Harvest Minerals has issued an update on the Arapua fertiliser project and says it has started infrastructure work in preparation of commencing open pit mining.
The company is also preparing the drill pads for the start of a new drill programme at its Maximus phosphate project, located in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais.
Last week, the Company carried out a topographic survey and started fencing the lease area to keep livestock away from the project site. The contractor has now broken ground at the site and started to remove the topsoil from the stockpile area.
The entire civil works, including construction of site access and the stockpile areas, as well as removal and stockpiling of the overburden from the planned open pit, is expected to take approximately 30 business days to complete. By this time, the Company hopes to have also received the Trial Mining permit.
The Company has also started the preparation for a new 35 hole air core drill programme at the project. The aim of this drill programme is to increase the size of the current resource to support an increased mine life and production rate as well as define the full extent of the mineralisation at Maximus.
All the drill hole locations have now been surveyed and work on preparing the drill pads commenced yesterday.
The drilling contractor is expected on site mid-October and the programme is expected to take 25 days to complete, after which the core will be sampled and sent for assay.
Executive chairman Brian McMaster said: "We are very pleased with the progress to date. The completion of these initial civil groundworks is expected to coincide with the award of the Trial Mining permit, allowing us to start production around the end of October, well ahead of schedule. Meanwhile, the drill programme should allow us to increase the size of the resource enabling us to demonstrate long term supply to potential customers."