Make Kitco Your Homepage

How much gold & silver is actually in Tokyo 2020 Olympic medals?

Kitco News

(Kitco News) It is no longer a secret that the Olympic gold medals don't contain a lot of the actual yellow metal. But how much gold do they have, and what about silver and bronze medals?

Here's the breakdown:

Gold medal: Only 1.2% of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic gold medal is actually gold. The other 98.8% is silver.

Silver medal: The silver medal is the only one that truly lives up to its name. It has the same weight as gold and is made from 100% actual silver.

Bronze medal: The bronze medal is lighter and is made up of 95% copper and 5% zinc.

The data are provided by Compound Interest

It is even more interesting how Japan got the needed metals to make approximately 5,000 medals that are currently being handed out at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

As part of the "Tokyo 2020 Medal Project," Japan collected approximately 78,985 tons of used small electronic devices. Out of those, 6.21 million were used mobile phones. These were collected all across Japan from April 2017 till the end of March 2019.

Japan managed to collect 32kg worth of gold, 3,500kg worth of silver, and 2,200kg worth of bronze.

"Every single medal to be awarded to athletes during the Tokyo 2020 Games is made from recycled metals. We are grateful for everyone's cooperation on this project. We hope that our project of recycling small consumer electronics and our efforts to contribute to an environmentally-friendly and sustainable society will form part of the legacy of the Tokyo 2020 Games," Tokyo 2020 said in a blog post.

The Tokyo 2020 medals designer Junichi Kawanishi said he specifically gave the medals a polished look in order to achieve a "warm glow."

"With their shining rings, I hope the medals will be seen as paying tribute to the athletes' efforts, reflecting their glory and symbolizing friendship," CBC quoted Kawanishi as saying.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect those of Kitco Metals Inc. The author has made every effort to ensure accuracy of information provided; however, neither Kitco Metals Inc. nor the author can guarantee such accuracy. This article is strictly for informational purposes only. It is not a solicitation to make any exchange in commodities, securities or other financial instruments. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.