Trustmark scheme for jewellery re-launches in UK

A certification scheme for jewellery sold in the UK has been expanded and re-launched in a bid to crack down on counterfeiting.

First launched in 2012 by the Edinburgh Assay office it was the world’s first consumer online assurance scheme for the jewellery industry, and will now be adopted by all four independent UK Assay Offices, adding London, Birmingham, and Sheffield.

The relaunch includes a brand-new Trustmark design featuring a crown in place of the earlier castle, allows for a unique certification number for each jeweller, and will introduce new options for multi-channel retailers.

Jewellery retailers that apply to the Assay Assured Trustmark scheme are subject to company verification checks and then audited against a code of conduct. And jewellery buyers can click on a logo on the retailer’s website to find a certificate bearing a six-digit certification number, which can be checked on the Assay Assured website.

“Independent, digital verification is critical and allows a range of stakeholders to know that they can trust the marketing claims they read and be assured that the product is compliant,” according to Scott Walter, assay master and chief executive at the Edinburgh Assay office and Assay Assured.

“Assay Assured will remain focused on building trust, promoting excellence, and levelling the playing field,” he said.

2019 figures prepared for the British Hallmarking Council by brand protection groups WRi and Incopro revealed that around a third (36 per cent) of ‘gold’ jewellery listings on sites such as Amazon, eBay and Preloved had not been advertised as hallmarked, and of those, 24 per cent were suspected as fake and therefore being sold illegally.

It is illegal to sell anything in the UK made from a precious metal (silver, gold, platinum and palladium) over a certain weight without a hallmark – a stamp of quality that protects the consumer by confirming that what they are buying is made from real precious metal.

“Assay Offices have been protecting customers in the UK for almost 700 years, this initiative aims to bring that protection to shoppers who increasingly purchase luxury products online,” commented Will Evans, general manager of The Goldsmiths Company Assay office in London.

“Giving them extra reassurance that their retailer of choice complies with the Hallmarking Act.”

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