By Hayley Henning, Chief Commercial Officer, Greenland Ruby
It’s hard to believe it’s been nearly six years since Greenland Ruby officially opened its Ruby Camp in Aappaluttoq in an icy and mountainous part of Greenland. LNS Norway, a family owned operation out of that Scandinavian nation, remains owner.
The mine site is about 120 kilometers southwest from the capital city of Nuuk. The name Aappaluttoq [Ah-puh-lu-tok] is the Greenlandic word for red and was given to the area after the discovery of the red crystals on the ground. Mine access is largely by helicopter, ferrying staff and supplies once a week. In the summer months, an ice breaker hugs the coastline south from Nuuk—it’s a gorgeous journey that takes about five hours.
Greenland Ruby’s particular deposit is in hard rock and believed to be the oldest on earth, dating back nearly 3 billion years, though it was only recently discovered by the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, called GEUS.
Despite its challenging geography, Greenland Ruby operates year round. Icy winters are dry, making it easier to access the Ruby-bearing rock, and the 100% local Greenlandic team at our mining operation is used to the bitingly cold environment.
Since our debut, Greenland Ruby has introduced its Rubies and pink Sapphires to the global gem and jewelry industry as a new and responsible source of corundum (both gems are from the same mineral family). Operating offices now exist in Bangkok, Paris, Copenhagen,
and New York City, and our Rubies and pink Sapphires range in color from deep, dark red to light and icy pink and every shade in between.
Our gems have also been identified as unique by their chemical trace elements that tell the story of a journey through time and temperature! Gray, purple, orange, and green Sapphires have also been found in our location, and we call these our Northern Lights Sapphires!
Our material is cut and polished into calibrated cabochons, free size faceted and diamond cuts, and beads that we call Polar Spheres. Gem weights can be as large as 50 cts., while calibrated diamond cuts start at 0.9 mm.
In terms of volume, Greenland Ruby has processed nearly 2,000 kilograms of Ruby and pink Sapphire rough from January 2020 to December 2022. Of that amount, 451 kilograms were sent for cutting and polishing, resulting in 480,000 carats of cut and polished
Greenlandic gems. Over the last three years, Greenland Ruby has processed an average of 500 kg a year in our Thai facility, of which 150 kilograms is cut and polished. The result is approximately 160,000 carats of available Rubies and pink Sapphires per year.
Like most corundum, Greenland Ruby gems undergo treatment to bring out their best attributes. Gems are heated with flux, an industry standard, in Thailand, which is the capital for the world’s Ruby trade and where gemstone treatments have been perfected over generations. Stable and irreversible treatment allows Greenland Ruby to bring gems to market in a quantitative supply. Of particular interest to our European and U.S. customers is our mine-to market traceability. Each gem is tracked and traced from the mine site to the hands of the customer. Each gem comes with a Certificate of Origin or Card of Authenticity, which is of great value to customers worldwide, who are drawn to the incredible story behind the stones. And when mining is complete, our processing plant will be removed and the environment will be returned to how it was found. Membership in the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC)—we are the only colored gemstone mining member—further reinforces our commitment to responsible business practices.
Plus, our PinkPolarbear Foundation, the company’s corporate social responsibility arm, contributes a percentage of gem sales to communities who live close to the mines. (For more information,log onto pinkpolarbear.org.)
Anyone who would like to see our inventory in person can do so at JCK Las Vegas booth #27064. Those who can’t make it to the show can shop our digital platform dubbed RubyCloud™, a B-to-B platform that gives registered buyers access to thousands of gems.
Greenland Ruby is thrilled to be front and center in the gem and jewelry industry by setting an example of responsible mining! We’ve already been able to achieve many of the 17 SDGs as identified by the United Nations, and now we just need to keep up with demand of our better-quality material. Like all mining operations, the good stuff is really hard to find!
Keep dreaming in color, and all the best!
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