What percentage of gem market is NOT the "Big 4"


In trying to prepare a business plan, I’m wondering if anyone has any data related to the “other” gemstones besides Diamond, Sapphire, Ruby and Emerald, commonly known as “The Big 4”. As an example, I saw it reported that “The global gemstone market is expected to grow at a 6.53% CAGR from 2022 to 2029. It is expected to reach above USD 53.2 million by 2029 from USD 30.1 million in 2020.” (Gemstone Market Size, Trends, Growth and Forecast 2029) but what I don’t know is what percentage of that 53.2 million is expected to be stones like Garnet, Amethyst, Topaz, Tourmaline, Aquamarine and my business which is Oregon Sunstone (a very small percentage I’m sure).

For instance if my total market is only $1,000,000 what percentage can I expect? 10%? If I’m lucky maybe. Any info someone might have would be helpful or if you can steer me to sources you don’t know about.

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I too am interested in the question you pose but I suspect the answer is somewhat nebulous because of several factors. The main one is the public’s lack of knowledge of “other” gemstones and therefore a blind following of fashion. We have seen that with Tanzanite and fancy garnets, and it is also connected with celebrity adornment. There is also a country factor where some cultures favor certain gemstones and this also depends on economic cycles in those countries. In short, demand for gems other than the “big four” is much less predictable and will remain that way until more people are aware that gems other than the “big four” exist. Your business plan therefore needs a complementary information plan.


I think it is sillly to worry about what the macro numbers are for stones besides the “Big 4” and you should instead focus your efforts on identifying ways to sell to your niche market, whatever that is. I see lots of loose tourmaline, peridot, amethyst, blue topaz (yes, even that), zircon, etc., for sale on various pages on FB. I am sure that they are also for sale on Instagram and other platforms…I know some folks who have a good following on Instagram and sell lots of gems there…Gemval.com has some data on prices for various species tracked over the years and the last time I looked, gems in general were appreciating pretty much on a straight line at about 10% per annum. You are looking for one sale at a time, so what does it matter how big the market is as long as you find your personal buyer? Lots of data on asking prices and sales on the Net if you look. Good Luck! -royjohn


Indeed, as I look for what the total “other gemstone” market is that seems to be the missing factor. I know the other players in my market and about how much of the total they garner (it’s an educated guess at best).

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To get current market conditions and pricing, you will need a subscription to Gem World. You receive a lot of excellent industry news and pricing from them. Here is the link to their 2023 1st Quarterly Report:

Linda Fitzwater, GIA AJP
Creation By Suzanne, LLC

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