Many regions of the world suffer from extreme climatic conditions and as a result are often without adequate natural grass pitches. Either the climate makes the growth and maintenance of such fields a burden or the financial resources are limited. Furthermore, the demand on these pitches is quite high and the resulting mix often leaves the pitches in poor condition. The advantage of artificial turf in these regions is more than evident.
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The FIFA Quality Concept for Football Turf was developed to standardise the quality and
safety of artificial turf for football players, and to encourage further developments in artificial turf technology. The newest generation of artificial surfaces combines the advantages of playing characteristics similar to natural turf, including player comfort and safety, with independence from sunlight, wind and rain.
"There are a number of manufacturers and installers of artificial turf worldwide, and because many of them use different systems, synthetic turf exists in a variety of different technical versions," said FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter. "As a result, the performance of artificial turf products can be extremely variable and not all are advantageous to a player's health, or the quality of the game.
"Therefore FIFA, as the world governing body of football, wants to ensure that there is a recognised international standard for football turf pitches and in 2001 introduced, the FIFA Quality Concept for Football Turf. This quality testing scheme uses real turf as its benchmark and awards the FIFA RECOMMENDED Marks to those pitches that meet the very stringent quality criteria."
To achieve this end, the FIFA Qualify Concept for Football Turf folderbooklet demonstrates how every association could benefit from the installation of high-quality artificial pitches and covers many topics, including the advantages of modern football turf, the maintenance of a football turf field and the tests needed to ensure that it meets the FIFA criteria.