Analysis

Fairtrade-certified gold jewellery showcased (June 2011)

Jun 2011

By Ekobai Contributor

This month the Fairtrade Foundation UK has partnered with London Jewellery Week (6-12 June 2011) to showcase a collection of Fairtrade and Fairmined-certified gold jewellery curated by CRED, the world’s leading ethical luxury jeweller. This is the first major event showcasing certified gold since the formal launch of the initiative in February 2011.

The event comes at a time of surging, volatile gold prices. Gold trading is at near record highs with silver, gold plate and 9-carat being used in many of the designs on show in London and elsewhere to keep prices affordable. (Source: Reuters)

The Fairtrade and Fairmined gold certification is a joint venture 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. All products made with the ethically certified gold is dual-stamped Fairtrade and Fairmined.

So far some 20 retailers are selling the fair trade certified gold jewellery, see current list here: http://www.fairtrade.org.uk/gold/about-us/where-to-buy.html

The Cotapata Mining Co-operative in Bolivia was the first Fairtrade and Fairmined conventional mining organisation to be certified, and Condoto was the first group certified to produce ecological gold, with more expected to be certified in the near future.

Fairtrade is looking to certify at least 5% of the world’s gold in the coming years – a timely ambition given the controversy currently surrounding the mining industry over labour rights and pay, and from trading in ‘conflict’ resources.

Under the new certification, miners receive a guaranteed Fairtrade Minimum Price. This is set at 95% of the London Bullion Market Association's (LBMA's), fixing at the FOB export point. A premium payment to be reinvested in community projects and improving miners' operations will also be made, calculated as 10% of the applicable LBMA fixing and 15% for ecological gold (gold extracted without the use of chemicals).

Check out the BBC World Challenge programme on Fairtrade 'green' gold at the London launch event.

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