Tanzanite is a silicate mineral of the Epidote group of minerals. Tanzanite was first discovered in northern Tanzania in 1967 – hence its name. The purple, green and sapphire-blue gem has a Mohs scale hardness of 6.5-7.
Tanzanite became popular following several advertising campaigns by US fine jeweler Tiffany & Co. The gemstone’s sales in the US come to an annual $500,000 million. Tanzanite’s tendency to fracture prevents its use in rings, but the jewelry industry uses the stone for the production of precious gems which are increasing in popularity.
The only natural tanzanite deposit in the world can be found in the Meralani Hills of northern Tanzania, where it spans eight square kilometers.
Fake tanzanite stones are sold under the name “tanzanique,” but their color does not vary naturally, as the original gem’s does.
The tanzanite market is under the complete control of TanzaniteOne Ltd. Three years ago, the company launched a campaign meant to position tanzanite as the ultimate birth stone which every baby should be awarded.