The need to create and keep consumer confidence is something of a buzzword in the gem and jewellery industry. Today, with small, lab-grown diamonds being mixed undisclosed with parcels of natural rough, there is a heightened sense of urgency in the quest for consumer assurance measures. After all, it takes one single stone set in a piece of jewellery to be discovered at a later date to be lab-grown and consumer confidence in our entire industry will come crashing down on our heads.
The recent banning of the dealing in synthetic diamonds on the floor of the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) and anywhere on the premises of the Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) is a natural outcome of the heightened worry. I understand where the decision-makers in both these bourses are coming from.
Unfortunately, I think it’s not necessarily the right approach. For its own safety, the global diamond industry should ensure that the trading of synthetics stays within the established systems that govern and regulate the trade of all diamonds and gemstones. Synthetics are a legitimate product and should be given a legitimate channel to move through the processing pipeline. The question I have for those who support the ban is, when in history, has a ban ever kept the bad guys from doing wrong?