Responsibly Sourced Precious Metals

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Consumers are increasingly concerned about the impact of their jewellery purchases and the provenance of the products available to them. 

Buying habits are one of the key factors driving positive change in the precious metals industry but with such change comes choice and there are many factors for jewellers, jewellery brands, investors and consumers to consider.  

What is the price of gold? Will I have to pay a Fairtrade premium? What ethically sourced options are available to me? What do they mean for local communities and the environment? 

Sourcing sustainable metal isn’t always straightforward. That’s where our team of precious metals experts comes in.  

Single Mine Origin SMO Products

Single Mine Origin


SMO certified gold provides an auditable chain of custody for the entire supply chain, with full segregation from mine to finished product. It adheres to a number of strict CSR guidelines and is mined in accordance with the World Gold Council’s Responsible Gold Mining Principles.

Fairtrade Gold bullion

Fairtrade Gold


Fairtrade is an independent and ethical approach to ensuring gold and silver are responsibly mined, that tackles issues like child labour and dangerous working conditions head on. Buying Fairtrade certified gold means that artisanal and small scale miners are getting a fair deal.

fairmined ethical gold

Fairmined Gold


Fairmined is an assurance label that certifies gold from responsible artisanal and small-scale mining organisations. It transforms mining into an active force for good, ensuring social development and environmental protection, and providing everyone with a source of gold to be proud of.

We know where our gold comes from. Do you?

Where does your gold come from? The chances are that most jewellers, investors and consumers are not fully aware of the provenance of their products.

Why? Because the vast majority of the gold used in the jewellery industry cannot be traced to a known source. As a consequence, any potentially negative impacts of that metal also cannot be known and that is becoming an increasing problem for the industry, just at a time when consumers are making more ethical and sustainable choices.

It’s why a growing number of jewellers are choosing Single Mine Origin gold.

Full Segregation from Mine to Finished Product

The source of most gold is not simple to trace, in part because most gold in jewellery is usually melted together from different sources and not sold as a pure commodity.

That’s why Betts Group launched Single Mine Origin (SMO) gold in 2018, in partnership with Hummingbird Resources.

Sourced from the Yanfolila gold mine in Mali, SMO certified gold delivers unique vertical integration with an auditable chain of custody for the entire supply chain and full segregation from mine to finished product.

SMO gold must adhere to a number of strict CSR guidelines, so it only originates from mines with a proven track record of committed social and environmental responsibility. Batch codes and QR codes offer consumers a direct link to the source of the precious metal used in their purchase, as well as giving an insight into the impact each transaction has helped to create through local community projects.

Affordable Responsibility

Whilst the price of gold is important, so too is knowing that a product is of a high quality and has been responsibly sourced.

The huge benefit of choosing SMO gold, is that there are no administrative barriers to entry or membership requirements for jewellers or investors. And with a plentiful and reliable supply, there is no pricing premium either.

Rather than creating another new standard, SMO must be mined in accordance with the World Gold Council’s Responsible Gold Mining Principles.

The five key themes of SMO gold are:

  • Good corporate governance
  • Progressive employment practices
  • Strong health and safety procedures
  • Committed environmental stewardship
  • Responsible community engagement

 

SMO gold is 24 carat pure gold, produced and refined from one single mine site and plant. In an age where traceability is paramount, SMO-certification is the ultimate stamp of approval in precious metals.

SMO confirms that your gold is derived from a legitimate mining operation. It confirms that your gold holds no ties to conflict and has been produced at a mine where trade relationships are upheld with unwavering responsibility.

By purchasing SMO gold, investors and commercial buyers are supporting miners who are being paid a just wage under secure and safe employment. This in turn has a positive effect on the lives of the miners’ families and local communities who can benefit from the sustainability initiatives in place at the mine site and from residing in a region where legal business thrives. Extensive community development programmes include sanitation, education, health, environmental and alternative livelihood projects.

But SMO standards are not just advocated at the mine site, they are present at every stage of production. This is why SMO gold coins are produced at the Betts Metals refinery – the most ethical gold refinery in the world and now the world’s first SMO refinery.

smo gold logo

Why choose SMO gold?:

Auditable chain of custody from mine to finished product, with process assurance from world class audit partners

Sourced from responsible partners operating to World Gold Council’s ‘Responsible Gold Mining Principles’

Utilises economies of scale to ensure no pricing premium and plentiful supply

No barriers to entry for jewellers or investors, with no administrative burden or membership requirements

Broad range of products available from grain, sheet, wire to investment products

Fairtrade Gold and Silver

This rise in ethical consumption and choosing gold from responsible sources, shows no signs of abating.

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic and climate change have placed more pressure on low-income farmers and workers in some of the world’s poorest countries. All of which has led to a boom in global consciousness and in consumer demand for Fairtrade certified gold products.

And whilst sustainable grocery shopping has moved from being a niche market into an area of big spend, we are increasingly asking questions about where our gold and silver comes from too.

A Stand for Gold

Gold mining is one of the world’s most dangerous jobs.

An estimated 100 million people worldwide rely on small scale mining to support their families and communities and 90% are estimated to be artisanal and small-scale miners.

Fairtrade certification is an independent and ethical approach to ensuring gold and silver are responsibly mined, that tackles issues such as child labour and dangerous working conditions head on.

Buying Fairtrade gold and silver means that jewellers and consumers can also be sure that artisanal and small-scale miners are getting a fair deal. Fairtrade standards ensure that there is a minimum price for precious metal, providing miners with financial security and improved working conditions.

Is there a Fairtrade premium when purchasing gold and silver produced in this way?

Put simply, yes, but the costs are far outweighed by the ethical benefits. The extra money accrued is used to invest in building the future of workers’ families and communities, through education, clean water and healthcare initiatives.

To find out more about Fairtrade Gold visit www.fairgold.org

A Full Range of Fairtrade Gold and Silver Products

Betts Group is FLOCERT accredited to process Fairtrade gold. FLOCERT is an independent body that ensures producers and traders comply with the FLO International Fairtrade Standards.

Only Fairtrade certified items can be Fairtrade stamped. They include Fairtrade gold jewellery, ingots, coins, trophies and medals.

Betts Metals is also the only UK refinery to have been audited and accredited to process Fairtrade gold and silver. Our Fairtrade number is: 26139

We produce a wide selection of Fairtrade gold round and shaped wires, including most alloys and sizes, and we can also draw down stocked product or manufacture other products on request.

faitrade gold logo

An Unrivalled Knowledge of Precious Metals

Betts Group is the oldest surviving precious metal refining and dealing business in the UK.

Although we have evolved into a much more diverse business with interests in investments and waste management, our core ethos of integrity and quality of service, and our focus on precious metal expertise remain the cornerstones of our brand.

The knowledge and skill we have developed over 260 years is unrivalled and we are continually exploring innovative and pioneering approaches to enhance our proposition to our customers.

We specialise in a range of sustainable options, including Fair Mined, Single Mine Origin (SMO) gold and recycled precious metals. Our team is on hand to guide you through, making your considered jewellery choices that bit easier.

 

For more information

To send us your enquiries email [email protected], or if you'd rather speak to us in person feel free to call us on 0121 233 2413.


Fairmined

Gold may be a huge industry but while demand is high, supply is incredibly scarce.

It is estimated that for every gram of gold on our planet, there are around 60 grams of silver and in the region of 400,000 grams of diamonds.

And while generations of us may have been more concerned with the price of gold than the origin of the precious metals we purchased, provenance has become a huge concern for today’s consumer.

The question is being asked more frequently than ever before: do you know where your gold comes from?

A Fair Deal for Artisanal and Small Scale Miners

Almost 80% of the world’s gold is said to be turned into gold jewellery.

The economic impact is significant: the World Gold Council reports that gold mining contributes more than $170bn to the global economy.

Gold is mined in more than 60 countries worldwide and employs as many as 15 million people, but its supply chains have often been plagued with environmental and humanitarian issues.

From child labour to dangerous working conditions, a lack of health and safety standards have made for unsavoury headlines that have demanded a positive response from the precious metals industry.

Fairmined is an independent, not-for-profit initiative. Not only does it get mines up to an ethical working standard, it also operates minimum prices to ensure miners aren’t exploited.

Think of it as an assurance label, that verifies gold from responsible artisanal and small-scale mining businesses.

A Standard for Gold

The Fairmined Initiative was created by the Alliance for Responsible Mining, a non-profit organisation that is recognised globally as a leader of responsible artisanal and small-scale mining.

Fairmined strives to transform the entire mining industry into a force for good. It seeks to eradicate economic exploitation and ecological destruction, and looks to a future where all gold is sourced in a fashion that we can be proud of.

You can be sure that Fairmined gold and associated precious metals support responsibly managed community mines. Why? Because Fairmined is backed by a rigorous third party certification and audit system.

It ensures that artisanal and small-scale mining organisations are meeting world-leading standards for responsible practices, including social development and environmental protection.

Fairmined describes the process as ‘an exchange between markets and miners’.

 

A Standard for Gold

A guaranteed fair price for minerals

An additional premium to cover the costs of certification and promote investment in mining operations, social development and environmental protection

Direct access to international markets and responsible supply chains

Legitimacy within the industry, as well as government, national and international audiences

Access to a network of miners, experienced allies and mining support organizations.

 

Value to the gold industry:

Demonstration that the market puts a value on responsible practices

Risk mitigation: the Fairmined Standard ensures that companies not only comply with but supersede all international norms and regulations

Companies position themselves as pioneers and leaders in the growing trend towards sustainable and ethical sourcing

Added value and access to a growing market of ethical consumers

 

Assurance for consumers:

A story of origin

Human connection to the mining communities

Generating a positive impact with a purchase

Assurance that the gold is responsibly mined

Added emotional benefits

 

Information courtesy of Fairmined. You can find out more about the initiative by visiting: http://fairmined.org/


  

 

Manufactured Responsibly

Betts Group uses responsibly sourced gold in all of our manufactured gold products. It’s part of our industry-leading commitment to supply responsibly mined gold to investors and the jewellery trade, including artisan jewellers and renowned names such as Boodles, Sheila Fleet and G. Collins & Sons. 

Our complete service proposition includes refining services and a wide range of products and sundries such as grain, sheet, wire, bullion, wedding bands and engagement rings, jewelers’ tools and bespoke investment products.

Our business specialises in a range of sustainable options, which also includes Fair MinedFair Trade and recycled precious metals

Talk to our experienced and knowledgeable team for more information.

 

If you would you like to purchase a ring using SMO gold, or if you would like to purchase grain, sheet or wire, email [email protected] or call us on 0121 233 2413 for all products including investment products.

 

To find out more see www.singlemineorigin.com and www.bettsinvestments.co.uk