K92 Mining Inc.’s (TSX : KNT) (OTCQX : KNTNF) processing plant set records for daily processing throughput in Q3. These include a monthly record of 1,542 tonnes per day, and a new daily record set in late September of 1,867 tonnes processed.
On Thursday, the company announced its production results for Q3, 2023 at its Kainantu Gold Mine in Papua New Guinea.
The company reported producing 26,225 ounces gold equivalent (AuEq) or 22,227 ounces of gold, as well as 1.7 million pounds of copper and 40,233 ounces of silver. Sales during the quarter were 18,339 ounces of gold, 1.2 million pounds of copper and 30,484 ounces of silver.
In the latter part of September, the team achieved a significant milestone by extracting the first ore tonnes from the twin incline. This accomplishment occurred approximately two months ahead of initial expectations.
The discovery of thick Judd mineralization was a key factor in this early success, and it occurred during the development of the first waste pass access drive.
This particular area had been sparsely drilled in the past and was previously interpreted as waste. The team proceeded to advance two ore drives, one approximately 7 meters to the south and another 7 meters to the north. These drives revealed multiple high-grade faces, as confirmed by channel samples.
A diamond drill rig is scheduled to initiate drilling in this region shortly. The purpose of this drilling is to assess the area’s potential and identify which Judd vein corresponds to the drive.
Mining operations for Kora via the twin incline are set to begin in December. With the development of this second mining front, K92 anticipates a significant enhancement in mine flexibility and productivity. This will be achieved by leveraging the extensive and highly efficient infrastructure of the twin incline.
Safety incident at mine impacts company quarterly production
A safety incident on June 28 had an impact on the company’s production for the quarter. This incident led to the suspension of underground mining operations for a period of 9 days. As a result, the high-grade stoping tonnes that were initially planned to be mined in September had to be postponed to the fourth quarter. Additionally, K92 had scheduled maintenance for the process plant, which took 4.5 days in mid-July.
Following the commissioning of the Stage 2A Plant Expansion in May, the process plant has continued to record a significant increase in metallurgical recoveries for gold and copper. Recoveries for Q3 averaged 92 per cent for gold and 93 per cent for copper, significantly higher than the 2022 average of 90.4 per cent for gold and 90.5 per cent for copper. In the month of September, a new recovery record of 93.7 per cent for copper was achieved. K92 is continuing with optimization efforts, including increasing throughput.
The mine delivered yet another material movement record in Q3 despite operations being impacted in July due to the safety incident, with 124,236 tonnes of ore mined and 305,506 tonnes of total material mined (ore plus waste).
During the quarter, 11 levels were mined, and the mill head grade averaged 7.32 g/t AuEq or 6.20 g/t gold, 0.72 per cent copper and 12.84 g/t silver, head grade was impacted by significantly more than budgeted processing of lower grade stockpiles following the safety incident on June 28, that suspended mining operations for 9 days.
Due to the unexpectedly challenging first quarter and the impact of the safety incident on June 28, 2023, K92 Mining is revising its production guidance. The new production guidance is set at 111,000 to 116,000 ounces of gold equivalent (initially projected at 120,000 to 140,000 ounces).
The cash cost and all-in sustaining cost guidance remain unchanged, with costs expected to range between $620 and $680 per ounce of gold, and all-in sustaining costs estimated to be between $1,180 and $1,300 per ounce of gold.
Additionally, the company has increased its exploration budget to $20 million, reflecting the promising results obtained from our vein and porphyry drill programs, compared to the initial budget of $13 million to $16 million.
Shares dipped 10.3 per cent to $4.95 on Thursday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Gold is more popular than ever
Gold has surged in popularity for its multifaceted appeal. Investors flock to gold as a reliable store of value and a safeguard against inflation, especially during times of economic uncertainty. Its enduring beauty and cultural significance make it a sought-after material for jewelry and ornaments. With the advent of ETFs and digital investment platforms, owning gold has become more accessible to a broader range of individuals.
Here and a handful of companies operating in the gold mining space.
Calibre Mining Corp. (TSX: CXB) (OTCQX: CXBMF) increased its cash flow by 72 percent since the start of the year, with an additional 26 percent growth in the last quarter.
In its latest report covering the three and nine months ending on September 30, the gold mining company disclosed that its cash reserves have risen to USD$97 million since the previous quarter. Furthermore, K92 celebrated its fourth consecutive record-breaking gold production.
Calibre Mining Corp. achieved a milestone with a consolidated quarterly gold production of 73,485 ounces, marking a significant 50 percent increase compared to the same period in 2022 when production was at 49,081 ounces.
Lion One Metals Limited (TSXV: LIO) (OTCQX: LOMLF) (ASX: LLO) recently marked a significant milestone with a ceremonial first gold pour at its flagship mining operation in Fiji. The event took place on Fiji’s national holiday and drew a crowd of over 900 attendees.
This celebration, hosted by the mining company headquartered in North Vancouver, unfolded at the Tuvatu gold mine on October 10, coinciding with Fiji Day. It witnessed the presence of key figures, including the country’s minister for mineral resources, government officials, Lion One’s leadership, as well as members of local communities and businesses.
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