Unfortunately, the supply chain of gold in the jewellery industry is, in general, very opaque.
When it comes to the gold used to create your ring it really does matter where it comes from. The mining process varies greatly in how destructive it is to both the environment and human rights around the world.
We've spent the last 15 years researching, reading, visiting mines, and connecting with experts so we can feel confident that what we're using to make our ethical wedding rings is truly Good Gold. This isn't the case for all jewellery outlets.
If you're looking to avoid Russian conflict gold then buying locally-made and avoiding imported jewellery is the way to go. Chain jewellery stores often have pieces that have been made overseas and are usually unable to trace the origins of the gold.
To be confident in your purchase, the best option is to work with a jeweller who produces locally and can tell you the exact origin of the gold they use. If you're looking to make an ethical choice in not just what country the gold comes from but how it is produced, they should also be able to tell you how the gold has been mined. Two common examples being traditional hard rock mining and alluvial gold mining.
Hard rock mining requires human intervention to extract the gold from the earth whilst alluvial gold mining is a gentler process where water and time does the hard work of getting the gold out of the rock. You can read more about what ethical gold means in this blog post.
Ash recently chatted to Stuff news about the best way to avoid inadvertently buying jewellery made from Russian gold and ensuring your wedding ring has a good beginning, you can read the full article here.
We believe it's well past time there was a gold-tracing system established. The origins of the gold used to create jewellery need to be transparent. Hopefully with continued pressure from consumers making a conscious effort to purchase ethical jewellery this aspiration will become a reality.
Read more about our ethical New Zealand gold here.