With news reports that hundreds of undisclosed synthetic diamonds were submitted to gem labs in Antwerp, Mumbai and China. The synthetic diamonds in question were mostly .30 to .70 cts, very good to excellent makes, F to J color and VVS to VS clarity. Internal characteristics of the stones were feathers, pinpoints, and small dark crystals.

Given their similarity to natural inclusions, the labs surmise that the stones were intentionally made to simulate natural diamonds. Synthetic stones may not be distinguished from natural diamonds through standard tools such as microscopes.

In order to protect the reputation of your business -- and consumer confidence in the diamond and jewelry supply chain -- Jewelers of America urges members to take the following due diligence steps:

  • Establish a policy for testing diamonds. This should include all “important” stones as a matter of routine and doing sampling testing (at a minimum) on other stones. Be sure that relevant staff understand this policy and follow it.
  • Provide clear, written communications to your suppliers regarding your policy on purchasing of synthetic diamonds. If you don’t want any under any circumstances, state that. Advise that mixing synthetics into your natural stone purchases will result in cessation of your business, and that non-disclosure is a violation of ethical practices and Federal Trade Commission guidelines. Use JA's Synthetic Diamond Guidance for this >
  • Require suppliers to have and follow a testing plan. They should follow additional due diligence processes to ensure that all synthetic diamonds are segregated from natural diamonds, and fully disclosed if sold to you.
  • Ask that your suppliers communicate these same points to their own suppliers, requiring them to take steps to ensure synthetic diamonds are not sold without full disclosure.
  • If you find that you have inadvertently misrepresented product that was sold, take immediate action with the customer to remedy the situation.
  • Remind your customers that, as a member of Jewelers of America, you sign JA’s Code of Professional Practices on an annual basis and follow its standards. These include fully and accurately disclosing the material characteristics of the products and merchandise you sell. For more information on synthetic diamonds, read JA’s member guidance.
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