If you mention the word emerald to anyone who knows the slightest bit about the stone, you are most likely to hear the term ‘Colombian emerald’ mentioned. That is because up until recently, the South American country was the main distributor in the emerald industry and still produces some of the finest deep green emeralds on the planet. However, over the past few years, it has come to the attention of many in the industry that yet another emerald producer is making waves. This time around it’s Zambia, with its lovely blue-green emeralds that are most certainly comparable to the highly coveted Colombian emeralds in terms of beauty. Due to their popularity, Zambia is now the second largest producer of emeralds in the world, right after Colombia.
Zambia, also called The Republic of Zambia, is a country in Southern Africa, right beside the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Tanzania, and Malawi. Historically home to a copper mining industry, Zambia also has an economy based on agriculture, tourism, and now emeralds as well.
View this 9.82 carat Zambian Emerald and Intense Yellow Diamond Ring
Zambian Emeralds Vs. Colombian Emeralds
Aside from being mined in different parts of the worlds and displaying different distinct colors, these stones have a lot in common. They have so much in common that they are both considered the world’s most popular emeralds. One other main difference between the two is that although Zambian emeralds are extremely valuable, their prices will be lower than Colombian emeralds since it is a newer trade and the prices have not become a fixture as much as prices for Colombian stones have.
Many of the emeralds are sources by Gemfields, whose mines are found in Zambia.
Emeralds in General
Emeralds are one of the four precious gemstones, which also include diamonds, rubies, and sapphires. The vivacious green stone ranks 7 on the Moh’s scale of hardness, which is lower than the sapphire’s 9 ranking and the diamond’s esteemed grade of 10. Nevertheless, it is still a rather durable stone, though it can be prone to chips and scratches. That is why many emeralds are enhanced in some way to protect its structure and to sometimes boost its color, though natural emeralds will always be worth more. The ability to be enhanced in a natural-looking way is one of an emerald’s greatest advantages. Emeralds are the birthstone for the month of May, quite fitting for the spring month that is filled with greenery and vibrant colors. They are also used as gifts for 20th and 35th anniversaries.
One should never buy an emerald or any other gemstone simply because it has a ‘name.’ Though that name does usually come with a certain degree of prestige and worth, it is important to survey the individual stone and make certain it is the right one for you. The size, color, quality, shape, and price have to be just what you are looking for.