RJC News

Global Brands Unite to Drive Sustainability Best Practices in Jewellery & Watch Industry

Global Brands Unite to Drive Sustainability Best Practices in Jewellery & Watch Industry

‘Create Beautiful’ video released in Cannes at the occasion of the launch of the Progress Report

London, UK – 12 July 2021: Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), the world’s leading standard-setting organisation for the global jewellery and watch industry, today announced its latest progress report to showcase and encourage sustainability action throughout the supply chain. Findings show the number of new and renewing certified members increased globally to 1023, of which 222 organisations gained certification or recertification between January to December 2020. Citing collective action as an accelerant for change, the report was accompanied by a joint video titled ‘Create Beautiful’ featuring CEOs from some of the leading names in the jewellery and watch industry as well as special interest groups including ALROSA, Bvlgari, Cartier, De Beers, Diamonds Do Good, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre, The Plumb Club, and the United Nations Global Compact. The report and video were announced in Cannes during Cannes Film Festival 2021, at ‘Ethical Gold’, an event hosted by the Better World Fund and supported by the United Nations Environment Programme planetGOLD.

Iris Van der Veken, Executive Director for Responsible Jewellery Council said, “Our latest progress report shows that the jewellery and watch industry shares an ambition to contribute to a better world. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) demand a joined-up and collaborative approach from all parts of the jewellery and watch industry. RJC is committed to working with its members, industry organisations like the World Diamond Council and CIBJO, civil society and government to energise action towards a more sustainable future for all. You cannot separate beauty and design from sustainability. And when you ask, ‘how is this made’ and commit to create beautiful things in a beautiful way, you make it possible to live in a better, fairer world – today and for future generations.”

Today RJC has over 1450 member companies globally (1420 at the date of the Report)  from mining to retail and, through its Code of Practices which is the industry standard, is an enabler for collective action by the jewellery and watch industry, towards the 17 Sustainable Development Goals .

David Bouffard, Chair of Responsible Jewellery Council added, “We were there more than 15 years ago when the industry came together to change the way it does business. By introducing a common set of industry-wide standards, we have collectively shifted sustainability from an afterthought to a fundamental business management practice. By transforming our supply chains to be socially and environmentally responsible, we are deepening consumer trust and safeguarding the future of our industry.”

RJC continued to engage closely with NGOs, government and industry, fostering the exchange of ideas and action on how to further operationalise human rights due diligence across the supply chain. RJC built on its unique strategic partnership with the United Nations Global Compact to advance sustainability action, including joining SDG Ambition. The platform enables RJC members to showcase their progress towards the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through the implementation of the Code of Practices. After extensive multi-stakeholder consultation, RJC launched Roadmap 2030 – an attainable pathway to help RJC members collectively achieve long-term impacts whilst contributing to the SDGs. RJC established the SDG Taskforce, consisting of 26 member companies, to co-ordinate and benchmark progress by member companies and the industry in delivery the 17 SDGs, presented according to the five pillars of sustainable development – People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnerships.

To support its commitment to remove barriers to change and accelerate progress, RJC released several translations of its core documents including French, Italian, Spanish and German, and delivered an extensive calendar of roundtables, conferences and training to members and non-members, virtually and in-person (where permitted). RJC’s SDG Roadshow included understanding and implementing the SDGs and SDG Compass, with sessions dedicated to SDG 5 Gender Equality, SDG 8 Decent Work and Economic Growth, SDG 12 Responsible Production and Consumption, SDG 13 Climate Action, and SDG 17 Partnership for the Goals. A series of ‘how to’ training was provided to support members in the practical application of responsible management principles including, how to carry out Human Rights Due Diligence, how to implement the five-step OECD Due Diligence Guidance, how to develop and implement management systems, and processes for responsible sourcing. RJC released several toolkits including a Due Diligence Toolkit for the diamond and coloured gemstones industry.

Looking forward, RJC will continue to prioritise education and knowledge sharing as a key to embedding strong management systems, including the release of a Corporate Responsibility Toolkit for Small and Medium-size Companies to support smaller and independent organisations as they start their sustainability journey.

Names of speakers in CEO video:

  • Sergey Ivanov, CEO, ALROSA
  • Jean-Christophe Babin, CEO, Bvlgari
  • Cyrille Vigneron, President and CEO, Cartier International
  • Bruce Cleaver, CEO, De Beers Group
  • Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., Co-Founder, Diamonds Do Good
  • Christoph Grainger-Herr, CEO, IWC Schaffhausen
  • Catherine Rénier, CEO, Jaeger-LeCoultre
  • Michael Lerche, President, The Plumb Club
  • Sue Allchurch, Chief, Outreach & Engagement, United Nations Global Compact
  • David Bouffard, Chair, Responsible Jewellery Council
  • Iris Van der Veken, Executive Director, Responsible Jewellery Council
  • Daylia Brown, Membership Services Manager, Responsible Jewellery Council

Names of speakers in photograph:

  • Iris Van der Veken (Responsible Jewellery Council)
  • Louis Marechal (OECD)
  • Feriel Zerouki (De Beers)
  • Raj Mehta (Rosy Blue)
  • Ludovic Bernaudat (UN Environment Program)

Useful Links

Further Information

Olivia Saunders-Smith
Marketing & Communications Team
Responsible Jewellery Council
communications@responsiblejewellery.com
+44 207 321 0992 ext. 206

About Responsible Jewellery Council

Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) is the leading standards organisation of the global jewellery and watch industry. It has 1,500 member companies in 71 countries, that span the jewellery supply chain from mine to retail. RJC Members commit to and are independently audited against the RJC Code of Practices – an international standard on responsible business practices for diamonds, coloured gemstones, silver, gold and platinum group metals. The Code of Practices (COP) addresses human rights, labour rights, environmental impact, mining practices, product disclosure and many more important topics in the jewellery supply chain. RJC also works with multi-stakeholder initiatives on responsible sourcing and supply chain due diligence. The RJC’s Chain-of-Custody Certification (CoC) for precious metals supports these initiatives and can be used as a tool to deliver broader Member and stakeholder benefit. Through the implementation of the COP and CoC members contribute towards the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations 2030 agenda. RJC’s Roadmap 2030 is a framework for our industry with respect to the most impactful contributions our members can make through their supply chains. Impacts deepen consumer confidence and are linked to priority SDGs, they are presented according to the five pillars of sustainable development – People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnerships. In April 2021, RJC launched the SDG Taskforce, an industry-wide action platform to advance the sustainability agenda and benchmark progress in the jewellery and watch supply chain.

RJC is a Full Member of the ISEAL Alliance – the global association for sustainability standards. RJC complies with the ISEAL Standard-Setting Code which specifies general requirements for transparent and accountable preparation, adoption and revision of sustainability standards.

RJC is also a member of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) since 2009. RJC and UNGC entered into a first-of-its-kind strategic partnership in 2020 and launched the ‘SDG Innovation & Impact in the Jewellery Industry” programme. In 2021 RJC deepened this commitment by supporting the UNGC SDG Ambition global impact initiative to accelerate integration of the 17 SDGs into core business management. SDG Ambition enables companies to move beyond incremental progress and step-up transformative change – unlocking business value, building business resilience, and enabling long-term growth.

For more information on RJC Members, Certification, and Standards please visit www.responsiblejewellery.com and connect with us on LinkedInTwitter and Facebook.