Gold production peaked in 1866 at 22,870 kilograms, and came near this total again in 1871 (22,704 kilograms). The amount of gold that was recovered in the early gold-rush years has never been repeated. The year 1906 (17,536 kilograms) came the closest when the Coromandel Peninsula and West Coast hard-rock mines were operating, as were many gold dredges in Otago and on the West Coast. As silver only occurs on the Coromandel Peninsula, surges in its production represent hard-rock mining booms there. The recent surge in gold production can be traced back to the early 1970s, when the price of gold was floated on the open market.
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Source: Annual production reports, Mines Department (later Ministry of Energy, then Crown Minerals, Ministry of Economic Development)