When it comes to birthstone jewelry, the mysterious deep-green emerald — the May birthstone — is one of the most prized of all colored gemstones. Rarer than diamonds, gem-quality emeralds have starred in the storied history of fine jewelry for millennia. While they are the most valuable of the Beryl group, emeralds are not easily categorized by conventional standards due to their unique characteristics and rare qualities.
According to the international mining company Gemfields, which now produces 20 percent of the world’s emeralds, stones with highly-saturated colors and no inclusions are extremely rare and precious indeed.
Since 2005, Gemfields has been serving collectors and connoisseurs by providing renowned designers with a range of ethically produced emeralds from Zambia. Today, high-quality emeralds are more accessible than ever before.
The main emerald producing countries are Colombia, Brazil, and of late, Zambia. Although less common than gemstones from Colombia, Zambian Emeralds are available at significantly lower prices, opening up the market to new customers looking for beautiful gems at a good value.
Physically, Zambian Emeralds range in color from a natural rich saturated green to a vibrant green with slight bluish undertones. Zambian Emeralds are unique in several other regards. Gemfields has created the world’s first “integrated pipeline” to bring emeralds directly from the mine to the international market. This means that consumers will now be able to trace the origin of each gem from the source and can follow its journey to the point of purchase.
With the democratically-elected government of the Republic of Zambia as part-owners, Gemfields now produces approximately one fifth of the world’s emerald supply. This state-of-the-art mining facility is able to produce a reliable and consistent conflict-free emerald supply from a responsible source.
A Creative Collaboration
Gemfields has designated a select group of high-end jewelry designers as collaborators to create original jewelry pieces featuring the finest emeralds from the Zambian mines. These partners include Alexandra Mor, Kimberly McDonald, Kara Ross, and Coomi, just to name a few.
A glossy consumer advertising campaign starring actress Mila Kunis is helping to promote Zambian Emeralds to today’s younger (and wealthier) fine jewelry clientele. “We want to introduce the fashion-minded jewelry consumer to rare and precious gemstones and to create pieces that are cool, unique and highly wearable,” said Randi Molofsky, director of marketing and communications for Gemfields.
Whether you were born in May or December, you’re never too young or too old to wear precious emeralds. Some of the most beautiful jewels in history — and in today’s most exclusive jewelry salons – feature emeralds from Colombia…from Brazil…and now from Zambia.
We’re green with envy.