France is the first country to ban the term ‘CULTIVATED DIAMOND’


France is the first country in the world to decide that the name ‘Diamond’ can only be used for a naturally formed gemstone.

Any synthetic imitation such as “Lab-Grown-Diamonds” and/or any artificial imitations must be use the name SYNTHETIC OR OTHERWISE.

This way the consumer is better protected.

Hopefully the rest of the world will soon follow.


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The semantic dispute about what to call diamonds seems to be nearing its end. The industry is hoping a solution has been found, after the French government’s recent ruling on the matter. In France at least, the terms ‘laboratory diamond’ and ‘cultivated diamond’ (diamant de culture) are no longer acceptable, and the only designation that the industry will be able to use for a man-made/lab-grown diamond will be ‘synthetic’ diamond.

Back in 2002, France passed a law stipulating that the word ‘diamond’ can only be used to identify a natural diamond, and that French retailers are obliged to use the ‘synthetic’ designation to describe stones that are “entirely or partly man-made.” Also, the term ‘laboratory diamond’ could only be used outside France.

Following a request by a company active in the synthetic diamonds field, France’s Directorate-General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Prevention of Fraud (DGCCRF) launched a consultation a few months ago, to decide whether the law should be revised. At the end of 2023, the Ministry for the economy, finance and industrial and digital sovereignty issued a ruling confirming that the decree of January 14 2002 remains valid.

“International laws and national regulations regarding the commercialisation of these gems are in place, and they must be respected,” said in a press release Collectif Diamant, the French body that represents the industry’s leading players and associations. The industry is extremely careful in this respect, and firmly set on protecting the reputation of ‘natural’, authentic diamonds, as opposed to synthetic ones, a term that is regarded as pejorative compared to ‘laboratory diamond’.

This semantic war is crucial for diamond producers, which are facing stiffer competition within the jewellery sector owing to the increasingly widespread use of lab-produced synthetic diamonds, that are also touted as being more sustainable. Even some top luxury names have started featuring them, like LVMH-owned jewellery brand Fred, which presented its first synthetic diamonds last September.