Houlden members can place the policy on company websites, have it available in store as well as sending out to customers on request.

UK buying group to promote ethical trading by retailers and suppliers.

By Kathryn Lewis

The Houlden Group has adopted an ethical trading policy in a move that signals an industry wide trend toward ethical sourcing.


The Holden Group said it has had a zero tolerance policy toward conflict diamonds in place for years. The new ethical trading policy has been introduced to make it clear to the public that Houlden is formally adhering to a set of principles.

The buying group has drawn up a set of guidelines for its retail and supplier members, which members can display on websites and in stores to communicate to customers that they operate within a clear set of ethical boundaries.

“We will not knowingly purchase or sell any products that originate from a group or a country which supports or engages in illegal, inhumane or terrorist activities,” the policy states.

To ensure that members comply with the new policy, firms are expected to designate a director responsible for ensuring that company follows the policy guidelines and reports to the Houlden board on a regular basis.

Houlden Group chief executive Stuart Laing said: “We want to be transparent with our customers which are an essential part of ethical trading. It is about being prepared to look beyond the economic and commercial objectives and consider the wider implications of any business decision particularly when it comes to buying gold and diamonds.