The challenge of ethical standards in the diamond industry

Marianne Riou

Dear readers

Over the past two weeks, we have gradually begun to understand how the global crisis and the war in Ukraine will impact the diamond industry.

First, ‘tongues started wagging’ and then everyone took a stance.

The situation at the RJC is sending a strong signal to our industry. It is neither black and white nor simple. The issue of sourcing diamonds, especially Russian diamonds is crucial. We have yet to come up with a clear definition for conflict diamonds, and now we have to start understanding the issues surrounding Russian diamonds!

For the major groups, who are strong, financially secure and can take a firm stance, the crisis will be bearable. For the smaller companies in the sector, the stakes are high and they will find it much more difficult to make a commitment.

But the reputational crisis that we will certainly face if we don’t get to grips with the Russian diamond issue will be very damaging to our industry, given that it still suffers from a fragile public image.

Let’s look at it as a core challenge for the future: we need to assess, improve and go beyond our ethical standards!

Are they fit for purpose? Where can we find the inspiration to challenge them? Who will be capable of supporting us?

We ought to find the answers in other industries with similar problems… By showing imagination and openness! By looking at existing statutes. By going through the limits of certification tools with a fine-tooth comb, by questioning traceability solutions in the light of the current crisis, by tackling the melee issue head-on, by asking ourselves how to communicate and explain our limits to consumers. By prioritizing. By continuing to build on the UN’s SDGs…

The articles in this Lettre, as well as the many others published on our website, offer some answers to these questions along with some avenues to research and make progress.

And, to conclude on a lighter note, we wanted to repost the article by Melissa Rose Bernardo, from JCK Online, which unveils the most beautiful diamond jewelry and sets of the 2022 Oscars.

Let’s continue to be filled with wonder and to dream!

Happy reading and enjoy your week.

Source Rubel & Ménasché