TanzaniteOne eyeing tsavorite mine in Tanzania

We publish courtesy of National Jeweler

Arusha, Tanzania—TanzaniteOne Limited, the world’s largest miner and supplier of rough tanzanite, is working toward opening a tsavorite mine not far from its existing mining operation.

Earlier this month, the company announced its first Joint Ore Reserve Committee (JORC) compliant Resources Statement for the tsavorite project in the Manyara region of northeast Tanzania, about 20 kilometers (about 12.5 miles) from its tanzanite mine. The project has a total indicated resource of 1.4 to 3.5 million carats of tsavorite.

“Having successfully delineated a maiden resource to JORC compliant standards, we shall now work towards establishing an economic model for a potential tsavorite mine. We expect to provide a further resource update during the second quarter of 2011 following the next phase of the bulk sampling program scheduled in the coming months,” TanzaniteOne Chief Executive Officer Bernard Olivier said in news release.

Another resource statement on the project is expected in the second quarter of 2011, after the company does it second phase of bulk sampling. The current statement is based on work conducted up to Dec. 29 and covers about 50 percent of the project.

A brilliant green gemstone, tsavorite is a variety of grossular garnet first discovered in 1968 in Lemshuku, Tanzania. In 1974, Tiffany & Co. introduced this gemstone to the world, dubbing it “tsavorite” after the nearby Tsavo National Park game reserve in Kenya. The per-carat price of tsavorite is about two to four times higher than tanzanite but roughly a quarter the price of an emerald.