Boliden has started production at a new silver concentrator at its zinc smelter and refinery in Kokkola, Finland. The majority of the zinc concentrates processed at Kokkola are from Boliden’s own mines in Sweden and Ireland, but concentrates are also purchased from other mining companies in Europe, North America and Peru.

The new silver concentrator will process these concentrates via flotation and filtration ahead of smelting to produce a silver concentrate. The silver concentrate will be processed at the smelter or sold to external customers.

“This new process is of great importance for Boliden Kokkola since it will improve both profitability and raw material efficiency. Silver concentrate will now be one of Boliden Kokkola’s most valuable byproducts,” said Jarmo Herronen, general manager at Boliden Kokkola.

Boliden Kokkola has production capacity of 315,000 mt/y of zinc in zinc metal and alloys. It began production in 1969 and is the second largest zinc plant in Europe. About 85% of its production is exported, its most important market areas being northern and central Europe.

Since 2010, the smelter has also produced sulphuric acid.