Is There Such a Thing as Fair Trade? What do you think?
This article puts forward a rather critical assessment.
A Google poke for “fair traffic jewelry” will move up countless companies, many of which sell racial valuables constructed in tiny villages in the building world. The ‘fair trade’ judgment draws the socially obliged shopper, nonetheless the third celebration labeling organization, Fair Labeling Organization (FLO)- of which Transfair USA is the partial of – does not now list valuables as the difficulty certifiable as satisfactory trade. Apart from that, the little vast players in the mainstream valuables attention have been commencement to surveillance concepts such as “fair traffic diamonds as good as gold.”
So how does the single have clarity of these valuables claims, generally as they describe to the $150 Billion as good as mainstream valuables industry?
Investigating the Self-Proclaimed Fair Trade Jewelers
‘Global Exchange’ comes up series the single upon Google in the organic, delinquent listings for the “fair traffic jewelry” search. The Transfair trademark during the bottom of their website would lead the shopper to hold which their jewelry, similar to the coffee they sell, is third celebration certified.
In the context of their claim, I emailed them, asking about the source of their changed steel as good as the environmental safeguards for their manufacturer’s;
correct transformation as good as ordering or poisonous chemicals used in the production of the valuables they sell. Finally, argent china is ostensible to be .925% silver. Imports out of tiny villages in building countries have been scandalous for labeling as argent china valuables which has reduction china calm than genuine argent silver. Global Exchange wrote during the behind of explaining which which what qualifies as satisfactory traffic valuables is which their valuables is done in the encampment by tiny scale artisans as good as satisfactory operative conditions,
which they monitor. They could not answer questions about the environmental practices of these tiny manufacturers as good as did not guard argent content.
This concentration of the tenure “fair trade” to valuables by Global Exchange is corroborated by the satisfactory traffic judgment which exists outward of FLO. Global Exchange additionally referred me to the Fair Trade Federation (FTF),
of which they have been the member. FTF’s website FAQ pages
lists valuables as the “fair trade” product.
I interviewed Carmen Iezzi, the senior manager executive of FTF, which helped me assimilate which FTF has zero to do with products: usually businesses which sell them – the pointed eminence substantially mislaid upon the normal person.
Global Exchange, during least, has the little story during the behind of their reliable stance; there have been many tiny as good as vast companies as good as stores regulating the “fair” as good as “eco” tag around valuables with some-more controversial accountability.
Though “fair trade” valuables is assisting the little villagers in the building world, it is the immaterial niche marketplace in the mainstream valuables attention as the whole, which does over hundred as good as fifty billion dollars annually.
The Difficulty of Fair Trade in the Main Stream Jewelry Industry
Taking the judgment of “fair trade” valuables out of the encampment as good as in to the mainstream tellurian valuables marketplace (think gold, diamonds, bling bling) is similar to banging which aged block brace in to the turn hole. At present, the attention is all commodity formed as good as price driven, rather similar to two by four or oil. Fair traffic is only not partial of the paradigm.
Consider the ubiquitous conditions compulsory for the satisfactory traffic object
which is sincerely loyal forward: coffee. The beans have been organically grown mostly in farms which work collectively, fostering entrepreneurship which translates in to broader encampment prosperity. Third celebration acceptance assures the turn of firmness which the reliable consumer shopping during Whole Foods feels great about.
To interpret the same judgment in to the valuables product, the single would have to cause in work as good as environmental practices in the sourcing of changed steel as good as gemstones. Mining as good as growth of the tender element – steel enlightening as good as gemstone slicing – have been the single some-more steps. Manufacturing the accomplished product presents an additional routine with the own work as good as environmental issues. Plus, there is the far-reaching operation of valuables products, from fondle rings to the tall end. Attempting to come to an concluded upon criteria of what is reliable with such an elaborate, manifold supply sequence is daunting.
The Ethical Sourcing Movement in the Mainstream Jewelry Industry
Meanwhile, the tiny shred of passionate, dedicated people in the mainstream valuables attention have been attempting to conclude “ethical sourcing”, with the idealisation target of the little kind of concluded upon criteria heading to true, third celebration
Fair Trade Jewelry certification. This is starting to be the prolonged process.
To which end, the primary Ethical Jewelry Summit was hold in late Oct of 2007 in Washington DC. Fair traffic oriented suppliers, NGOs, Manufacturers, Miners from all over the universe as good third celebration acceptance groups similar to TransfairUSA came together to begin this process.
The valuables attention derives many of the revenues from diamonds, changed as good as gemstones as good as changed metal. The reliable sourcing transformation has captivated the seductiveness of governments, vast corporations as good as the World Bank, where the Washington assembly took place.
Most tender materials in the valuables attention have been sourced from tiny scale mining as good as efforts have been underneath approach to move reliable practices to this sector. FLO’s early efforts concentration upon ARM (Association For Responsible Mining). Some companies, such as the Rapaport Group as good as Columbia Gem House, have taken clever initiatives upon their own, extrapolating the satisfactory traffic judgment to request to gemstone sourcing.
However, changed metals as good as gems in themselves do not have up an complete square of jewelry. Though the accomplished square of valuables could be equivalent to the satisfactory traffic chocolate club which might have tools which have been exclusively certified, you cannot have ethically sourced valuables though addressing production which has the own work as good as environmental concerns. Fair traffic concerns apparatus which have been constructed in building countries. Unlike coffee, mainstream valuables cannot be simply made in the building universe encampment since it requires the outrageous primary investment in apparatus as good as tender materials.
Apart from companies which source their made products from reliable factories, the many important examination in this courtesy is receiving place in South Africa in the plan called, Vukani-Ubuntu. The plan radically trains people from internal townships in to the mainstream valuables trade, on condition which training, mentoring as good as equipment. It is heavily upheld by supervision as good as NGOs. But according to Lores Mares, CEO of the South African Jewelry Council, the single of the many formidable hurdles is bringing the product to the market.
Jewelry is particularly the commodity which is heavily price driven. This reliable sourcing judgment does not move combined worth since the marketplace is undeveloped. My anecdotal investigate shows which the progressive, immature shopper who buys from Patagonia does not feel during palliate with the standard valuables sales person. Winning the on-going ‘eco’ demographic during the behind of will not be easy. Yet those in the mainstream valuables universe who have been involved, have been frank as good as heavily driven by charitable concerns – with the probable difference of the incomparable corporations who might be fasten to gloss their red blood diamond, unwashed bullion image.Though millions of websites anxiety “fair traffic jewelry,” the nomination is, during this point, as well obscure for all though the couple of categorical tide valuables manufacturers to use. The consumer meddlesome in ethically sourced valuables needs to demeanour for minute report as to sourcing, work as good as environmental practices. At present, clarity is mostly some-more profitable to the consumer than any ‘fair trade’ designation.