To help maintain the integrity of our supply chain, Tiffany & Co. established Laurelton Diamonds in 2002, a wholly owned subsidiary that procures rough diamonds and manages our worldwide supply chain that sources, cuts, polishes and supplies finished diamonds to Tiffany & Co.
Over the last few years, Tiffany & Co. has financed diamond mines to assure access to high-quality diamonds. Specifically, we finance projects in Sierra Leone and South Africa, which allows us access to a new supply of diamonds that meet Tiffany & Co. standards and allows for increased traceability.
Tiffany & Co. sources the majority of our rough diamonds directly from mines in Australia, Botswana, Canada, Namibia, Russia, Sierra Leone and South Africa. We purchase rough diamonds only from those countries that are participants in the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS).
Further, in 2012, Tiffany & Co. received 100%* of rough diamonds either directly from a known mine or a supplier with multiple known mines. These diamonds are cut and polished at Laurelton Diamonds facilities in Belgium, Botswana, Namibia, Mauritius, South Africa and Vietnam or approved subcontractors. These subcontractors participate in the Tiffany & Co. Social Accountability Program and uphold our standards for quality and environmental and social responsibility. In addition, Laurelton Diamonds plans to open a new cutting and polishing facility in Cambodia in 2013.
In recent years, approximately 50%-60% (by dollar value) of the polished diamonds used in our jewelry have been produced from rough diamonds that the Company has purchased. Tiffany & Co. purchases the remaining polished diamonds from third-party suppliers that comply with the World Diamond Council’s System of Warranties, which was developed to extend the KPCS assurance to polished diamonds and assure diamonds are from conflict-free sources. Our polished diamonds are sourced in accordance with Tiffany & Co. standards for quality and environmental and social responsibility, through participation in the Tiffany & Co. Social Accountability Program.
Tiffany & Co. believes that diamonds should benefit the economies and societies of diamond-producing countries. For information on our manufacturing operations and training programs in Botswana, Namibia and South Africa, please see the Beneficiation section of this website.
THE KIMBERLEY PROCESS
The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) is an international cooperative monitoring system created by governments, industry and civil society to eliminate the flow of “conflict diamonds”—rough diamonds that are smuggled by rebel movements to finance wars against legitimate governments. The KPCS requires participating countries to tightly control the import and export of rough diamonds. Also, the KPCS requires governments to establish control systems over private sector trade in rough diamonds. To comply with this process, rough diamonds may only move among participating countries in sealed containers with accompanying documentation evidencing that the diamonds are “conflict-free.”
We applauded the creation of the KPCS, built upon the cooperative efforts of governments, the diamond industry and nongovernmental organizations. We are encouraged by the progress that has been made since the system was put in place in 2003. Nevertheless, it is clear that much work remains to be done.
Most importantly, Tiffany & Co. believes—along with many in the diamond industry—that the Kimberley mandate should be expanded to ensure that human rights abuses are not associated with diamond mining in any member country. We also urge changes in the peer review process to provide for compliance assessment and monitoring that is independent and avoids conflicts of commercial and political interests. Finally, we believe it is prudent to reconsider the current “consensus” decision-making process that governs the Kimberley Process and has, at times, proven challenging for appropriate and timely responses to noncompliance.
Tiffany was quick to respond to the human rights
crisis unfolding in Zimbabwe’s diamond fields.
It publicly assured its customers that it would
not buy diamonds from Zimbabwe and urged for
reforms to the Kimberley Process so that it
could better safeguard human rights. Tiffany is an
example that other retailers should follow.
— Arvind Ganesan, Director – Business and Human Rights, Human Rights Watch
Regarding the widely reported human rights abuses in the Marange diamond district of Zimbabwe, Tiffany & Co. joins with other responsible jewelers in condemning those abuses and urges other industry participants to refuse to purchase diamonds sourced from this district. Although the quality of Marange diamonds generally falls below Tiffany & Co.’s minimum quality levels, and in 2012 Zimbabwe was re-instated as Kimberley Process compliant, we have advised all of our business partners of our zero tolerance policy for diamonds of Marange origins.
*Metric included in the Report of Independent Accountants