The etching is so small—one five-thousandth of a hair—that it can only be seen by using a special microscopic viewing device. The miniscule emblem of Forevermark diamonds—the elite diamond brand from the world’s leading diamond company, De Beers—is inscribed on the table facet of each of its gems with the brand logo and a unique identification number. Because of the proprietary technology used to inscribe it, the diamond-shaped mark can never be altered or duplicated. More important, however, is the integrity behind that symbol.
De Beers laid the groundwork for its Forevermark brand back in 2000, when it became actively involved in establishing a set of guidelines known as the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS). It requires the diamond industry to adhere to a strict system of documentation that guarantees ethical sourcing. (It’s no secret that conflict-free gems are on everybody’s list, and one of the KPCS requirements is documentation that proves diamonds are sourced this way.)
The Forevermark brand—originally launched in 2009 and released in Canada this year—was created in part to showcase De Beers’s top-quality gems. To qualify for branding, a diamond must be cut to the highest standards set by the Forevermark Diamond Institute in Antwerp—the higher the cut grade, the greater the light return, for which it is deemed worth sacrificing some of a diamond’s precious carat weight—and the diamond must be ethically sourced. (The De Beers Group only sells diamonds from its own mines in Botswana, Canada, Namibia, and South Africa, thereby guaranteeing the integrity of all the diamonds it sells.)
As far as their sparkling stats go, Forevermark diamonds must also be scrupulously clean in terms of colour and clarity values, scoring high on those grade scales, and each must be larger than 14 points. The result of this rigorous selection process is that only one per cent of diamonds mined in the world meet Forevermark standards.
Although the Forevermark’s etched code of honour is invisible to the naked eye, it speaks volumes.