Royal Canadian Mint

minting institution icon Canada flag icon Producing the Canadian Maple Leaf coins out of gold, silver, platinum & palladium

The Royal Canadian Mint (French: Monnaie Royale Canadienne) is registered as a Crown Corporation that is wholly owned by the Canadian government. It produces Canada's circulation coins as well as circulation coins for other nations, precious metal bullion coins, commemorative and numismatic coins, coin blanks for other mints and financial institutions, precious metal bars and medals and medallions. The flagship bullion coin of the Royal Canadian Mint are the Canadian Maple Leaf coins which are minted out of gold, silver, platinum and palladium. The mint is further active in the refining of gold and silver, precious metal storage and assaying services. It is one of the best known and respected mints worldwide and its produced coins regularly win awards such as the "Coin of the Year" and "Most Popular Coin" awards.

the Royal Canadian Mint produced this 99.999% pure 100kg Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coin in 2007
historic buildings of the Royal Canadian Mint in Ottawa
logo of the Royal Canadian Mint

Minting Facilities

The Royal Canadian Mint maintains production facilities in Ottawa, Ontario (its historic headquarter) and Winnipeg, Manitoba. All the circulation coins (for Canada and other countries) are produced in Winnipeg whereas all other areas of operation are located in Ottawa. The respective mint marks are W for Winnipeg and C for Ottawa but the Royal Canadian Mint also uses a special logo as a mint mark. Precious metal bullion coins produced by the Royal Canadian Mint don't contain mint marks though.

Both mints in Ottawa (at 320 Sussex Drive) and Winnipeg (520 Lagimodière Boulevard) offer guided tours for visitors. When visiting the Ottawa Mint, you will not only learn how coins are made but also see the medals of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, hold a solid gold bar in your hands and learn about the production of the then record-breaking 100kg Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coin (see picture above). Check out this webpage for instructions how to book your 45min tour of the Ottawa Mint. The mint in Winnipeg is a veritable high-tech facility and the guided 45 min tour that you can book there will walk you through a special tour area that features many interactive coin displays.

History

The Ottawa Mint opened as a branch of the Royal Mint of London on the 2nd of January 1908. On that day, the British governor General Earl Grey ceremonially activated the coin press that produced the first domestically produced coin, a 50 Cent coin. The ceremony ended with the Countess Grey striking Canada's first bronze cent. In 1911, the mint opened a refinery that was urgently needed for the refining of the large amounts of gold that were dug up in the Yukon territory and British Columbia in those years.

In 1931, the Ottawa Mint was renamed the Royal Canadian Mint and was placed under the control of Canada's Department of Finance. That remained so until 1969 when the mint was restructured as a Crown Corporation that is wholly owned by the Canadian government. The modern Winnipeg facility of the Royal Canadian Mint opened in 1976. It produces all circulations coins for Canada (and circulation coins for some foreign countries) leaving all other areas of operation for the Ottawa headquarter.

The Royal Canadian Mint is ISO 9001 certified since the year 2000.

The Royal Canadian Mint's Gold Bullion Coins

reverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coin

Canadian Gold Maple Leafs

The Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coins are produced by the Royal Canadian Mint in a wide variety of denominations since 1979. The 99.99% pure coins count among the most popular gold bullion coins worldwide (99.9% purity between 1979 and 1981). Some special editions of the Canadian Maple Leaf gold coins are even minted out of 99.999% pure gold. Radial lines as well as a textured maple leaf privy mark also makes the coins extremely hard to counterfeit. The Canadian Gold Maple Leafs are available with brilliant uncirculated and proof finishes in a wide range of denominations between 1 gram and 1 oz.

The Canadian Gold Maple Leaf page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

reverse side of the 2017 Elk issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian CALL OF THE WILD gold coin
obverse side of the 2017 Elk issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian CALL OF THE WILD gold coin

Canadian "Call of the Wild" Gold

The Canadian "Call of the Wild" gold coins count among the purest gold coins ever minted with their purity of 99.999%. The Royal Canadian Mint started this coin series in 2014 with the initial "Howling Wolf" release. It has since continued with the "Growling Cougar", "Roaring Grizzly" and "Roaring Elk" editions. The coins are issued in the denominations of 1 oz (proof-like BU and proof) and 1/10 oz (proof-like BU). The 1/10 oz version with the same animal design is always issued in limited mintage in the following year. The CAD $ 200 face value of the 1 oz coins is the highest face value of any legal tender 1 oz gold bullion coin in the world.

The Canadian "Call of the Wild" Gold page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

The Royal Canadian Mint's Pre-1933 Gold Coins

obverse side of the $10 Canadian George V gold coin minted in 1914
reverse side of the $10 Canadian George V gold coin minted in 1914

Canadian George V Gold Coins

The Royal Canadian Mint produced $5 and $10 George V gold coins between 1912 and 1914. The coins were the first Canadian gold coins since the mint in Ottawa had just been opened in 1908 as a branch mint of London's Royal Mint. Composed out of 90% gold and 10% copper, each $10 coin contains 0.4837 oz of gold and each $5 coin 0.2419 oz. The Royal Canadian Mint recently made about 30,000 such coins available that had been in storage at Bank of Canada vaults. The obverse side of the coins depicts King George V in profile wearing his ceremonial robe and royal crown. A shield bearing the Arms of the Dominion of Canada is depicted on the reverse side.

The Canadian George V Gold Coin page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

Other Precious Metal Bullion Coins

reverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin

Canadian Silver Maple Leafs

The Canadian Maple Leaf coins are also produced out of silver since 1988. The legal tender coins with a face value of CAD $ 5 have the same design as the gold version of the coins. Whereas most other silver bullion coins are 99.9% pure, Canadian Silver Maple Leafs are minted out of 99.99% pure silver. That is a major reason why Silver Maple Leafs count among the most popular silver bullion coins worldwide. Only one denomination of 1 oz is offered by the Royal Canadian Mint for now. The standard brilliant uncirculated finish has been upgraded in 2014 and includes radial lines from the coin's center as well as a micro-engraved laser mark since then.

The Canadian Silver Maple Leaf page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

reverse side of the 2015 Growling Cougar issue of the proof 1/2 kg Canadian CALL OF THE WILD silver coin
obverse side of the 2015 Growling Cougar issue of the proof 1/2 kg Canadian CALL OF THE WILD silver coin

Canadian "Call of the Wild" Silver

The Royal Canadian Mint also produces 1/2 kg "Call of the Wild" silver coins with a highly detailed proof finish. They are of the same size - 85 x 11 mm - and just as detailed in design as the 1/2 kg gold proof version of the coins. The coins out of 99.99% pure silver have an official face value of CAD $ 125 and only 1,000 such silver coins were minted with the Howling Wolf design in 2014 and the Growling Cougar in 2015. Mintage of the 2016 coin with the Roaring Grizzly design was even more limited with just 600 pieces.

reverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2017 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coin

Canadian Platinum Maple Leafs

The Royal Canadian Mint produced the 99.95% fine Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf coins from 1988 - 1999 and in 2002 in the denominations of 1 oz (face value CAD $ 50), 1/2 oz (CAD $ 20), 1/4 oz (CAD $ 10), 1/10 oz (CAD $ 5) and 1/20 oz (minted since 1993, CAD $ 1). Only in 1994 was a 1/15 oz coin (CAD $ 2) produced as well. The Canadian Platinum Maple Leafs made a comeback in 2009 but are since then only produced in the 1 oz denomination with brilliant uncirculated and proof (including reverse proof) finishes. They were the world's best selling platinum coins in 2012. Radial lines and a micro-engraved privy mark were introduced as counterfeiting measures in 2015.

The Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.

reverse side of the 2015 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Palladium Maple Leaf coin
obverse side of the 2015 issue of the brilliant uncirculated 1 oz Canadian Palladium Maple Leaf coin

Canadian Palladium Maple Leafs

The 99.95% fine Canadian Palladium Maple Leafs were the first palladium coins ever minted by the Royal Canadian Mint and the world's first regularly issued palladium bullion coins. The coins were first minted in November 2005 and production continued uninterrupted until 2007. After that, Palladium Maple Leaf coins were again minted in 2009 and 2015. That last year also saw the introduction of two new security features, radial lines as well as a special privy mark with the laser-engraved year of mintage. These features were implemented to prevent counterfeiting. The coins are only available with a brilliant uncirculated finish in the single available denomination of 1 oz. Their official face value is CAD $ 50 and they have legal tender status in Canada.

The Canadian Palladium Maple Leaf page gives more information about the coins and allows you to compare current prices.