There are different types of pearls that come from many different locations around the world. The Saltwater Akoya cultured pearl is one of the better known types of pearls. Japan has long been the leader in Akoya pearl cultivating, however the Chinese have recently made many advances in their cultivating methods that have allowed them to match the Japanese quality with Akoya pearls under 8.0mm in diameter.
Most Akoya pearls found today that are smaller than 8mm are quite likely to come from China. Any Akoya pearls that are larger than 8mm will almost exclusively come from Japan. Freshwater pearls are produced mostly in China, as the Japanese focus mainly on their Akoya collection.
Around the Northern Seas of Australia there are many south sea pearl farms creating some of the most exquisite pearls in the world. Produced in both gold and white, there are not many pearls that can match the south sea’s luster and huge size. Finally, the South Sea Tahitian pearls, which are fairly new compared to the Akoya pearl, come from the French Polynesia area between China and Australia. These darker colored pearls can reach a very large size, and they are very valuable pearl jewelry. High quality Tahitian pearl necklaces can sell for well over $25,000 retail.