Do you know how many different uses there are for salt? According to Morton Salt, there are over 14,000 different uses. I don’t know about you, but that absolutely blows my mind! Whether it’s for seasoning our food or for deicing our roadways, we use salt every single day.
As a mining recruiter, I am constantly learning more about this fascinating mineral. Here are some of my favorite facts about NaCL (salt) that I have learned over the last year.
The world’s largest salt flat is Salar de Uyuni located, which is located in Bolivia. The salt flat is over 4,000 square miles, and whenever a thin film of water rests on its surface, it becomes as reflective as a mirror.
Source: SRK Consulting
Sifto Salt Mine in Goderich Ontario
The world’s largest salt mine belongs to Sifto Salt in Goderich Ontario. To get the 40-ton dump trunks down the underground mine, the trucks are dissembled, lowered 1,800 ft down mine shafts, (that’s further underground than the Empire State Building is tall!), and reassembled for use. In fact, the tunnels in the Sifto Salt Mine are wide enough for two 70 ton dump trucks to pass each other.
Khewra Salt Mine in Pakistan
The Khewra Salt Mine in Pakistan is the world’s 2nd largest salt mine. It is said to have been discovered in 326 BC when Alexander the Great’s horse began licking the rocks in the area. Khewra has led to over 40 kilometers of underground tunnels and produces over 325,000 tons of salt each year!
There is actually a Mosque inside made entirely of salt rock. Talk about a salt lamp!
We all know that salt is in many of our foods and we use it every day to season our meals. However, did you know that only 6% of the salt in the United States is used in food? With over 14,000 different uses, salt has a profound impact on our daily lives. For example, the word ‘salad’ originates from early Romans salting their greens.
Imagine getting paid in salt
Into the 20th Century, 1lb bars of salt were still used as the basic form of currency in Ethiopia. Salt used to be so valuable it was called “white gold” and the word ‘salary’ is actually derived from salt having been so valuable that it was used as payment. Even into the 19th Century salt was known to be multiple times as expensive as beef, four times in fact.