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Premium Akoya Pearls: Exquisite Harvest, Unmatched Elegance

Today is January 10, 2024. I have been involved in the harvest and sorting of Akoya pearls since last month. Tomorrow is the day for accepting submissions for the upcoming auction of harvested pearls, which will take place domestically in Japan. Top-grade pearls from pearl cultivators nationwide will be presented at this auction. Participation requires a rigorous screening process, and currently, it seems challenging for new entrants to join.

Preceding this auction, another auction is taking place in a different region, and the market for Akoya pearls this season is reportedly booming. Compared to the previous year, prices have doubled, and this season, they are trending 1.5 times higher than the previous year, breaking a five-year trend of stagnation or decline, partly influenced by the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pearls harvested at the pearl cultivation farm have been sorted by a few individuals, and today, the listing process for the auction has been completed. Both top-grade and quasi-top-grade pearls will be presented this time, with the final selection being made up to around grade 6. They are distinguished by factors such as round pearls, baroque pearls, color, and thin layers of nacre. Each lot is also categorized based on sizes ranging from 5mm to 9mm.

As a result, the final number of lots will exceed 300, totaling over 40 tons. Ten people will be tirelessly involved in the sorting process until early February.

Today, I compiled the sorted lots into an Excel spreadsheet. The list includes details such as pearl size, type (insert nucleus month, nucleus size, etc.), type of Akoya shell used, weight, and internal evaluated value.

While I enjoy working with pearl products, I find these administrative tasks challenging. Accuracy in calculations is crucial, and I need to be careful not to make mistakes. When I first joined, this process took me from 6 pm to 3 am at the hotel we were staying. Over the years, I have become more accustomed to this task, but it still sometimes extends past midnight.

Even after completing the list, at the reception, the association inspecting the submissions will weigh them, and discrepancies in pearl weight may occur. I need to reflect these changes in the list and distribute the documents to my superiors and the farm manager, who scrutinize them rigorously. This moment always causes anxiety and discomfort in my stomach.

After that, I distribute the list of pearls we are putting up for auction to our clients. Creating this document is also a challenging task for me.

By the time these complicated tasks settle, the auction begins. During the auction, I record the daily bidding amounts in the documents and report the sales and weights for each pearl cultivation farm. Despite my struggle with calculations, I have become remarkably fast at punching numbers on the calculator.

Once these tasks are done, I plan to ship the pearls to customers who recently placed orders. Some customers tell me, “There’s no rush for shipping,” which genuinely warms my heart.

However, if it were me, I would want the ordered products to arrive as soon as possible, and I would be thrilled if they reached me quickly. Therefore, I want to deliver the pearls to customers as quickly as possible. I believe even pearls that have not basked in the sunlight for a long time need to shine. Since I’m currently on a business trip, I may not have dedicated accessory packaging boxes, but I will pack them as gift-worthy as possible.

I hope customers will be delighted when they open the package. When they see the pearls, I also hope they bring joy to the customers.

For customers, I may be a somewhat unknown person from a distant foreign land, and they might feel a mix of uncertainty and anticipation when placing an order at my store. I don’t want to betray the courage and expectations of such customers.

Today, it’s uncommonly raining. I will soon go to sleep, preparing for tomorrow.



I am part of a Japanese company with an Akoya pearl farm. Apart from the company, I personally run an Akoya pearl shop. I would appreciate it if I could share smiles with various people through pearls.

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