By Sarah Louise Jordan
The Responsible Jewellery Council and the Alliance for Responsible Mining has confirmed the integrity of the Fairmined Standard v.2.0 by officially recognising it as a Responsible Mining Standard under the RJC Chain of Custody (CoC) Standard for precious metals.
The Fairmined Standard v2.0 is a landmark mining standard for the artisanal and small-scale gold mining sector. It has now been given the seal of approval as a Responsible Mining Standard by the RJC.
The RJC worked with ARM to compare the RJC Code of Practices Standard and the Fairmined Standard. Following this, the RJC agreed to formally recognise the Fairmined Standard v2.0 in September 2014.
It is hoped the announcement will further incentivise artisanal miners to become certified under the Fairmined Standard, after concerns were raised that downstream supply chain participants may purposefully try and avoid Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining (ASGM).
Extending the Fairmined certification scheme and increasing the numbers of committed responsible artisanal miners is seen as one of the most crucial ways of ensuring the long-term feasibility of the Fairmined initiative, according to an official RJC press release.
The Fairmined Standard provides brands with three sourcing models; Labelled, Incorporated and Fairmined Certificates that respond to the demand and nature of a broad variety of businesses.
Now, when gold is sourced from certified ASGM under the RJC Chain of Custody Certification, it will become part of a ‘CoC gold’ stream to ensure its authenticity and validity to the market. Claims that gold is Fairmined can’t be certifified until the requirements of the Fairmined System must be met.
The Responsible Jewellery Council’s director of standards development, Fiona Solomon, explained: “The Fairmined Standard makes a vital contribution to the formalisation and professionalization of the ASM sector. RJC is pleased that this recognition under the CoC standard can help further promote certification of ASM producers and enhance market access with RJC CoC Certified refiners.”
Alliance for Responsible Mining executive director Lina Villa-Cordoba, added: “The RJC recognition of the Fairmined Standard opens up important market possibilities for the Fairmined certified miners and the industry. We are very pleased the efforts of the miners are recognized and invite RJC members to further support the miners by joining the Fairmined initiative through our different sourcing models.”