November 21, 2001
WGC Tells Consumers Not To Worry About Underkarated Gold
The World Gold Council sent a press release today to New York City area consumer news media stating that underkarating gold jewelry is not a significant problem in the mainstream jewelry industry. It also explained the differences in karat weight and the importance of consumers looking for the karat mark and the registered trademark.
The WGC response came after the New York Attorney General office's public announcement on Nov. 19 about fining retailers and distributors around New York state for selling underkarated gold (see related news).
The jewelry industry takes the laws regulating precious metal purity very seriously so that consumers are protected," said John Calnon, senior vice president, Americas, for the WGC. The Council stressed also that some of the earliest consumer protection laws were written about precious metals and their karat markings. The National Gold and Silver Stamping Act, passed in 1906, was championed by the jewelry industry.
The council advised consumers to use good common sense and shop at reputable quality stores. "Established retailers look to buy their karat gold jewelry from select manufacturers whose quality controls and ethical practices ensure accurate karat markings," said Calnon. "Look for someone who is knowledgeable, offers a broad range of product, a reasonable return policy, and who may be affiliated with a professional trade association, such as Jewelers of America, the Jewelers Vigilance Committee, or the local Better Business Bureau. And, as with any significant purchase, make sure you get everything in writing."
- by Peggy Jo Donahue