Supporting sustainable economic development
and direct trade in Guatemala

Appropriate Technology

Appropriate technology is small-scale, labor-intensive, energy-efficient, environmentally sound, and locally controlled. It also people-center technology.

For AGAIG, this revolutionary technology closes the door on conventional methods of doing things and opens the door for simple, feasible, reliable, inexpensive, small scale machines, processes, or even animals to solve a problem. Human power or animal power is placed at a premium over electrical power. Fuels that we can grow are held to be more useful than those pumped from the ground. Energy sources that can be replenished in a day, week, or month are ideal, as opposed to those sources that are replenished only in geologic time periods.

Inexpensive devices, low capital investment, and culturally sensitive solutions are key.

If you, your organization or university group has experience with appropriate technology and would like to drop us a line about ideas and potential projects, please contact Franklin here.

 


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Natural Decaffeinator

 

Coffee Pulpero

 

Coffee Husker

Traditional coffee decaffeination processes rely primarily on chemical solvents to remove the caffeine from the beans, also removing the primary characteristics (and taste) of the coffee. We follow the European water process, using naturally activated charcoal (local macadamia nut shells roasted in our homemade kiln) to absorb the caffeine from the beans, leaving the character of the beans in tact. This 100% organic and chemical free process is carried out using our locally built decaffeinating machine.   This machine separates the coffee fruit and beans with bicycle power. Early versions of the machine were made from stainless steel. It worked great, but if your 8-year-old put a rock in the machine, the teeth were ground up. Julio has now designed one that has solid steel teeth. Now our 8-year-olds can grind up rocks!   The husking device turns dried parchment coffee into green coffee. It processes 500 lbs an hour. The husks are collected in an old chicken coop and reused as chicken bedding and finally as organic compost.
         
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Coffee Washer   Intercropping

 

Kiln 
Cross the world’s largest egg beater with a drill brace and you get our latest coffee washer. The washer also does double-duty as a coffee fermentation tank, eliminating double material handling. He can wash the coffee in a matter of minutes, then open the door and let his coffee fall directly onto the drying patio.   Intercropping has been around for centuries. Timoteo's ancestors intercropped black beans with rice as he still does today. Our intercropping is using unconventional species mixes. Timoteo is mixing wheat, oats, black raspberries and asparagus with his coffee.   This is a down-flow kiln designed to make filter media for decaffeinating coffee. Its versatile design makes it suitable for making bisque, low-fire clay work, permeable clay pots, physical water filters, and adsorptive water filters.