Pandora, which makes more jewelry than any other jeweler in the world, takes an ethical stand against mined diamonds and only uses those made in laboratories.
Pandora A / S, which makes more jewelry than any other company in the world, will no longer use mined diamonds, dropping another raw material tainted with ethical concerns.
The affordable trinket maker will now use lab-made diamonds, after announcing last year that it would stop using newly mined gold and silver. While mined diamonds only entered around 50,000 Pandora pieces last year – out of a total of around 85 million items – the movement reflects a greater demand for durability.
Copenhagen-based Pandora said on Tuesday it will release its first collection from UK lab-made stones and look to other markets in 2022.
“For millennials in particular, awareness of what a lab-created diamond is is significantly higher than with the older generation, so it’s also a matter of education,” said the CEO of Pandora, Alexander Lacik, in a telephone interview. “They are more concerned with the sustainability aspects.”
Despite decades of reform, the jewelry market continues to be hampered by reports of human rights violations in mines and factories. To address these concerns, Tiffany & Co. last year began providing customers with details of newly purchased and individually registered diamonds that trace a stone’s path to the mine. Retailers and manufacturers of lab-grown diamonds have proliferated in recent years, offering durable stones that are also more affordable than the mined type.
Global diamond sales fell 15% in 2020 due to lockdowns, travel restrictions and economic uncertainty, according to a research report from the Antwerp World Diamond Center and Bain & Co. dropped by 20% in 2020 and prices by 11%.
Diamond sales and prices have rebounded this year, with De Beers having sold more than $ 1.6 billion in rough diamonds, the most since 2018 for around two-thirds of global demand.
Diamonds produced in Pandora’s lab are produced from carbon with over 60% renewable energy on average, a ratio that is expected to increase to 100% next year.
Increasing Bling Segment
Pandora’s pledge last year to stop relying on newly mined gold and silver in her jewelry means all of her production will use only recycled precious metals by 2025, as part of a plan to make operations carbon neutral within four years.
The Bain report shows that the market for lab-created stones is growing at double digits, with younger customers in particular keen to identify sustainable producers. He also found that sustainability, transparency and social welfare “are priority issues” for consumers and investors.
It’s not just customers who are increasingly focusing on sustainability. Nordea’s asset management unit recently stated that it plans to hold only securities that comply with environmental, social and governance standards in all of its portfolios.
Pandora also highlighted the price as a consideration behind its decision. Lab-made stones cost around a third of the stones mined and the change will make diamond jewelry accessible to more consumers, he said.
“We’ve done a lot of research around the world to make sure this proposition can really land with our existing customer base,” Lacik said. “They really like the fact that we make diamonds accessible to them.”
Lab-made diamonds will have the same physical characteristics as mined stones, Pandora said. The new collection will include rings, bracelets, necklaces and earrings, he said.
Pandora’s emphasis on sustainable production methods has coincided with a considerable growth in its market value. In the past year alone, the company’s shareholders have seen the value of their investment triple. And this week, Pandora raised its profit forecast to reflect faster-than-expected sales growth.
Shares of the Danish company climbed as high as 7% and trade rose 5.6% at 12:03 p.m. in Copenhagen.
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–With help from Kim Bhasin and Thomas Biesheuvel.