Is the future of retail being cooked up in a lab?
Pandora announced yesterday the launch of its first collection of diamond jewelry made exclusively with diamonds created in a lab.
The company, which is primarily known for its bracelets and sold 50 million diamonds last year, said that the new Pandora Brilliance line is its first step to phasing out the use of mined diamonds in its products. Pandora will launch the new line in the UK this summer before rolling it out globally next year.
The goal, according to the company, is to make jewelry more accessible to the public with pieces that are both affordable and sustainably produced.
Alexander Lacik, Pandora CEO, called the new line “as much a symbol of innovation and progress as they are of enduring beauty and stand as a testament to our ongoing and ambitious sustainability agenda.”
CNBC, citing a Bain & Company as its source, reports that the price of diamonds grown in laboratories has fallen over the past two years and that they “are now up to 10 times cheaper” than those mined from the earth.
Sales of jewelry with lab-grown diamonds has grown significantly and quality is said to be equal to those of mined gems.
The products are also more environmentally friendly. Pandora says its new line has received a CarbonNeutral product certification in accordance with The CarbonNeutral Protocol.
Jewelry is not the only category that may be changed as a result of lab-grown products. A similar scenario may play out with meat products. A restaurant in Singapore became the first in the world to serve lab-grown chicken to patrons. The introduction of the chicken, made by Eat Just, a U.S. startup, marked the first time that a government anywhere in the world gave its approval for the sale of such products.
Eat Just co-founder and CEO Josh Tetrick called the sale a “historic step” that moved the world closer to the point “where the majority of meat we eat will not require tearing down a single forest, displacing a single animal’s habitat or using a single drop of antibiotics.”
CNBC, citing a Blue Horizon Corp. forecast, reports that sales of lab-grown meat is expected to grow to $140 billion by 2030.
Eat Just is not the only company pursuing lab-grown meat. Memphis Meats, a company backed by food giants Cargill and Tyson Foods, has raised nearly $350 million in funding in recent years to develop meat grown from the cells of livestock in its facilities.
- Pandora launches lab-created diamond collection – Pandora Inc.
- Jewelry maker Pandora will stop selling mined diamonds, focus on lab-grown ones – CNBC
- Eat Just Follows Regulatory Approval With Historic, First-Ever Sale of Cultured Meat – Eat Just/Business Wire
- Plant-based food start-up Eat Just receives $200 million investment led by Qatar – CNBC
- Move over plant-based meat, lab-grown meat is coming – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: How likely is the emergence of lab-grown products to disrupt the consumer brand and retailing industries over the next decade? Are there broader implications for businesses and society?