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  1. #1
    Pearl Maven Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Caitlin's Avatar
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    Default How about Fiji Pearls?

    Look what I found: LINK


    Local pearl farmers to export to America

    7/28/2008

    Fiji's local village based pearl farmers now have the opportunity to export their black pearls directly to the USA.
    However, they desperately need assistance in pearl cultivation and harvesting if they are to succeed in attracting prominent pearl buyers from this market. This was the views shared by Carolyn Ehret, a black pearl buyer and jewelry designer from the USA who recently visited pearl farmers in Labasa and Savusavu.
    Although she bought all the quality black pearls that local farmers had, Ms Ehret was disappointed she could not buy more.
    ?These local village farmers are so nice, but they really need much help to increase their production and I hope the Fiji Government can help them,? she said. Ms Ehret's visit to the local pearl farmers in Vanua Levu was organised by the Fiji Trade Commission in Los Angeles.
    ?Mrs Ehret was an honest and genuine buyer who was impressed with our black pearls. It was good that we were able to meet and do business directly with her,? said Taveuni black pearl farmer and jeweler Noleen Billings. ?This is our first time with a US buyer and the experience has given us all some good ideas of what to expect in the future. It is good that our Trade Commission in Los Angeles is streamlining the right type of buyers from the United States.?
    ?We are targeting small volume pearl buyers as a start, and we have not yet considered the medium scale buyers because the supply capacities of our village farmers is very limited at present and growing slowly,? said Trade Commissioner to the USA Ilisoni Vuidreketi. Ms Ehret who buys pearls from Tahiti and the Cook Islands, plans to add Fiji to her list of black pearl suppliers and will visit the local farmers in Vanua Levu during their future harvesting season to buy all the pearls they can produce. ?The message here is very clear, Fiji's black pearl industry holds a lot of potential for growth and the Trade Commission is ready to send US buyers directly to the village farmers to buy all the pearls they can produce. But our farmers need help to increase and expand their supply qualities and volumes at the production levels,? Mr Vuidreketi said.
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  2. #2
    thou shall read the book Senior Guide Member effisk's Avatar
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    I wonder how farmers from Fiji and the Cooks will be affected by the crisis in Fp.

  3. #3
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by effisk View Post
    I wonder how farmers from Fiji and the Cooks will be affected by the crisis in Fp.
    As long as it is 'Tahitian Pearls' and not 'Black Pearls' with an image crisis, it should have the positive effect of opening doors for the other producing countries. This is already evidenced by Carolyn's ever widening search for quality. Just not as friendly and convenient for the high-volume players.
    Steve
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  4. #4
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member Mervione's Avatar
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    What kind of oyster does these pearls come from? Same as the tahitian and cook island pearls?
    Actually have an avatar.
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  5. #5
    thou shall read the book Senior Guide Member effisk's Avatar
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    Pinctada margaritifera, yes.

    As long as it is 'Tahitian Pearls' and not 'Black Pearls' with an image crisis, it should have the positive effect of opening doors for the other producing countries.
    Crisis in Fp means lower prices; will farmers in Fiji and the Cooks still be able to compete? The only way to compete with lower prices (and maybe lower quality pearls) is to offer a different product. A different label ('Fiji pearls' or whatever) won't fool a buyer. So what's left? Higher quality pearls? The CI are not known for high quality pearls (and more low quality pearls smuggled from Fp won't help). Justin Hunter's approach with very colorful (and bigger?) pearls might be a good solution for Fijian farmers. Is there a big market for that kind of pearls?

  6. #6
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Sounds like a potential image problem to me. Erosion of the 'Tahiti' brand would help to democratize the black pearl industry. Problem is, who is in position to take advantage in any meaningful way?

    Actually I think Fiji has plenty of potential as a brand, Cook Islands less so. But low volumes would dictate absolute dedication to quality.
    Steve
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  7. #7
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Nerida's Avatar
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    I agree with Steve - Fiji as a brand is much more appealing than CI. Fiji has been a regular family holiday destination for us for years and someone like Carolyn buying there would indeed be big news. Like most polynesian communities, Fiji isn't exactly a thriving economy, and government unrest has the effect of destabilising the tourist industry from time to time. They need all the help and support they can get.

  8. #8
    thou shall read the book Senior Guide Member effisk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerida View Post
    I agree with Steve - Fiji as a brand is much more appealing than CI.
    This is something the CI Pearl Authority has been working on lately. Not sure if they've come up with a name yet.

  9. #9
    Member Mka4972's Avatar
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    Last time I went to Japan I had a meeting with somone who sold Fiji pearls. The quality was terrible not quite like what you see in the pictures on the internet. The good quality is very limited and scooped up right away. However I would love to get my hands on a nice lot of Fiji pearls..
    Pearl Buyer/Manager
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