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A E Wards & Son Ltd – Ethics Statement

The cutting and processing of gem materials is now done in controlled environments where modern equipment and employment law is the norm. This has eliminated the problems of exploitation and child labour.

It is a competitive industry where lots of low cost items are manufactured by automated machines and computers. All our stones come from workshops and factories we have visited, and we are confident that the people employed are treated well and fairly for the different countries they are based.

There is much more of an ethical issue when it comes to the gathering or mining of gem materials, whether they are mineral, vegetable or animal. They are all natural to the environment we live in, some miles under the earth crust, some miles under the oceans, some under miles the glaciers or ice caps of our planet, and we must not forget the gems that come from living animals and reefs.

Our gems are sourced from these environments by two distinctly different types of supplier. The local population that gather material as a means of their best chance of any income, they may put in a lot of effort for little gain. Then there is the multi-national mining conglomerates that are out for maximum financial gain at any cost. The artisanal diggers will have little incentive to restore the landscape but they may be the only source of some materials. The mining giants will almost certainly be compelled by local governments to restore the environment when mining has ceased.

Please visit Links below for latest information on this subject.

Diamond Facts

Facts and information regarding the Diamond industry.

Most people are unaware of the role diamonds play in bringing real benefits to people in the countries around the world where diamonds are sourced. Nowhere is this more evident than in Africa.

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Belmont Emerald Miners

All of our larger Brazilian Emeralds are from this source.

Belmont Group was started in 1969 rendering services of transportation at that time exclusively for Companhia Vale do Rio Doce and is nowadays composed by several different companies.

In 1978, the mining activities were initiated after the finding of an emerald natural deposit in one of the company’s rural properties. Investments in an assembly industrial unit were made to extract and process the ore containing emeralds; this unit is now considered as the most advanced in the world for this industrial sector.

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Australian Opal Mining

All of our Opal suppliers have these licenses.

A person must be licensed to mine for opals in South Australia.

South Australia has four proclaimed opal fields – Coober Pedy, Mintabie, Stuart Creek and Andamooka. There are also fields on Lambina and Welbourn Hill pastoral stations.

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Gemfields - Responsible Gemstone Mining

Our Mozambique Rubies are all from this source, our newer Zambian Emeralds are also.

Our approach is to set new benchmarks for environmental, social and safety practices in the coloured gemstone sector. Recognising our leadership role, we are working to support increased transparency across the wider downstream supply chain, thereby providing the discerning customers with increased confidence in the responsible journey their gemstones have taken all the way from our mines

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The Guardian. The Kimberley Process

The Kimberley Process is a certification scheme established in 2003 by a United Nations resolution, following a series of reports which first exposed the link between the diamond trade and the financing of conflict.

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The Kimberley Process Website

Uniting governments, civil society and the wider industry, the Kimberley Process (KP) defines conflict diamonds as: ‘rough diamonds used to finance wars against governments’ - around the world.

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Sapphire Mines In South East Asia

Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and Laos

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New Stones