Melting Pot

Nov 05, 2010 | 12:37 PM |

Coconuts and concrete

It's common practice to christen a new vessel by breaking a bottle of champagne on its hull, and some bury a likeness of St. Joseph in the front yard to help sell a house. But who knew that coconuts would play a role at a concrete pouring ceremony for a $1.6-billion steel mill? Essar Global Ltd., parent company of Essar Steel Minnesota LLC, recently held a ceremony to pour the first 105,000 cubic yards of concrete for its iron-to-steel manufacturing facility on the Iron Range. Before the concrete was poured into the area that will serve as the taconite pellet plant, however, executives took time to break several coconuts at the site—an Indian custom at significant....

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