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What is “B+C” Jade?


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Dear Arthur,
I’ve read your posts and others from many websites about type A, B, C jade. Once I came across a web that mentioned the type of treatment called B+C, which was explained as the worst jade that received all heat treatment, bleaching, and added color.

Is there such a term ‘B+C’ in jade industry? Is this pendant an example of type ‘B+C’ jade? This pendant doesn’t belong to me. I found it online and brought it here for a discussion only. I can see there is some sort of ‘icy’ texture on the back and something like ‘calcification’ in the front but no other black inclusion. Plus, the carving is primitive. If it is not old style, then it must be a product of low quality, mass-produced jade.
Best regards,

Viet Walin from the Deep South.

Hello Viet Walin

You can read about Type B+C Jadeite Jade and Type C Jadeite Jade on these links.

Type B+C Jade is only a trade term which is described as being bleached, dyed and polymer-impregnated by a number of websites and even some gemlabs in Hong Kong and other countries.  The identification is only by sight and it has never been established that there are 2 different types of compound of dye and polymer as present within the jade piece.

I would say that to hang a label with a name onto a jade piece without any empirical proof is wrong.  A gemlab can only detect the presence of polymer but a gemlab or anybody in the jade trade will never go further than that, that is, to analyse the content of the polymer and the so-called dye within the jade.  It is not practical and no one will spend time analyzing an enhanced jade which has no value, unless a person is in the trade of making Type B jade.

It is only logical that only one type of polymer is used for impregnation. A polymer can be colorless as well as colored.  Using two compounds which are not homogenous for impregnation will have complication of absorption into the jade piece.  Further, when 2 compounds are used, there will be very clear demarcation of color separation and it can be easily seen by the naked eye that foreign elements have been added onto the jade.  The purpose of polymer impregnation is to enhance the jade to make it more pleasing and at the same time not to have any visible tell-tale signs.

Calcification of a jade refers to leaching of its color when a jade piece is being buried under the ground of a long time.  On the picture, there is no calcification at all.

The jade piece is also not considered as glassy.  A glassy jade is semi-transparent and almost look like glass whereas semi-translucent is more common.

The jade piece as in the picture is easily available in Hong Kong and China at a cost of less than 2 quarters a piece.

There is a purpose by seller/s on the use of the term Type B+C jade.  I will write about it sometime in the future.

Thank you

A Arthur Lau

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I am a Graduate Gemologist trained at the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) in New York City, USA. I hold an MBA degree from Cranfield University, United Kingdom, and a Bachelor degree in Mathematics. My earlier profession was a banker until I found jade in Myanmar (Burma) in the early 90s. I have traveled to the fabled Hpakan Jade mines, and Mogok, the world’s famous rubies and sapphires mines in upper Burma, with my second son. Three of my children are also Graduate Gemologist, GIA, NYC and they deal in diamonds, gemstones and jade. 我是在美国纽约市的美国宝石学院(GIA)接受过培训的宝石研究学家。 我拥有英国克兰菲尔德大学的工商管理硕士学位和数学学士学位。我以前的职业是银行家,直到90年代初我在缅甸接触到玉石。我曾经和我的次子一起去过缅甸上流传说中的哈帕翡翠矿山和莫谷矿山, 莫谷矿山是世界上著名的红宝石和蓝宝石矿山。我的三个孩子都是纽约市GIA毕业的宝石研究学家, 他们专门处理钻石,宝石和玉石.


  1. Yes Viet Walin, it is always a matter of deciding to buy, then to send for testing then you may end up with a B jade. It takes experience and a lot of reading to identify a glassy jade. A number of glassy jade which are Type A Jadeite Jade look like glass and one is not sure whether they are of jade material.

    There may be some simple quick and dirty tests. You can read about them in my posts on jade.

    Thank you for your strong support and putting in some comments on my website.

    Have a good day

  2. Mr. Lau,

    Your explanation about the polymer compounds is eye opening. So the pendant in the pictures is more likely the aftermath of 2 compounds. I have always found it much more difficult to identify the nature of jadeite color in a piece when it appears to be ‘high class’ with glassy texture and/or ‘fu-lu-shou’ color than a lower class-opaque jade piece with color. That is the case, as you said, a lab work is necessary, but then we don’t know whether that glassy, tri-color piece is worth to buy and then get a lab report!

    Thank you so much

    Viet Walin

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