Anyone know the market for sand?

I\’m looking for someone who can give me the two minute lesson on the market for sand.


The background is that as a part of our adventures in the Sudetenland we will be producing 30k tonnes of quartz sand. Rock, ground then milled to perhaps 200 nm, the heavy mineral sands extracted by water/centrifuge, the by product being what I\’m told is quartz sand.

We assume that 30k tonnes of sand is entirely trivial by any market standard. But we\’d love to know more about it. I think this is what in English is called \”sharp sand\”. And that it goes for a premium to builders\’ sand.

But I\’d love to know more about who uses it, why, how much they pay etc.

Another interesting line would be, what\’s the sort or price premium between selling it in bulk (10 lorry loads? That\’ll be fine sir) and packaging it up in 25 kg or so and selling though builders\’ merchants,/garden centres.

Anyone actually know anything about this?

12 thoughts on “Anyone know the market for sand?”

  1. Sharp sand is used by gardeners to improve drainage. Visit your local garden centre or don’t they have them in Portugal/Germany?!

  2. High purity silicon sand is used for all sorts of things, glass making, abrasives, silicon wafer production, certainly not down the local builders merchants. A quick wander round Alibaba give range $70 to $150 a tonne FOB, which might not be a lot, but would keep the beer fund well supplied.

    Tim adds: Indeed….but it won’t be pure silica, our production. If it was we’d be in 60% gross profit territory even without counting the value of the mineral sand. Which we ain’t gonna be.

  3. Might be of interest for sand filters for water purification. Is your particle size specific to your process?

  4. It’s rougher and more sticky than builder’s sand; and is sometimes used for concrete (not mortar) or for rendering, and for block/paving laying.

    Wickes charge £40 for 850kg in a big bag.

    OTOH I can have a 10 ton lorryload of *washed* sharp sand delivered to my home for £222 tomorrow morning. Or £400 for 20 tons.

  5. Do you have an assay of what impurities are in the sand? If it comes from mine tailings, that might be a concern.

    Tim adds: Not tailings, no. Left over low grade ore which we then grind and mill, extract the ore from. Only water used to extract, so no pollution of it….and the water washes the sand in hte process.

  6. why not ring your local building supplies wholesaler and ask how much they’d buy it for. I bet you get a hell of a lot less for it as the producer that the wholesaler would sell it for, which in turn will be one hell of a lot less than it’s sold for at retail.

  7. Sand is an inflation hedge.

    Visiting a brick factory with $17K in cash to buy bolivars required for an armoured Merc (nuttin’ to do with me, guv, but I was there), the brick factory had a three storey high, one large city block in area mound of sand.

    Asked why, he said that it was a store of value that could not be inflated away by Chavez, nor could it easily be stolen. And, come what may, he’d always need it for his bricks …

    A handy tip for when they stop inflating the bubble with QE*.

  8. Kill two birds with the one stone.

    Secure the energy future by selling it to the Fracking industry and p*ss off the watermelons at the same time.

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