Green Caribbean Amber | Buy Caribbean

Caribbean Amber

When you read that the so-called “Caribbean amber” was “recently found on an unknown small Caribbean Island” you should give it as much factual credibility as the novel “Treasure Island” or the movie “Pirates of the Caribbean”.

A well known amber-jewelry manufacturing company  is promoting “Caribbean amber”, a beautiful transparent green gem material that the company says is the color of the Caribbean Sea. It’s found on an “undisclosed small Caribbean island, close to the Dominican Republic, where other ambers have been found.” Sounds romantic.  

This “Caribbean Amber” which comes in greenish tones, but also in amber, red and all kinds of amber colors is certainly beautiful.  Fact is, that what  is being sold as “Caribbean amber” is enhanced Colombian resinite copal. And what is “Copal” and how is it different from amber? Only the age. Copal is young amber and Amber is young copal. And Colombia has a Caribbean coast, so it really is Caribbean.

In the copal hardening process, it is being “aged” in the autoclave for several hours. See: Wikipedia: Caribbean Amber. But this method is not strange at all, considering all the weird technics that are used to enhance, clarify and modify the famous Baltic amber which is sold to the gullible public as “natural” and “genuine”. See: naturalamber.com

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Green Amber Market

There is much confusion about what green amber on the market really is and a question among amber experts as to how it should be labeled.

Retired paleobotanist and mineralogist Francis Hueber, formerly with the Smithsonian’s National Museum  of Natural History, mentions that green amber is usually “that which reacts to exposure to ultraviolet light. The color is not a pigmentation but a physical reaction.” But most of the green amber does not have this property.

At jewelry and gift shows throughout the country today, you will often see brilliant green amber gems set in sterling silver. This may be Baltic amber, but it has been enhanced. As with most gems, there are enhancement techniques to enliven and brighten the stone. Where does the “green” come from?

In some cases it is obvious. Visual clues such as sun-spangle inclusions establish the material as “heated and pressure enhanced.” We are aware that amber can be clarified and shaped by using heat and pressure. Such amber is called “pressed,” and gem identification laboratories, such as the Gemological Institute of America’s Gem Lab, as well as suppliers of the material, are required by the Federal Trade Commission to label it “pressed amber.”

When it is green Baltic amber, remember, the natural green amber is rare in the Baltic countries and would not be so bright with inclusions and “sun spangles.” Currently, jewelers are applying a dark paste (almost like a paint) to the backs of the amber gems. The illusion of the dark paste through the honey-colored gem causes the beholder’s perception of green amber.

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Buy Caribbean Amber

We are in the lucky position to offer you both: Natural Caribbean amber from the Dominican Republic and enhanced “Caribbean amber” (Copal) from Colombia.

In Natural Dominican green amber, there is the rare translucent kind (which the copy-cats imitate and call “Caribbean Amber”), also an opaque green, a green with black stripes (almost marble), a bluish green, smokey green, olive green etc. And it is all NATURAL. Just the way it is found in the mines!

On the other hand, the so-called “Caribbean amber” is enhanced Colombian Copal (young amber), and does not only come in green, although it is the most known. It also can come in brown, red, honey and even the cream and butterscotch color you know from the Baltic. All which also can be turned into beautiful beads and gems. Why it is called “Caribbean Amber”? It probably was a publicity stunt, but it stuck. And since Colombia also has a Caribbean coast…

Besides the green and other enhanced colors, we can supply you with Colombian Copal in its natural form, not modified. We offer quite a few large specimens, a lot of medium size chunks and tons of smaller pieces. We sell it with and without inclusions, raw -rough-, polished, tumbled and as beads. Besides specific specimens offered as single items, we mainly wholesale.

Our sister site http://colombiancopal.com has a catalog where you will find this interesting material. We are experienced wholesalers of natural rough amber and polished amber and Colombian copal suppliers. But we will always be truthful to you. As a fair partner, will tell you what it is that you are looking at and getting. As we work with the direct source can deliver almost any commercial quantity upon request.

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