I don’t know how I got myself into this mess making a stand against lab-grown diamonds. It isn’t so much the product, but what they represent and how they market themselves that bothers me.
One of my favorite actors, Leonardo DiCaprio, backed a synthetic diamond company, the Diamond Foundry.
DiCaprio is a powerful man. In fact, he fought a bear with his bare hands in one of his most recent flicks, The Revenant.
Now, we all know this is just acting, but it was just as effective as him fighting with a real one. I find it similar to the products companies like these are creating. The stones look very nice, and shine with flare and brilliance, but the diamonds in this lab grown diamond project are made in a furnace out in California.
Lab-grown diamonds aren’t real and they possess no value, just like the bear that attacked DeCaprio.
Virtual reality is very powerful these days. So much so, that it almost makes the real, original version somewhat trivial and unimpressive. The pure hypocrisy of it all drives me insane. Mixing your virtual reality product with cultured diamonds, all while accusing the diamond industry of human rights abuse, child labor, ecological destruction, is simply wrong. How can we, the legitimate diamond companies, sit quietly and listen to all that crap? These people are selling you a valueless substitute for $20,000 or more, and calling themselves responsible and honest? Actually, not just honest, but proud!
"Reducing the environmental toll?" There are a number of countries in Africa who have no income and cannot occupy the people without the mining industries. The land was blessed, and now thousands of people can support their families as a result of working the land. Would it be better to close all mines? To cease digging for Aluminum, Iron Ore, Gold, Platinum, Nickel, and more?
The man-made, lab-grown diamond companies promote ridiculous 'blanket' messages, like these, in the hopes of staining the whole industry: "The diamond industry has long been linked to human-rights abuses, child labor, ecological destruction, untraceable origin, and cartel pricing. We felt it is time to create a better choice."
The illegitimate trade and abuse by the rebel and terrorist groups were most prevalent in areas of Sierra Leone, Angola, Liberia, the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Ivory Coast. But together, the world is fighting back against the terrorism in these areas.
The problem here is these new businesses trying to put the blame of world troubles on the industry as a whole. What makes it worse is they aren't alone. Earlier this year, the following story was published in The Guardian: "Whether it's Mexico's gold or Zimbabwe's diamonds, mining is driven with violence and business is complicit."
Allow me to show you an image of workers at the Botswana Diamond Mine.
I am not saying that abuse and terrorism doesn’t exist, but you can’t simply wipe out a whole trade which also supports hundreds and thousands of people.
Taylor's diamond was mined in Botswana. After their divorce, Taylor auctioned the diamond in 1978 for $5,000,000, which was used to build a hospital in Botswana.
Surat, India, is the diamond capital of the world. There are over a million people who work there within the industry. Will Leonardo DiCaprio employ these millions in his California office in the Diamond Foundry?
Business is good, and it is needed to make the world go round. But why slam on other industries and make numerous false claims just to promote your own product?
Elizabeth Taylor sold her Diamond and later on donated the money she made. Try to imagine what the sale price would have been if it was costume jewelry? Do you think lab grown diamonds will maintain value like a real diamond does? Although engagement rings have only become customary since the early 1900's, diamonds have been used as luxury pieces for centuries. Regardless of who once owned the stone, I don't think a man made piece of jewelry will sell for enough to pay for a hospital in Botswana. When you present a fake diamond to your wife at the 10th wedding anniversary, you might get smashed in the face. You won't be able to build a hospital, but you may need to visit one then.
It is important to understand how they create these stones out in California. DeCaprio wants to replace all these people with his plasma reactors and create a worthless illusion. They claim that they developed a very quick way to hot-forge diamonds under a "Sun on Earth" specialized plasma reactors.
Plasma reactors? How much electricity is used to create a round 2.30 carat Very Good/ Good, SI1, diamond for which they charge over $20,000? You also need to consider how much the reselling value of this plasma reactor diamond is? According to my count, it ain't much.
Here is a 2.83 carat violet diamond unearthed by Rio Tinto. This will be among the hero stones at this year’s Argyle Diamond Tender. This stone is valued to sell for anywhere between 3-5 million.
Akbar Khan writes on Facebook- "Leonardo was protesting against global warming now he burns carbon at 6000 Celsius for 3 weeks to make one fake diamond, whilst melting an iceberg - pure hypocrisy."
They use 'solar power credits' to reduce our carbon footprint to zero.
We don't need solar power credit to mine natural diamonds. But on top of all the false claims, it isn't only the derogatory name they are trying to create. One of the main problems is the prices these lab grown diamonds are being sold for. Is it responsible and honest to sell a man made stone which has no real value for $20,000 US? What happens when the couple wants to resell this so called diamond? The entire 20K is gone. Can they go back to Hollywood and get their money back?
I just got a mail from a Doctor from California who bought an Argyle stone from LEIBISH in 2009. The stone wasn’t made in California, but mined in Australia. He is interested in selling his stone, and would like to sell it with a 50% profit. I didn’t say yes yet, but we will definitely sit down and negotiate.
Diamond with real value! A 0.72 carat Fancy Vivid Purplish Pink SI1, Argyle Diamond
I am looking at another Argyle pink diamond we sold seven years ago. These are stunning beauties, and we would love to own them again.
A 0.50 carat Fancy Intense Purplish Pink, Round shaped diamond with a 1PP Argyle color
A real, earth mined diamond is recognized internationally as a luxury item. These gems are nurtured in nature over a period of millions of years. They aren’t man made product created in the diamond nursery of Mr. Leonardo DiCaprio.
Leibish Polnauer, President and Founder of Leibish & Co. Fancy Color Diamonds