Our Ethical Trading Statement
As a second generation family business trading for the last 50 years we have always taken care to find the best people to work with and where possible we visit the factories and mines that supply our products. All of our suppliers have been selected for their reliability and trustworthiness, and we have established a network of companies and individuals who we trust implicitly. From our experiences of travelling to meet our suppliers and getting to know them and their families, we have never witnessed any unethical or exploitative practices.
We recently changed our Madagascan supply as we were concerned about the supplier’s ethics but in doing so we subsequently found Elka, one of the most amazing Madagascan suppliers. Elka has a well-established crystal cutting and polishing company that employs hundreds of Malagasy people. She has committed her life to a business that gives back to the local economy and community in a country where a fragile infrastructure and corrupt government make running a business extremely difficult. She pays her employees double the going rate and supports her employees through sickness and health.
The crystal trade is generally artisanal which means that by purchasing from an ethical trader you are assured that this money is going back to communities and not big businesses. The vast majority of our products are purchased through uncapitalised individuals who extract crystals as their sole source of income in areas where no other sources of income are available. Rough stone for cutting, such as Rose Quartz and Jaspers, may be extracted by excavators, but crystal and mineral specimens are carefully mined by hand, therefore retaining their value.
Regarding the ‘destruction of the land’ debate, most mining is for bulk stone and minerals, where they are pulped in hundreds of thousands of tonnes for commercial use. This type of crystal/mineral extraction is not representative of our business. The mining that produces our products accounts for a maximum of 0.001% of the industry’s total output. Here at Rockshop we have the utmost respect for the environment and need to protect it, and take every effort to minimise the impact of our operations on it.
As a company we are committed to providing a safe and healthy working environment for all of our employees. There are regular health and safety checks and safety training where appropriate. Employees are treated with dignity and respect with equal opportunities given to all irrespective of their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability or age.
We build long term partnerships with our customers by being honest and straightforward in our dealings at all times. The confidentiality of any information we have in relation to any of our customers is of paramount importance to us.
Unfortunately mining crystals and minerals, by its very nature, can be dangerous and impact on the surrounding landscapes and local populations if it is not regulated properly. As a business we recognise this fact and constantly push the whole of our supply chain to be more transparent by supplying as much information as possible on the products they supply. If we think there could be any unethical practices with a product, we will not purchase the product in the first place, or we will remove the product from our stock until we find an alternative supplier, who we are sure is not unethical or exploitative.
As the industry grows, we need to go further and collaborate across the board, from the mines through to the retailers. We all need to take responsibility for this, and the more we push for transparent and ethical practices, the greater our achievements will be in making this an industry that people can trust.
As a company we are driven by a passion, enthusiasm and mutual respect for everything in the natural world.
Rockshop Wholesale Limited