Controlling Pearl Color: Pigment Inhibitors, Promoters and Delivery Systems

Award Information
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2003-33610-13011
Agency Tracking Number: 2003-00492
Amount: $75,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2003
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
Black Pearls, Inc.
P.O. Box 525, Holualoa, HI, 96725
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Neil Sims
 Vice President and Research Director
 (808) 331-1188
Business Contact
 Dale Sarver
Title: President
Phone: (808) 331-1188
Research Institution
NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: The color of nacre is one of the most significant criteria in determining the value of a pearl. Nacre color is due to both schemochromic phenomena and biochromes (pigments). The vast majority of pearl farm profits comes from the small percentage of pearls that have a perfect surface, good color, and high luster. Even small increases in these quality factors can radically increase profits. Positive results from this work will allow us to gain some control over these important characteristics and produce higher value pearls. This patentable technology would increase the profitability of BPI affiliated farms, and allow additional income through licensing agreements with other farms.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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