The AKARA® label you see on FTJCo’s gold, gems and diamonds means that we have some provenance information about this material.  That information could be a date, a country of export or origin, or a social or environmental impact.


AKARA® People+Planet® Gold is our proprietary blend of 50% certified Fairmined gold from small-scale mines and 50% recycled gold, for a positive social and environmental impact.  FTJCo is the first company in the world to combine Artisanal & Recycled gold.  All rings made in AKARA® gold have a unique serial number that allows us to track the gold back to the original lots from which it was made.  You will see these serial numbers in the item descriptions of our Ready to Wear items, and on your invoice, for Made to Order pieces.

Fairmined Gold is sourced from certified small-scale, artisanal miners and responsibly managed community mines that meet world-leading standards for responsible practices, delivering organizational and social development and environmental protection to those miners. FTJCo launched Fairmined gold in North America in 2014. Learn More

Fairtrade Gold is sourced from small-scale mines which meet the Fairtrade Gold Standard; an internationally recognized marker of best practices for workers’ rights and environmental protection.  FTJCo launched Fairtrade gold in North America in 2011. Learn More

Recycled Gold is re-refined gold that has been sourced from a mix of post-consumer and manufacturing applications, as well as pre-consumer finished goods that were not distributed. Because it repurposes previously-mined gold that is already in circulation, recycled gold has a much smaller environmental footprint than newly mined gold.  FTJCo’s recycled gold is sourced from Canadian and U.S. refiners certified under the Responsible Jewellery Council standard. Learn More


Natural Diamonds

We consider any natural diamonds without specific origin or provenance information, which solely depend on the Kimberley Process for their conflict-free status, as potentially being conflict diamonds due to the lack of evidence asserting otherwise. The Kimberley Process, historically and currently, is often critiqued for its role in legitimizing conflict diamonds. Furthermore, there is a compelling argument that it functions as a tool of colonialism. This is because it facilitates the export of rough diamonds from their countries of origin, where ideally, these diamonds should be processed and manufactured locally.

Canadian Diamonds have always been a focus for us because they have historically had the best traceability.  But we always look for third party validation of origin rather than just repeating the claims made by suppliers.  FTJCo offers Canadian diamonds under the Canadamark system, the Canadian diamond code of Conduct, and origin certificates from the GIA lab. 

Botswanamark Diamonds are extracted in Botswana by miners certified under ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001. These diamonds are primarily sourced from the Jwaneng, Orapa, or Letlhakane mines. Following their extraction, they undergo cutting and polishing processes either in Botswana or at partner facilities in India. Diamonds play a pivotal role in Botswana's economy, contributing 88% to the country's export revenue, 35% to government revenue, and representing 20% of the gross domestic product (GDP). Aligning with FTJCo's core value of maximizing the retention of value within the mineral-producing country, these diamonds stand out for their significant contribution to Botswana's economic development.

Recycled Diamonds are gems that are experiencing their second or third lifecycle, having been previously set in different jewellery pieces. Some of these diamonds are sourced by FTJCo from older rings we acquire from estates, where we carefully unset the stones. Others are obtained from a secondary market dedicated to pre-loved diamonds. This approach not only gives new life to these precious stones but also aligns with our sustainable practices.

Antique or Vintage Diamonds are also unset from pieces FTJCo has acquired or sourced on the secondary antique diamond market.  These diamonds often have unique, historical cuts.  Learn more about these wonderful diamonds here (opens in a new tab).


Lab Grown Diamonds

8X Diamonds meet the Gem Certification and Assurance Lab (GCAL)’s stringent new standard that focuses on eight critical aspects of diamond cut quality for Round Brilliant Cut diamonds. All eight factors must achieve a grade of Excellent for the diamond to qualify for this certification. The eight metrics are: Polish, External Symmetry, Proportions, Optical Brilliance, Fire, Scintillation, Optical Symmetry, and Hearts & Arrows.  FTJCo launched the first 8X Diamonds in Canada that were also certified under the SCS Sustainability Rated 007 Standard.

AKARA® Certified Climate Neutral & Sustainability Rated Diamonds are third-party certified carbon and climate-neutral, as assessed by SCS Global Services. The key components of this certification include stringent environmental, social and governance achievement, climate neutrality, sustainable production practices with net-zero impact, comprehensive origin traceability, and sustainability investments that support vulnerable communities and reduce net impacts. Learn More

AKARA® Climate Neutral Diamonds are diamonds for whom the climate impact has been measured and assessed by SCS Global Services and where the impact has been offset by the manufacturer.  Unlike the Sustainability Rated Diamonds, these diamond do not come with an individual sustainability certification.

Lab Grown Diamonds share the same chemical and physical properties as mined diamonds, and are indistinguishable by the naked eye. They are created in a lab which mimics the same conditions that produce naturally-occurring diamonds. Lab grown diamonds have a smaller environmental footprint and are more traceable than mined diamonds.

AKARA® Modern Vintage Sapphires, Rubies, Emerald, Alexandrite & Other Gems are gemstones that predate the July 2011 OECD guidance on conflict minerals.  These are older gems that have never been sold to consumers (so they cannot be considered post-consumer recycled), neither are they old enough to be considered antique.  For these gems, we have a date and country of export.

Charles & Colvard Moissanites are brand name lab-grown moissanites made by the Charles & Colvard company.  Moissanite has some properties that are similar to diamonds, and they famously enjoy a higher refractive index, meaning they bounce more light internally and are extremely sparkly. Moissanite also rates highly on the Mohs Hardness Scale, making them appropriate for daily wear. However, they cannot withstand extreme heat and must be removed from a ring before resizing. Moissanite is considered a budget-friendly alternative to both mined and lab-grown diamonds. 

Chatham Lab-Grown Sapphires, Rubies, Emeralds, Alexandrites & Spinels are brand name lab-grown gemstones made by the very company that invented lab grown gemstones. These gems are physically and chemically identical to their mined counterparts, and are available in a range of colours, shapes and sizes. Like lab grown diamonds, these gems have a smaller environmental footprint than mined gems, and cost less than their mined counterparts.