GIA no-longer uses the term 'synthetic' on their grading reports

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) has had a bit of a rethink concerning its grading reports of diamonds grown in a laboratory. Actually, in this instance, it is more of a reword. From July 2019, the old “GIA Synthetic Diamond Grading Report” will be replaced with the new and improved “GIA Laboratory-Grown Diamond Report.” Spot the difference? This change now conforms to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) guidelines.

Swapping “synthetic” for “laboratory-grown” is not just confined to the headline either. “Synthetic” will no longer feature inside GIA reports. A minor change, some might say. It might be considered minor with regards to synthetic being a nine-letter word but it is a major change when addressing the problem of “synthetic” used in marketing terms to communicate a negative message. On these occasions, it implies or hints at an “inferior” product or not a “real” diamond. These implications can be misleading and confusing to customers, which is exactly why the FTC made the changes to its Jewelry Guides in the first place.

On the other hand, “lab-grown diamond” or a diamond “grown in a laboratory” is a transparent term and a straightforward description. You know exactly what it is about and where it has come from. There is traceability from start to finish.

The rewording of the GIA reports is great news for the makers and creators of lab-grown diamonds. It cuts through confusion and eliminates mixed messages, especially when someone questions if a lab-grown diamond is “real”, as in real like a mined diamond. 

GIA CEO Susan Jacques comments “With the increased availability of man-made diamonds in commercial qualities, sizes and quantities, and with greater consumer awareness of and desire to this product, GIA is making these changes to align with the revised FTC (Federal Trade Commission) guides and changes in the market”.