In 1979, the only gold bullion coin on the market was the Gold Krugerrand. Government boycotts of South Africa’s Apartheid limited the supply of this coin and the Royal Canadian Mint began production of the Gold Maple Leaf bullion coin in response to the shortage.
Between 1979 and 1982, the Gold Maple Leaf had a gold purity level of .999. In 1982, Royal Canadian Mint Gold Maple Leaf coins were minted with a purity of .9999.
The Royal Canadian Mint has a long and storied history, maintaining its position as one of the world’s most prestigious mints.
For the first fifty years (beginning in 1858) Canadian coinage was produced at the Royal Mint in London. As Canada grew into its own nationhood, the need for more coinage became paramount. In 1901, a branch of the Royal Mint was built in Ottawa.
During the Great Depression, Canada negotiated its independence from the Royal Mint and, in 1931, became the Royal Canadian Mint.