Aguila Norte hits throughput record

Canadian explorer and mineral processor Peruvian Metals has had quite the June quarter at its Aguila Norte processing plant in northern Peru, recording the facility’s best-ever throughput
Aguila Norte hits throughput record Aguila Norte hits throughput record Aguila Norte hits throughput record Aguila Norte hits throughput record Aguila Norte hits throughput record

The Aguila Norte processing plant in northern Peru recently recorded the facility’s best-ever throughput

The company, which owns an 80% interest in the plant, said June quarter processing totalled 7,509t, a 357% spike over the March quarter. During the period, it focused on producing high-grade concentrates for third parties.

"Eight mineral campaigns or batches were processed ranging from 355 mt to 1,750 mt," officials confirmed, adding that all but one batch was polymetallic. Additionally, "excellent" recoveries were realised: 1,539t of zinc and 480t of lead-silver concentrates.

"More importantly, concentrate ratios averaged 3.72:1, showing that the plant is producing significant amounts of concentrate that will interest metal traders to enter into long-term off take agreements with Aguila Norte," Peruvian said. "The company is now confident that these metal traders will provide the upfront capital to purchase mineral from suppliers and to make further improvements to the plant."

The company noted that the Aguila Norte plant has a capacity of 100t/d or approximately 3,000t per month.

CEO Jeffrey Reeder pointed out that Peruvian Metals will now be in a position to start purchasing mineral near-term for processing, then sell concentrates to in-country traders.

"The company is continuing discussions with small miners to assist them geologically and, in return, either process their mineral for a fee or purchase the mineral outright. This has led us to review new potential properties for acquisition," he said.

Aguila Norte is permitted for an expansion to boost its current daily operational level. With its current momentum paired with its plans to convert to mineral purchasing and processing, it is projecting higher margins over the September quarter.