Cultured, Freshwater, Natural Pearls-what does all this mean?

  • October 24, 2019

Cultured, Freshwater, Natural Pearls-The Pearl is an organic gem, that is one that comes from a living thing-Coral and Amber are also organic gems. Pearls are produced from molluscs. In the case of natural pearls a small grain of sand or irritant finds it’s way into the mollusc which then secretes a nacre over the irritant and this forms a Pearl. Today most of the wild natural pearl producing molluscs are gone and natural Pearls are very rare. Cultivated Pearls are produced by Molluscs which have had a small piece of mantle shell, or bead inserted into the shell and this produces the Pearl. The molluscs can be saltwater or freshwater. The Pearls we have on this website are freshwater cultivated or cultured  Pearls. There are four major types of cultured whole pearls:

Akoya—This type is most familiar to many jewellery customers. Japan and China both produce saltwater akoya cultured pearls.
South Sea—Australia, Indonesia, and the Philippines are leading sources of these saltwater cultured pearls.
Tahitian—Cultivated primarily around the islands of French Polynesia (the most familiar of these is Tahiti), these saltwater cultured pearls usually range from white to black.
Freshwater—These are usually cultured in freshwater lakes and ponds. They’re produced in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and colors. China and the US are the leading sources.

At I love my Pearls we concentrate on one type-Freshwater Pearls as these are great value Pearls. All these Pearls are cultured -they have been cultured or grown in Pearl farms, harvested, cleaned and processed to become lovely glowing Pearls.