One of the world’s largest Jeweller companies is switching from mined diamonds to more environmentally friendly lab-grown diamonds. This week, Pandora CEO Alexander Lacik announced that the company would stop selling mined diamonds because it was “the right thing to do.” Even though diamond sales account for a small portion of the company’s annual sales of 100 million items, Lacik claims that with the lower price point, more people will purchase diamonds.
He told BBC, “We can essentially create the same outcome as nature has created, but at a very, very different price.” The Copenhagen-based company plans to launch its first range of lab-created stones in the United Kingdom first, before expanding to other markets in 2022. The change from mined to lab-grown diamonds represents a cultural shift in which customers increasingly want to know where their goods are made.
Diamond mining has long been recognised as a troublesome industry with convoluted supply chains that make tracing the source of retail diamonds difficult to impossible, resulting in conflict diamonds entering the market. Tiffany & Co., a luxury Jeweller store, led the industry’s transparency charge in 2019, announcing that it will begin sharing the provenance of its diamonds with customers.
The Diamond Source Initiative traces each of its “individually registered diamonds (0.18 carats and larger) by a unique ‘T&Co’ serial number engraved by laser and invisible to the naked eye, and provides customers with geographic sourcing details related to their diamond,” according to the company. The aim is to make sure that all of their diamonds are “among the world’s most responsibly sourced.”