US Abalone: Aquaculture
in harmony with nature
David A. Ebert, Ph.D.
Wednesday, August 16, 2000
3:00 p.m.—Pacific Forum
US Abalone, located just north of the town of Davenport, California,
was incorporated in October 1988 and began operations in December 1989.
Declining wild populations combined with increasing demand created an
opportunity to fill the gap between demand and supply. The abalone is a
unique animal for culturing in that every part of the animal can be
marketed. The meat can be sold live in the shell (processed fresh or
frozen), the shells can be sold for jewelry, the viscera can be sold as
bait, and pearls can be cultured from them.
The cultivation of abalone pearls holds tremendous promise, because a
single gem-quality abalone pearl can bring more than 50 times the value
for the same abalone sold live in the shell. US Abalone is the largest
producer of cultured abalone pearls in the world, having launched our
commercial production in 1999. Our abalone pearls are marketed under a
subsidiary "Pearls of Passion."
Aquaculture is an environmentally friendly industry, it relieves
pressure from the wild population of many commercially important species,
and as many populations of finfish and shellfish decline, aquaculture will
continue to increase in importance as a source for many of our fresh
seafood and other aquatic products.
Next: 2000 Annual Intern Symposium