About 70% of all silver is produced as a by-product when extracting other metals: 33% in lead and zinc refining, 27% in copper refining (see below), and 10% in gold refining (see above). Since only 30% of all silver is mined, the process of silver mining shall not be discussed in this document.

The melting point of silver is 961.78 °C, so using appropriate equipment, it can relatively easily be melted and subsequently shaped. As a result of its complete demonetisation, silver is now mainly used in industrial processes for its excellent electrical and thermal conductivity. One example is silver wire, which is used extensively. In the 19th century,

the bactericidal effect of silver was discovered, so it is now used in many objects of daily use. The food industry, electronics, medical instruments and electrical engineering are all areas where silver is widely used. Other consumers are buyers of jewellery and silverware, the latter still being very popular with collectors.