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Gloucestershire Business News

Pandora switching to lab-made diamonds

The world's biggest jeweller, Pandora, is switching exclusively to laboratory-made diamonds.

Concerns about the environment, sustainability and working practices in the mining industry have led to demand for alternatives to mined diamonds, as reported by the BBC.

Pandora, which has stores in Cheltenham and Gloucester, said the move is part of a bigger sustainability drive.

It also said the lab-made diamonds can be made for a third of what it costs for a mined diamond. In 2020, lab-grown diamond production worldwide increased to between six and seven million carats.

Pandora's diamonds are being made in Britain, and the UK is the first country where they will be sold. The diamonds will be chemically and physically identical to mined diamonds.

The new diamond jewellery will start at £250. Although diamonds have always been a very small proportion of the 100 million pieces Pandora sells worldwide each year, the company believes that will increase due to lower prices.

Last year, a report by Human Rights Watch said that most major jewellery companies "cannot assure consumers that their jewellery is untainted by human rights abuses". It found that Pandora was one of the best performers, and had already taken significant steps towards responsible sourcing.

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