KITCHENER, ON, Dec. 7, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Cutting-edge jeweler luxe.zen launches mine–to–market raw gemstone jewelry collection in partnership with Moyo Gems, PACT International & the Tanzanian Women Miner’s Association. This is a groundbreaking move for luxe.zen on its mission to handcraft kinder jewelry.
Most jewelers who make ethical claims simply set stones in recycled gold, without addressing the social and environmental costs of the metal’s origins. Further, brands that market “ethically sourced” gemstones without disclosing their origins offer consumers questionable confidence that their jewelry is ethical. For example, a third of the world’s diamonds are mined in Russia and are considered ‘conflict free’ under the Kimberley Process, yet are directly financing Russia’s war on Ukraine (Abend) (“What is the Kimberley Process”). When jewelers assure their materials, they are typically fine jewelry or luxury pieces. Therefore, much of the affordably-priced costume jewelry sold today fuels environmental destruction, poor wages, unsafe working conditions, and conflicts like the war in Ukraine (Archuleta).
luxe.zen aims to change that. The cutting-edge jeweler is already a Fairmined gold & silver licensed brand. With this partnership, luxe.zen can trace all materials from the mine to the consumer. “When the answers to our questions about our material’s origins were unsatisfactory, we knew we had to do better. Our Moyo Gems pieces represent industry-leading transparency at an affordable price. We name the miner and give back 3% of profits to support others like her,” Sarah Healey – founder
This boundary-pushing partnership also helps increase artisanal miners’ income. luxe.zen uses primarily rough and imperfect stones, which most jewelers reject. This partnership means that miners now have a market for those stones. Furthermore, luxe.zen’s partners provide safer venues to sell, transparent pricing, and immediate payment. Training is provided on mining safety and environmental sustainability, and how to assess the value of their finds. Salma Kundi, TAWOMA’s Secretary General, sees a bright future for these miners, as partners like luxe.zen expand the market for their gemstones while ensuring they have the support and training to get their stones to market safely. “We are bringing expanded opportunities to Tanzanian Moyo program miners through this new effort,” says Norbert Massay of PACT International. “These opportunities strengthen women-led households, communities, and our national partner TAWOMA.”
In addition to their commitment to ethical sourcing luxe.zen focuses on minimizing their environmental footprint. Their bestselling mosaic collection features upcycled gemstone shards and broken stones that most jewelry studios would discard. “It never made sense to me that imperfect stones are wasted. These stones still have so much beauty and character. Women are looking for pieces that are unique,” Sarah Healey – founder
To learn more about luxe.zen’s ethical sourcing, click here.
Abend, Lisa. “Russia Produces a Third of the World’s Diamonds. Now They’re Coming Under Scrutiny.” TIME, 5 May 2022, time.com/6172665/russia-diamonds-sanctions-belgium/
“What is the Kimberley Process.” Kimberley Process, www.kimberleyprocess.com/en/what-kp.
Archuleta, Jennifer-Lynn. “The colour of responsibility: ethical issues and solutions in coloured gemstones.” GIA, www.gia.edu/doc/GG-SU16-Archuleta.pdf.