Diamonds: how rare are they?

Diamonds have a unique and prominent place in the jewelry. Diamonds add to the glitter and glamour of any red carpet event. For years they have acted as a symbol of love and commitment. Diamonds are expensive, invaluable and rare so people think that diamonds are the only suitable stones for expression of love.

How rare are they? When diamonds were first found in mines, people realized they were unlike any other substance found on earth. Diamonds were found rarely in riverbeds and hence became a prestigious symbol worthy of kings and nobility. With advent of latest mining techniques, diamonds are not such a rare commodity anymore. Worldwide production of rough diamonds in 2013 is estimated to be 130 million carats.

Why are they considered so rare? Part of it is marketing hype. The world production is controlled by handful of miners. De Beers, which is the largest producer of mined diamonds, controls who buys diamonds from them, for what purpose and how much they buy every year. Hence the supply is rigidly controlled. The charm of buying, owning or gifting diamonds is the price and rarity of the stone. Little do the buyers know that they are paying steep prices for their symbol of love not because the stones are rare but because a marketing team creates this impression.

Do we have to spend so much? Along with the supply, the prices are controlled as well. So before you spend your hard earned money on a material object, think if you have any alternatives available. Also spare a thought to the havoc that mining brings on the eco-system. Express your love the eco friendly way. 

Source: Nikhil Gilbert, ‘Diamonds are Forever’,


  1. Though I love diamonds and would like to place my hands on them (planning to have my first purchase), I definitely agree here that most of it is just marketing gimmicks that have been thoughtfully orchestrated since past so many decades by companies like De Beers, who will do everything to increase the prices and ensure that the sparkle remains in hands of few.

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