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'The Great Debate' to Address Fairtrade Issues

Jun 22, 2010 11:10 AM   By Jeff Miller
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RAPAPORT... The "Great Debate" is now an established part of International Jewellery London as presented in partnership between The Birmingham Assay Office and Reed Exhibitions. Conflict diamonds, dirty gold and other ethical issues are of concern to the consumer and to the trade so, this year's Great Debate aims to stimulate discussion, provoke thought, share ideas and deliver prompt action in relation to these matters.
The jewelry and gemstone industry is responding to issues with a variety of initiatives and the Great Debate 2010 will address these areas of action with three seminars all of which will be held at the Boulevard Bar -- center show floor Earls Court 2.
At 1:30 p.m. on opening day, September 5, 2010

Topic:   Making Fairtrade and Fairmined Gold a Reality -- How can the jewellery industry use Fairtrade and Fairmined gold to improve the lives of miners and their communities?

Globally, more than 100 million people depend directly or indirectly on artisanal and small-scale mining. They are trapped in unfair supply chains, and struggle to get a fair price for the gold they mine. Fairtrade and Fairmined gold is the first ever third-party independent certification which ensures that artisanal and small-scale gold miners can earn a better price and bring about social, environmental and economic development in their communities. This seminar will explain how the jewellery industry can play a part in improving the lives of artisanal and small-scale miners by dual-labelling certified products as Fairtrade and Fairmined.

Consumer demand for Fairtrade products in other sectors is huge, indicating strong potential for retail sales of Fairtrade and Fairmined Gold.
At 1:30 p.m. on September 6:

Topic:   Responsible Jewellery Council – Implementation Workshop

The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), formerly the Council for Responsible Jewellery Practices was founded in 2005. It is committed to promoting responsible, ethical, human rights, social and environmental practices throughout the supply chain in order to reinforce confidence in the industry. 230 members have signed up globally, from all parts of the supply chain. Within the next two years they all need to become fully accredited to the RJC’s system and standards.

This informative workshop, led by an RJC representative, will explain how to implement the RJC system of independent, third party audit and certification. Open to RJC members and non members.  
At 11 a.m. on September 8:

Topic:   Ethical Jewelry  - from ideal to reality

Delegates wishing to offer ethically sourced fine jewelry, but not sure how to go about it, can learn first hand as a panel of successful traders share their experiences.  Sourcing, auditing, and marketing ethically sourced products are all potential challenges as is balancing a small “ethical” collection within a range of more widely sourced goods.  Designer Ute Decker, Jonathan Lambert (Ethically Precious) and David Hargreaves (Fair Trade Gemstones) will endeavour to provide the answers in this interactive session.

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Tags: Conflict Diamonds, Exhibitions, Fair Trade, Jeff Miller, Jewelry, Responsible Jewellery Council, RJC
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