Officially dated January 17, 2022, Rubel & Ménasché has just validated its 5th certification with the Responsible Jewellery Council, for its 2019 Code of Practices. This certification follows an audit which was successfully completed on September 16, 2021. Here, we explain Rubel & Ménasché’s motivations.
“Being exemplary, respectful of women and men, striving to create total transparency in the supply chain” are commitments that Rubel & Ménasché actively champions. And very early on, to ensure that these are not ‘ONLY’ good intentions, the Maison launched a process to look into its practices and put them through the scrutiny of demanding charters and certification procedures.
In 2011, Rubel & Ménasché became the 5th certified member of the Responsible Jewellery Council. This approach of continuous improvement and compliance with the most demanding standards for supply and corporate sustainable management in the world of jewelry will lead the Maison to renew this certification every 3 years. While R&M achieved a 4th certification at the start of 2020, the diamond company quickly set itself a major new challenge, to undergo a new audit to be certified for the COP 2019* in less than 3 years.
For Florence Bouvier, General Secretary & Compliance Officer of R&M, this “makes perfect sense! Rubel & Ménasché was convinced early on that it should commit to achieve progress in the diamond industry. This is why we joined the RJC in 2010**, which has now become a cornerstone for sustainable practices in our sector. From 14 founding members, the RJC now has 1,409! So yes, when we were re-certified in 2020, we could have patiently waited for 2023. But this certification for the COP 2013 standards was not enough for us. This was just the basics for a French company. At that time, in March 2020 we had just been locked down for the first time and our Maison, like so many others at the time, was questioning its operations. We wanted to do better, go further, create balance in our due diligence practices, manage our risks and get to know our partners. Finally, committing to an audit process to comply with the COP 2019 criteria seemed obvious to us and consistent with the Maison’s development.”
The challenge seemed enormous and yet, as the self-assessment work progressed, Rubel & Ménasché found that while these good practices had not as such been recorded, they had already been integrated into its operations. The work essentially consisted of structuring, formalizing and ensuring that the Maison’s work can endure in the fields covered by the RJC’s COP 2019: legal compliance, reporting, responsible supply chains, Human rights and due diligence, labor rights and working conditions, health, safety and the environment, the Kimberley Process certification and responsible mining. Thus, some of the documents drafted and approaches implemented for this occasion included: a risk-based management approach, the responsible procurement policy, the sustainable development policy or the ethics whistleblowing system – Rubel Speak UP, etc.
“The self-assessment has also enabled us to make progress on some issues within our company, such as traceability,” continues Florence Bouvier. “We have improved our methods, set up management systems and also encouraged our partners to make headway in this field by committing to responsible and ethical practices.”
What about the future? Rubel & Ménasché intends to pick up the pace, notably in terms of transparency and traceability, by totally merging its sustainable development policy with its development strategy and sharing its convictions and commitments even more widely both upstream and downstream in the chain. We are also in the process of determining our 2021 carbon footprint.
Finally, the objective is clear, we have to act consciously if we are to have a positive impact over the long-term and help build a better and sustainable world.
To learn more about the 2019 Code of Practices and understand how to become certified with the RJC, visit our dedicated article and read the relevant explanatory box.
Source Rubel & Ménasché
* The Code of Practices was revised in 2019 to meet, among other things, the OECD Due Diligence Guide, new criteria for declaring lab-grown diamonds, respect for human rights in accordance with the United Nations guidelines and respect for the environment, etc.
** R&M joined the RJC in 2010 and was certified for the first time in 2011.
Photo © Rubel & Ménasché.