DPA & Signet Launch As­sure Pro­gramme

The As­sure pro­gramme, a joint col­lab­o­ra­tion by the Di­a­mond Pro­duc­ers As­so­ci­a­tion (DPA) and Signet Jew­el­ers, has de­vel­oped a universal stan­dard to test the per­for­mance of di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments in a con­sis­tent man­ner.

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The As­sure pro­gramme re­cently pub­lished the results from the in­de­pen­dent per­for­mance tests in the As­sure direc­tory on di­a­mond­pro­duc­ers.com/as­sure. Through the As­sure direc­tory, trade par­tic­i­pants can ac­cess ob­jec­tive and third-party-ver­i­fied in­for­ma­tion on the rel­a­tive per­for­mance of di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments and guid­ance on how to en­sure that their busi­ness is pro­tected from undis­closed lab­o­ra­tory-grown di­a­monds.

Jean-Marc Lieber­herr, CEO of the DPA, said “Trade par­tic­i­pants have a shared re­spon­si­bil­ity to dis­close the na­ture of the prod­uct they are sell­ing to pro­tect the end con­sumer. Through the As­sure pro­gramme we will sup­port the di­a­mond trade, from in­de­pen­dent jew­ellery re­tail­ers to large di­a­mond

man­u­fac­tur­ers, to make in­formed de­ci­sions on how to en­sure that undis­closed lab­o­ra­tory-grown di­a­monds do not en­ter their nat­u­ral di­a­mond sup­ply chain. The As­sure test results should be con­sid­ered along guidelines for­mu­lated by the Re­spon­si­ble Jew­ellery Coun­cil (RJC).”

Pramod Agrawal, chair­man of the Gem & Jew­ellery Ex­port Pro­mo­tion Coun­cil (GJEPC), said, “GJEPC has al­ways believed that seg­re­ga­tion of nat­u­ral di­a­monds and syn­thetic/lab­o­ra­tory-grown di­a­monds is of para­mount importance. For this, it is im­por­tant that the in­dus­try is made aware of the var­i­ous ma­chines and their ca­pa­bil­i­ties. This will help in­dus­try par­tic­i­pants to choose the ‘right’ ma­chine for their needs, as the costs vary de­pend­ing on the speed and tech­nol­ogy in­cor­po­rated in the ma­chines. We are happy that the DPA, through the As­sure pro­gramme, has taken an ini­tia­tive in this re­gard. This in­for­ma­tion will go a long way in ef­fec­tive seg­re­ga­tion of di­a­monds, as a cat­e­gory, from syn­thetic di­a­monds, and elim­i­nate confusion and en­hance con­sumer con­fi­dence and trust.”

An­drew Bone, ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor, RJC, said, “We wel­come this ini­tia­tive to sup­port the spread of ef­fec­tive di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion prac­tices across the pipeline. We will con­tinue to sup­port the DPA and the As­sure pro­gramme in their ef­forts to en­hance con­sumer con­fi­dence in the jew­ellery in­dus­try.”

The As­sure pro­gramme part­nered with the 11 man­u­fac­tur­ers, rep­re­sent­ing the 18 most widely avail­able di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments in the mar­ket.

The in­stru­ments sub­mit­ted to As­sure have been tested in ac­cor­dance with the meth­ods and pro­to­cols of the Di­a­mond Ver­i­fi­ca­tion In­stru­ments Stan­dard. The stan­dard was de­vel­oped in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the in­de­pen­dent third-party test agency, UL, and a tech­ni­cal com­mit­tee con­sist­ing of lead­ing sci­en­tists and aca­demics from ma­jor gem­mo­log­i­cal or­gan­i­sa­tions, in­clud­ing the Ge­mo­log­i­cal In­sti­tute of Amer­ica (GIA), Gem­mo­log­i­cal In­sti­tute of In­dia (GII), In­sti­tute of Di­a­mond Grad­ing & Re­search (IIDGR) now known as De Beers Group In­dus­try Ser­vices, Na­tional Gem­stone Test­ing Cen­ter (NGTC), Swiss Gem­mo­log­i­cal In­sti­tute (SSEF), Tech­no­log­i­cal In­sti­tute for Su­per­hard and Novel Car­bon Ma­te­ri­als (TISNCM) and Sci­en­tific and Tech­ni­cal Re­search Cen­tre for Di­a­mond (WTOCD).

The di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments have been tested with the As­sure Core Sam­ple, a highly con­tam­i­nated sam­ple made up of 1,000 nat­u­ral di­a­monds and 200 syn­thetic di­a­monds in­clud­ing very chal­leng­ing syn­thetic di­a­monds, some of which are not yet avail­able

in the mar­ket. When needed, 200 di­a­mond sim­u­lants were added to the sam­ple. The stones sizes ranged from 0.02 carat to 0.20 carat in D-J colour.

The first round of test­ing took place at UL’s lab­o­ra­to­ries in Can­ton, Mas­sachusetts, USA, and the results will con­tin­u­ously be made avail­able in the As­sure direc­tory in the com­ing weeks. There­after, the As­sure direc­tory will be reg­u­larly up­dated as new in­stru­ments are sub­mit­ted to test­ing or re-test­ing, and the set of stones in­cluded in the sam­ple will evolve con­tin­u­ously to in­clude new syn­thetic di­a­monds as they are iden­ti­fied.

David Bouf­fard, vice pres­i­dent cor­po­rate affairs, Signet Jew­el­ers Ltd., said, “The Di­a­mond Ver­i­fi­ca­tion In­stru­ment Stan­dard is a vi­tal ini­tia­tive to pro­vide the di­a­monds and jew­ellery trade with in­de­pen­dent guid­ance about the ca­pa­bil­i­ties of di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments avail­able in the marketplac­e. The As­sure pro­gramme has al­ready proven valu­able for com­pa­nies in our sup­ply chain who op­er­ate at a global scale. We look for­ward to all of our sup­pli­ers im­ple­ment­ing As­sure-cer­ti­fied tech­nol­ogy to help pro­tect the in­tegrity of the global jew­ellery sup­ply chain.”

Wayne Bilodeau, op­er­a­tions direc­tor, UL, said, “UL is proud to part­ner on the As­sure pro­gramme and pro­vide trust­wor­thy and strin­gent test­ing, em­pow­er­ing trust and de­liv­er­ing qual­ity in the di­a­mond sup­ply chain and di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ment in­dus­try.”

De Beers sub­mit­ted four in­stru­ments for test­ing: Di­a­mondSure™, AMS2™, SYNTHde­tect™ and Di­a­mondView™, re­ceiv­ing ex­cel­lent results over­all, and with the SYNTHde­tect, AMS2 and Di­a­mondView be­ing the only tested in­stru­ments to achieve a di­a­mond ac­cu­racy rat­ing above 99%. Three of the ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments gave a 0% false pos­i­tive rate mean­ing no syn­thetic di­a­monds were misiden­ti­fied as nat­u­ral di­a­monds, with the AMS2 record­ing near per­fect results. All of the in­stru­ments ei­ther iden­ti­fied or re­ferred 100% of syn­thetic di­a­monds for fur­ther test­ing. The Di­a­mondView achieved 100% ac­cu­racy and a zero re­fer­ral rate and the AMS2 and SYNTHde­tect in­stru­ments re­ferred less than 0.75% of nat­u­ral di­a­monds for fur­ther test­ing.

Speak­ing about the results, Jonathan Ken­dall, pres­i­dent, De Beers Group In­dus­try Ser­vices, said: “We are thrilled to have re­ceived the results of the As­sure pro­gramme’s in­de­pen­dent test­ing and to have learnt that our di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments per­formed so well. It is of key importance to the di­a­mond in­dus­try that we are able to pro­vide clear guid­ance about the ca­pa­bil­i­ties of di­a­mond de­tec­tion in­stru­ments so that our cus­tomers can have con­fi­dence in the ma­chin­ery, and their abil­ity to de­tect lab-grown di­a­monds.”

HRD An­twerp’s M-Screen+ desk­top fully au­to­mated screen­ing de­vice was tested in ac­cor­dance with the Di­a­mond Ver­i­fi­ca­tion In­stru­ment Stan­dard with the test pro­to­col for in­stru­ments that sep­a­rate di­a­monds from syn­thetic di­a­monds and di­a­mond sim­u­lants.

Michel Janssens, CEO of HRD An­twerp, said, “The As­sure pro­gramme is a pre­cious as­set for di­a­mond traders. They can now fi­nally ac­cess re­li­able in­for­ma­tion con­cern­ing the per­for­mance of di­a­mond ver­i­fi­ca­tion in­stru­ments avail­able on the mar­ket. We are thrilled that the un­de­ni­able and unbeatable speed and ef­fi­ciency of our M-Screen+ have been high­lighted in the pro­gramme, and we look for­ward to prov­ing that we can even do bet­ter with our brand new M-Screen 4.0.”

As­sure cer­ti­fi­ca­tion mark

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