The Lab Grown Diamond Council (LGDC) was launched today in New York with the objective to develop and implement a multi-tiered, international communications program designed to increase the awareness of, knowledge about, and demand for laboratory-grown diamonds. The LGDC was formed by jewelry industry veterans Chris Casey, the former National Jeweler publisher who will serve as president, and Michael Barlerin, who also heads the Silver Promotion Service and will be its chairman.
According to a statement, the LGDC intends to fill the "need for focused, research-based messaging on advocacy, communications and education of the unique offering of lab-grown diamonds," said Michael Barlerin, Chairman of the LGDC. "The LGDC creates the platform to both develop and deliver on these needs." The LGDC is launching a series of new initiatives in support of the LGD market, including research services focusing both on retail performance and consumer attitudes; social media consumer outreach; and the clarification, with third party verification, of industry sustainability. The need for third-party verification of standards of sustainability was imposed by the FTC.
"One of things we want to address is consistent language and vocabulary," Casey told Rob Bates of JCK. "It’s one of the things that we have heard from our advisory group - there are all these different terms, and everyone is saying different things. There are currently a lot of voices. We hope to bring a single voice.” Another voice already representing the laboratory-grown sector is the International Grown Diamond Association, which is more of a lobbying group. Casey told Bates, "What we bring is more of an information and communication perspective.” It is unclear whether they will also get into marketing.