Mikimoto: A love letter to the sea

This year marks the 130th anniversary since the founder of Mikimoto, Kokichi Mikimoto, successfully created the world’s first cultured pearl. The Japanese jeweller will roll out a special campaign to celebrate the anniversary of this breakthrough

The first part of its anniversary campaign is called A Love Letter to the Sea, which can be found on a special website. On there, a series of films divided into six chapters will dive into the history of coexistence between the brand and the sea. “Pearls are a symbol of the beauty of the sea, and through its journey with pearls, Mikimoto re-acknowledges the fact that humans are a part of nature, and nature is a part of human existence,” stated the company.

Beyond this thoughtful and aesthetically pleasing tribute to the sea, Mikimito will continue its efforts to promote a sustainable coexistence with nature. Special emphasis is placed on the ocean, where its pearls are nurtured. This includes continuing its research on pearls, implementing zero-emission pearl farming system that collects and recycles all waste from its process, and introducing a new thread made from upcycled plastic bottle fibres for pearl stringing.

Sustainable pearl farming begins with cutting down on wastage. In the past, oysters were almost entire discarded discarded, except for the adductor muscles, which were used as food. In collaboration with its partners, Mikimimoto now reuses and recycles all waste from the pearl production process.

For example, useful components such as collagen and conchiolin, also known as pearl protein, are extracted from organic waste and used in cosmetics and dietary supplements. Oyster shells are used for ornamental purposes or to improve soil quality. Residues of oyster meat and sessile organisms on pearl oysters are used to make compost. The company aims to champion sustainable pearl farming while preserving biodiversity and ecosystems.

Kokichi Mikimoto, the founder of Mikimoto, placed great emphasis on quality in his journey to create the world’s first cultured pearl. So it’s only fitting that the jewellery company continues his legacy of making sure that standard is being met beyond just the craftsmanship and the pieces, but also in the way that they source their material.

Also see: Mikimoto: Pearls are everyone’s best friend

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