About Better Gold Benefits and Certifications

Better Gold Continuous Improvement

SBGA and the Better Gold Initiative, facilitate the entry of artisanal and small-scale mining operations to the gold market. Continuous improvement is the heart and the immutable principle of the private-public partnership, and is essential to its success. Small-Scale Mining participating operations are given incentives to continuously improve their practices and to slowly enter the international gold market by complying with the due diligence guidance of Better Gold or the requirements of Voluntary Sustainability Systems recognized. This progressive approach is known as Better Gold Continuous Improvement Escalator.

ASM’s Better Gold Continuous Improvement Escalator comprises three progressive steps, from the first selection of Small-Scale Mining operators until becoming Better Gold verified suppliers and, for some operators who aim at having access to specialized markets, obtaining the Voluntary Sustainability Systems certification.

Continuous Improvement Escalator

1
Access to SBGA Markets: For many artisanal and small-scale mining operators, having access to SBGA members’ value chains bring great benefits. SBGA members may often offer better trade conditions.</dt style=”display:block;”>
2
Technical Assistance: While working with a network of experts covering all aspects of viable and responsible operations of Small-Scale Mining, supported by SBGA and SECO funds, the BGI Project – Better Gold team can reach many Small-Scale Mining operations with the potential and willingness to participate in the Better Gold Continuous Improvement Escalator.
3
Community Development: SBGA offers Small-Scale Mining eligible operations a co-funding for the development of projects that contribute to the economic, environmental, and social development of mining communities directly related to the Better Gold mine.

Voluntary Sustainability Systems

Voluntary Sustainability Systems are an alternative way of trade based on the transparency, traceability, equality, and observance of rights and duties of all parties. Its main objective is to support and contribute to the creation of a sustainable, responsible and environmentally-friendly business development model. Voluntary Sustainability Systems promote trade conditions that allow to develop a direct relationship with the buyer, without requiring any intermediary, and also ensure that small-scale and artisanal gold miners get a fair price, access to international market, and anticipated funding.

How is the Certification Obtained?

In order to obtain the Voluntary Sustainability Systems certification, mining organizations shall meet the requirements of a standard for artisanal and small-scale mining. Standards have a comprehensive approach to the production process, comprised by 4 chapters of requirements with their respective compliance criteria.

Once all the standard requirements are met, miners shall submit a request for audit to the organization from which they want to receive the certification, in order to verify its compliance, and assume all the service costs.

Certification Stamp

The certification stamp guarantees the certification of gold produced with added value, since it complies with the criteria of the Voluntary Sustainability Systems’ standards.

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