Gemological challenges of today and the future will be addressed by internationally recognized gem researchers at the Accredited Gemologists Association (AGA) annual conference, Wednesday, February 6, 2019 in Tucson, AZ. The conference will be followed by the presentation of the Antonio C. Bonanno Award for Excellence in Gemology at the evening Gala.
Gemstone Paternity Test
The cutting-edge technology behind gemstone traceability will be explained by Daniel Nyfeler, Managing Director of Gübelin Laboratory, Switzerland. Nyfeler will share the lab’s program to identify the history of gem materials combining DNA tagging and blockchain accountability. Initiated with emeralds in partnership with Gemfields, the “Provenance Proof Initiative” brings the discussion of industry transparency to the forefront.
Newest Emerald Source
Jeffrey Bergman, founder and director of Primagem, Thailand will report on the state of the emerging Ethiopian emerald production. Bergman is a key participant in this market and will discuss deposits, qualities, identifying characteristics, treatments and projections for future production and their distribution channels.
Pearls of the New World and Beyond
Gina Latendresse, Tennessee, grew up in the American freshwater pearl business and is now one of the world’s leading authorities on U.S. as well as exotic natural pearls. She will trace the origins of a market that captivated Europe hundreds of years ago and continues to be a vibrant industry niche as well as supply for nucleus material to the Tahitian pearl market. Attributes of other natural pearls, including conch, Baja, Melo and Quahog will be examined as well as some telltale signs of when a pearl was cultured.
An In-depth Look at Tourmaline
A complex group with stunning color variation and marketing possibilities will be explored by Dr. Claudio Milisenda, Managing Director of the German Foundation for Gemological Research (DSFF), Germany. Dr. Milisenda will cover the varieties and qualities of tourmaline at market, discuss origin factors and treatments now encountered in the laboratory.
Workshops are back
Two workshops will be available as well as the main room presentation by Dr. Çigdem Lüle on gem treatments and their influence on the market. Dr. Lüle, founder of Kybele, Inc., specializing in gemological research and training was the 2016 Bonanno Award recipient. In addition, Gem-A will be conducting a small-group workshop on lab instrumentation (to be announced) and Gary Smith, forensic gemologist and master goldsmith will conduct a workshop on metal identification, sharing some of the current deceptions encountered in the trade.
The AGA also intends to examine the latest revisions to the Federal Trade Commission’s guides on jewelry and gemstones.
Conference registration includes continental breakfast, light lunch and the AGA Annual Dinner Gala featuring great networking opportunities, live band, dance floor and the presentation of the AGA Antonio C. Bonanno Award for Excellence in Gemology.
Registration and other information is available at www.accreditedgemologists.org.