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Sustainably sourced minerals for the polymer industry

The picture shows David Alldén and Veronica Apelqvist standing next to the magnetite processing plant in Northern Sweden
Own European productions of core minerals is a differentiator for LKAB Minerals, combined with stringent sustainable sourcing processes that offer the assurance of value chain integrity to customers. The picture shows David Alldén and Veronica Apelqvist standing next to the magnetite processing plant in Northern Sweden. Photo: Fredrik Björkenwall, LKAB

Sustainability demands from the polymer industry throughout the entire value chain positively impacts LKAB Minerals.

Currently, our customers in the polymer industry are challenged by industrial end-users and the consumer markets alike to be completely sustainable. As a result, we have seen a positive change on the bottom line from our sustainability efforts.

LKAB Minerals pursues sustainability as a core strategy. “Our owner (LKAB) has very stringent demands on our operations which has proven to be very positive for us. They have supported us conducting activities that drive and continuously develop our, and our business partners, sustainability,” says Anders Lundgren, Chief Operating Officer at LKAB Minerals.

Sustainability sells in the polymer industry

We see that our customers in the polymer industry have become more aware and are more often actively working to ensure the integrity of their value chain.

Rob Lammertink, LKAB Minerals Business Area Director for the Polymer and Coating industries, says “We have been getting a lot of positive feedback on our work and new requests thanks to us being able to supply sustainably sourced minerals. It is both a risk control mechanism to partner with someone like us, but also a positive positioning opportunity for themselves to prove control of their value chain”.

Many aspects of sustainability

The company has a broad view of sustainability that encompasses the full value chain.

Sustainable extraction – we operate own mining and processing sites in Europe for the core minerals MicaFort, MagniF and UltraCarb, geographies with low sustainability risks and in the company’s own hands.

Sustainable sourcing – we have developed a procurement process and supplier assessment methodology to ensure that our suppliers, in whatever country they operate in, observe the highest possible standards for all aspects of their business including environmental, health and safety, human rights, anti-corruption and general ethical practices.

Sustainable operationsSafety, Operational Excellence and Business Ethics are top priorities for LKAB Minerals and the whole LKAB group. All employees have gone through Code of Conduct training, and the company has transparent reporting through the Annual and Sustainability Report

Sustainable industrial uses - end-user segments are chosen based on where the company can provide the best value, which includes improvement of performance thanks to the functionality of the mineral or the customer’s industry. Examples of this include low free silica Mica’s, natural flame retardants with better performance, and traceability of plastic contamination in food processes through MagniF food grades – to name a few examples.