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Panelists Address Diamond Grading Standards

Jul 8, 2015 2:32 PM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... In this video presentation, industry panelists discuss grading reports and standards as well as share opinions on best practices for the industry moving forward. Susan Jacques, the CEO of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), opens the discussion with a comprehensive overview of the organization and its grading process.

Panelists share differing views on what grading reports communicate (or not) to consumers, offer insight into what is legally acceptable  and engage in  a lively discussion about what is taking place at various labs. 

Jacques was joined on the panel by Mahiar Borhanjoo of Venus Jewel International; Jerry Ehrenwald of the International Gemological Institute; Cecilia Gardner of the Jewelers Vigilance Committee; Mark Gershburg of the Gemological Science International; Dries Holvoet of HRD Antwerp; David Lasher of the Diamond Dealers Club of New York; Jason Quick of the American Gem Society Laboratory and Peter Yantzer of American Gem Society Laboratory.
Tags: certification, diamond, GIA, grading, Laboratories, Rapaport News, retail
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Jul 20, 2015 9:53AM    By Lalit Aggarwal
I agree with David Atlas’ comments, posted July 8, 2015, in particular his observation that “automated, accurate and repeatable color and clarity grading [is] now being offered with new technology.” It was unfortunate that the program did not acknowledge that such technology exists. The technology he references is offered by ImaGem, Inc., and its potential applications can be explored at ImaGem has a growing list of industry clients, both domestically and internationally, and has appeared at JCK Las Vegas for the past several years, as well as at other industry gatherings. ImaGem will continue to do its utmost to bring the best and latest technology to the diamond and gem industry, and welcomes inquiries from interested parties. Dr. Lalit Aggarwal, Chairman
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An opportunity missed
Jul 8, 2015 3:51PM    By David Atlas
I was in the live audience for this panel at JCK Las Vegas 2015. The lack of a strong moderator able to control the content allowed the GIA presenter to make an extended dissertation about GIA that had next to nothing to do with the subject we had all come to hear about. What a missed opportunity! All these great people on the panel and some of the best and brightest concerned folks in the audience, yet the program was high jacked by the first presenter and no one did anything about it. Poor planning, to say the least. It isn’t as if the entire trade didn’t know about labs misusing GIA standards for many years. This topic is a hot one now, but is long overdue. In spite of automated, accurate and repeatable color and clarity grading now being offered with new technology, the panel generally chose to ignore the possibility and still claim that no one yet offers this. For the most part, this is like ostrich putting its head into a hole in the ground sure that it will be invisible to its enemies. It would be humorous if it were not equally sad. The trade appears still firmly resistant to a system with very much less subjectivity. Why? The system is decentralized yet totally connected and supervised in one central facility, and will give the same results in any location it is installed in. It can reduce the workforce necessary to do the grading and the fee structure for diamond grading will be pressured to become lower and more competitive. While few labs will want to compete in this way, the trade might prefer to save money on grading, and it is likely that consumers would much prefer a less subjective grading strategy. In time, we will see such changes in spite of the missteps.
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