So many of us are so far-removed from what diamonds actually are and where they come from, that it’s difficult to wrap our minds around the sparkling stone's origins.
Did you know diamonds are only found in two places? Either many, many kilometres underground the surface of the Earth in ancient kimberlite (rock) formations, where they are extracted through pipe mining. Or in riverbeds and the ocean floor where they are extracted via alluvial mining (eroding minerals).
While diamonds are mined in Canada and Russia, the vast majority are found in Africa, where they’re sourced from both deep-earth mines and alluvial beds. Wherever they’re found, each diamond takes millions of years to form, and they require extensive resources, equipment, manpower and time to discover.
Deep-earth mines with cutting-edge technology are owned and operated by industrial mining companies, like De Beers, who also perform alluvial mining. De Beers have strict ethical and environmental standards, with a huge commitment to sustainability, so consumers can have faith that the practice is ethically and environmentally sound. De Beers really look after the communities they mine within.
In fact, the De Beers group recently contributed $2,500,000 across Botswana and Namibia to support COVID-19 response.
“We have long-standing partnerships with the people of Botswana and Namibia spanning decades. The men and women of De Beers are proud to stand with them now in this moment of crisis and we will stand with them as their partners on the road to recovery and renewal.” - Bruce Cleaver, CEO, De Beers Group.
It's really important to buy only responsibly sourced diamonds, or even better yet, Forevermark diamonds. Forevermark is a diamond brand from De Beers Group, which has a vast history of diamond expertise spanning back more than 130 years. Every Forevermark inscribed diamond is natural, hand-selected, conflict-free and comes with a promise that it is beautiful, rare and responsibly sourced. New Zealand jewellery boutique Partridge Jewellers were recently selected as an Atelier for Forevermark Diamonds.
Forevermark diamonds are the result of a 17-step selection process, which is why less than 1% of the world’s natural diamonds are eligible to become Forevermark.
For Forevermark, responsible diamond sourcing lies at the very heart of their business. The group examine the human rights standards, political climate and socio-economic profile of every community which might be a source of Forevermark diamonds. Each diamond must comply with the Kimberley Process, an international monitoring system co-founded by the De Beers Group with the aim of eradicating the trade in conflict diamonds.
A Forevermark diamond's journey from rough to polished, means particular care has been taken to ensure responsible business practices, support for the advancement of women and protection of the natural world, which is the ultimate source of their diamonds.