Gold is a universal symbol of love, power and wealth, but for many small-scale gold miners it signifies a desperate situation.
Fairtrade gold supports small-scale gold miners to improve their livelihoods.
Across the world an estimated 30 million small-scale miners are dependent on finding gold to support themselves, their families and their communities. Very often they work long hours in dangerous conditions for little money; exposed to serious health risks from falling rocks, and the improper use of mercury and cyanide in the gold extraction process.These miners, working alone or in small groups, struggle to make enough money to invest in the safer, more efficient technology that would remove some of their daily risks.
Like many farmers and workers, gold miners are at the start of a long and complex supply chain and are vulnerable to exploitation. But Fairtrade is working to change that by ensuring that in return for their efforts, miners gain international market access and receive a guaranteed Fairtrade Minimum Price of 95 percent of the London Bullion Market Association price, plus a Fairtrade Premium of $2,000 per kilogram to invest in community or business development projects. The problem for consumers is working through the lack of transparency in supply chains making it impossible to know the origins of the gold on their wrist or finger.
By looking for Fairtrade gold, consumers can make their jewellery extra special, knowing it has been responsibly mined and that the miners have received a Fairtrade Minimum Price to give them security, and a Premium – to invest in their businesses or in education, medical care or protecting the environment. Certification also helps generate more sales on better terms.
Fairtrade currently works with miners in South America and East Africa.
Find out more about Fairtrade, our work and our products.
Where can I find Fairtrade gold?