We have full trace-ability of our stones from exactly which mines they have been mined from, who the miners are, where the mines are located, if the mine is in production right now and what the mine is producing at this moment.
We Support Mining Communities
We buy mostly from small scale artisanal miners as well as local community groups in the mining villages who we believe support their communities. This in turn benefits their families and the areas in which they live, thus raising their livelihood and increasing their quality of life within those communities and mining areas. With a vast network of miners as such, we’ll mostly be speaking to miners as they are sat at their mines sifting through stones. We speak local languages fluently, and understand and respect local cultures and needs.
We also direct local miners on how to make effective use of their Capital and resources. We advise them to grade, sort and cobb their material right at the mines as it comes out, getting the most out of their stones, and making calculated decisions on what would be most profitable for them. We encourage mining villages to form small groups and mine together thus increasing their capacity, and to employ the townsfolk to set up small cobbing and sorting units there.
We make sure they benefit their local communities as well as carry out ethical mining i.e. no child labour, minimum impact to environment, sustainable mining, and community based mining to help their local villages where miners comprise mostly of local villagers taking the proceeds back home.
We believe the future of a constant supply of good quality rough depends on the development of small miners capacity and looking after their needs best. In other words, we follow the "teach a man to fish" principle. Sometimes miners will come in not knowing how to grade their stones nor how to clip them or remove impurities on the outside of the stone; we explain, and take the time to teach and educate them. We work at root level with miners and there is a great deal of mutual respect in our relationships with them.
This is very important to us: We pay fair prices to miners so we always have a ‘win win situation’; and both miners and us are happy. We like miners to have a content, wholehearted and satisfied feeling about a sale with us, and it is important to nurture a sense of goodwill and happiness in all transactions. We believe in strong, long-term relationships with miners and buyers that we supply, that are rock solid and built over time.
Meet one of the miners we work closely with:
The gentleman pictured owns all the Mandarin Spessartite Garnet Mines in Loliondo (Arusha, Tanzania). He is of the Sonjo tribe, and his mine is where the Sonjo and Maasai tribes mine together. He also owns all the Orange Kynite mines in the area; so any of the Orange Kynite crystals you may have come across that are mined in Tanzania, come from one of his mines; also in the Loliondo area!
He involves his local community in communal mining where all communities benefit.
These are the Maasai miners from Longido; cobbing and sorting their goods (Gem Rubies, untreated), that were mined the day before.