Junior gold explorer Orinoco Gold (ASX: OGX) has published assay results from the Mestre Zone of its Cascavel mine in Brazil. The Cascavel Gold Mine lies within Orinoco’s Faina Project in the State of Goiás in central Brazil.
Orinoco says that from 19 samples, gold grades averaged 31.42g/t (grams per tonne) from its most recently collected samples, including a whopper sample returning 185g/t.
Today’s batch of results takes the total number of panel samples analysed from Mestre to 59, for a total average grade of 39.31 g/t, and the company says that “the Mestre Zone is proving to be the jewel in the crown” at Cascavel.
“These results represent only the start of Mestre. Our team is working extremely hard on defining new structures as the mine develops. With the results regularly being returned from the laboratory it will make grade reconciliation and control much easier. We are currently formulating a drilling programme for Cascavel to better understand structures, grade and the prospect that this orebody continues at depth,” said Orinoco Chief Geologist Dr Marcelo de Carvalho.
Orinoco has also confirmed that this latest batch of 19 samples average is broadly comparable to its recently published hammer mill results.
These latest assay results, in conjunction with test mill samples, confirm the high-grade nature of the Cascavel lodes and in particular, the Mestre zone.
Given the nature of the geology at Cascavel, Orinoco is deploying a “back to basics” approach focusing on low-dilution mining and effective processing.
Late last year, Orinoco reviewed the rates of mining dilution at Cascavel and determined that there was significant room for improvement in the ratio of gold mined versus gold processed for sale.
Given its findings, Orinoco selected to selectively mine the high-grade veins and then remove the waste material with mechanised means.
In 2013, Orinoco confirmed the presence of a large gold system at Cascavel, and in 2016 the Company commenced development aimed at establishing a 50,000 – 100,000tpa underground mine feeding an on-site gravity processing plant.
According to Orinoco, the poor recovered grades of the past year have been largely a reflection of poor processing efficiency and mining dilution; factors which are being prioritised for improvement.
The resource grades are suitably high for a commercially viable operation at Cascavel with the Mestre zone possibly hosting the most alluring mineralisation.