A piece of jewellery is a beautiful and enduring item, that is usually created to mark an event or celebration of great significance and importance in our lives. It should make the wearer and giver feel special and is often bestowed with great meaning and sentiment. How can it truly do this if it has not been produced with thought and care for all of those involved in its production and the environment?
Currently my Fairtrade gold collections and commissions are created from gold originating from the Sotrami and Aurelsa mines in Peru. The mining communities there are supported in many aspects of their lives by Fairtrade regulations, ensuring better conditions for the miners, their families and the environment, and guaranteeing a fair price for their gold. It is wonderful news to hear that the first Fairtrade Gold from Africa has arrived in the UK from a small number of newly certified mines in Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya.
Recently, 6 mines in Colombia have also been accredited ‘Fairmined’ status, thanks to a joint project with the Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM) and the jewellery house Chopard. That such an historically well-known producer of stunning and luxurious jewels should give their financial support to this project is key, as it shows that the tiny pebble a few ardent campaigners dropped into the pool some years ago, is now making ripples with the prominent jewellery houses.
Much energy and commitment is now needed to progress the ethical sourcing of gems. Companies such as Nineteen48, Gemfields and Ruby Fair have been supplying gems with traceable, ethical supply chains from around the World, often first hand. More suppliers such as these are needed. I am very excited to be working with Canada Mark diamonds, which are responsibly mined in Canada’s North West Territories and traceable along every step of their journey.
Fairtrade certification enables me to guarantee the source of my precious metals and to offer my customers information and choices about their commissions. The difference in cost is a small percentage, but what it means in global terms is very significant indeed. I really believe it’s time for Fairtrade and ethical jewellery to be thought of the first choice for every special piece of jewellery we make, give and wear.
If you’d like to know more about a Fairtrade Certified mine, read about Sotrami here: http://www.fairgold.org/producers/sotrami-peru/
Please do get in touch if you would like to know more about Fairtrade and ethical jewellery.