Buying course for scrap metals comes to BAO


One-day course could improve jewellers’ cash-for-gold services.

The Birmingham Assay (BAO) has added a new course focused on buying scrap metals to its portfolio, at a time when the industry remains focused on the scrap market and the positives it can offer jewellers and pawnbrokers.

The intensive one-day course, Buying Scrap Gold and Silver, will be hosted twice in the new year on January 18 and February 1.

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It has been created for anyone who wishes to engage in buying scrap gold and silver from the public and covers basic standards and best practice and will also offer an overview of UK and foreign hallmarks and metal testing using acid touch solutions.

The day also includes a visit to the hallmarking and melting areas within the Assay Office.

Michael Allchin, chief executive and assay master at BAO said: “With the market for buying scrap gold and silver so strong at the moment, we recognise that there is a real need for training for those people who wish to buy scrap gold and silver from the public.

“Here at The Birmingham Assay Office we can offer delegates a unique combination of the specialist expertise of our staff with hands-on sessions in our laboratory, which will give them the chance to see gold and silver testing processes in action and try them out for themselves as part of the course.”

The course will be led by Dippal Manchanda, chief assayer and technical director at The Birmingham Assay Office. Manchanda has more than 26 years experience in assaying and the examination of precious metals and alloys.

He will be joined by Sally Hoban, the BAO’s heritage and training officer.

It may be of importance to jewellers, especially those who offer cash-for-gold services, as consumers become ever-more aware of shopping for a good deal for their scrap metals and jewellery, amidst claims that some jewellers have been under-weighing customer’s gold.

Last month a number of jewellers in the Northwest were investigated by Trading Standards across a number of local authorities. Nearly half of all the weighings its team had carried out by jewellers in the region were done incorrectly.

A secondary investigation found that 71% of traders that had not been visited previously were using illegal weighing equipment that did not deliverer accurate measurements. It was also found that it is common practice for jewellers in the Northwest to weigh gold out of sight of the customer, which it believes gives traders greater opportunities to carry out fraudulent or inaccurate weighing.



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