Jungle Gems Newsletter / December 2002

Hello from Brasil once again. This is where you can read about gemtrade related news and rumors that we uncover from Brasil, and sometimes other locals. In this December issue, we would like to sum-up the year with a photo special. We hope you enjoy the news and reviews… and the photos of 2002.

Special Note: We will be closed for Christmas, beginning Dec 15th. Any procurement orders must be concluded and shipped by this time.

In December, we will be exporting all of our yearly accumulated goods direct to the Desert Gardens Gem & Mineral Show in Quartzite AZ. We have some really nice stuff accumulated that we are anxious to show our clients who can make it to the show. We will be in Row C this year, from Jan 1 thru Feb 15…

In January, our newsletter will report on the Quartzite Show. We will talk about our visit to the Tucson Gem & Mineral Show in February. We will return to Brasil in March 2003 for the remainder of the year, re-opening our 10% procurement service for gemstone rough, faceted stones and mineral specimens.

2002 Year End Report from Teofilo Otoni, Minas Gerais:

The highlight of the year was the Annual Teofilo Otoni Gem & Mineral Show, held in August. The show is set-up in a huge tent, in the middle of the Praca (town square). A tremendous display of faceted gemstones, metaphysical quartz (scepters, elestials, lasers…), fine specimens, facet-grade gem rough, Quartz crystal clusters, spheres, polished quartz, minerals and even granite. We see a steady stream of tourmaline, aquamarine, amethyst, citrine, aventurine, apatite, kunzite, opal, amber, emerald, andalucite, topaz, and other gem materials.

The biggest news of the year for us was the introduction of our own New Stone: “Amazon Amber”. Our own find, available exclusively from jungle-gems.com. It is the only new stone on the market for 2002 that we know of, at least here in Brasil. You can see samples of our newly produced collection of finished pieces only here at jungle-gems.com

Other highlights of the year include recent fabulous production at the Pereneira Tourmaline Mine, the Santa Rose tourmaline region, gorgeous quartz lasers from Goias, best ever emeralds from Nova Era and new production coming from Tocantins, the aquamarine mines of Medina, “Bahian Jade” aventurine mine, and our Amazon Opal Mine. It is a joy for us to be surrounded by such magnificence everyday… as you can see below:

Click Pictures To Enlarge

Click Pictures To Enlarge

2002 Year End Report from Ariquemes, Rondonia:

This was our 1st year operating from the Rondonian Topaz capital of Ariquemes. You can call us direct at 55-69-536-1968, or email direct to: gemstone@ariquemes.com.br We have been buying 100% sawn clean topaz for export, as well as sawing local production. We export this material in large volume orders of 100kg and up, at 10% above the local market price. We guarantee 100% clean goods for faceting. We plan to continue our service for the coming year, beginning in March 2003.

While operating out of Ariquemes we continue to run our Amazon Opal Mine, about 250km away from here. After a very long dry spell of almost 2 years, we were able to get the mine producing again in August of this year. Production is limited, so we will be marketing only faceted goods at the present time. If 2003 production allows, we will make rough material available to the market. Please see the Amazon Opal page on this website for examples of some of our recent production.

We began the year in Rondonia reporting many gem trade related rumors. To our eventual surprise, many of these rumors have now been confirmed as fact. We have seen locally produced aquamarine from various locals in various qualities, some low quality tourmaline, tons of clean quartz for faceting or carving, clean rutilated quartz, beautiful granites, amethyst, and diamond rough. The elusive Amazon Petrified Wood remains a rumor. We now believe it might exist, but we have yet to find it. Perhaps this will be our “new stone for 2003”? Below are some photos from the year in the Amazon. How about those photos of Amazon Trucks!

Click Pictures To Enlarge

Click Pictures To Enlarge

2002 Year End Report from around Brasil:

The headline of the year has got to be the 178 GRAM Diamond rough found in The Brasilian State of Tocantins. A hugely beautiful facet grade stone, still unsold as of this writing. Diamonds continue to be produced in numerous regions of Brasil.

The emeralds of Nova Era now rival the famous Muzo Colombian goods, according to many pros in the trade. Deep color, fine crystallization, nice sizes. The emerald mines of Carnaiba and Santa Terezinha continue to produce quality stones as well. A new area of Tocantins is also beginning to show real potential, with many opportunities for new operators.

Aquamarine had a big year with many new finds, along with an abundance of Amethyst, Andalucites and Apatites. Tourmaline continues to be the mainstay of Brasilian gemstone production.

The biggest news in Brasil for Brasilians was the World Cup Soccer Finals victory over Germany. It was a record 5th World Title for Brasil. The victory parties, after each game of course, were also a world class event.

Click Pictures To Enlarge

Click Pictures To Enlarge

On a more personal level, my partner Jeff Gale and myself both celebrated the 1st year birthdays of our sons: Tomas and Jeffrey Jr., born in May and November of 2001. We hope to have them with us for the USA gemshows within a couple of years. The photos below are from our “family album”, including our mining partners and some special friends.

Click Pictures To Enlarge

Click Pictures To Enlarge

We'd like to thank the following for helping us have a great year… Rob and Brad, Doc Johnny, Dale, Anu & Sam, SJ & Maykel, Chicao & Hugo, Erik, Marco, Artenia & Joan, Tomas & Jeffrey Jr., Tammy, Damon, Kelle & Katrina, Karen, 2 Susans, David, Luciano, Trevor, Jonathan & Udorn, 2 Cathys and 3 Daves, Roberto, Raimundo, Nem, Shay, Simone, Tom, Richard, William, Zelito & Crew, and a special long overdue thanks to Stu & Irv. (you guys all know who I mean)

In closing, we would like to pay our last respects to our dear friend and gemstone associate Mr. Bruce Truesdell. We spent many great years together in the trade, dating back to the 1980's. Bruce passed away this year at age 46, from cancer, in Mexico. Bruce is survived by his wife Maria, their beautiful young daughter Gabriella and a passel of adopted kids from Brasil.

We look forward to 2003 and many new gemstone treasures to come.

Jungle Gems Newsletter prepared by Kirk "Tomas" Bond and Jeffrey Gale