Akoya pearls are bead-nucleated cultured pearls produced in the Pinctada fucata martensii and Pinctada fucata chemnitzii primarily in Japan, China, Vietnam, South Korea and Australia.Saltwater Akoya pearls are the classic pearl. They were the first variety of pearl to ever be cultured in the early 1900s.
Pearl producers cultivate akoya pearls in a bivalve mollusk of the Pinctada genus. The primary species used in cultivation are the Pinctada fucata (specifically the sub-species martensii) and the Pinctada chemnizti. The Pinctada fucata martensi is native to the coastal waters of Japan, while the Pinctada chemnitzi is more prolific in the Gulf of Tonkin and along the coast of China. Today, most akoya pearl producers in both China and Japan cultivate with a hybridization of the two species. As with all cultured pearls, Akoya oysters are nucleated with a hard-shell bead and mantle tissue from an oyster that has produced a high-quality pearl in the past. But compared with the other species of saltwater cultured pearl oysters, many more Akoya oysters are nucleated. Generally, Akoya cultured pearls take 10 to 18 months from the time they are nucleated to the point they're ready for harvest. Now, there are so many experts like Real Shoppee believe that Akoya pearls have the highest lustre of all cultured pearls, and it has to do with their nacre coating.
The akoya oyster is the smallest pearl-producing oyster used in pearl culture today, so akoya pearls also tend to be small, ranging in size from about 2 to 11 millimeters. They also tend to be the most consistently round and near-round pearls, making them ideal in terms of matching for multi-pearl jewelry such as strands, Pearl bracelets and Pearl Necklace.