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Industry Battles Over One Particular Word in Synthetic Diamond Advertising

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The Federal Trade Commission will soon settle the debate.

Currently, synthetic diamonds must be labeled either “lab-grown” or “lab-created” in advertising, though marketers say they should be able to use the word “cultured” instead – something that sellers of natural diamonds oppose, as the Minneapolis StarTribune explains.

Cecilia Gardner, CEO of the Jeweler Vigilance Committee, summed up that opposition to the news outlet. "The phrase ‘cultured’ usually refers to pearls, not diamonds. The JVC has taken the position that the word ‘cultured’ should only be used to describe pearls and nothing else."

The article says the issue is getting more attention with the looming June 3 deadline for submitting comments to the Federal Trade Commission on proposed changes to the jewelry guides, which explain to businesses how to avoid making deceptive claims, including what types of disclosures are needed. "You want to make sure it’s a level playing field, so that when jewelry sellers are describing their items they use similar terminology," John Henne, owner of Henne Jewelers in Pittsburgh, said of the jewelry guides. "This avoids confusion for the consumer. There are ways people can talk around things and lead someone to believe something is better than it is."

Read more at the Star Tribune

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