The Maple leaf has become synonymous with all things Canadian — eh? Maybe that’s why the Royal Canadian Mint’s most popular product is their infamous 1 oz Maple Leaf coin, whether it’s gold, silver, or platinum, this coin captures the hearts of collectors worldwide. Want to learn more about the Royal Canadian Mint (RCM)? Read on to learn about what it is, its history, and its products.
What is a Mint?
First, let’s start with some background information. If you’re new to bullion, you might wonder, “what is a mint?” Mints are facilities that produce coins for use as currency or sale to collectors. National mints, like the RCM, produce coins the government recognizes as legal tender. The Mint is also responsible for distributing the currency, protecting the Mint’s assets, and overseeing production facilities.
What is the Royal Canadian Mint?
The Royal Canadian Mint is the official Mint of Canada. As a crown corporation, they are owned solely by the Government of Canada. From their facilities in Ottawa, Ontario, and Winnipeg, the Mint produces all of Canada’s circulation coins and designs. They also manufacture precious and base metal collector coins.
The History of the Royal Canadian Mint
Before the formation of the RCM, the Royal Mint in London acted as the primary producer of Canadian coins. However, as Canada emerged as a nation, its need for coinage increased. As a result, the Ottawa branch of the Canadian Mint opened in 1908. In 1931, the Ottawa Mint changed its name to the Royal Canadian Mint after negotiating its independence from the British Royal Mint.
The Coins of the RCM
Like the Perth Mint, the Royal Canadian Mint takes inspiration from its country’s unique wildlife to create its products. Below are some of its most popular products:
Gold Maple Leaf Coin
In 1979, the Mint began producing its branded bullion coins, starting with the Canadian Gold Maple Leaf. Since its inception, the fineness has increased from .999 to .9999. It even reached .99999 purity for a special series 2007-2009. The design features the Canadian Maple Leaf on its reverse side and a profile of Queen Elizabeth II on its obverse side. In addition to the ever-popular 1 oz coin, it is struck in fractional ounces, including 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 oz, 1/20 oz, and 1/25 oz. The coin’s market value varies depending on the spot price of gold.
In 2013 and 2015, the RCM added security features to its Gold Maple Leaf coin, including a laser-micro-engraved textured maple leaf on its reverse side and radial lines on both sides.
Silver Maple Leaf Coin
Another popular product is the Silver Maple Leaf coin. Issued in 1988, it features the same design as the Gold Maple Leaf coin. Don’t fix what isn’t broken, right? Similar to its 1 oz gold sibling, the coin is struck in fractional ounces, including 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 oz, and 1/20 oz sizes. The coin’s market value varies depending on the spot price of silver.
In 2014, the RCM improved the security of their Silver Maple Leafs with a cutting-edge striking process (no pun intended). As part of its Bullion DNA Program, they began to strike Silver Maples with micro-inscribed radial lines, creating a unique pattern that is difficult to counterfeit. This added security only enhances the Silver Maple Leaf’s desirability.
Now that you’re an RCM expert, are you ready to add some Canadian coins to your portfolio? Shop 1 oz Gold, Silver, and Platinum Maple Leaf Coins today!