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Are the Olympic gold medals really gold? Who provides them?

Gold medals are actually silver, at least at their core. They have a 6 gram gold plating. Silver medals are solid silver. Bronze medals are a solid alloy of 90 percent copper and 10 percent zinc. Every medal is given an antique finish by hand, then a coat of lacquer.

According to information from the U.S. Olympic Committee, the 2002 medals were made exclusively of Utah metals, extracted from minerals donated by Kennecott Corp., from the world's largest open-pit mine near Salt Lake City.

Salt Lake City-based O.C. Tanner Co. donated its expertise and labor to produce the medals.


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