In 1982, Canada set a new standard in the purity of gold bullion. Before 1982 the Maple Leaf was .999 gold; after it was minted with .9999 solid gold.
The Royal Canadian Mint has maintained its tradition of leadership in the gold bullion industry by raising the bar once more, to .99999. Once again, history was made, this time in 2008. To honor this historic occasion, the Gold Maple Leaf was given a special design which includes a crosshatched pattern.
This purity won’t replace the Mint’s standard .9999 Gold Maple Leaf coins in foreseeable future, and is reserved for exclusive special editions produced to show off the Royal Canadian Mint’s unparalleled achievements in coin minting. These coins are highly sought after by collectors and investors because of the purity of the gold as well as the low mintage.
Superior purity makes the Canadian Gold Maple Leaf one of the most sought after gold bullion coins in the world. However, it comes at a cost. The coins are softer and therefore more prone to damage than gold bullion coins such as the American Gold Eagle or Krugerrand. Combined with the milled edge and blank field surrounding the Queen, handling marks show up more easily.