creation of " l’Office Polynésien d’Expertise et
Commercialisation de la Perle de Culture de Tahiti (OPEC) "
is an important chapter of the Tahitian pearl history.
By deciding to justificate and to attest the
real quality of cultured pearls sold by the OPEC, Pierre Lérigé,
OPEC'S chairman, has revolutioned the negociation and
selling process of cultured pearls, in the world.
His decision, taken in the beginning of
1990's, to give an X- ray certificate to all of his
customers of the pearls they were buying, has probably been
the most important step in the pearl history, after the
discovering of the pearl production by MIKIMOTO at the
begining of the last century.
The real and true quality of a pearl can only
be confirmed by an X-ray certificate.
By informing and showing how to an
un-informed public, Pierre Lérigé has set up the
transparancy concept in a sector which may need all these
By refusing to sell bad quality cultured
pearls, and this, even if they've got a good general aspect, he did ebranlate the international pearl
negociating sector: « Don't speak about quality, show it! ».
By respect for Pearls, to their customers and its integrity.
By imposing the concept that a cultured pearl
may only be defined by the quantity and the quality of the
nacre thickness, Pierre Lérigé did advise all potential pearls
customers: " a bad quality
pearl will quickly "die", and a real and true quality pearl
defined by the X-ray certification, will become a patrimoine
element, an eternernal gift ".
Pierre Lérigé was conscient of the commercial
interest of uncertified pearls but he did prefer to take the
risk of setting up his concept of real X-ray certification.
The tahitian corporation, agree with his methods, may
In 1999, the French Polynesian Public
Instances, 1st cultured pearls exporter in the world, have
decided to generalize and impose the idea of a minimum
thickness of natural nacre for pearls which may be certified
« Perle de Culture de Tahiti ».
Each exported tahitian cultured pearl will
have to be controled by X-ray process.
One check what is the minimum admited by the
legislation, but the way is open...
A way made of True and Sagesse.