In November 2008 , the CIBJO Europe Working Group convened a meeting in Antwerp, to reach agreement on nomenclature for synthetic diamonds. CIBJO Europe is a body that was created by the World Jewellery Confederation in 2007 to promote standard diamond terminology in the European Community. It is strongly supported by a consortium of the major diamond producers, including De Beers, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton.
An agreement was reached in Antwerp regarding the proposal that will be put forward in Europe. Its bottom line is that only three alternative terms should be used to identify synthetic diamonds: “synthetic,” “laboratory-grown” and “laboratory-created.”
But before anyone begins kicking and screaming about the apparent discrepancies between this nomenclature and those used by other organizations, pointing out the differences and suggesting that the proposal may lead to disarray and disaster, I suggest that we keep our cool. I say so simply because we have not yet reached the conclusion of the process.
I trust that once the comments to the proposals that were tabled at the CIBJO Europe Working Group of November 19, 2008, and then were distributed on December 17, 2008, are received and processed, there will be another round of discussions. During these, all participants will be afforded the opportunity of making additional efforts to reach consensus.
And indeed, consensus is the key word here. Nobody in the diamond jewelry supply line will be well served with a nomenclature for synthetic diamonds that will divide instead of uniting and strengthening us. More important still, it should be a nomenclature that is clear and enhance the confidence of the consumer.