What is the Price of a conch pearl?
There is not one week I don’t receive an email or a phone call, asking for help to value a Conch Pearl. The price of conch pearl could be very obscure for someone outside the trade. Moreover, believe it or not, inside the trade as well experts have difficulties to value conch pearls. Some trade for few hundreds per carat, some other can go as high as $20,000 per carat.
First of all, one needs to understand that Conch pearls are rare. I want to put the emphasis on it. It’s probably the rarest gem in the world. Therefore, only a few people have access to those pearls and this is not an easy thing to value them. Being exposed to Conch Pearls is getting rarer and rarer since the total population of the animal is decreasing. Therefore the annual “collection” of Conch Pearls decreases.
We had the chance to trade thousands and thousands of pearls over the past 20 years. As far as I’m concerned, 4 criteria play a crucial role in the valuation of a Conch Pearl.
Price elements of Conch Pearl :
- The Shape: It’s the most important element since it is the one which will define the Jewellery one will able to produce. The most sought after are the round ones, this they are extremely rare, due to the internal shape of the shell. Then the oval shape, marquise, semi-baroque and baroque.
- The color: The pinkier, the better. Some markets value sakura pink over flamingo pink or salmon pink, whereas others put the flamingo pink first. It’s a question of taste on this part of the end customers.
- The weight: Nothing complicated here, the bigger, the better, the more value your pearl would have.
- Flame structure. Despite the fact that most people put it as a major element in the price structure, I personally prefer putting it as the last factor which adds a tremendous premium on the price of a Conch Pearl if and only if the other factors are here.
A 1ct baroque brown pearl with a “fire gem” flame structure will have more or less the same value as a similar pearl with no visible flame structure. On the contrary, a 5ct oval pearl with a “silky gem” flame structure could worth 10 times more than the same pearl without a visible flame.
In conclusion, as many other gems, there is always a part of subjectivity based on emotions for those natural pearls, nevertheless, those 4 factors are the key drivers when it comes to price your Conch Pearl.
Here is some Gemological Approach to conch pearls