Ariki is a jewellery and souvenir manufacturer based in Blenheim, New Zealand. The Paua is a shellfish (Haliotis Iris) and although part of the abalone family, is unique to New Zealand’s environmentally pure, southern Pacific coastal waters. The Paua is renowned throughout the world for not only its beautifully coloured shell but also for its edible, dark full flavoured flesh.

Paua Quota System

Divers harvest the Paua from the clear coastal waters around New Zealand’s extensive coastline. This natural resource is sustainable. It is protected by a government managed quota system which regulates the number of Paua that can be harvested each season by the quota holders. Recreational divers may take only a limited number per day and the Paua shell must be no smaller than a regulated size. The use of equipment is controlled, as divers must “free dive” without the use of air tanks. The regulations are strictly enforced and there are regular compliance checks by fishery protection officers.

The main purpose for harvesting Paua is to obtain the Paua meat, with the shell being left as a by-product. Without a long established industry for using the Paua shells, the shells would be discarded and left to gradually degrade. Ariki, being the original Paua shell manufacturer, has made full use of these shells in jewellery and ornaments for over 85 years.

Sustainablility in the Ariki workplace

Ariki staff are committed to being environmentally friendly. We are mindful of the impact we make on our local environment. Where possible, we reduce, reuse and recycle.

Paua Shell Quota System