The Board of Directors of the International Colored Gemstone Association, New York, has unanimously adopted a proposal to make tanzanite a December Birthstone. To date, December’s birthstones traditionally have been blue and have included gemstones such as turquoise and blue zircon.
In so doing, ICA is joining forces with the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA), which is currently running an information campaign, promoting tanzanite as a December birthstone in the lead-up to the important end of the year holiday season in the U.S.A.
“The majority of the world’s tanzanite production is handled by ICA members,” ICA Vice President Joe Menzie explained. “As such, our organization has a vested interest in letting the world know that tanzanite has been provided the elevated status of a birthstone.”
The only known source of the tanzanite, a gemstone that displays elegant violet blue hues, is in the hills of Merelani, not far from Arusha in Tanzania. Since its introduction into the consumer market in the late 1960s, it has developed into the most popular blue gemstone after sapphire.