The sourcing of colored gemstones – including emeralds, rubies and sapphires– poses one of the greatest current challenges to the Jewelry industry in terms of traceability and transparency. Colored gemstones are mined in at least 47 countries around the world, with 80% of stones coming from artisanal and small-scale mines, according to United Nations estimates.
They are traded, cut, polished, and sold in various hubs around the world, often changing hands many times before being set on a piece of Jewelry. Jewelry lines, where we have a recurring sourcing in place, have been the priority focus of our supply chain traceability endeavors, from the mine to finished products.
Strong partnership and collaboration with our suppliers have been instrumental in our traceability journey where we can ensure responsible practice at each step of the value chain. More than 60% of the
colored gemstones and mother of pearl used in our Jewelry lines sold in 2021 are traced: we are committed to reaching 100% by 2025.
Traceability of colored gemstones remains a challenge, especially for stones coming from artisanal and small-scale mines, as traceability is often lost in the opaque and complex value chain. Therefore, on top of continuing our journey toward full traceability, broader industry effort is necessary to ensure solutions at scale
Since 2020, we have worked with the Paspaley Pearling Company in the Kimberley region of Western Australia which is our largest supplier of sustainably-harvested oyster pearls and mother-of-pearl from its Marine Stewardship Council-certified pearl fishery.
Founded 70 years ago and still family-owned, they have seen first-hand the relationship between the natural environment and the pearl.
A high-quality environment is required to produce high-quality pearls. Paspaley observes a high level of environmental standards, which are of critical importance to its operations and certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). The standard comprises three core principles against which a fishery’s performance is assessed: the status of the fish stock, the impact of the fishery on the marine ecosystem, and the management system overseeing the fishery.
Our partner provides assurance that their products are fully traceable back to a sustainable fishery.