About Simply Shells
Shells and starfish have many decorative functions and can be used just about anywhere for any occasion. They bring a sense of calm and freshness that only the sea can offer.
I’m sure that the first thing that comes to mind, especially in our ever growing environmentally conscious world, is that “I love these shells, but surely its not good for our environment”. Thats exactly what we thought when we started selling them and was the first question we asked our suppliers. The fact is, collection and trading in shells has been going on for centuries and we only sell shells that are in abundance and prolific breeders. We do not, and will never, trade in black market shells. The shells, starfish and sea urchins we sell are not threatened species. Starfish are extremely prolific breeders, with females of some species producing millions of eggs. The shells and starfish collected are common, commercial-grade shells and they are not threatened. Communities in developing countries have harvested seashells and urchins for food for centuries. The income from the subsequent sale of the remaining shell is often their sole livelihood. In many of the developing countries, these communities are being taught and encouraged to exercise stewardship of their reefs to ensure sustainable harvesting into the future, for example, coral harvesting in Fiji, and seahorse farming in the Philippines.
The greatest issue facing coral reefs today is climate change, bleaching and coral disease. We definately do not want to part of that and don’t offer, or intend to, anything that is detrimental to the eco-system.
We only deal with sustainable resources. Most of the shells are prolfic breeders, literally laying 1000s and 1000s of eggs. The quantities we sell are in the hundreds and have no impact on their species, in fact more quantities probably die of natural causes in the wild than we sell.
Some of the shell species we offer are a by-product of their industries. Pearl shells, for example, are harvested from clams and once the pearl is extracted, we’re left with a stunning “mother of pearl” shell.
Shell numbers are monitored
When our shells are imported into Australia numbers are strictly monitored by customs. Heavy fines are handed out for illegally importing “black market” shells.