The marketing battle between the natural diamond industry and laboratory-grown diamond producers and their advocates is intensifying. Not a week goes by without the latest effusive article - sponsored or otherwise - appearing about the inevitable rise of synthetics. While the traditional issue of the undisclosed mixing of synthetics with natural is still very topical, recent debates have shifted to nomenclature, pricing, transparency and corporate social responsibility.
Russian diamond mining giant Alrosa has updated its policy on sustainable development and corporate social responsibility in accordance with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as well as best international practices and industry trends, the company writes in a press release.
“We want to change the narrative surrounding the diamond industry,” says Diamond Empowerment Fund executive director Nancy Orem Lyman.
De Beers Group and United Nations (UN) Women, in collaboration with Botswana’s Ministry of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs, today announced a $758,000 (BWP8 million), three-year investment in capacity-building programmes to support women micro-entrepreneurs in select villages in the Okavango Delta and Kweneng District, the company stated in press release. The announcement was made at today’s W Summit in Gaborone, convened by De Beers, which focuses on the advancement of women business leaders in Botswana and southern Africa.
In the midst of a five-day Belgian State visit to India, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) - umbrella organization for the Antwerp diamond industry - joined hands with its Indian counterpart, the Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), to host a roundtable discussion today (Nov. 9) in Mumbai concerning the contributions of the diamond industry to social and economic development.
ALROSA has been included on the FTSE4Good international rating, an index series designed to support investment in companies based on their environmental, social and governance criteria, for the first time. The rating system serves as an indicator of compliance with internationally recognized standards of the above mentioned criteria.
Signet Jewelers Limited has been recognized for its corporate social responsibility and sustainability efforts by being named as a component of the FTSE4Good US and Global Indices in 2017. Signet joins this group of other publicly traded companies with strong environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices. “Signet is proud of our commitment to reducing our energy consumption and raising our efficiency levels across our business.
De Beers Group has announced it is leading a ground-breaking research project that aims to deliver carbon-neutral mining at some of the company’s operations in as few as five years. The company’s scientists are working in close collaboration with a team of internationally-renowned scientists to investigate the potential to store large volumes of carbon at its diamond mines through the mineralisation of kimberlite ‘tailings’, the material that remains after diamonds have been removed from the ore. De Beers Group will investigate the storage potential across its diamond mines globally.
Following the end of year 2016 in which poor sales performance and management changes were overshadowed by the reemergence of allegations of rampant sexual harassment and discrimination, Signet Jewelers is clearly making an effort to polish its i
ALROSA, the world leader in diamond mining, has become a member of the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) since 11 August 2016, writes RJC in a press release. "Consumers around the world are giving great importance to the origin of diamonds in jewelry. We believe it is important to demonstrate to the consumer that diamond mining is a socially responsible business that creates jobs, supports local communities and cares about the environment.
Andrey Polyakov, President of the World Diamond Council and Vice-President of ALROSA, sat down for an interview with Interfax (translation published exclusively by Rough-Polished), covering everything from the work and mission of the World Diamond Council (WDC), the Kimberley Process (KP), the Diamond Producers Association (DPA) and consumer demand for complete information about jewelry, to the possibility of ALROSA joining the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), setting up a diamond tracking program in China and the consumer markets in India, Brazil and the United States
New De Beers Group CEO, Bruce Cleaver, has highlighted the importance of relationships with all the company’s partners, saying they are the “cornerstone of the business”, the company stated in a press release citing his blog for the company website. Mr Cleaver, who took up the role on 1 July, said: “De Beers holds a unique position with consumers, our rough diamond customers, governments, communities and retailers ...
It's not just the banks that are insisting on stricter compliance standards and diamond pipeline integrity, writes Avi Krawitz on Rapaport, but the largest mining companies and jewelry retailers too. The central themes of the recent World Diamond Congress of transparency, responsibility and sustainability precisely summarized the challenges facing the industry and what it has to aim for.
According to the company's 10th annual Report to Society publication, investment by The De Beers Group of Companies in skills training for the local workforce and social projects increased 13 percent to US$52.5 million in 2015. De Beers also improved its environmental performance, with reductions in energy consumption and carbon emissions.
"Very few speak of the good diamonds have done for some of the poorest people in the world," write Mark Boston and Vinod Kuriyan in a blog article on GemKonnect. "Of the positive influence on communities in literally every single continent barring uninhabited Antarctica." With the world's attention grabbed by evils such as terrorists, people traffickers, sex slavers, and drug cartels that destroy millions of lives, good deeds don’t get the sort of publicity that evil does.
In his latest blog, Leibish Polnauer, President of Leibish & Co. Fancy Color Diamonds, speaks about the importance of corporate social responsibility and the firm's association with colored gemstone miner Gemfields, which he says is the leading supplier of responsibly mined gemstones and aims for its operations to have a minimal on the environment as well improving the lot of people in the surrounding areas. Meanwhile, its pink diamonds all come from Rio Tinto’s Argyle diamond mine since the firm has high standards.
De Beers Namibia Holdings will make N$10 million (US$650,000) available over five years to support the programme run through UNAM’s southern campus at Keetmanshoop, with UNAM providing administrative support. The programme aims to complement the Government’s efforts to support Namibian children in marginalised communities to fulfil their academic potential. At least 50 per cent of the beneficiaries will be girls. For 2016, 87 students, 60 of them girls, have been selected for support. They will receive help with costs related to tuition fees, books and accommodation.
Mr. Chakkrit Bhamornsatit, HR Manager for IGC manufacturing was recently bestowed with the high honour title of “Officer in the order of Leopold II” by H.E. Marc Michielsen, Belgian Ambassador in Thailand, granted by HRH King Philippe of Belgium for honourable services rendered in the field of Corporate Social Responsibility projects. Mr. Chakkrit’s devotion to people in need started in the eighties when he worked as a UNHCR volunteer in refugee camps along the Thai-Cambodian border. From 1993 onwards, Mr.
The news agency reports from the controversial diamond fields of Marange in gem-rich eastern Zimbabwe which have contributed virtually nothing to improving the lives of more than 80,000 people in the area. Due to frequent droughts, people in Marange had hoped the diamond industry would invest in reviving irrigation schemes, since national law requires mining companies to help local communities develop. Irrigation schemes in and around Marange, most constructed decades ago, are no longer operating properly as small-scale farmers cannot pay to maintain or replace aging equipment.
The Jewelry Industry Summit, an open forum on sustainability and responsible sourcing in the jewelry industry, has announced some of names of speakers and session presenters for its March 11-13 conference in New York. “The summit is organized to hear all viewpoints, from miners to retailers,” said Barbara Wheat, executive vice president of the Natural Color Diamond Association, who is a member of the planning committee.
Corporate Social Responsibility strategy in the gemstone and jewelry sectors came under focus at a seminar held at the VICENZAORO January show in Vicenza, Italy. The seminar was part of CIBJO's and Fiera di Vicenza's joint program to promote CSR education in the jewelry sector, and also was supported by Gemfields PLC, the world's largest colored gemstone mining company. The basic premise of the seminar was that in the current business environment, CSR no longer is a practice that one chooses to follow or not.
Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology, Rinat Gizatulin, is to leave after four years in the post to become a vice president of ALROSA, he told RIA Novosti, Rough & Polished reports. "Now is the time to apply the experience earned in the field of environmental policy and to implement all previously adopted legislative initiatives in the business structure," Gizatulin said. ALROSA can go further in improving its environmental performance, as well as in other areas, including profitability, the social orientation of its business, and diamond manufacturing in Russia, he added.
Sounds like basic common sense: mining executives explain that the most effective corporate social responsibility programs (CSR) are those that are implemented in cooperation with local communities rather than miners deciding for themselves and simply going ahead without any consultation with the needs of people on the ground where operations are located. Mining companies and their shareholders also realize that doing the right thing in the communities where they operate is also important because it can raise their the bottom lines.
Jewelry and watch retailers, as well as brand owners, must cooperate to make the mining sector that supplies the materials on which they depend more transparent and responsible. Consumer sentiment is changing on these issues, and the point of sale is where our industry feels most sharply the new public awareness.
The World Jewelry Confederation (CIBJO) will be a sponsor of the Jewelry Industry Summit (JIS) to take place from March 10-13 at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. CIBJO will provide financial support and encourage its members to fully participate in the summit which will concentrate on the issue of sustainability, responsible sourcing in the jewelry industry, and supply chain challenges.
SCTimes.com (Central Minnesota) reports that according to local independent jewelers, asking questions about the origins of a diamond has become a common part of consumers' buying process. For some retailers, the assurances of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme, pushing back conflict diamonds over the past decade, aren't enough.
The De Beers Group reported in its 2014 Report to Society that rough diamond sales for local beneficiation jumped 11 percent to $1.56 billion. In addition, the miner reported that its social investment spending on health, education, housing and community development rose by around $800,000 from the 2013 figure to $30.3 million.
The Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative has published its new Conflict Minerals Reporting Template. Established in 2008 by members of the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) and the Global eSustainability Initiative (GeSI), the CFSI has grown into one of the largest resources for companies addressing conflict minerals issues in their supply chains.
The diamond jewelry manufacturer is one of several firms to take advantage of a GJEPC corporate social responsibility initiative providing subsidized insurance for their employees. Kama Schachter is providing the policy for 800 workers.
“The De Beers Best Practice Principles were created as a set of standards that could complement the Kimberley Process, covering environmental, social and business ethics both within our own operations as towards our clients”
Feriel Zerouki, De Beers Head of Government and Industry Relations
Dr. Benjamin Chavis, a co-founder of the Diamond Empowerment Fund (D.E.F.), stressed the need at seminars at the Smart Show Chicago to connect the positive stories behind diamonds with customers.
The third annual Conscious Consumer Spending Index, which measures U.S. consumer appetite for corporate social responsibility, found that 32 percent of shoppers intend to spend more with socially responsible companies this year. The percentage is up from 30 percent in 2014 and 29 percent in 2013. The message is that jewelers need to market 'eco-friendly' and 'local' more prominently.
In a ground-breaking initiative for the Indian diamond trade, the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council is pushing a Corporate Social Responsibility proposal as of March 1where member companies can enrol their employees and their families in insurance programs at a competitive price.