As part of our committment to ethical trading we will be visiting China in 1 month. We will be attending a meeting at the Xiamen natural stone fair on behalf of the ETI. The ETI has a dedicated stone group which London Stone are new members of. The ETI stone group are currently working with the Dutch working group regarding the practicalities of a sustainable stone label for suppliers. While the ETI do not necessarily agree that a label is the way forward (ETI place a greater emphasis on continuous improvement) they do share some common values with the Dutch working group.
Its going to be a real eye opener to hear the opinions and views of the Chinese suppliers who will be attending the meeting in Xiamen and hopefully we can find some common ground on the key issues which will undoubtedly be living wages, excessive working hours and health & safety.
I will be keeping you all up to date on the results of the discussions.