In the wake of the July 28 Today show segment on lead glass–filled rubies, the New York Gemstone Association says the industry needs to develop a plan to deal with misrepresentation of the product.
“GIA now calls this material a ‘manufactured product’ and AGL uses the terminology ‘composite,’” said a statement from the group, which represents more than 45 gemstone dealers in the New York City area. “Lead glass–filled ruby is unstable and if subjected to ultrasonic cleaning either at home or unwittingly by a jewelry store it may badly discolor or even fall apart.”
The statement says continued misrepresentation of the product “threatens demand for rubies and jewelry in general.”
“All retailers, wholesalers, and gemstone dealers [must] clearly disclose at every level leading to the consumer all treatments and enhancements of their products,” the association said. “Consumer confidence is a foundation of our economic health, and if that is shaken by misrepresentation it may affect the entire jewelry industry.”