On a visit to China, we visited a government run pearl farm, and watched as they injected particles of sand into the oysters before lowering them into freshwater pools to wait for the pearls to form. I didn't know that pearls were merely Calcium Carbonate - how depressingly mundane! The Chinese eat ground up pearls as a calcium supplement, grind them up for face powder and add them to lanolin, beeswax and cocoa butter to produce face creams and exfoliants, as well as antiseptics.
Drilling holes in pearls can be tricky as the calcium is likely to crumble if handled wrongly - which is possibly why tiny pearl beads can be more expensive than the larger ones.
That's me for this week, folks. Have a fabulous week, and I'll catch you next week, same time, same place.