Sustainability + Activism + Community

Since our founding in 2006, we've travelled the globe to build new, evidence-based supply chains for the materials we use.  We are focused on reducing the environmental impact of the materials we use while also striving for a more equitable distribution of value along the supply chain.

The AKARA responsible sourcing brand includes gold, diamonds and gems and is a moniker of trust and integrity for materials sourcing.

GOLD

FTJCo's Search for Traceable, Sustainable Gold since 2006

2020: FTJCo launches AKARA People+Planet, our blend of 50% recycled gold and 50% new content from artisanal miners.

We are currently sourcing from Agromining Cooperative of the Municipality of Iquira in Colombia, under the Fairmined standard.

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Premiering at the Hot Docs festival, this documentary covers the murky world of gold trading across the globe. With scenes shot in the FTJCo studio, our staff members and clients talk about gold sourcing and why origin matters.

Watch on TVO.org

In 2018, FTJCo, working with IMPACT, created the first legal gold supply chain connecting a conflict affected area to North America.

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FTJCo travelled to Bolivia to tell the story of a mine certified under the Fairmined standard.

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We were the first company in North America to use Fairtrade gold.  In 2014, we followed that up by launching Fairmined gold in North America. The gold flakes in this photo are from the first Fairtrade gold in North America which is now part of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights collection.

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From 2006, we began sourcing artisanal gold from a co-operative in Colombia.  In 2008, we visited them and shot The Last Gold Rush as they underwent their audit for Fairtrade certification.

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AKARA GEMS

The AKARA brand of gems have provenance information that can include the country of origin, export or cutting, and often a date of export or gem lab certification.

Taking inspiration from the fashion industry's use of older materials in their supply chains, we began offering gemstones that pre-exist the OECD's guidance for responsible mineral supply chains, first published in July 2011.

View New, Old Stock Gems

We found a passionate Australian cutter who sources from small scale miners in Central Queensland. We loved the variety of colours we could add to our AKARA offerings.

View Australian Gems

We began working with a company based in Sri Lanka and the United Kingdom, purchasing gems that they had mined and cut themselves through their partner company Crown Gems. This allowed us to offer curated gems under our AKARA responsible sourcing brand from a new country of origin.

View Sri Lankan Gems

We introduced AKARA Montana sapphires. These gemstones are precision-cut in the United States and gem lab certified.

View Montana Sapphires

We began working with one of the only vertically integrated responsible mines in Madagascar, with cutting operations in Mauritius. Working with GCAL gem lab, we pioneered origin reports for these first AKARA brand gemstones.

View Madagascar Gems

DIAMONDS

Ours is a history of higher standards. From our beginning, we knew diamonds that used only the Kimberley Process for their conflict-free claims were not good enough. Over the years, we have found better sources and we continue that journey today.

FTJCo partnered with Scientific Certification Systems to become the first jeweller to offer diamonds that are certified as socially and environmentally responsible.

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FTJCo partnered with Swarovski, a company that shares our values, to launch Swarovski diamonds in North America. At the same time, FTJCo defaulted to Swarovski-cut lab diamonds for its small diamonds below 3.5 mm.

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We added vintage diamonds dating from the 19th and early 20th centuries as well as recycled diamonds to our selection of sustainable diamond offerings.

Learn More About Vintage Diamonds

In this year, we added lab grown diamonds to our offerings as an alternative choice to conflict-free Canadian diamonds, with the added benefit of a lower carbon footprint.

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Community Activism

Positive impact around the world and close to home.

We chose food security as our COVID-19 cause, donating a portion of sales to food banks local to our clients or to causes they chose.

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In 2016, we were asked to re-interpret the YWCA's Women of Distinction Award. Supporting women is a core value for us, so we were honoured to have this opportunity. Every year since then, we have been making the Toronto YWCA Women of Distinction Award pins.

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