How Retailers Are Making Sense (and Sales) of Sustainability

Most retail jewelers are engaged in eco-friendly or socially responsible practices in some way: They carry a designer who uses recycled metals, or they can prove their diamonds do not come from conflict areas. But a small group of dedicated retailers is finding that education is the best way to court the socially conscious customer.At Chicago-based Leber Jeweler, a third-generation family business recognized as the first wholly dedicated socially conscious and eco-friendly fine jewelry store in the United States, owner Brian Leber and his wife, Joanne, decided to handcraft their own ­jewelry in-house using responsibly sourced materials back in 1999. That was when they introduced the Earthwise ­Jewelry collection featuring conflict-free Canadian diamonds, fairly traded gemstones, and recycled precious metals. Since then, they have become a destination for socially conscious shoppers.“

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