This is an original discovery that could bring him big. A Thai fisherman may have found “whale vomit” on January 3rd. According to Bangkok Post, the man picked up a curious bumpy mass, weighing six kilos on a Koh Phaluai beach. After months of searching, he asked the local authorities for help in determining whether or not it is ambergris, also known as “whale vomit” or “floating gold”.
A find that could make it rich: it is estimated at 298,000 euros. It must be said that the substance is rare and much sought after in the world of perfumery. The “whale vomit” helps to fix the odors. The gray and yellow mass is created in the digestive tract of the large sperm whales. Cetaceans consume large quantities of squid and cuttlefish and digest only the flesh and no other parts of the body like the beaks, explains West France.
57,000 euros for 1.57 kg
These elements are mostly expelled before digestion by sperm whales. But on rare occasions, they end up in their intestines and over the years, the elements aggregate to form a compact mass: ambergris. A ball of material that whales end up expelling into the oceans and which has been the happiness of perfumers since the dawn of time: Herman Melville already evoked this floating gold in his novel Moby Dick in 1851.
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The substance contains indeed amberine, a form of alcohol that, once extracted, helps to prolong the smell of a perfume over time. While ambergris is often replaced by chemical substitutes in the world of perfumery, luxury brands still use it for their most expensive perfumes. Thus, this “whale vomit” rips at the price of gold.
In 2013, recalls The Parisiana man had found a piece of three-pound gray amber on a beach in north-west England. A buyer had offered him 50,000 euros. In 2016, two walkers had also found a block of 1.57 kilo, estimated this time to nearly 57,000 euros.