The Gemological Institute of America (GIA), which is well known in the jewelry industry for being the top grade for diamond and precious gemstone reports, is taking all of its reports digital by 2025. GIA noted that by taking their reports digital, they will save annually 20 tons of paper and 18.5 tons of plastic.
In a video announcement, GIA asked what viewers see while showing various videos of some of the most beautiful places on earth.
“We see the world’s greatest treasures. Since 1931, we’ve protected consumers with our trusted research, standards, and reports. Now we want to protect the very planet that offers us the treasures we love.”
The company is starting by taking its Diamond Dossier, its most popular report, fully digital in 2023. The dossier presents a detailed report of the characteristics of a diamond. These lab reports are signed by GIA gemologists and are issued for diamonds weighing less than one carat.
JCK Online shared more details as to how the new process will work. Instead of a paper report, graded diamonds will include a QR code in which the owners of that gemstone can scan the code, enter the inscription number into the GIA’s online report check and access the report. Once a user scans the QR code, the digital grading reports will be available in the new app that GIA is launching. In addition to this, the reports can be stored in the diamond owner’s Apple Wallet.
The new app will also include an interactive guide to the 4Cs of gemology as well as GIA articles and videos. The 4Cs refer to the 4Cs of diamond quality, which are color, clarity, cut, and carat weight. Looking at these is the universal method for assessing the quality of any diamond.
GIA’s senior vice president and chief operating officer, Pritesh Patel, noted that this is a big change. Patel told JCK Online that GIA has been in constant communication with retailers around the world. In fact, many retailers have been wanting GIA to go digital for quite some time.
“I’m sure there are some who will still want paper reports, but the majority are ready for this.”
In addition to the new app, GIA is allowing its customers to convert their old paper reports to the new digital format. GIA’s new service, Match iD, will use artificial intelligence to match the inscribed diamonds with their digital GIA grading reports. This will also prevent the sale of diamonds with mismatch reports. Regarding the AI technology, Patel said:
“Our AI technology will be able to identify counterfeit inscriptions. It can see if any alterations have happened. So even if someone cuts the diamond to the same specifications [as the original graded diamond]when the machine takes the image, our AI is smart enough to know that it is not the same diamond.”
Patel added that going completely digital offers GIA “a great sustainability story.” He added that alongside the saving of 20 tons of paper and 18.5 tons of plastic each year, going digital will also reduce transportation-related carbon emissions.
Gemology itself isn’t a normal topic for CleanTechnica, but it is something that I am interested in and I follow GIA and several other gemology institutes closely. Unfortunately, gems and minerals are gained at a high cost to our planet. However, there are companies out there dedicated to creating the diamond experience without the high environmental costs.
Lab-created diamonds are often scorned by the gem snobs as being not “real” even though they have the exact chemical formulas as naturally occurring minerals cut into gems. However, lab-grown gems are better for the environment than minerals that are mined and later cut into gemstones. One such company, Aether, is actually using the air itself to create diamonds — by using carbon extracted from the atmosphere.
That aside, I think it’s a good thing that GIA is taking critical steps to reduce paper and plastic waste. On Friday, JCK Online will host Unfolding the Digital Future of GIA Reports at JCK Las Vegas. Here, GIA Senior Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer Mark Buntz and GIA Senior Vice President & Chief Operating Officer Pritesh Patel will discuss more details about the new reports. Hopefully they will livestream it or share the video. I would love to learn more about how GIA plans to reduce waste and other strategies they are taking to help protect the environment.
Featured photo: screenshot taken from GIA’s video.
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