Lab-grown diamond industry is seemingly on a phenomenal rise. Russia’s New Diamond Technology LLC recently crossed the 10-carat milestone by growing an IGI certified 10.02 carat Type IIa Lab-grown diamond. Now Scio Diamond Technology, a major lab-grown diamond producer, is selling its stones at Helzberg Diamonds – 4th largest jewelry retailer in US. Similarly, several jewelry retailers worldwide are stocking up and selling Lab-grown diamonds.
Scio Diamond grows diamond roughs in the range of 3-5 carat and has collaborated with Renaissance Diamonds Inc. who processes (cuts and polishes) those roughs into finished diamonds. These diamonds, available in 0.5 carat to 2+ carat sizes are sold to jewelry retailers through a Joint Venture (JV) – Renaissance Created Diamonds.
By a national marketing program, Helzberg Diamonds is testing the demand and sales of Lab-grown diamonds in its 10 stores. However, Helzberg is not the only one adjusting to the shifting consumer taste and demand. Sam’s Club is also selling various Lab-grown diamonds on its website. Several other reputed retailers/ brands including Brilliant Earth, Mia Donna, Robbins Brothers, Rebel Chique Diamonds (by Royal Asscher) et al are already selling Lab-grown diamonds.
Though the price-effective, eco-conscious choice offering remains the primary reason for jewelry retailers selling Lab-grown diamonds, pressure on retail margins has also influenced this adoption. As per New York based Natural Colored Diamond Association (NCDIA), colored diamonds are the highest growth segment in jewelry industry. The fact that Lab-grown diamonds are 30-70% cheaper than their mined counterparts and more so in the colored diamonds segment, helps ease the margin pressure on retailers.
With more awareness, Lab-grown diamonds is now catching the fancy of many people who are now turning away from environmentally damaging, socially detrimental and sometimes ‘conflict’ mined diamonds to a sustainable, eco-friendly and socially responsible choice of Lab-grown diamonds. Besides, unlike the exorbitantly expensive mined diamonds, cheaper prices of Lab-grown diamonds have allowed the sparkle in the reach of several consumers.
As natural economics principle in a Laissez Faire system, jewelry retailers are now gearing up to supply and sell what the market is demanding – Lab-grown diamonds. However, mined diamonds producers are still to come to terms to this fundamental shift in the industry and are trying their best to sabotage the growth of Lab-grown diamonds.