From 2010 to 2014, it was estimated that over 48 million carats of diamonds mined under horrific conditions made their way onto the international diamond market. Ever since the 2006 film Blood Diamond there has been a lot of talk about conflict diamonds and many socially-conscious brides are looking for other options.
If you don’t want to opt for an alternative stone, but you still want to make sure your diamond engagement or wedding ring is conflict-free, then here are some things to consider.
For this post we’ve partnered with MiaDonna & Co. who are an eco-friendly and conflict-free diamond engagement ring company.
Know what you’re looking for
The official definition of a conflict diamond is a “rough diamond mined in an area controlled by insurgent forces whose sale is used to finance anti-government military action.” The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) is one way to try and ensure that the diamond you’re buying is conflict-free, but at MiaDonna they believe that there is still no guarantee that it truly is. KPCS is a scheme with more than 75 member countries and UN approval, that came about as a response to diamond sales financing war efforts in Africa. Countries adhering to KPCS are supposed to meet strict requirements – they must trade diamonds only with each other and use Kimberley Process certificates to export diamonds. Unfortunately, diamond smugglers do not comply with these rules and regulations. This sometimes causes a ‘conflict-free’ label to be placed on conflict diamonds which negates the KPCS’s entire purpose.
At MiaDonna, they feel it is important to define a conflict diamond in a much broader scope, incorporating the protection of the environment as well as the native communities who live in these areas and are often forced to mine for diamonds.
Find an eco-friendly jeweller
MiaDonna & Co. pride themselves on the fact that they do more than simply create beautiful bridal jewellery. They believe conflict-free diamonds should positively impact both the environment and humanity. Each time you make a purchase with MiaDonna, a portion of the proceeds go into empowerment programs that help restore the lives and land in sub-Saharan Africa. They also donate countless hours to develop successful projects through their charity foundation, The Greener Diamond, which helps those who are affected by the unethical diamond mining industry.
When CEO, Anna-Mieke, learned the truth behind her own earth mined diamond engagement ring she became passionate about finding a conflict-free alternative. She soon realised that the only true conflict-free diamond was lab-created. As a result, MiaDonna was born.
Lab-created diamonds (also known as lab-grown diamonds, man-made diamonds, or cultured diamonds) are grown in highly controlled laboratory conditions that simulate the earth’s natural growing process, creating real diamonds that are optically, chemically, and physically identical to earth-mined diamonds.
With recent advances in technology they are now able to grow diamonds that are of higher quality than those sourced from the earth. The best part is, lab-grown diamonds are offered at offered at up to 50% less than an earth-mined equivalent!
MiaDonna’s rings start from just $500 and they are currently running a special offer where you can save 20% on your wedding bands when they order them at at the same time as an engagement ring! The discount is automatically applied at the checkout and you can even try three rings for free at home with their new Home Try On Program.