The gold mining organisation Minera Cambio S.A. in Peru

Peru is one of the most important gold producing countries in the world. Besides the large international mining companies, there are many smaller mines that represent the majority of the labour force in gold mining. One of them is the Minera Cambio cooperative in Chaparra in the Peruvian region of Arequipa.


Country: Peru

Fairtrade certified in: 2020

Main products: Gold and precious metals

Projects using Fairtrade Premium

The gold cooperative Minera Cambio was Fairtrade certified in 2020 and has not been certified since the end of 2021 as a result of COVID.

In the Chaparra district in southern Peru, small-scale gold mining has been going on for decades. In 2011, local miners joined together to form the Minera Cambio S.A. mining cooperative, with the aim of leaving informality behind and using machines to increase their production. During the first years, the cooperative suffered from poor prices and fraudulent business practices of the local middlemen to whom they sold their gold. For this reason, Minera Cambio decided to work with Fairtrade. Since 2020, the mine is now certified and can export its gold directly abroad. To achieve certification, Minera Cambio has already implemented several projects to improve working conditions, including the construction of a new dining hall and the introduction of new technology to reduce the use of mercury in extraction.