We don’t cover every release from the Royal Canadian Mint as the volume of them has become quite overwhelming, but we do like to pick out what we think are the most interesting, or simply what we think are the best of them. This one is definitely interesting as it seems to have captured general attention and caused a spike in aftermarket prices. Given the prevalence of meteorite coins appearing on the market over the last few years, we can’t imagine the frenzy is being driven by the more hardcore coin collector, so one that resonates with the Canadian public, perhaps. Similar stories can be told about the Falcon Lake coin from a couple of months ago, as well as the recent gimmicky carousel coin issue.
The more informed coin collector will no doubt be aware of some of the superb meteorite coins released by such producers as Coin Invest Trust (CIT), the Mint of Poland, and others. So what has made this one stand out? No idea, to be honest. A simple coloured one-ounce coin with a meteorite fragment stuck to the face is hardly cutting edge in this genre, and even the fragment is Argentinian – not Canadian. The subject commemorated is certainly a worthy one. The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC) has been contributing to the human body of knowledge for 150 years and that’s something that should be acknowledged.
The coloured image is a collage of astronomical features, including the simply breathtaking Pillars of Creation, so plenty of appeal to astronomy buffs. A fragment of meteorite from the expansive Campo del Cielo fields is attached to the face. The obverse is the usual RCM effigy of Queen Elizabeth II by Sussana Blunt. Packaging is quite disappointing. The RCM has shown a willingness to embrace the latex frames for display, as well as some very high quality boxes, but this is one of those served up in the standard maroon snapper box. A shame given the display potential.
As we hinted at earlier, this coin has picked up some good appreciation on the secondary market, but how long that lasts is open to question. The 4,500 mintage is high for the genre, and if we’re being completely honest, the European competition is much more ambitious in design, rarer in mintage, and more attractive. Even the Campo del Cielo meteorite has appeared on several coins before. It’s good to see the RCM release their first meteorite coin and have it be successful, but we’d like to see something a bit more creative next time. Available from several of our sponsors, these are selling very well, so if you want one, now is likely the time.