Protecting the Consumer and Servicing
the Trade with Independence and Integrity

Greg& Faye  The Birmingham Assay Office welcomed visiting small scale gold miners from Bolivia, Peru and Colombia recently when they spent a week visiting the UK. The South Americans enjoyed the opportunity to meet key figures in the industry and gain a better understanding of the UK supply chain and factors impacting demand for Fairtrade Gold. Miner checking teh punch The miners, representing four Fairtrade mining co-operatives first attended the Company of Master Jewellers’ UK Jewellery Conference. Supported by Fairtrade gold programme co-ordinator Greg Valerio and Managing Director of Cred Jewellery Alan Frampton, they clearly set out the difference that the Fairtrade premium has already made to their communities and the  challenges they still faced.  Later that afternoon, the miners visited The Birmingham Assay Office to see the Fairtrade mark being struck on pieces made from Fairtrade gold as well as the whole hallmarking process, which they found fascinating.  Wayne does XRF Their week continued with a major meeting of key stake-holders at the Fairtrade offices in London. Marion Wilson, Sales and Marketing Director of The Birmingham Assay office who has contributed to the Fairtrade Gold project from the outset said “It was a privilege to meet the miners and to hear them talk of their lives, which are so very different from ours. It is encouraging to think we have begun to make a small difference but there is still a very long way to go and we need the jewellery industry to grasp the opportunity of Fairtrade Gold.  We have gone from a situation where there was so little Fairtrade Gold available that jewellers were frightened to commit to delivering ranges made from it, to a position where there is now surplus capacity which is not being taken up. Standardizing the premium has removed some of the uncertainty with regard to price and we all need to support these small mining co-operatives by building awareness and encouraging the trade to buy into their product”. Group talk      

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