Pandora Changes Metal Supply to Recycled Gold and Silver

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by | Feb 1, 2024

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Pandora, the world’s largest jewelry brand in terms of production, is now sourcing only recycled silver and gold for all its jewelry after changing its precious metal supply.

The shift will cut down on greenhouse gas emissions, with recycling taking fewer resources and requiring less energy than mining for new metals. In fact, the carbon footprint of recycled silver is one-third compared to mined silver, and recycling gold emits less than 1% of the carbon emissions from mining gold, according to Pandora. The company said it will avoid 58,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year with the change.

Pandora’s Supply Changes

The move comes after Pandora committed to sourcing 100% recycled silver and gold by 2025, and the company reached the milestone at the end of 2023.

“Precious metals can be recycled forever without any loss of quality,” said CEO Alexander Lacik.  “Silver originally mined centuries ago is just as good as new, and improved recycling can significantly reduce the climate footprint of the jewelry industry.” 

To make the switch to recycled gold and silver, Pandora’s suppliers had to switch their operations to only source certified recycled materials, as defined by the Responsible Jewellery Council Chain of Custody — a strict standard. Doing so was a new process for many suppliers, according to Pandora, which required “complete segregation of mined and recycled metals across the entire supply chain including sorting, melting and manufacturing.”

Pandora expects all its jewelry will be crafted with the recycled materials by the second half of 2024 due to its current supply of materials.

Mining Industry

While Pandora has made the switch to recycled materials completely, the gold mining industry is improving somewhat on its environment, social, and government performance, according to a recent report. The industry reported a 2% decline in their combined Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions in 2022, a 7% reduction in water withdrawals, and 3% decrease in water consumption in 2022. 

Just 20% of the world’s silver supply comes from recycled sources, Pandora said, and it is often sourced from discarded electronics, old jewelry, silverware, manufacturing scrap, and other waste from industry. Those materials then go through a refining process, and impurities are removed before it is recast again into something new. 

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