The mining industry causes harm to the planet due to harvesting and processing, and so more brands are turning to sustainably sourced materials.
Here are associations and certification schemes to look out for when defining sustainable jewelry:
Responsible Jewellery Council
The Responsible Jewellery Council is a global leader in setting standards for the watch and jewelry industry. The RJC has set out to assist jewelry brands on their sustainable journey by helping them understand where they are in the supply chain.
The RJC standards cover human rights, labour rights, health and safety and product integrity.
Their Code of Practices standard applies to gold, silver, PGM’s, diamond and gemstone supply chains.
Their services are designed to be affordable for every business from large to small. They encourage businesses to sign up as members for its many benefits to getting on the path to sustainability.
This is a good move for jewelry brands wanting to rethink their operations for sustainable development and become more ethical.
Responsible Source™ – For Precious Metals, Gemstones and Jewelry
The Responsible Source™ – For Precious Metals, Gemstones and Jewelry helps jewelry brands to steer clear of materials that could have potentially come from illegal sources. The organization assures their customers of whether the gemstones are used from recycled materials or not, helping sustainable fashion brands to make better informed decisions. By seeking raw materials that have been ethically sourced and have less environmental impact, this helps businesses to build a better reputation in the jewelry industry. They also advise brands on how they can have closer-knit relationships with suppliers to assure a higher level of transparency.
The ISO/TC 174 is a technical committee in charge of making sure that jewelry meets with sustainably sourced standards. Specifically, precious metals such as gold, silver, platinum, etc. These standards are divided in categories of color, size, type of diamond and methods of defining fineness. This standard is what helps many jewelry brands set the correct price for their pieces.
Canadian Jewellers Association
The Canadian Jewellers Association (CJA) has represented all aspects of Canadian jewellery industry since 1918. They’ve been a guiding source for consumers, businesses, government and media to learn about the many elements of this industry.
The association advises its members on information on codes of ethics, security and integrity in order to boost the promotion of sustainably sourced materials.
Women’s Jewellery Association
The Women’s Jewellery Association was born from the idea that the power of women joining forces and networking could take over the world. Today the WJA represents the watch and jewelry industry in more than 20 chapters all over the world.
For more than 30 years the WJA has been a source of guidance, support and education for women working in the jewelry industry. The organization hosts many local, national and online events as well as mentoring programmes and scholarship grants in categories of design, manufacturing and retail.