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4.1 Government Policy and Production Strategy

  1. Full support from the government is necessary and the key to success will be establishing a hatchery breeding facility to ensure that a constant supply of oysters is available.

  2. Besides the black-lipped cultured pearls, consider culturing white-lipped cultured pearls that are not only profitable but also marketable, and also the Akoya pearls (although demand for them is currently declining).

  3. Fully understand the local people and also the culture of the country prior to determining business policy. (refer to problems of G.I.E. Poe Rava Nui)

  4. Have knowledgeable seeding technicians, such as the experienced Japanese ones. The important point is to have a key person control and manage the team of technicians.

  5. Consider how technicians are paid. In Tahiti, the technician's salary is based on the number of implantations the technician made. This must be revisited, however, because under these payment conditions there is a tendency for the work of the technicians to become rough.

  6. Consider the length of the contract. Long-term contracts are preferable, because pearl culturing methods may differ according to the farming ground, and may require adapting or improvement over time.

  7. Establish a vocational school to educate and train the local people. It may be difficult to induce the Japanese technicians to share their knowledge, because doing so might jeopardize their livelihood. But, like most skills, knowing the theory does not ensure practical success, and even if the pearl seed planting theory and process is understood by amateur technicians, it does not mean they can easily produce quality pearls. It is said that only 5–10 % of the harvest is qualified as “superior” quality pearls, and it is the personal ability and experience of seasoned technicians that produces even this small percentage. In other words, time and experience will be necessary for newcomers to the industry to improve their techniques.

4.2 Sales

It may take some time to produce enough pearls to hold an auction, so newcomers will probably have to deal with a buyer on a private settlement basis. The choice of the buyers is most important, because buyers can take advantage of a newcomer's inexperience. Producers should have an established organization to control the total harvest and to act as liaison to avoid any unnecessary loss to the producers.

Like the G.I.E. Poe Rava Nui organization, it is important to get all the producers' cooperation, gather the total harvest, and hold one unified, controlled auction. If the auction is held on an open basis, producers are certainly able to gain higher returns. If, however, the producers deal directly with the buyers, they would be limited in making saleable lots, and any lack of experience would surely be disadvantageous. In any case, new producers need experienced people who have thorough knowledge of the market (including other cultured pearls) to maneuver through the auction successfully. These key people will be obliged to value, rank, and sort the pearls favorably and fix the price accordingly, so greater profits are ensured. The benefit of organizing this way will be unification and solidarity for member producers, and assurance that they will not flirt with buyers.

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