The Mining Association of Canada (MAC) is the national association of the Canadian mining industry – comprising companies engaged in mineral exploration, mining, smelting, and refining. Member companies account for the majority of Canada's output of metals and major industrial materials. MAC's mission is to promote, through the collective action of members, the growth and development of Canada's mining and mineral processing industry for the benefit of all Canadians. An important function is to work closely with the federal government to improve the business and regulatory climate in Canada. In 2004, MAC launched Towards Sustainable Mining, an award-winning stewardship initiative focused on improving the mining industry's social, environmental and economic performance. The government, the public and the Association's diverse group of stakeholders recognize MAC as a source of reliable information and valuable consultation on matters concerning the industry and its place in Canadian society.