Freshwater Pearls – Value Factors
Freshwater Pearls or freshwater cultured pearls are raised in lakes in vast quantities, especially in China. A given mussel will often produce many pearls at one time – sometimes as many as 50 pearls at once!
This, coupled with the faster production time (and even faster capitalism!) of the Chinese market has led to lower prices and, surprisingly, pearls of better and better pearl quality. Freshwater pearls are cultivated with a technique different from that used with other pearls species; there is no bead nucleus.
Freshwater Pearls – What to Expect:
- Freshwater pearls sizes are usually in the range from 4mm-12mm. Larger sizes are possible.
- Natural colors are whites, pinks, pastels, lavenders, but color treatment is also common. If in doubt, ask… it effects the price you should pay!
- Freshwater pearls may appear slightly less round than the more expensive Akoya pearls, but this is changing as cultivation techniques improve.