Fair Trade Is About Control, this month’s feature article is written
by an East African gem miner and aggregator who deals with other gem miners
in his region. He is responding to a recent press release that we forwarded to
him. The text of the press release is posted below his comments.
Trade Programme Is Not Favoured
Fair Trade is not to be confused with free trade. Free trade is a process
whereby two or more entities agree to an exchange that is advantageous to
all parties… the well known “Win – Win Transaction” that is the
basis of worldwide capitalism.
Trade is a Progressive political concept about central planning and
control - in this case the exchange of gemstones. The stated goals of Fair
Trade are said to be social change. In practice, Fair Trade programmes
applied to other goods have proven to have unintended (?) consequences.
Fair Trade Is About Control commentary is written from a legacy of previous experience. Only
after such a programme is engaged is the dilemma realised.
Trade rules, regulations, controls, and power in the hands of a few seem
to inexorably be accompanied by onerous realities.
Gemstone Fair Trade would bring:
expenses at each step of the supply chain
prices must inevitably follow
advantage to large, corporate mining operations, and
regulations - forcing many individual, family, and village mining
ventures out of operation.
mining and trading enterprise rewards mining families with an improved
lot, and a more comfortable existence.
small-opportunity gem miners of East Africa wish to continue engaging in
free trade. We are bearing up with the regulations and tariffs our
governments impose, and do not welcome additional. That is the sentiment
of many I know.
Gemstone Fair Trade Is About Control,
is written by a miner with experience in both gemstone mining and a
previous fair trade experience in another field.
RELEASE, May 22, 2013, Las Vegas:
This year’s Rapaport Fair Trade Conference at
JCK Las Vegas will provide a robust discussion of what the jewelry industry can
and should do to ensure the legitimacy of the jewelry supply chain. Industry
leaders will participate in an open discussion about proactive measures for the
implementation of ethical standards. The conference follows ahead.
panelists include: Eric Braunwart, the president of Columbia Gem House Inc.;
David Bonaparte, the president and CEO of Jewelers of America (JA); Benjamin
Hackman, the president of the International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA);
Larry Drummond, the president of Metalor U.S.A. Refining Corporation; Michael
Rae, the CEO of the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC); Ronnie VanderLinden,
the president of Diamond Manufacturers and Importers Association (DMIA) and the
moderator is Martin Rapaport, the chairman of the Rapaport Group.
conference will be held at the JCK Las Vegas show in the Banyan Ballroom,
Mandalay Bay Hotel on Sunday, June 2, 2013 at 2 p.m. The Rapaport Fair Trade
Conference is part of a series of conferences being held on June 2, including
the Rapaport Breakfast at 8 a.m.
“It’s time for the diamond and jewelry
industry to progress from talking about standards to implementing reliable
chain-of-custody and source certification programs. The Rapaport Fair Trade
conference will provide an opportunity for industry leaders to discuss proactive
measures that will ensure the legitimacy of the diamonds, gems and jewelry we
sell,” said Rapaport about this year’s conference.
The Agenda Source Certification and RJC Chain-of-Custody Certification 1. Introduction
2. How can the diamond and jewelry industry be sure that the products they sell
are legitimately sourced?
3. How do we move forward from the development of standards to the
implementation of source verification, auditing and certification programs?
4. What programs currently exist? What are their benefits and limitations? Can
gold certification programs be extended to diamonds, gems and other metals?
5. What about products sourced from areas where source certification is
impossible or too expensive to implement? Will source certification negatively
impact the income of artisanal diggers? Can this be avoided?
6. Where do we draw the line when it comes to implementing ethical standards?
7. How can source-certified products be identified at the consumer level?
8. What impact will source certification have on the marketing and sale of
About the Rapaport Group: The Rapaport Group is
an international network of companies providing added value services that
support the development of fair, transparent, efficient, and competitive diamond
and jewelry markets. Established in 1978, the Rapaport Diamond Report is the
primary source of diamond price and market information. Group activities include
Rapaport Information Services providing research, analysis and news; RapNet –
the world's largest diamond trading network with daily listings of over 1
million diamonds valued at US$6.5 billion and 12,000 members in 80 countries;
Rapaport Laboratory Services provides GIA and gemological services in India,
Belgium and Israel; and Rapaport Trading and Auction Services with monthly sales
of over 50,000 carats. The Group employs 180 people with offices in New York,
Las Vegas, Antwerp, Ramat Gan, Mumbai, Surat, Dubai, Hong Kong and Shanghai.
Additional information is available at www.Rapaport.com.
About Rapaport Fair Trade: The Rapaport Group is
committed to the sustainable development of ethical diamond, gold and jewelry
products and markets. We believe that retailers, manufacturers and their
suppliers should proactively investigate their supply chains to ensure the
legitimacy of the products they sell. We also believe that Fair Trade products
sourced from artisanal miners or produced by disadvantaged communities can be a
catalyst for the alleviation of poverty. Additional information about Rapaport
fair trade initiatives is available at https://www.diamonds.net/fairtrade
or via email at email@example.com.
Top - Gem crystals from river gravels - a fortnight's
Next - Gem miner and a trader making
a win-win deal
A village gemstone field
Next - Mining the river gravels
Next: - Hard rock mining for gemstones
Next: - Gem special offer - Swiss Blue Topaz
Next - Dealer Product Image - Blue
Spinel and White
Topaz Ring in Sterling Silver
Last - Dealer Program Image - Pink Spinel and Sterling
A Google search using keywords such as fair
trade social movementcan return some very interesting information and websites.
We keep gem prices low by buying quality gemstone rough
worldwide, and having the rough material cut by our gem cutters in Asia.
Gem Industry News
The Gem & Lapidary Dealers Association Tucson Gem
Show is now the JCK Tucson Show
For many years the Gem & Lapidary Dealers Association
(GLDA) Tucson wholesale gem show was held
at the Radisson - City Center hotel. That hotel is next door to the American Gem Trade
Association's colored gemstone show at the Tucson Convention Center. The
location of the Gem & Jewelry Exchange show is just across the street. It
was all very convenient to have three of the most important jewelry-trade-only
shows within walking distance.
In 2005, the GLDA show relocated to the Marriott Starr
Pass Tucson Resort & Spa, located a few miles away from its former home. The
number of gem show attendees have since dwindled, and as a consequence, some
dealers have moved to the other shows.
Now the GLDA show has been taken over by JCK Events. The
show will continue to held at the Marriott Starr Pass location - for now. It is
widely assumed the show would relocate to a proposed convention center area
hotel... if that hotel actually gets built.
The text of the JCK Events press release announcing the
takeover is shown below.
On May 24, JCK Events announced it had taken over the B2B G.L.D.A.
Tucson Show with plans to transform it into a fine jewelry–centered event.
The new JCK Tucson show will be held at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort
Feb. 3–8, 2014, during Tucson’s jewelry weeks.
“JCK Tucson will cover the finished fine jewelry segment and feature luxury
and design exhibitors, which will provide a new opportunity for exhibitors
within the built-in audience already visiting Tucson,” says Yancy Weinrich,
JCK Events’ group vice president. “The JW Marriott Starr Pass provides an
opulent setting and environment for both exhibiting and networking beyond the
show floor. With the outdoor patios, mountainous backdrop, golf course, and spa,
it is the place to stay while in Tucson.”
Arnold Duke, president of the G.L.D.A., said in a statement that the new show
will “bring new exhibitors and buyers” and be a “win-win not only for the
jewelry industry, but the city of Tucson."
For more information on the qualification process
for exhibiting, contact John Tierney at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From a supply perspective, now is the time to replenish your depleted inventory.
If you have some money to invest in inventory - there are deals to be had.
And you should have some cash. After all, that depleted inventory was sales.
From a sales perspective, gift giving occasions have not disappeared. Birthdays,
anniversaries, and many other reasons to give nice jewelry at a great price just
keep on coming. Your customers (and their friends) need what you offer!
We are still in a market where buying has been repressed for several years.
You can your
marketing strategy to encourage existing customers to buy this year. Offer value
and good deals, and...
Be The Quality Jewelry Discounter.
Do you enjoy jewelry and gems?
Do you enjoy talking with friends and friends