As of mid-2023, it cannot be denied that the world has vastly changed from what it was even a decade ago. With the rise of a new generation, a sudden shift in values and artificial intelligence seeping into every facet of our lives, we’re looking at a whole new way of life and a massive gap between what was and what is. This societal change can only be compared to the industrial revolution of the 19th century, and things are just getting started
One may assume that an entity as steeped in tradition as the diamond industry would be unphased by these changes, but that simply isn't the case. From AI to lab-grown diamonds, we’re going to reveal the evolutionary changes that our industry is currently going through and give our readers an idea of what might be coming in the near future.
Demands for Sustainability and Transparency
Every change begins with a generational shift. With diamond sales dwindling from the start of the millennium onward, it was obvious the industry had become unaligned with the modern consumer and changes needed to be made. The new generation wasn’t satisfied with just a luxury product, they wanted more.
With the internet taking households by storm and everything slowly becoming digitalized, products that couldn’t keep up with the advancing tech found themselves being slowly doomed into irrelevance. Diamonds were on this path. To make matters worse, the controversy over conflict gems and Hollywood’s portrayal of the situation in the mainstream media made quite an impact. Modern consumers longed for sustainable products that matched their values, their ideals and the reality they were living in. Diamonds did not match this vision.
What consumers wanted was a story, and background information proving that their gems were ethically sourced. Digitalization was also needed. With the demand for these essentials, the present and the future of our industry began.
AI Meets The Natural Diamond
In the last decade, AI has seeped into almost every facet of our lives to some extent. It was only a matter of time before it made its way into the diamond industry and to the surprise of all, AI has brought diamonds into a brand new and fascinating light. Through traceability and transparency, which engaged consumers with education. Let’s talk about Sarine, the technological leader within the diamond industry and how we’ve used AI to enable the best out of the natural diamond.
Diamond Traceability Made Possible
With AI-powered machines and software across the entire pipeline, diamonds are for the first time completely traceable. From production through manufacturing and all the way to the display case. With each machine that a diamond passes through, data is transferred and stored within the Sarine cloud, which assures that true transparency isn’t just a tune to be sung, but a promise that can be backed up.
For generations, diamond grading would be done manually in a lab and would be a process that could have never been described as fully consistent or accurate. Humans get tired, sick, have bad days and so on. This would often lead to backstock and retailers with flawed orders. A diamond’s journey from mine to the retailer was very frustrating and time-consuming back in those days..
When Sarine founded AI grading eight years ago, it was the start of a revolutionary change down the entire pipeline. Diamond evaluation became an automated process that extended beyond the 4Cs. Furthering the impact, we've introduced AI grading into the manufacturing segment. This makes a diamond's trip from manufacturer to retailer all the more efficient and cost-effective.
Upscale In Retail
With many retailers across the spectrum embracing the phygital shopping experience, it should surprise none that the diamond industry has taken its first steps in doing the same. Slipping away are the days of sterile shops with cold displays. One of our budding sales tools in the retail sector is the Sarine Diamond Journey™. This fully digital, data-based diamond report speaks to the modern consumer by presenting the story of their diamond in a highly engaging manner.
No longer does a customer have to look at their diamond in a mysterious light. The Sarine Diamond Journey reveals their diamond's ethical sourcing at the mine and walks them through the manufacturing process, the grading, and to the store. Most importantly, this traceability tool gives consumers full transparency. One can learn more at our new Diamond Journey Traceability Website.
Lab Grown Diamonds
Over the years, entities across the diamond industry have made impacts and efforts to relate to modern consumers from multiple angles. One of the most talked about topics is the rise of lab-grown diamonds, or LGDs for short.
Despite the old back-and-forth arguments, the statistics have made it clear that they're here to stay. According to the Rough Polished website, retail margins for LGDs are 16% to 40% when compared to natural gems. It's safe to assume that the impact of these lab-grown gems will only continue to grow in the years to come.
So, there we have it. The days of looking at diamonds draped in mystery through a shop window on 5th Avenue are all but slipping away and making room for the digitalized gem. A modern diamond that can be traced, transparent with consumers and be fully ethical. This is the diamond industry of today. An efficient industry that’s more aligned than ever and one taking steps toward sustainable diamonds. The future holds something even more exciting for the world’s most beloved gem.