Development Diamond Standards™
The Development Diamond Standards™ certification scheme is a unique effort to support artisanal diamond miners and their communities and to ensure their inclusion in the broader process of promoting ethical certification and responsible supply chains. The certification system includes: standards that set specific social and environmental provisions for artisanal diamond miners; independent third-party verification and certification; and a traceable chain of custody that maintains the integrity of development diamonds from the digger to the consumer.
DDI defines development diamonds as diamonds that are artisanally-mined and produced responsibly, safely, with respect for human and community rights, in conflict-free zones, with development benefits to communities and payment of fair prices to miners.
DDI is currently implementing DDS projects at various stages of development in 10 communities in Sierra Leone.
|Target Areas||Kono District|
|Funder||GIZ, The Tiffany & Co. Foundation|
- Qualified sites identified
- Enrolled in DDS program
Training and Compliance
- Site operators and miners are trained on the DDS system and coached on implementation through direct (on site) and remote (call centre) support
Verification and Certification
- Independent and random verification of each site takes place 2-3 times for certification on basic standards and progress standards
Development Diamond Export
- Qualified buyers participate in transaction and export process of development diamonds
Chain of Custody
- Certified sites ensure a chain of custody from production site to export
- Qualified buyers ensure a chain of custody from export to retail
By ensuring fair treatment and respect for artisanal miners, their communities and the environment, the Development Diamond StandardsTM (DDS) respond to consumer demand for “ethical” jewelry and the industry’s need for responsibly-mined diamonds.
Expected results include:
- Diamonds produced with internationally desired and accepted norms and standards
- Formalized mining operations
- Reduction in child labour
- Environmental sustainability
- Fair payment for miners
- Opportunities for responsible sourcing of rough diamonds from artisanal sector
Benefits to artisanal miners
Artisanal miners – the most vulnerable group of diamond miners – are the key stakeholders in the Development Diamond Standards™ system. Integrated into all aspects of mining operations, the Standards contribute to the improvement of the socio-economic conditions of miners by ensuring fair treatment and pricing and environmentally sustainable practices. In addition, the Development Diamond Standards™ empower miners to take their place in the responsible-sourcing supply chain, from mine to retail.
Benefits to local governments
The Development Diamond Standards™ can contribute significantly to the formalization of artisanal diamond mining in many countries. They are rooted in, complement, and enhance relevant laws and regulations in producing countries because the application of the standards is subject to audit, assessment and certification. As artisanally-sourced diamonds become part of the formal economy, they are traceable and taxable by the local government.
The Development Diamond Standards™ support the Kimberley Process (KP) Certification Scheme’s conflict-free and internal controls requirements, while also helping countries go beyond KP standards to focus on environmental and social practices.
Benefits to industry and consumers
The Development Diamond Standards™ provide the only dedicated certification system for artisanal diamond production. By connecting the supply chain from source to retail, DDS provides the diamond and jewelry industry with diamonds that carry third-party certification of responsible sourcing, and consumers with the assurance that their diamond was responsibly-sourced and contributed to a community’s development.