January 3, 2018
Unimin Canada is making a multi-million dollar investment in the modernization of the company’s mining and manufacturing operations at Blue Mountain in the Kawartha Lakes region of Ontario.
“To sustain our operations in the Kawartha Lakes region over the long-term, it is critical that we continue to increase efficiency levels and stay competitive in the marketplace,” said Carl Horvat, Regional General Manager in a company press release. “We appreciate that this will affect a number of valued employees and will work with everyone involved over the next two years, to manage this transition effectively.”
When completed, the new operation will further improve the site’s environmental footprint and support continued mining, manufacturing, and employment at the facility for many more decades. The modernization will enable the optimization of new technologies and practices to reduce noise, dust, lighting, and use of water, as well as electricity, and will provide improved capabilities to serve coatings, polymers, glass, and ceramics markets.
The long-term sustainability of this operation is one of the key goals of this project.
Upon the completion of the modernization scheduled for early 2020, Blue Mountain’s sister operation at Nephton will be closed. Unimin will work closely with its staff and labour representatives to determine mutually effective adjustment measures for the approximately 100 employees who will be affected. During the modernization, the Nephton facility will remain fully operational.
The facility’s product, Canadian Nepheline (Nepheline Syenite), used worldwide, is a high-quality ingredient used in the production of glass, paint, insulation, and ceramic tile as well as in polymers and coatings. It is processed without toxic chemicals, making the process environmentally friendly.