Where does granite come from?
Shopping for granite is a really exciting experience; but making a decision on which granite to choose can be tough! There are so many different options! Granite comes in tons of different colors, patterns, and textures that can vary depending on the granite's origin. But where does granite originate from?
Our beautiful earth!
The granite quarry pictured above is located in China.
When you are looking through a slab yard you may be looking at granite from China, Italy, Spain, Brazil, India, and even North America! China's granite supply is made up of mostly brown granite. Whereas Brazil's supply ranges from beautiful blues to deep reds. In Italy and Spain you will mostly find marble quarries. Brazil produces almost 90% supply of granite for the United States, and other countries around the world! That's a lot of granite!
Granite is mostly composed of mica, quartz, and amphibole minerals. The place of origin, weathering, and the type of granite will also determine what it is composed of.
How do they get it out of the mountain?
Photograph by Edward Burtynsky - Quarry
To get granite out of its initial form in the mountain, workers take long drills and sink them into the rock up to 20 feet, repeating the process until a block is formed. Then to break the block loose from the mountain, they will use water jets, jet piercing (flame), and even explosives! Once the block of granite is removed, it is produced into commercial form, in our case...granite slabs!
Pictured above is a gang saw.
To get the stone into slab form, the block of granite is placed in a gang saw which will turn the block of stone into slabs! The gang saw can take hours, and even a whole day to get through a block of granite. Depending on the size of the block, the gang saw can produce over 60 slabs of stone! Now, if you have seen an entire slab of granite, and then picture 60 or more of them put together...that's a HUGE block!
Once the granite is in slab form, it is taken to a warehouse where they will pour resin to strengthen and intensify the detail of the stone, polishing the surface for a gorgeous glassy shine while leaving the edges raw, laying fiberglass for shipment, and then sending it to granite vendors around the world! Then the granite ends up in homes like yours!
Having granite in your home is a true luxury, especially after you learn where it came from!
Check out this neat video by M&F Granite and Marble for a closer look at the process!
Have you ever wondered what our process from TVG to home is? Next week I will take you on a tour of our shop, going into every detail of how we customize each slab to fit your wants and needs!