Erica Sharpe is one of the first jewellers worldwide to receive a license to sell jewellery made from Fairtrade gold.
Protecting the environment and people
Like other industries, the jewellery trade is becoming increasingly environmentally and socially conscious. For example, since 2003, only diamonds that conform to the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) have been traded to prevent ‘conflict diamonds ‘ from entering the market.
In 2011, certification was extended to precious metals, when an official Fairtrade gold certification label was launched.
Pioneering ethical jewellery production, Erica is also exploring ways to bring new options in other high quality materials to her customers. The gemstones that she uses come from trusted suppliers, who source only from environmentally- and socially sound operations. Erica also recycles gold and other precious metals regularly in her work.
What is Fairtrade Gold?
A unique partnership, Fairtrade certification is the result of a joint effort between Fairtrade International (FLO) and the Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM), which combined their expertise to enable artisanal and small-scale miners (ASM) to improve their livelihoods.
The two organisations have developed a set of standards for responsible mining, which the miners have to fulfil in order to get certified.
Fulfilling the Fairtrade standard means that certified miners:
- Have developed democratic and accountable organisations and formalised chemicals, such as mercury and cyanide, used in the gold recovery process
- Are respectful with their environment
- Recognise the rights of women miners
All Fairtrade mines will be audited by the independent, international certification body FLO-CERT to ensure they are complying with the standards
For full information please visit: www.fairtrade.org.uk/gold/
For more information on Erica’s new Fairtrade Silver collection ‘The Honey Makers’ please click here.