The Fairtrade Foundation has unveiled a new initiative as part of its Fairtrade Gold Campaign – named ‘I Do’ – in a bid to “stamp out practices that have tarnished the industry’s reputation”.
The initiative will begin with a series of five nationwide conferences, which will be held across England, Scotland and Wales throughout September and October.
The conferences will be attended by leading activists from Fairtrade’s network of 10,000 local campaigning groups, including towns, schools, universities and faith groups.
Each event is designed to “inspire, motivate and equip” community networks to help boost awareness of Fairtrade Gold jewellery in their local area and drive sales. The network will be asked to reach out to jewellers on their high street and ask them to sell Fairtrade.
Two gold miners from Fairtrade mining projects in Peru and Kenya will speak at each of the five conferences. They will also visit leading independent jewellery stores around the country and give talks at campaigner-led public events.
The push will also include the launch of a new e-learning platform, a Fairtrade gold business advice clinic and seminar hosted by International Jewellery London (IJL) and the creation of a suite of new business resources and new campaigner literature.
Kevin McCullough, head of campaigns at the Fairtrade Foundation said: “If Fairtrade Gold becomes the norm in the jewellery industry, the impact could be enormous. This could break the poverty cycle of millions of miners who are cut out of the benefits of this lucrative trade.
“As consumers and campaigners, we all carry the power in our pocket to make that change.”