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Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems
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Author:  Barbra Voltaire, FGG [ Thu Apr 11, 2024 11:56 am ]
Post subject:  Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

Lotus Gemology wrote:
The American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) has recently amended its trade rules for lab-grown, man-made, and/or synthetic gems. Starting in 2025, no exhibitors may display synthetic stones at any AGTA show.

This move was made to ensure that there is no confusion for buyers when attending AGTA shows. AGTA dealers are still allowed to sell properly disclosed synthetics outside of the shows.

At Lotus Gemology, we support this commitment to promote clear disclosure and to support the colored gemstone trade.

As part of our own commitment to disclosure, our reports come in three different colors to separate natural, treated, and synthetic gems.


READ FULL ARTICLE HERE which includes Lotus Gemology's pricing for their lab reports. Their prices are beyond reasonable!

Author:  Stephen Challener [ Thu Apr 11, 2024 12:01 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

AGTA has never had many lab gems (aside from Chatham who stopped doing shows st all way back). Many customers like or prefer lab gems and that is a growing trend--AGTA has no influence over that, how they choose to respond is up to them.
That said, I wonder how this affects the Somewhere in the Rainbow collection. Will their displays of artistically cut lab gems also be given the heave ho?

Author:  path914 [ Thu Apr 11, 2024 1:11 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

I wonder how they intend to enforce the new policy and how it will apply to stones such as hydrothermal Amethyst/Citrine that are rarely if ever disclosed.

I saw a rather dramatic article was posted by ISG on the topic, but am not sure if it warrants such a strong reaction. I can't imagine many of the AGTA vendors will be affected by the new policy.

Author:  1bwana1 [ Thu Apr 11, 2024 6:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

On top of all the other issues, I wonder how far behind the identification technology is from the creation technology. We only know what we know. The example of quartz is one example where the cost of detection is not worth the value difference in the stones.

I have a feeling that this may be driven by lab diamonds gaining such a strong presence and acceptance in the market. I have always said that this acceptance will cross over into the colored stone market sooner rather than later. There have been a lot of dealers at AGTA showing Lab Diamonds in recent years. Combine this with the fact that not all lab diamonds are successfully separated from mined stones these days and you can easily see the threat to the industry.

Author:  Barbra Voltaire, FGG [ Sat Apr 13, 2024 4:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

Sidebar. Demand for synthetics.
The colored gemstone demand for synthetics is close to non-existant for retail consumers, in my experience.
But, I can easily attest to the fact that 60%+ of my current diamond appraisals are LG.

Re: synthetic quartz varieties: I'd like to hear Dick Hughes opinion

Author:  Stephen Challener [ Sat Apr 13, 2024 10:01 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

My entire career right now is lab colored stones of various kinds. The interest is definitely there and growing, no doubt boosted by all the coverage and acceptance lab diamonds have gotten. A lot of customers seem to be ready for other, weirder types once they get over the hump with diamonds. But of course being online helps a ton in finding them.

Author:  dchallener [ Sat Apr 13, 2024 10:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

I have noticed in malls that jewelers have lots of synthetic colored stones, and then poor quality natural stones for much more. I have always thought they were trying to get customers to buy the synthetics, where they had more profit.

Author:  1bwana1 [ Sun Apr 14, 2024 11:53 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

Certain lab processes like flux growth methods for growing colored stones produce very nice stones. Combine these types of stones with the right cutting style and you have very convincing gemstones at a reasonable cost.

One of my students just cut a flux grown Emerald in the way I am talking about. He took it down to the local Jewelers Building to be mounted. Everyone there called it as a natural stone including some G.G.s and a well known gem dealer.

I just took a Lab grown Diamond down to the building so I could check it against a variety of detection machines in use by the industry. It passed as natural on all of them except one. That gave conflicting results depending on whether the stone was face up of down. That sort of makes sense because there was a problem with the gas during the growing process. It is CVD grown. This stone also was issued a natural diamond report by one of the best labs in the World. I know it was lab because it was grown in a lab I am a partner in. We have more stones like this. When we get a stone like this we put them in the safe and don't sell them at all. It would easily trade for a high price with the report, but I know the report is in error so would disclose the real origin. Even so, I am guessing that somewhere down the line it would be sold as natural. I am not sure some other dealers would be so cautious in protecting the industry and public from such things. Just too much money in selling them as naturals.

The problems with lab gems is real and is going to get even more real.

This month on Cable television there is a documentary called "Nothing Lasts Forever" that examines the effect the lab grown diamonds are having on the industry. I believe it is on ShowTime, but can probably be seen on one of the pay per view services as well. I recommend watching it. It is well done, and eye opening.

Author:  S. Rautiainen [ Thu May 30, 2024 3:58 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Agta Takes a stand on synthetic gems

Stephen Challener wrote:
My entire career right now is lab colored stones of various kinds. The interest is definitely there and growing, no doubt boosted by all the coverage and acceptance lab diamonds have gotten. A lot of customers seem to be ready for other, weirder types once they get over the hump with diamonds. But of course being online helps a ton in finding them.


I would tend to agree here. I've been getting a varied amount of synthetic and real stones coming through and I've been seeing more interest in the synthetics lately with the acceptance of the diamonds in our area. Even a couple years ago when synthetic diamonds weren't being carried by the "mall jewellery store" we had a larger push for natural stones but now that the synthetic diamonds are being marketed more the coloured stones here have followed.

dchallener wrote:
I have noticed in malls that jewelers have lots of synthetic colored stones, and then poor quality natural stones for much more. I have always thought they were trying to get customers to buy the synthetics, where they had more profit.


I would agree with this as well but here at least it's probably partly also what is available en masse. The jewellery stores in the mall here are all part of the chain jewellery stores (think Zales/Peoples) and they are usually buying for all their stores so I would suspect there is a much larger quantity of stones available at lower quality than higher quality. Synthetics are plentiful and look nice so they would usually show them beside the heavily included naturals. They might carry a branded high quality natural stone line, something like LeVian, but most of their stock is "commercial grade".

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