Fixing the lab-grading mess

Rob Bates

The World Federation of Diamond Bourses president Ernie Blom today put out a much-welcome open letter on diamond grading, which makes a firm statement about what constitutes acceptable behavior as far as choosing grading labs:

“Diamantaires cannot hide behind certificates with the excuse that these goods sell cheaper. There is a common standard of colors and purities, and it is not about price but quality. In blatant cases, the misrepresentation can amount to fraud with criminal consequences, depending on a country’s consumer laws.”

Blom is calling a meeting of industry labs to chart a way forward.

Here is what I would like the WFDB and other industry groups — including the Gemological Institute of America, which needs to stop being silent on this issue — to endorse:

– The GIA color and clarity scale is currently the internationally recognized standard for diamond grading, and all labs should tailor their grading to it. (We’ll leave cut aside for now.)

– The industry should move to have the GIA grading scale officially endorsed by the International Organization for Standardization and CIBJO.

– To help ensure consistency, GIA should provide a set of its official master stones to any diamond lab that requests it.

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Source JCK Online