This year, a significant number of award-winning UK jewellery designers have chosen to work with Fairtrade gold from Fairtrade certified mines in South America.
The number and calibre of jewellers and designers signing up to work with Fairtrade gold indicates that the most creative and successful people in jewellery designing are taking an interest in the traceability and provenance of their gold.
Included in the list of designers who are using Fairtrade gold are Arabel Lebrusan, who has been nominated for Designer of the Year in the British Jewellers Association Awards which will be announced on 4 December. Arabel Lebrusan was one of the very first designers to hold a Fairtrade license and says about Fairtrade gold: “We’ve championed the issue of Fairtrade and Fairmined metals and stones from the beginning and it’s an important part of the brand.”
Also signed up to work with Fairtrade gold is Ute Decker. She was one of a handful of designers to be specially selected by Zaha Hadid for an exhibition during the Goldsmiths Fair this year, marking her out as one of a number of designers to watch. She says that working with Fairtrade gold “enriches each piece with an additional layer of story and meaning.”
Jeanne Marell, who recently registered on the Fairtrade Foundation’s Goldsmiths Scheme was also awarded a prize this year - the prestigious KickStart award at International Jewellery London (IJL), giving her the status “best British young jeweller.”
Victoria Waugh, the Fairtrade Foundation’s commercial lead for gold said “It’s clear that for the UK’s top jewellery designers, knowing the source of their materials is important and it is great that so many of them are keen to purchase Fairtrade gold. They are setting a precedent in the sector by proving that it is possible for businesses to provide their customers with gold from traceable and responsibly managed sources.”
The designers are available for interview by contacting Martine Parry, Media and PR Manager in the Fairtrade Foundation press office. For high-res images of Fairtrade designers’ work please contact Anna Galanjz, Press Officer in the Fairtrade Foundation press office.
For more information about Fairtrade gold, please visit http://www.fairgold.org
Images: Fairtrade gold earrings by Ute Decker; Dovetail ring by Jeanne Marell; Selection of Ethical Wedding Rings by Arabel Lebrusan
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For more information, interviews, footage and images, please contact Martine Parry, Media and PR Manager in the Fairtrade Foundation press office on 020 7440 7695 or at martine.parry @fairtrade.org.uk.
Notes to Editors
- The Goldsmiths Registration Scheme, which was launched in April this year, supports jewellers and designers in purchasing a small amount of Fairtrade gold from licensed suppliers. Small jewellers and designers who join the scheme agree to abide by certain terms and conditions and are able to buy up to 500g of Fairtrade gold or platinum or 2kgs of Fairtrade silver. Since April, 98 jewellers and designers in the UK have registered on the scheme
- Around the world small-scale mining employs about 30 million miners. As many as 100 million people depend on it for their livelihoods.
- Fairtrade gold was first launched in 2011 in the UK closely followed by launches in Australia/New Zealand, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, South Korea and Sweden. Certified gold is being launched in Switzerland in October 2014 and discussions are currently underway to introduce certified gold in the USA and Germany in the near future.
- The Fairtrade Minimum Price for pure gold is set at 95% of the London Bullion Market Association’s (LBMA) fix plus a Fairtrade Premium of US$2000 per kilogram of fine gold bought from the mines. Platinum: 95% LMBA + Fairtrade Premium of 15%; Silver: 95% LMBA + Fairtrade Premium of 10%. The LBMA fix is the international agreed price for gold. Artisanal and small-scale miners (ASM) producers in the mainstream get anything from 50% to 85% of the LBMA fix.
- Miners can earn a premium of 15% on top of their sale price when they recover and process gold without the use of harmful chemicals such as mercury and cyanide.
- Certified miners must use safe and responsible practices for managing toxic chemicals in gold recovery. Chemicals have to be reduced to a minimum and where possible eliminated over an agreed time period.
- Child and forced labour is prohibited under Fairtrade standards, and Fairtrade monitoring stamps it out wherever it is found.
- The FAIRTRADE Mark is a certification mark and a registered trademark of Fairtrade International. The Mark is licensed on products which meet international Fairtrade standards. Today, more than 1.3 million people – farmers, workers and their families – across 70 developing countries benefit from the international Fairtrade system.