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Coming Soon: Fairtrade Gold

Coming Soon: Fairtrade Gold

"The first years were about creating the demand for environmentally certified gold. Now demand is exceeding supply."
-Lina Villa, general coordinator for Green Gold

January 14, 2008 —

Buoyed by the success of the 2006 film, "Blood Diamond", and a recent increase in awareness concerning the conditions under which most of the world's precious metals and stones are mined, ethical jewelry now makes up about one percent of the market. It's only a start, but with the Association for Responsible Mining and the Fairtrade Foundation working together to establish the first fairtrade certification for fine jewelry, it shouldn't be long before ethical jewelry commands a similar market share to ethical alternatives in other luxury markets.

One place where the demand for ethical gold is already making a difference is Choco, Columbia, home of the the Green Gold Corporation. Miners here receive a 10 percent premium for their work, and the Association for Responsible Mining works to ensure that safety and environmental regulations in the the mines are not only followed but exceeded. An estimated 27 square miles of rainforest have been saved as a result of the sustainable mining practices practiced in Choco.

Fairtrade certification for gold is expected to be available by 2009.


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