Diamonds and girls have been best friends for centuries, but that friendship has long come at a high cost for the communities involved in the excavation and processing of these highly coveted gems. Thanks to shifts in consumer behavior, however, sustainability considerations are now on par with price and design for consumers when purchasing diamonds, according to new research published by De Beers Group.
And it is high time. The mine-to-market journey contains a myriad of social and environmental impacts at every step of the way. From soil erosion, deforestation, and the destruction of ecosystems to the appalling working conditions, low wages, and child labor rampant in the industry, there is certainly a dark side to the way people have acquired their sparkling stones. The upside is that the industry creates high levels of employment and makes up a significant part of the GDPs of the countries that produce them.
Tackling these issues requires crystal clear insight into the value chain. Tools and services from Everledger, for example, enable independent retailers to easily reference the origin, human rights, and environmental performance of their diamond listings from the world’s leading producers. The global digital transparency company based in the UK uses blockchain to track goods from raw materials to the end consumer and beyond – making it ideal for retailers implementing circular business models.