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The Diamond High Council (HRD)

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HRD is a non-profit organization at the service of the Belgian diamond trade and industry.  The HRD not only acts as the representative and mouthpiece of the diamond sector, the various departments also offer the diamond community a wide range of services.

One of these is the HRD Certificates Department, founded in 1976 to meet the growing demand for reliable diamond certificates.

At that time, a large number of diamond laboratories existed. Concerning nomenclature and grading methods, confusion reigned, which made it very difficult for the consumer and even for the professional diamond dealer to judge the value and meaning of a certificate.

The official opening of the Certificate Department was preceded by extensive research. Already in 1972, a study of polished diamonds was set up in cooperation with the Antwerp University (Rijksuniversitair Centrum Antwerpen, RUCA).

The HRD was not the only organization to realize the importance of good quality descriptions being available.

The World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) and the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA) also felt that a clear and well-founded system for grading polished diamonds was urgently needed.

In 1975, WFDB and IDMA appointed a Joint Committee to create an international standard for rules, working methods and nomenclature.

The results of the study made in Antwerp and, starting from 1976, the practical experience of the HRD Certificates Department, significantly contributed to the work of the Committee. In this way, a comprehensive system of rules and methods was built up, combining the practical experience of professional diamond people with scientific facts and figures.

The Joint Committee later changed its name to the International Diamond Council (IDC). In 1978, the IDC presented the result of all these efforts at the world congress of WFDB and IDMA: the International Rules for Grading Polished Diamonds.

The system was unanimously accepted, and since then the HRD Certificates Department is working according to these IDC Rules. In the following years, the system was adopted by other major diamond labs.

The HRD Certificates Laboratory has, since its foundation in 1976, grown into one of the largest diamond certification labs in the world.


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