Our antimony smelter and precious
metals plant is located in the Burns Mining District of Sanders County,
Montana, approximately 15 miles west of Thompson Falls, MT. We hold 2
patented mill sites where the plant is located. We have no "proven
reserves" or "probable reserves" of antimony, as these terms are defined
by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Environmental restrictions
preclude mining at this site.
Mining was suspended in December
1983, because antimony could be purchased more economically from foreign
For 2019, and since 1983, we relied
on foreign sources for raw materials, and there are risks of
interruption in procurement from these sources and/or volatile changes
in world market prices for these materials that are not controllable by
us. We have sources of antimony in Mexico but we are still depending on
foreign companies for raw material in the future. We expect to receive
raw materials from our owned and leased properties for 2019 and later
years. We continue working with suppliers in North America, Central
America, Europe, Australia, and South America.
We currently own 100% of the common
stock, equipment, and the leases on real property of United States
Antimony, Mexico S.A. de C.V. or “USAMSA”, which was formed in April
1998. We currently own 100% of the stock in Antimony de Mexico SA de CV
(AM) which owns the San Miguel concession of the Los Juarez property.
USAMSA has three divisions, (1) the Madero smelter in Coahuila, (2) the
Puerto Blanco flotation mill and oxide circuit in Guanajuato that is
ramping up for 2020, and (3) the Los Juarez mineral deposit with
concessions in Queretaro and the Wadley mining concession in San Luis
In our existing operations in
Montana, we produce antimony oxide, sodium antimonate, antimony metal,
and precious metals. Antimony oxide is a fine, white powder that is used
primarily in conjunction with a halogen to form a synergistic flame
retardant system for plastics, rubber, fiberglass, textile goods,
paints, coatings and paper. Antimony oxide is also used as a color
fastener in paint, as a catalyst for production of polyester resins for
fibers and film, as a catalyst for production of polyethylene pthalate
in plastic bottles, as a phosphorescent agent in fluorescent light
bulbs, and as an opacifier for porcelains. Sodium antimonate is
primarily used as a fining agent (degasser) for glass in cathode ray
tubes and as a flame retardant. We also sell antimony metal for use in
bearings, storage batteries and ordnance.
We estimate (but have not
independently confirmed) that our present share of the domestic market
and international market for antimony oxide products is approximately 4%
and less than 1%, respectively. We are the only significant U.S.
producer of antimony products, while China supplies 92% of the world
antimony demand. We believe we are competitive both domestically and
world-wide due to the following:
We have a reputation for
quality products delivered on a timely basis.
We have two of the three
operating antimony smelters in North and Central America.
We are the major domestic
producer of antimony products.
We can ship on short notice to
We are vertically integrated,
with raw materials from our own mines, mills, and smelter in Mexico,
along with the raw materials from exclusive supply agreements we
have with numerous ore and raw material suppliers.
As a vertically integrated
company, we will have more control over our raw material costs.
We own 100% of Bear River Zeolite Company,
(BRZ an Idaho corporation) that was incorporated on June 1, 2000. BRZ
has a lease with Webster Farm, L.L.C. that entitles BRZ to surface mine
and process zeolite on property located near Preston, Idaho, in exchange
for a royalty payment. In 2010 the royalty was adjusted to $10 per ton
sold. The current minimum annual royalty is $60,000. In addition, BRZ
has more zeolite on U.S. Bureau of Land Management land. The Company
pays various royalties on the sale of zeolite products. William Raymond
and Nancy Couse are paid a royalty that varies from $1 to $5 per ton. On
a combined basis, royalties vary from 8%-13%. BRZ has constructed a
processing plant on the property and has improved its productive
capacity. We constructed a new warehouse in 2018 to expedite our
shipping and packaging for customers.
We have no "proven reserves" or "probable
reserves" of zeolite, as these terms are defined by the Securities and
"Zeolite" refers to a group of industrial
minerals that consist of hydrated aluminosilicates that hold cations
such as calcium, sodium, ammonium, various heavy metals, and potassium
in their crystal lattice. Water is loosely held in cavities in the
lattice. BRZ zeolite is regarded as one of the best zeolites in the
world due to its high CEC of approximately 180-220 meq/100 gr., its
hardness and high clinoptilolite content, its absence of clay minerals,
and its low sodium content. BRZ's zeolite deposits’ characteristics
which make the mineral useful for a variety of purposes including:
Soil Amendment and Fertilizer. Zeolite has
been successfully used to fertilize golf courses, sports fields, parks
and common areas, and high value agricultural crops
Water Filtration. Zeolite is used for
particulate, heavy metal and ammonium removal in swimming pools,
municipal water systems, fisheries, fish farms, and aquariums.
Sewage Treatment. Zeolite is used in sewage
treatment plants to remove nitrogen and as a carrier for microorganisms.
Nuclear Waste and Other Environmental
Cleanup. Zeolite has shown a strong ability to selectively remove
strontium, cesium, radium, uranium, and various other radioactive
isotopes from solution. Zeolite can also be used for the cleanup of
soluble metals such as mercury, chromium, copper, lead, zinc, arsenic,
molybdenum, nickel, cobalt, antimony, calcium, silver and uranium.
Odor Control. A major cause of odor around
cattle, hog, and poultry feed lots is the generation of the ammonium in
urea and manure. The ability of zeolite to absorb ammonium prevents the
formation of ammonia gas, which disperses the odor.
Gas Separation. Zeolite has been used for
some time to separate gases, to re-oxygenate downstream water from
sewage plants, smelters, pulp and paper plants, and fish ponds and
tanks, and to remove carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide and hydrogen sulfide
from methane generators as organic waste, sanitary landfills, municipal
sewage systems, animal waste treatment facilities, and is excellent in
pressure swing apparatuses.
Animal Nutrition. According to other
research, feeding up to 2% zeolite increases growth rates, decreases
conversion rates, and prevents scours. BRZ does not make these claims.
Miscellaneous Uses. Other uses include
catalysts, petroleum refining, concrete, solar energy and heat exchange,
desiccants, pellet binding, horse and kitty litter, floor cleaner and
carriers for insecticides, pesticides and herbicides.
Precious Metals (Gold and Silver):
USAC has reported progress on the gold and silver leach plant in
Guanajuato, Mexico for the Los Juarez property.
The shakedown of the cyanide plant at Puerto Blanco has progressed as
expected, and we look forward to becoming a gold and silver mining