Act is performed through active due diligence, which includes research into the country of origin, primary imports and exports, and all transactions affecting the specimen thus far. If a species is listed under CITES, this evidence is required by the Division of Management Authority at the time of permit application. If it is not listed under CITES, the chain of custody is required without a CITES permit, but still must be declared to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services division (APHIS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).


We guarantee that every 2014 Bedell guitar qualifies for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service guitar passport and can be transported for performances and transacted for sale throughout the world. For assistance obtaining your guitar passport and other permits to facilitate international travel and conveyance, please contact permits@, or call us at (888) 234-2210 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Pacific time.