Pearls are valuable gemstones that are rarely found in wild oysters. A surprise discovery in your food is rarely good news, but for one man in New York it turned out to be a real stroke of luck.
1 in 10,000 – The odds of actually finding a natural pearl in an oyster. 1 in 1 million – The odds of one of those above-mentioned mollusks producing a pearl of gemstone quality. $200-$400 – The average appraised value of the pearls diners find on their dinner plates. .
According to history and the myths, pearls are symbolic of wisdom gained through experience. The gems are believed to offer protection, as well as attract good luck and wealth. They are well-known for their calming effects. Pearls have a way of bringing balance to your karma.
Today, natural pearls are extremely rare. Only 1 in about 10,000 wild oysters will yield a pearl and of those, only a small percentage achieve the size, shape and colour desirable to the jewellery industry.
Symbolism Of Pearl
Pearls have long been associated with wisdom gained through experience. They are thought to offer protection as well as good luck. Pearls are often used for their calming effects and help to balance your karma.
Around the world, people considered the Oyster as a symbol of prosperity, reincarnation, protection, fertility, and femininity. These associations appear in Babylon, Egypt, China, Tibet, and Sumeria, just to name a few. Among the Greek, Aphrodite, a Goddess of passion and beauty drifted in an Oyster Shell to Cyprus.
However, on average, a pearl’s value ranges from $300 to $1500.
Typical Price Range: Low: below US$200. Average: US$200 – US$600. Fine Quality: US$1000 – US$36,000 or more.
Oysters that can produce pearls only once could be released back to the oceans but they are rather killed and sold for their meat and other parts. And the ones that could be nucleated again might die by accident when the pearl is cut out.
Jesus said, “The Father’s kingdom is like a merchant who had a supply of merchandise and found a pearl. That merchant was prudent; he sold the merchandise and bought the single pearl for himself. So also with you, seek his treasure that is unfailing, that is enduring, where no moth comes to eat and no worm destroys.”
Let’s look at this verse in a slightly larger context: “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces” (Matthew 7:6).
Pearl signifies faith, charity and innocence. It enhances personal integrity and helps to provide a focus to ones attention. Pearl symbolises purity and is known as a “stone of sincerity”. It brings truth to situations and loyalty to a “cause”.
So, the simple answer of whether pearl farms kill the oyster is.. yes. The end goal of a pearl farm is to breed the mollusks, produce the pearl and ultimately kill the oyster. The mussel meat is then eaten and the shell is repurposed into mother of pearl inlay and other decorative accessories.
The process of producing a pearl can range from 6 months to several years. Even before this, it takes about 3 years for the mollusk to reach a mature age in order to produce a pearl. A mollusk is only able to begin the pearl making process naturally or with the help of humans when it reaches this mature age.
When a pearl in an oyster is ready, the harvester opens the shell, extracts the pearls and evaluates it for quality. Some oysters can produce two to three pearls over the courses of their lifetime, but only an oyster with pearls of good quality will repeat the process of producing a pearl.
Pearls, on one hand, are believed to bring health, fortune, luck and prosperity to the wearer. And yet, pearls in an engagement ring are still considered unlucky for brides in many cultures. The tears they represent might herald an unhappy marriage.
Silky and glistening with many shades, these precious gems seem to carry a one-of-a-kind energy. Often tagged as being gifts of grace and glamor, pearls also carry a luminous water energy and a sense of harmony as they are created in synergy with other living creatures (marine pearl oysters and freshwater mussels).
The inner glow (orient) of pearls is thought to tap inner wisdom and nurture love. Pearls are also believed to signify innocence and faith. Practitioners use pearls to enhance personal integrity, bring truth forward, grow sincerity, inhibit immodest behavior and advance in wisdom.
It is recommended to drink either beer, wine or soft-drinks with oysters since strong spirits does not aid in the digestion of oysters. Stout and champagne are traditional drinks to accompany oysters.
Pea crabs are a sign of healthy oyster populations in quality water. Historically, they’re considered lucky in the south and are highly sought by celebrity chefs and even our nation’s first president George Washington. So, the next time you find a pea crab in your oyster, smile and enjoy!
Oysters are rich in vitamins and nutrients
Oysters contain a variety of vitamins and nutrients including zinc, calcium, magnesium, protein, selenium, and vitamin A. They also contain especially high levels of vitamin B12, iron and monounsaturated fat – the “healthy” kind of fat that you also find in olive oil.
Pearls come in a wide range of colors, with blue being the rarest shade. When occurring naturally, blue pearls come with very high price tags. The overtones in blue pearls vary from light aquamarine to very dark, deep blue.
Naturally colored blue pearls are the rarest pearl colors in the world (with one or two exceptions, which we will get to below). The color has existed in pearls for decades, but only recently have naturally colored blue pearls gained popularity in the modern pearl jewelry markets.
The qualities that determine the overall value of a natural or cultured pearl or a piece of pearl jewelry are size, shape, color, luster, surface quality, nacre quality, and—for jewelry with two or more pearls—matching.