TORONTO (miningweekly.com) – Vancouver-based Farallon Mining produced a best-ever 23,4-million pounds of zinc in concentrate and 2,4-million pounds of copper in concentrate, plus by-product silver and gold, from its G-9 mine, in Mexico, in the fourth quarter of 2009.
The record production was achieved as the company increased the average mill throughput to 1 550 t/d in the quarter, actually exceeding the mill design of 1 500 t/d.
Farallon said the mill expansion under way at G-9, which is designed to increase throughput to 2 000 t/d, remains on track for completion in July and on budget of $5,3-million.
Axxent Engineering has ordered all the key pieces of process equipment and site construction begin next month.
Farallon is financing the mill expansion from its current cash balance of $22-million and cash flow generated by operations.
"The initiatives that were undertaken in the third quarter to improve mill availability paid off and the mill has now been successfully ramped up to full design capacity,” commented CEO Dick Whittington.
“With the mill expansion on track to increase production and our exploration programme delivering excellent results, we are well positioned to grow our production profile and add mine life in 2010,” he said in a statement.
The company also remains focused on potential acquisitions.
Farallon processed 142 752 t of ore in the fourth quarter, compared with 117 318 t in the three months ended September 30.
Metallurgical recoveries also improved, with zinc recoveries at 80%, compared with 79% in the third quarter, and copper recoveries at 56%, up from 46% in the third quarter.
Farallon achieved commercial production at its G-9 mine in April last year.