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Press Release from the Alliance for Responsible Mining: 

July 8th 2013

Milestone for ethical jewelry: FAIRMINED Gold now available in North America 

The Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM) is happy to announce that FAIRMINED metals are now available to ethical jewelers in North America through FairSources, the recent joint venture between the Fair Trade Jewellery Company (Canada) and S&P Trading (Gold by Gold group — France). The availability of FAIRMINED Gold on the North American market represents a monumental achievement not only for the fair jewelry movement, but for Artisanal and Small-scale Miners (ASM) globally. 

FairSources is the first authorized trader of FAIRMINED Gold in America, and their recent success merges the world’s largest consumer market for fairly traded goods with one of the world’s largest consumer markets for jewelry. Offering FAIRMINED Gold to North American markets was a deliberate and intuitive step for both the Fair Trade Jewellery Company, whose exemplary business model operates in an ethical and responsible manner; and for S&P Trading, whose strategy is to promote certified responsible precious metals from ASM globally.

The arrival of FAIRMINED Gold to the U.S. and Canada will improve the livelihoods of two ASM communities in Peru, Sotrami and Aurelsa; and the Cotapata Cooperative in Bolivia. All three communities thrive at high altitudes, in harsh conditions where mining has historically been the only stable livelihood. These communities often lived and worked in impoverished dangerous conditions, lacking the ability to improve their circumstances. However, with the support of the Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM), its local partners Red Social and Cumbre del Sajama and its global network, all three communities have worked diligently to achieve the FAIRMINED certification and now offer socially, environmentally and sustainably produced gold to cutting-edge ventures like FairSources.

FairSources will be offering the following FAIRMINED casting grains Gold from Sotrami, Aurelsa and Cotapata: 18K gold (yellow, nickel white, nickel free white with palladium) and 14K gold (yellow and nickel white). The silver and palladium used in the alloys are from consumer recycling sources. FairSources will also be ushering FAIRMINED Silver on to the market in the near future in addition to other Gold alloys according to demand.

In addition to casting grain, FairSources will be offering finished semi-mounts and wedding bands to retail jewelers as well as white-label contract manufacturing for chains and brand holders.

Commenting on the arrival of FAIRMINED gold to North America, Executive Director for the Alliance for Responsible Mining, Lina Villa Cordoba says: 

“For several years North American jewelers have been working to make FAIRMINED gold available to their markets. The recent arrival of the gold is a great achievement that offers ASM miners the opportunities they deserve for sustainable livelihoods and ensuring them that their diligent efforts to mine in a socially and environmentally responsible manner will be recognized and rewarded.” 

Commenting on FairSources’s pioneering efforts, the founders expressed:

“This initiative is important because it makes sourcing easier for all jewellers. Our goal has always been to expand market access for responsibly sourced minerals. With ARM's new FAIRMINED standard, we can continue our mission using their expansive framework for licensing. In the end it's really about helping these mining communities and making consumers feel confident about their jewellery again.” said Ryan Taylor, Co-Founder & Chief Designer of the Fair Trade Jewellery Co.

“We are excited to have a continued presence in Canada while also opening the U.S. market to artisanal miners who have made the effort to extract gold responsibly whilst breaking the vicious circle of poverty in their community. We are proud to partner with Fair Trade Jewellery Co. an organisation who pioneered certified and responsibly sourced jewellery. By launching a new line of products tailored specially for jewellers, artists and manufacturers they can continue to offer luxury goods traced refined and fabricated in our certified refinery to a wider audience.” said Patrick Schein, founder and CEO of S&P Trading (Gold by Gold group).

ARM continues to work with various actors in North America to increase market opportunities for the FAIRMINED certified mining communities. The FAIRMINED certification has served to bolster livelihoods and sustainable development internationally, and jewelers and companies are encouraged to register with ARM and obtain their FAIRMINED license to continue supporting ARM’s powerful impact and innovative work with ASM miners worldwide.

For more information on the FAIRMINED certification, registration and licensure, contact Kenneth Porter, Supply Chain and Producer Support LAC at the Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM): (574) 322 4711, kennethporter@communitymining.org

FairSources can be contacted at sales@fairsources.com, Toll-free at 1-866-931-0826 and internationally at +1-650-300-4403. www.fairsources.com twitter.com/fairsources




-ENDS-



For more information, interviews and photos please contact:
Siri Teilmann-Ibsen, Communications Coordinator at the Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM)
(574) 322 4711, siriteilmann@communitymining.org

Notes to editors:

About the Alliance for Responsible Mining - www.communitymining.org
• The Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM) is an independent, global-scale, pioneering initiative established in 2004 to enhance equity and wellbeing in artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) communities. ARM is committed to social justice and environmental responsibility as the values driving the transformation of ASM.
• ARM's vision is for ASM to become a formalized, organized and profitable activity that uses efficient technologies and is socially and environmentally responsible. ARM’s work is focused on four strategic areas: Standard Setting, Producer Support, Market Development and Advocacy and Communications.

About FAIRMINED Gold - www.communitymining.org
• FAIRMINED Gold is ethical gold extracted by Artisanal and Small-scale miners certified under the FAIRMINED Standard. FAIRMINED gold is the achievement of the world’s pioneering and industry leading network of responsible Artisanal and Small-scale miners. An initiative and movement led by and for the miners. The FAIRMINED model is open to all market players wishing to make a positive impact on responsible mining. 
• The FAIRMINED Standard was developed with ARMs network for responsible mining and includes four types of requirements: social development, economic development, environmental protection and labor conditions. Certified miners receive a guaranteed FAIRMINED Minimum Price and a premium payment, which is democratically reinvested in community projects and in improving mining operations.
• Currently, four mines in Bolivia, Peru and Colombia are certified in the FAIRMINED system, with over 30 other mining organizations working towards certification in Latin America. Furthermore, ARM partners with UNIDO, GEF, FFEM and AGC to begin the certification process for ASM communities in Senegal, Burkina Faso and Mali; and in 2012 the organization began the expansion of its efforts into Mongolia.

About FairSources - http://www.fairsources.com
• FairSources is an ethical resource initiative, a joint venture between the Fair Trade Jewellery Company of Toronto, Canada and S&P Trading (Gold by Gold group) in Paris, France. FairSources offers certified casting alloys, and finished jewellery to the North American jewellery market in both certified FAIRMINED and certified Fairtrade & Fairmined gold. Private label manufacturing services will also be available using these special metals.

About The Fair Trade Jewellery Company – http://www.ftjco.com/
• North America’s first jeweler of Fairtrade & Fairmined precious metals, FTJCo was founded to craft well-designed jewelry out of ethical metals and diamonds. FTJCo is a new kind of jewelry company. In addition to achieving third-party certification from Fairtrade, B-Corporation, American Gem Society and the Responsible Jewellery Council, it designs, manufactures, distributes and retails it’s collections across the globe. 

About S&P Trading- www.patrickschein.com/uk 
• S&P Trading (Gold by Gold Group) is a precious metals trading and refining company. The company was founded in 1992 by Patrick Schein, and is dedicated to fair trade ethics and procedures, promoting the rights and formalization of small-scale miners internationally. The company is dedicated to providing technical, financial, and logistical assistance to small-scale precious metals producers, offering them an equitable price for their metals and promoting sustainable development. The company operates its own refinery in France which is certified to produce FAIRMINED and Fairtrade Gold.

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