Production of Dicalcium Phosphate for livestock in north west Queensland could soon become a reality in 2022, following the approval of a pre-feasibility study.
New Zealand's Chatham Rock Phosphate is adding to its phosphate production with planned manufacturing of DCP at Korella and Korella South, located southeast of Mount Isa.
The mineral is an essential ingredient in the diet for all farmed animals including beef cattle in feedlots as well as all dairy cattle in that it enables healthy bone growth.
DCP is currently a fully imported product that has recently become subject to supply-chain difficulties.
Chatham Rock Phosphate president and CEO Chris Castle said they were conducting a pre-feasibility study, before production gets underway.
"Having regard to the high demand for DCP in Australia and in particular Queensland beef feedlots, attention turned to looking at sources of phosphate in Northern Territory and Queensland," Mr Castle said.
"Since the merger of Avenir Makatea and CRP in July 2021, a detailed scoping study for siting of the DCP plant has been undertaken in conjunction with Prayon having regard to supply of the three key ingredients, phosphate, limestone and sulfuric acid. Three sites were considered, one in the Northern Territory and three in Queensland.
"Following the recent the application for an exploration area at Korella South adjacent to the Korella Mine, the decision has now been taken to progress to the Prefeasibility Study stage with plant proposed to be located at Korella South and supplied with phosphate from the adjacent Korella Mine."
The Korella South exploration area of 196 square kilometres will potentially increase phosphate reserves and associated rare earths.
Mr Castle said samples of Korella phosphate were currently being transported to phosphate technology specialists Prayon SA for testing to establish the parameters for production of DCP.
"Since Korella and Korella South are located in the Northwest Queensland mineral district both additional inputs i.e., limestone and sulfuric acid, are readily available locally," he said.
"With the expected arrival of samples in February 2022 at Prayon's European testing facility initial results are expected by the end of March 2022."
Chatham Rock Phosphate plans to become an international producer and trader of organic, low cadmium rock phosphate.
Following the acquisition of Korella in October 2021, Chatham is shortly to be a phosphate producing company with a mine and two projects in the pipeline.
This announcement of planned production of DCP is the fourth step forward for Chatham and is the first initiative in value-adding to our phosphate deposits through use of innovative technology.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content:
DO YOU HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY? Send letters to the editor or story tips to firstname.lastname@example.org
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.