The diamond and jewelry industry needs to respond to lab-grown diamonds in a way that will differentiate the natural product. While the industry is set to debate the challenges presented by lab-grown diamonds in the coming weeks, it should accentuate the underlying value of natural diamonds as a means of fending off rising consumer interest in lab-grown goods.
While lab-grown – or so-called synthetic – diamonds may be a more affordable alternative, natural diamonds represent the opportunity to express the diamond dream – the idea that real diamonds symbolize real love.
The upcoming seminars separately hosted by the World Jewellery Confederation (CIBJO) in Moscow, the Accredited Gemologists Association (AGA) in Las Vegas and the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) in Antwerp, ought to brainstorm around that idea. These organizations should be credited for putting the issue on the agenda to gain a better understanding of the market for synthetic diamonds.
“Natural diamonds represent the opportunity to express the diamond dream – the idea that real diamonds symbolize real love.”
It’s important to stress that lab-grown diamonds are a legitimate product. While they received bad [trade] press recently for undisclosed synthetics being mixed in parcels of natural – mainly melee – small diamonds, fully disclosed lab-grown diamonds do have a place in the market. In fact, producers and distributors of lab-grown diamonds are encouraging disclosure as much as those in the natural diamond market.
They too need to differentiate their product in order to enable their multi-layered marketing appeal. Thierry Silber, CEO of Diamaz International, an Antwerp-based distributor of lab-grown diamonds, outlined a number of talking points used when marketing these goods.
To begin with, he stresses that a lab-grown diamond is a diamond that is certified — with the only difference to a natural one being its point of origin. Indeed, it has been well documented that they are created from the same material and are produced under simulated conditions that mimic the creation of mined diamonds.