Gemfields launches new campaign to raise awareness of responsible sourcing

Gemfields has launched a global advertising campaign to raise awareness of responsible sourcing in the coloured gemstone industry and promote Zambian emeralds and Mozambican rubies.

Gemfields believes that coloured gemstones should be mined and marketed by championing three key values – transparency, integrity and legitimacy – and seeks to challenge itself and the sector by setting new benchmarks for responsible sourcing. Therefore, a new campaign titled ‘Every Piece Unique’ has been designed to bring these core values and Gemfields’ associated initiatives to life, highlighting the breadth of consideration involved in responsibly supplying coloured gemstones to global markets.

“We wanted to bring to life the many stories behind responsibly sourcing precious gemstones in Africa, as there is far more to our business than industry-leading mining and geology,” explains group marketing and communications director at Gemfields, Emily Dungey. “The characters in the campaign allow us to build awareness of the many life-changing community projects we carry out, our pioneering quest for greater transparency across the industry and the support we provide for vital conservation works protecting Africa’s biodiversity. The campaign is a snapshot of who we are: it’s fun, unexpected and non-conformist, but also gives an insight into some of the ways in which Gemfields strives to leave a positive and lasting impact.”

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The campaign film is set in a contemporary art gallery, closing for the night, when the sculptures come to life through movement and dance. Each character moves with unique style, unveiling their distinctive role in the Gemfields ecosphere.

The first character, a faceted female form, half emerald and half ruby, embodies the gemstones that underpin Gemfields’ drive for transparency, the founding principle of the business. Gemfields’ extractive operations, combined with its proprietary grading and auction systems, are all designed to bring a reliable supply of responsibly sourced gemstones to market with an unprecedented level of transparency.

As the transparency character dances through the gallery, her arm brushes a second character – a petite paper sculpture featuring hand-writing and emeralds. The scroll-like figure personifies Gemfields’ education programmes. Gemfields supports life-changing initiatives for the communities near its mines in three key spheres: health, livelihoods and education. It has established four schools in Mozambique and constructed three in Zambia, as well as providing university scholarships in the fields of mining and geology.  In total, more than 2,500 pupils are now attending these schools and classes for adults have been added to allow parents to keep up with the next generation.

Transparency and education awaken a valiant rhino sculpture carved from wood, half-dipped in recycled green gold, replete with emerald eyes.  An iconic African symbol of conservation, the rhino was chosen to reflect Gemfields’ work with conservation partners to protect Africa’s wildlife and biodiversity, including the Niassa Carnivore Project and Quirimbas National Park in Mozambique and the Zambian Carnivore Programme spanning several Zambian reserves.

The three characters run together through the gallery until they reach a dominating, abstract painting featuring human forms dramatically poised around a Fabergé egg. The central form emerges from the painting to join the trio. It represents Gemfields’ community initiatives to improve the health care and wellbeing of those living around its mines. Before Gemfields introduced formalised mining operations, these remote communities had little or no access to healthcare. Cholera, malaria, HIV and dysentery are commonplace. Now, two mobile health clinics in Mozambique serve six remote villages of around 10,000 people, and in Zambia a further 10,000 people benefit from a significantly upgraded health centre and maternity wards. The presence of a Fabergé egg reflects Fabergé’s role as a vital component of Gemfields’ ‘mine to market’ vision.

The dance builds as the characters surround a large-scale hanging installation. Comprising bright blue feathers and sparkling rubies its colouring is inspired by the lilac-breasted roller, a native African bird. This character signifies livelihoods, the third of Gemfields local initiatives and is a nod to the chicken farms created to empower local women. Gemfields set up the farms with local women, teaching them how to manage these autonomously and transferring the projects so they are now fully functioning independently, providing self-sufficiency for the women.  Gemfields strives to leave a positive, lasting legacy in the communities it touches that will long outlive its presence and support ongoing economic sustainability.

The dance leads them to the base of a huge flowering Baobab tree, the ‘tree of life’. This iconic form embodies sustainability, Gemfields’ approach to mining operations. By its very nature, mining impacts the environment, but Gemfields seeks to minimise this where possible. Before mining commences, seeds are collected from indigenous plants and trees, to create a seed-bank and the rich top soil is carefully stored. Gemfields re-fill and re-plant as an ongoing process, reducing impact to the site and maintaining biodiversity. Deepening the connection to this art sculpture character, a Baobab tree sits on the mine site in Mozambique, so Gemfields has mined around it, leaving this magnificent symbol to stand for years to come.

The film concludes with an explosion of Baobab flowers, and the exuberant characters are pgeoised in their original gallery positions, with only two gently floating flowers- with hearts of ruby and emerald- to indicate that anything magical has happened. Likewise, Gemfields’ mine sites will return to their original state, with only the wider positive effects such as improved community healthcare, education, sustainable livelihoods and conservation efforts left to indicate that Gemfields was ever there.

‘Every Piece Unique’ highlights how each gemstone is unique, possessing its own personality and character, much like original pieces of art. The film continues the narrative of Gemfields’ ‘A Story in Every Gemstone’ campaign, building a greater understanding of the depths behind responsibly sourcing emeralds and rubies from their origins in Zambia and Mozambique.

The campaign was created by adam&eveDDB with production carried out by Gutenberg Global and media planning and buying carried out by Havas LuxHub Media. The Moving Picture Company (MPC) in collaboration with FutureDeluxe produced and directed the campaign film, with characters brought to life by MPC Creative, using VFX and CGI animation.

Watch the video campaign here:

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