Read this before you put a ring on it
Buying ethical diamonds
You want to buy a ring but you also want to make certain that the stones you bring home aren’t paid for in someone else’s blood. Beauty without misery is what makes for the best ownership experience and it’s not too hard to ensure that you buy ethical diamonds either. Here’s what you need to know:
Ask Your Jeweller
A good place to start is to ask the jeweller about the origins of the stone. Good jewellers love their products and they know exactly their route to market.
Ask if they have an ethical supply policy and how they make that work in practice. These policies come in the form of certification. Diamond certification implies that the stones are from ethical origins for example, GIA or HIA certification.
Ask For Details
Kimberley Process Certification is a bare minimum requirement from a jeweller. In truth, it doesn’t prevent diamonds that are used to fund human rights abuses from getting to the market.
The more questions that you ask, the more likely you are to feel certain that you are making the right choice.
Avoid Conflict Regions
Zimbabwe and Angola, in particular, do not have good reputations in the current market. They have been featured by both Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International for their abuses and it’s easy to avoid diamonds that come from their mines.
You’ll pay extra for Canadian diamonds, that’s a reflection of the country’s labour costs, but there’s nowhere on earth as squeaky clean about diamond mining either. The Canadians don’t do human rights abuse.
Namibia And Botswana Are Not Bad
Both of these small countries near South Africa have a good approach to ethical diamond production. Their mines are tiny and owned by collectives that create jobs and human development. You may not believe it if you saw the DiCaprio movie but the once awful Sierra Leone is now heading in a similar direction. It’s certainly not perfect yet but they are trying hard to do the right thing now.
Ask About The Supplier
DeBeers offers the Forevermark, Tiffany, Signet and Cartier use small mines in Botswana, the supplier matters when it comes to diamonds. If you want responsible sourcing, you need to use an ethical supplier of stones and not just a random one.
Don’t Be Afraid To Ask About The Gold Either
Gold mining is also contentious. The money involved in gold is as great as in diamonds. Gold mining techniques can be environmentally devastating. The proceeds can fund war and oppression. Fair trade gold is a good alternative.
Come And Talk To Us
We’d be happy to discuss any of your ethical concerns. Feel free to come and see us or call and ask; we believe that you’ll be very glad that you did.