Monday, May 20, 2024
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AGTA Takes Firm Stance Against Lab-Grown Gemstones at Trade Shows

In a recent declaration issued on Tuesday, the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) has announced its decision to bar exhibitors from showcasing loose lab-grown stones or any jewelry containing them at its trade shows. This measure aims to tackle potential market confusion, particularly in light of the growing presence of lab-grown diamonds.

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Emphasizing its dedication to transparency within the industry, AGTA has stated that while dealers are permitted to sell synthetic gems, they must be explicitly disclosed. However, in a bid to ensure absolute clarity and confidence for buyers, attendees of AGTA GemFair can now anticipate encountering exclusively natural gems up for sale.

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Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, AGTA holds a distinguished reputation as the foremost authority on natural colored gemstones. Its trade shows, notably the annual Tucson fair in February and another significant event in Las Vegas during late May and early June, serve as pivotal gatherings for stakeholders within the colored gemstone industry, drawing thousands of buyers and exhibitors alike.

Kimberly Collins, President of the AGTA Board of Directors, emphasized the organization’s unwavering commitment to providing superior, rare, and naturally sourced gems straight from the earth. She underscored the inherent value and natural allure found in mined gems, asserting that synthetic gemstones lack these distinctive qualities.

AGTA’s decision aligns with its foundational principles, which were established in 1981 to represent wholesale dealers of natural gemstones, cultured pearls, and natural pearls. CEO John Ford reiterated that the board’s resolution remains steadfastly in line with AGTA’s core mission.

Additionally, AGTA acknowledged the Gemological Institute of America’s (GIA) definition of synthetic gems as materials sharing identical chemical composition, crystal structure, and optical and physical properties with natural gem materials. However, AGTA clarified that synthetic gems do not meet the criteria of minerals as defined by the British Geological Survey and the US Geological Survey, both of which require a natural origin.

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