The Alliance for Responsible Mining recently announced that Fairmined gold will be available in North America for the first time.
The Fairmined precious metal, made available by FairSources, a joint venture between the Canadian Fair Trade Jewellery Company and the French company S&P Trading, marks a historic development for the fair jewellery industry as well as for Artisanal and Small-scale Miners (ASM) around the world. There will be a variety of Fairmined golds on offer, including 18ct yellow, nickel free and nickel free and white with palladium gold as well as 14ct yellow and nickel free gold. FairSources will also be offering finished semi-mounts and wedding bands to jewellery retailers.
FairSources is the first authorised trader of Fairmined gold in America, one of the world's largest consumer markets for jewellery, which will have a number of positive effects globally. In particular, it will help three ASM communities in Peru and Bolivia who live at high altitudes in areas where, historically, mining has been one of the only stable, but often dangerous, jobs available. Now that all three communities have achieved Fairmined certification, with the help of the Alliance for Responsible Mining, they will be able to continue developing their sustainable livelihoods while producing Fairmined gold under stringent social and environmental criteria.
Looking ahead, FairSources hopes to offer Fairmined silver in the next few years, as well as an increased variety of gold alloys.
Commenting on the arrival of Fairmined gold in North America, Executive Director for the Alliance for Responsible Mining, Lina Villa Cordoba, said: "For several years North American jewellers have been working to make Fairmined gold available to their markets. The recent arrival of Fairmined gold is a great achievement that offers ASM miners the opportunities they deserve for sustainable livelihoods and ensuring that their diligent efforts to mine in a socially and environmentally responsible manner will be recognised and rewarded."