Trading Policies of Pachamama Jewellery, one of our Fair Trade jewellery suppliers since 1993
"We practise a strict ethical trading policy, aiming to empower small-scale alternatives to the global economy, which is the cause of so much injustice in the world.
Everything we offer for sale has been bought directly from the people who make it. – This is essential to have any influence. As soon as anything is purchased from any intermediary, such as a shop or export agency, control over the prices paid or producers, their working conditions and so on has been lost, and the chain of fair trade broken.
We know all of our producers personally and have built up long-term relationships with them. We visit our producers regularly to discuss life, business and develop new designs.
We pay good prices. We never use our buying power to force prices down. We pay a good price for our jewellery, and in return expect the highest quality of work for you. This way we promote a culture of high standards, and encourage producers to take pride in their work. We always pay our producers in advance.
Good wages are paid to workers. As fair traders we have responsibilities to our producers which go beyond selecting the best workshops. We must also ensure that we provide them with steady well-paid work and it is important to us that workers receive a good wage.
The boss must be a silversmith who works alongside the producers rather than just a businessman. Our smallest producer works by himself, but most work in small family workshops.
Women are paid the same as men for work.
Working conditions are pleasant and convivial. All the workshops where our silver is produced have plenty of space and good natural light, as well a congenial social atmosphere.
Hours are not long and plenty of time is allowed off for family and religious obligations. In Bali and Java the social and religious fabric of society is strong, and there are many duties to the family and the temple or mosque. Workers get plenty of time off to attend to these duties. Their hours of work are quite relaxed—typically four hours in the morning, then another three or four."