Dimexon joins the debate on ethical sourcing at the UK Jewellery Festival 2022 to share why we believe full traceability is achievable.
Earlier this year, Christopher Bull, head of Dimexon’s European division, was invited to take part in a talk at the UK Jewellery Festival. It was titled The Changing Face of Diamonds - From the question of provenance to the rise of laboratory-grown: What retailers really need to know. Christopher spoke alongside Maiko Eaton, UK sales manager for GreenRocks, and Tobias Kormind, managing director of 77Diamonds. The session was moderated by jewellery journalist Rachael Taylor.
The group discussed and debated what new challenges, such as Russian sanctions and the growth of the lab-grown diamond sector, might mean for the jewellery industry.
One of the most pressing problems for the diamond industry is the conflict in Ukraine, and the resulting sanctions and moral outcry. Before the war, Russian rough diamonds accounted for about 30% of global supply. “After discussions internally and with our client base, we decided to stop all inputs of Russian diamonds,” said Christopher, sharing Dimexon’s reaction to the conflict. “Post-sanctions, we have bought no Russian diamonds, and any Russian polish that was in the system was slowly worked out [over] the last few months. And we now run a totally non-Russian supply chain.”
This issue has once again brought into focus the need for transparency in the business, something that Christopher argued at the talk, is much easier than consumers are led to believe. “It's not difficult to track diamonds. I think people exaggerate the fact that origins are not possible in the diamond industry,” Christopher commented. “If consumers ask retailers and retailers ask their suppliers, the whole process moves forward faster.”
Transparency was perhaps the most prevalent subject of the talk, with it also being cited as one of the most important parts of sustainability strategy. At Dimexon, we have been working hard behind the scenes for decades to improve our own sustainability and ethical credentials. This year, we released our first ESG report, Diamonds with Purpose. With a view to building on the transparent and open relationships we have with our clients, this report is free for all to read and we hope it inspires others in the industry on their own journies to sustainable luxury.
There was also discussion around lab-grown diamonds versus natural diamonds at the talk, and whether there is space for the two to coexist. The panel discussed how, although both have pros and cons in terms of value and investment, natural diamonds will forever be the luxury industry’s choice. Whilst there is a lot of conversation around the ethics of lab-grown diamonds, not all lab-grown diamonds have matching ethical credentials, making it important for businesses and consumers to research suppliers. At Dimexon, our natural diamonds are fully traceable and conflict-free.
As Christopher put it so eloquently at the UK Jewellery Festival panel: “We’re headed into a rough period now [and] storm clouds are gathering, but at the end of the day, we’ve got a beautiful product. As long as we can keep producing beautiful jewellery and doing it honestly, and we keep pushing transparency, there’s no going back.”