Zambian Emeralds

Zambia is so unique because it has 8 varieties of beautiful gemstones; among them are Emeralds.

Zambia accounts for about 46% of the world’s production of Emeralds. The country is a World class example of peaceful and equitable gemstone mining. Jewel of Africa is a jewellery company in Zambia committed to be a fully vertically integrated company supplying emerald jewellery from 'Mine to you'.

While Colombia has long been at the forefront when it comes to emerald mining, Zambian emeralds have become increasingly popular in recent years thanks to their extremely high quality and hardness.


Colour is the most significant value marker of an emerald. Colour is an area in which Zambian emeralds are distinctive. Their highly-desirable bluish undertone comes from the presence of iron. This addition of a little blue adds to the overall depth of the stones. The most valuable color should be the perfect balance of blue and yellow, a pure vivid green hue with lots of depth; neither too dark nor too light, and evenly distributed throughout the gemstone.


A Gemstone clarity has to do with the numbers of eye-visible inclusions. The fewer, smaller and less conspicuous the inclusions, the better. But almost all emeralds contain inclusions, they are natural and are part of the gemstone’s story that can reveal the gemstones’ origin and its subsequent migration from subterranean darkness to the light of day. Most of Zambian emeralds are appealing and valuable thanks to their clarity; they reflect light very well, enhancing their colour. 


An emerald’s size, if expressed in a unit of weight, is called a carat. A carat is a metric unit equivalent to 0.20 of a gram. At Jewel of Africa, we can provide the full range of sizes because of our direct access to the most abundant Zambian Emerald mines. Quality being equal, an emerald with higher carat is more valuable. Tough, experts agree that a smaller emerald with brilliant color quality is more valuable than a larger one with poor color quality.


Jewel of Africa cuts gemstones in-house for maximum retention while maintaining critical angles to achieve total internal reflection. A good cut will enhance stones natural beauty to the fullest. 


Zambian emeralds tend to be naturally stronger than others, rating between 7.5 and 8 on the Mohs scale of hardness. This puts them just behind rubies and sapphires (both of which score 9 on the Mohs scale) and diamonds, which score a perfect 10.

The durability of Zambian emeralds stems from their origins, and the fact that they were created during millions of years through the process of metamorphic rock coming into contact with granite rock.

Zambia produced the World most famous Emerald

In 2018, a 5,655-carat (or 1.1kg) emerald was unearthed from Zambia’s Kagem Mine. What made the discovery truly remarkable was not just its size, but its exceptional clarity and perfectly-balanced green hue, with a tinge of golden-yellow.

It was named "Inkalamu", meaning "lion" in Bemba. Inkalamu was subsequently auctioned in Singapore a month after its discovery, and while the exact selling price remains unknown, experts peg it at around $2.5 million, making it the most expensive emerald in the World.

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