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Chopard, event sponsor of this year’s Cannes International Film Festival (May 2014), is showing a desire to move towards sustainable luxury. Amongst their dazzling jewellery featured at this year’s event, a few pieces that were presented and worn on the red carpet were part of the brand’s Green Carpet Collection. The collection is sourced, designed and crafted with a focus on “rigorous benchmarking standards established by the Green Carpet Challenge, a venture founded by Livia Firth (wife of actor Colin Firth) that promotes ethics in the luxury fashion market.”
These pieces include a pair of earrings made with sustainability-produced Fairmined white gold set with 13.49 carats of pear-cut, brilliant-cut and marquise-cut diamonds. Additionally, this year’s Palme d’Or trophy is made of ethically and sustainably produced Fairmined gold, as well.
All of this is part of Chopard’s “Journey to Sustainable Luxury”, which includes a commitment to responsible social and environmental practices, including careful selection of suppliers and other vendors. Since 2010, Chopard has also been a certified member of the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), an environmental, social, and ethical standard-setting organization.
There is a huge challenge for the company and other luxury jewellery brands, as so few mines are certified, making access to this metal limited. In order to achieve their sustainability agenda, the company is buying directly from certified mines and working in partnership with an NGO to enable mining communities in Latin America to reach Fairmined certification. This certification provides clear channels to market, fair compensation to the miners and an assurance that the gold is traceable from mine to market.
It is exciting to see the luxury market catch up with the grassroots movement that is being made in the jewellery industry. We hope to see more brands take on the sustainability agenda and incorporate more ethically-sourced materials into the jewellery they produce.