Scallop in half shell
Many species of scallops are highly prized as a food source, and some are farmed as aquaculture. The word "scallop" is also applied to the meat of these bivalves when it is sold as seafood. In addition the name "scallop" is used as part of the name of dishes based on the meat of scallops, and is even applied to some dishes not containing scallop at all but which are prepared in a similar fashion. The brightly colored, symmetrical, fan-shaped shells of scallops with their radiating and often fluted sculpture are valued by shell collectors, and have been used since ancient times as motifs in art, architecture and design.
Scallops do produce pearls, though the pearls do not have the buildup of layers, or “nacre”, and may not have luster or iridescence. They can be dull, small and of varying color, but there are exceptions that are appreciated for their aesthetic qualities.